Can You Take Hydroxyzine and Weed Together?

hydroxyzine and marijuana
By Nick Congleton Updated March 8th

Medically reviewed by Dr. Brian Kessler, MD

According to the CDC, 31.8% of U.S. adults suffer from some form of allergy. And seasonal allergies make up a big chunk of that number. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America states that roughly 26% of adults and 19% of children were diagnosed with hay fever in 2021.

With nearly a third of American adults experiencing some sort of allergy, and over a quarter of adults suffering from seasonal allergies, there are millions of people seeking relief. Antihistamines, like hydroxyzine, are commonly prescribed to relieve symptoms like itching. 

Hydroxyzine and cannabis are both prevalent in the U.S. This has left many consumers asking if hydroxyzine and medical marijuana can be safely used together.

While each one is considered to be relatively safe on its own, and they may help alleviate many of the same symptoms (though in different ways), there are some concerns when using them together.  Before you use cannabis and hydroxyzine together, it’s important to have a good idea of the possible effects of the combination.

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What is Hydroxyzine?

Hydroxyzine belongs to a class of medications known as antihistamines, similar to Benadryl. These medications are commonly used to treat allergies. They work by blocking histamine, a chemical the immune system produces to respond to potential threats. If there’s too much histamine, the body will overreact to common substances, like pollen and pet dander, which leads to allergy symptoms.

Hydroxyzine is referred to as a first-generation antihistamine, meaning that it affects the central nervous system by interacting with H-1 receptors. As a result, hydroxyzine also causes drowsiness and may be prescribed to alleviate nausea or suppress anxious feelings

While antihistamines, like hydroxyzine, are typically considered safe, there are possible side effects, including:

  • Tightness or pain in the chest
  • Coughing
  • Problems swallowing
  • Fainting
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Racing or rapid heartbeat
  • Rashes
  • Hives
  • Unusual or unexplained itching
  • Slow heartbeat
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Constipation
  • Swelling or puffiness in the face, especially around the eyes or mouth
  • Unexplained tiredness or fatigue
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Confusion

Though rare, hydroxyzine also has several even more severe side effects, including:

  • Seizures
  • Trembling or uncontrollable shaky movements

Hydroxyzine is also known under a few common brand names, which include:

  • Atarax
  • Hypam
  • Orgatrax
  • Vistaril

Hydroxyzine and Weed: What are the Potential Risks and Side Effects?

Hydroxyzine and Weed

Unfortunately, there isn’t much research into the specific interactions between cannabis and hydroxyzine.

Many experts caution that using cannabis and antihistamines together can be risky. The most common cause for concern is excess drowsiness. On their own cannabis and hydroxyzine are known to cause drowsiness, to the point that they are often used to treat insomnia. Using both cannabis and hydroxyzine together has the potential to boost those sleep-inducing effects in such a way that’s either too potent, too unpredictable, or both. Driving, operating machinery, or even going about your daily business could become dangerous with excessive drowsiness, increasing the potential for accidents and injury.

Both cannabis and hydroxyzine are also known to lower blood pressure at certain doses. When blood pressure falls too low, it has its own set of risks that can endanger someone’s health, including fainting and dizziness.

Hydroxyzine is a central nervous system depressant, which slows down activity in the brain and spinal cord. Experts often caution against using cannabis along with central nervous system depressants because it can increase those effects.1 A depressed central nervous system can lead to drowsiness and could impact breathing in severe cases.

Though it’s rare, some people can be allergic to cannabis.2 Cannabis allergies can trigger symptoms that are mild and similar to seasonal allergy symptoms, though reactions could be more severe for some users. The symptoms that arise can be related to the method of cannabis use. For instance, smoking or vaping cannabis is more likely to trigger respiratory symptoms. Topicals would be more associated with skin irritation and rashes. And edibles have the potential to trigger a range of symptoms.

Combining hydroxyzine with cannabis could potentially lead to unpredictable reactions or a worsening of symptoms in some patients. It’s best to speak with your doctor before combining prescription medication and cannabis. And if you experience any adverse effects after taking cannabis and hydroxyzine, seek medical attention. 

