Scientists have warned that smoking weed can affect fertility in both men and women. They say that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – the psychoactive ingredient in the cannabis plant – can have an effect on the reproductive organs. Here are five things the scientists want you to know about marijuana and fertility:
- The active ingredient in marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), acts on the receptors found in the hypothalamus, pituitary and internal reproductive organs in both males and females.
- Marijuana use can decrease sperm count. Smoking marijuana more than once a week was associated with a 29% reduction in sperm count in one study.
- Marijuana may delay or prevent ovulation. In a small study, ovulation was delayed in women who smoked marijuana more than 3 times in the 3 months before the study.
- Marijuana may affect the ability to conceive in couples with subfertility or infertility but does not appear to affect couples without fertility issues.
- More, and better quality, research is needed into the effects of marijuana on fertility.