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What To Do When You Feel Too High

what to do when you feel too high

Cannabis has been called “the healing herb” for many good reasons. It may help with the relief of inflammation and pain, and some strains can help with symptoms of anxiety, depression, and many other conditions.

If you have consumed too much THC and you are feeling anything but relaxed or experiencing uncomfortable symptoms, there are some steps you can take. And in some cases, symptoms you should be aware of that may require emergency medical care.

What Does Being High Feel Like?

Cannabis contains hundreds of cannabinoids and a variety of terpenes. So, when you talk about what it feels like to “get high,” it depends on the strain and the terpene content. Cannabinoids and terpenes create different physiological and psychoactive feelings (the entourage effect).

Some other factors can either amplify impairment or subdue the effects of THC. But generally speaking, cannabis can make you feel relaxed. Some strains (Sativa dominant or pure Sativa) may make you feel energetic, talkative, and ambitious to do things, even if it is just cleaning your closet. Twice.

Indica dominant strains may have the opposite effect, making you feel less alert, sleepy, and motivated to do little. But that can feel nice too. And some Indica strains stimulate appetite, so you’ll either want to avoid those types or ensure you have some great snacks in your kitchen.

too high

What is a Head High?

Some types of cannabis may provide a cerebral effect, otherwise known as a “head high.” If you consume a “cerebral strain,” you may find yourself philosophizing about life, actively engaged in problem-solving or critical thinking. Other strains may have you staring into space with no thoughts or give you a pleasant (if not sometimes annoying) case of chronic giggles.

Hybrid strains can create a “best of both” Indica and Sativa effects. Mainly 50/50 balanced strains of weed. When you have a “head high,” you may experience:

  • Lower (or paused) anxiety.
  • Relief from low mood or feelings of depression.
  • Reduced or (temporarily) resolved sensations of pain and muscle spasms.
  • High energy.
  • Drowsiness.
  • Overall relaxation and calmness.
  • Creative thoughts.

The effects of THC are temporary, however, and do not permanently treat or resolve any symptom or condition. But cannabis may pause unpleasant side effects, whether physiological or psychological.

What Can Amplify the Effects of THC?

Learning how much weed to take and how the entourage effect works may help you get better results from the medical marijuana you take. Some types of foods and other terpene-rich herbs can positively accentuate the effects of cannabis.

However, if you do not want to increase the impact of THC on your body, you should avoid the following things:

  • Consuming cannabis on an empty stomach.
  • CYP2C9 inhibitors such as cotrimoxazole, fluoxetine, and amiodarone can increase THC’s psychoactive effects.
  • Eating certain foods like mango, dark chocolate, raw nuts, coffee and tea, kombucha, sweet potatoes, and broccoli immediately before or while you are consuming cannabis.

If you are new to using medical marijuana, starting with a low-potency strain is advised. Cannabis may also have adverse effects with common medications, including blood thinners, drugs for hypertension, and certain statin medications for cholesterol.

How Long Does It Take to Sober Up From Weed?

The duration of the “high” from cannabis depends on the route you choose. If you use smokable or inhalable cannabis, you can expect to feel “back to normal” in about three hours. Inhalable cannabis takes effect within 3-10 minutes for most patients.

However, if you have taken an edible, you will feel the peak of cannabis effects 2-3 hours after consuming it. And then, you can feel some after-effects for 6-10 hours, depending on your tolerance and the potency of the edible you finished.

Tolerance is a variable that also determines how quickly you “sober up” from weed. If you have used medical marijuana for years, the effects will likely wear off faster. Patients new to using cannabis may find the effects linger for a more extended period after inhalation or consumption.

What Are the Symptoms of Being Too High?

Hollywood movies make getting “too high” seem funny, but it’s not. It can feel pretty awful. Cannabis is a drug, and taking too much can mean hitting a level of uncomfortable or unpleasant impairment.

The symptoms of taking too much THC include:

  • Feeling anxious or paranoid.
  • Increased heart rate.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Bloodshot dry eyes.
  • Dizziness.
  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Delayed reaction time or impaired motor coordination.
  • Feeling confused or disoriented.
  • Hallucinations or delusions.
  • Nausea or vomiting.

Cannabis users have a “higher” risk of falling and other injuries due to impacts on motor coordination and cognitive impairment. If you, or someone you are with, experiences severe side effects, it is important to seek medical attention.


Steps to Take if You Feel Uncomfortably High

You have a few options if you do not need to go to the hospital, seek medical attention, or if someone is with you to monitor your safety (call someone if you are concerned).

Many people believe that taking a hot shower will help reduce the effects of THC; some studies have debunked that method of sobering up. It doesn’t work, but you can try some of these proven steps to come down from your weed high.

1. Stay Calm and Try to Relax

You may be worrying about something insignificant and causing yourself more anxiety. Find a quiet place, and do some therapeutic breathing. Get fresh air. Turn on some relaxing music, sit for a bit, and try to slow down your thoughts with some deep breaths until you are calmer.

