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Health Risks from Residual Butane Gas Inhalation

August 29, 2017


We've all seen that guy who sucks the whole flame through his bowl trying to burn the last few flakes of weed. That is a major no-no! Whether you use a Bic lighter for your joints or a dab-torch for your shatter - that blue flame you're using as a heat source can be toxic. The fuel inside is called butane, and it's a "colorless gas with a faint petroleum-like odor." This gas can have short-term and long-term effects on your health. Without a flame, that joint you just rolled is almost useless...so having a flame is a necessary evil of smoking. With that said, we wanted readers to know the health risks of too much residual butane inhalation. 


Related: Why You Should Never Spark Up With Matches Again


Short-Term Effects

Picture this - you're trying to keep a one-hitter lit so you spark your lighter and suck the flame through. Midway through the process, the flame goes out but you keep your finger down on the button and continue your hit. This is BAD! Butane gas obviously enter your body through the respiratory system, and therefore it has the ability to immediately enter into the body's blood stream. While many cannabis consumers are looking to feel a bit intoxicated, this chemically-induced high coming from the butane is the wrong way to get intoxicated.


Related: THC vs. CBD - Which One is for You?


What's the number one reason why this is so bad? Because one single instance of butane inhalation can be fatal due to lack of oxygen in your red blood cells. This lack of oxygen in your red blood cells and tissue can lead to permanent brain/organ damage and more. If you aren't scared yet, other effects of butane inhalation include seizures. 

Chronic Effects

Over time, butane inhalation can produce some degree of liver damage and more. The butane from your lighter or dab torch can also interfere with the transportation of oxygen throughout your body. By messing with the way that red blood cells bind with and release oxygen, butane can really mess with your homeostasis. 


Related: 14 Weed Accessories Every Cannabis Consumer Needs


One major takeaway from this is to consider another way of consuming cannabis that doesn't involve combustion (edibles, etc.). Another takeaway is to be careful sucking the flame through the last few flakes in your bowl. Be sure to subscribe to one or more of our free e-mail newsletters so you never miss an important marijuana update. Also, don't forget to connect with The Daily Marijuana Observer on social media via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.



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