What are the Benefits of Taking Hydroxyzine and Weed?

Benefits of Taking Hydroxyzine and Weed

Cannabis has a number of benefits that might be of interest to allergy sufferers. Inflammation is a common allergy symptom, and cannabis is known to have anti-inflammatory properties. Cannabinoids, like CBD and CBG, have been shown to fight inflammation on their own.3 Additional research also suggests that THC may help, too. There’s also evidence that the entourage effect boosts the independent anti-inflammatory properties of the individual cannabinoids and terpenes found in cannabis.4

Pain is another common allergy symptom closely related to inflammation. Current research indicates that cannabis may help alleviate pain for many patients, which may have something to do with its anti-inflammatory properties. As a result, cannabis may provide relief for some users from soreness and headaches associated with allergies.

Cannabis is also known to help people get to sleep, which can be difficult when suffering from moderate to severe allergy symptoms.

Hydroxyzine has been approved to treat many of the same allergy symptoms that patients use cannabis to alleviate. But the potential benefits many patients are hoping for are outweighed by the risks of combining the two. 

Instead of increasing each other’s effectiveness, the combination could lead to distressing side effects or a worsening of symptoms. If you aren’t sure which option is best for you, it’s a good idea to consult with your doctor. They’ll be able to provide you with informed, personalized guidance to help make the best possible decision.

Safety Precautions When Using Hydroxyzine and THC

Hydroxyzine and THC

Using cannabis and hydroxyzine together is not recommended. The risks simply outweigh any potential benefits. Before combining these or any medications, speak with your doctor about possible interactions and alternatives.

If you insist on using both substances – or if you accidentally combined the two – there are a few precautions you can take to reduce the risks.

Because both can cause drowsiness, do not drive or operate heavy machinery. Doing so is extremely dangerous and potentially puts you at risk for severe injury or death. Likewise, the risk of dizziness and low blood pressure from each substance can increase the risk of falls or fainting. So if you have taken both hydroxyzine and medical marijuana, consider finding a comfortable, safe location to wait out the effects of the cannabis. Finally, stay hydrated, eat healthy foods throughout the day, and avoid strenuous movements. And if you experience any adverse effects after combining the two, consult your doctor right away.

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Hydroxyzine and Weed FAQ

How long should I wait to use cannabis after taking hydroxyzine?

There isn’t any research to estimate how long someone should wait after taking hydroxyzine before using cannabis. If you have questions about dosage amounts or timing, consult with your doctor.

Can hydroxyzine reduce the effects of marijuana allergy?

While it’s possible that hydroxyzine could help reduce allergy symptoms of a cannabis allergy, there isn’t any research on this interaction specifically. And due to the risks of combining the two medications, it is not recommended to use hydroxyzine to treat symptoms of cannabis allergy.

Can cannabis relieve my allergy symptoms?

Cannabis has shown promise in helping alleviate several common allergy symptoms, but it hasn’t been studied as a treatment for allergies or their root cause. It’s always best to consult with a qualified medical marijuana doctor before using cannabis as a treatment.


1. Mayo Clinic. “Marijuana.” Mayo Clinic, 2017,

2. Jackson, Bradley, et al. “An Emerging Allergen: Cannabis Sativa Allergy in a Climate of Recent Legalization.” Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology, vol. 16, no. 1, 26 June 2020, Accessed 2 July 2021.

3. Henshaw FR, Dewsbury LS, Lim CK, Steiner GZ. The Effects of Cannabinoids on Pro- and Anti-Inflammatory Cytokines: A Systematic Review of In Vivo Studies. Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research. 2021;6(3):177-195. doi:

4. Anil SM, Peeri H, Koltai H. Medical Cannabis Activity Against Inflammation: Active Compounds and Modes of Action. Frontiers in Pharmacology. 2022;13. doi:

The information in this article and any included images or charts are for educational purposes only. This information is neither a substitute for, nor does it replace, professional legal advice or medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about laws, regulations, or your health, you should always consult with an attorney, physician or other licensed professional.

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