2. Drinking Water

While cannabis doesn’t directly cause dehydration, it can make you feel thirsty and dehydrated if you get too high. Certain strains are notorious for dry mouth or “cotton mouth.” Get some room-temperature water (it hydrates the body faster than ice-cold water) and sip slowly.

Beer? Wine? Alcoholic beverages do not hydrate the body. They contribute to further dehydration. So head to your kitchen, and grab some plain water. Hydrated cells can more easily flush out THC, according to some studies.

3. Eat a Small Snack

If you are feeling symptoms of nausea, this may be easier said than done. Few people know that cannabis can cause a drop in blood sugar levels. That can create hunger pangs and make you tired and sleepy.

Put the chips and cereal away, and opt for a nutritious snack. Cheese or yogurt are good. Nuts, fresh fruit, or vegetables can help as well. Did you know that regular cannabis users can develop potassium deficiency? Snack on a banana, grapefruit, melon, or other high-potassium food. You may feel better in a few hours.

4. Chewing Peppercorns May Help

It may sound like a silly idea, but chewing raw peppercorns may help if you feel too high. That is because black pepper contains powerful pinene and the terpene beta-caryophyllene. Two natural compounds that may help reduce feelings of anxiety caused by too much THC.

Can’t stomach the idea of chewing black peppercorns? You can try pouring some into a bowl and inhaling them. That can also work to absorb the terpenes.

You can also drink some water with a 30% concentrate of fresh lemon juice. Limonene is the dominant terpene in all citrus fruits found in lemon peel and juice. It can act like CBD to help mellow out THC’s psychoactive and physical effects. Avoid drinking alcohol.

5. Try a CBD Oil Tincture

Did you know that taking a clinical-grade broad-spectrum CBD supplement may help you recover faster from THC? We suggest a tincture, with a dose held under the tongue for at least one (1) minute. This method, called sublingual uptake, provides rapid absorption into the blood flow.

While THC activates the body’s cannabinoid receptors, CBD helps reactive them. Dulling the CB1 and CB2 receptor response to THC may reduce some unwanted side effects of being “too high,” such as increased heart rate, anxiety, or paranoia.

6. Reduce Stress and Sleep It Off

You may feel sleepy. And in many cases, the opportunity to fall asleep is a great idea. You will likely wake up feeling refreshed, mildly groggy (if you have taken too much THC), but improved overall. But there are some safety steps to consider.

If you are vomiting or you feel like you may be sick with severe nausea, do not lie down. It may cause a life-threatening situation with the risk of choking in your sleep. Instead, if you feel you must rest, prop yourself upright in a chair or with pillows on your couch. Keep your head elevated higher than your abdomen.

Do not take any sleep aid when you feel over-intoxicated from too much THC. Whether a natural supplement, sleeping pills, or over-the-counter remedies. Sleep medications and natural extracts that promote drowsiness can negatively interact with cannabis and increase your risk of an adverse event.

Do Not Take Any Sleep Aids

If you feel too high on THC, sleeping it off is okay. Sleeping can help your body recover and allow the effects of cannabis to wear off. Find a comfortable place to lie down and try to get some rest. However, avoid taking sleeping pills or other medications to fall asleep, as they can interact with cannabis and worsen the side effects.

7. Call a Friend or Family Member

Having someone come over to monitor you can be a good idea and life-saving, particularly if you are nauseous or persistently vomiting. Choking hazards are a real threat anytime you are feeling nauseous and intoxicated. It’s a good idea to call someone you trust in case you need assistance until the cannabis effects wear off.

8. Avoid Driving or Operating Machinery or Appliances

Alcohol isn’t the only controlled substance that can result in a DWI (driving while impaired) charge. If you are high on cannabis, you do not have the cognitive skills to operate a vehicle safely. And that poses a danger to yourself and everyone else on the road.

If you need to get somewhere, like a hospital or walk-in clinic, have a friend or family member drive you. Or call an UBER or Rideshare to get you there safely.

Also avoid operating appliances like grills, gas stoves, or other devices that have the potential to injure you. Appliances can present fire hazards, particularly if you crash out on your couch and forget you left them on. Take a pass on the cooking, and order DoorDash or Uber Eats instead.

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Know What to Do if You Get Too High

THC is a controlled substance for a reason. Marijuana can cause psychoactive (psychological) and physiological effects when consumed. It may also conflict with other controlled substances, including prescription medications.

Make sure you get expert advice from your physician and your dispensary about the potency and side effects of different strains of medical marijuana. And know the steps to take if you become experience unpleasant side effects.

DocMJ Helps Educate Patients About Medical Marijuana

Our team at DocMJ is committed to providing expert cannabis healthcare services. When ready to apply for your medical card, make DocMJ your first choice. We have friendly and compassionate doctors who support your right to try alternative health treatments with cannabis.

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter for resources to reach your wellness goals. And if you have a question regarding medical cannabis or getting your medical card, contact us for more information.


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