How Long Does a Cannabis High Last?
Various factors come together when it comes to determining how long will a high last for. Whether you smoke or scoff a brownie, the type of strain you choose, the amount you take—this is not an exhaustive list of things to consider. Read on for more details!
There are times when it’s handy to know how long you can expect the effects of cannabis to last. It could be that you still have work to do or need to drive somewhere. Perhaps you are planning a night out and are trying to estimate when to smoke so you can enjoy those effects when out with your friends. Giving the answer to the question at hand would be easier if weed hit us all the same, but that’s not the case. The effects don’t vary too wildly from person to person, however there are several factors that come into play when determining the duration of your high. We can safely say that it’s a combination of those factors, so let’s explore them in more detail.
CANNABINOID PERCENTAGE IN YOUR WEED
Before we talk about an individual’s set of features that make highs longer or shorter, look at what you’re smoking. If the strain is a mild 14% THC with a moderate amount of CBD in the mix, like Royal Bluematic for example, the high won’t be too strong and long-lasting. However, if you go for something along the lines of Amnesia Haze (22% THC), expect to be on that ride a while longer.
METHOD OF INGESTION
We also have to consider how the weed is being ingested. When it comes to inhaling smoke, people generally see their highs lasting for one to three hours. If we’re dealing with edibles, though, the high can push well past that boundary and stick around for a good four to six hours.
Along with the way you choose to consume your weed, the amount you take will affect how long the high lasts. So if you take a couple more edibles than normally, you’ll be high for five to six hours. You might even go past that in special cases. The same goes for smoking—a hit is enough for a bit, but the whole joint will have you high for 3 hours or more.
AMOUNT VS TIME
Those that drink will know at least one thing. Pounding six shots in one hour gets you drunker for longer than drinking the same amount in six hours. The same principle applies to weed. If you have a joint in bits over the course of the night, you’ll be in the zone for about an hour each session. If you smoke the whole thing yourself in 15 minutes, you’ll be good for three hours or more.
Now we have to consider the individual. Even after smoking the whole joint, someone who smokes two per day would be high for more or less an hour. However, giving a 10mg edible to a first-timer can leave them soaring for almost eight hours.
Due to the brain’s impressionable state in youth, 18-year-olds can expect to stay high for longer than older smokers. The reason for that is the same as the reason why cannabis is harmful to younger consumers. Since it’s able to stick around in the brain, every effect it has is stronger.
As some could expect, your metabolism plays a key role in the duration of your cannabis high. If your body takes more time to process chemicals, your high will last a bit longer than that of your peers. If your metabolism is on the faster end, you’ll likely be the first of your friends to reach sobriety.
HEIGHT & WEIGHT
While not as major of a factor, a person’s height and weight will still affect their high. Heavier and taller people will stay high for longer. The effects heavier people experience are also impacted by low metabolisms at times, since they occasionally appear together.
Lastly, if you focus on the fact that you’re high, the sensation will linger on longer than it would if you weren’t paying attention. Cannabinoids stay in your body just as long, whether you pay attention or not, but the duration of the feeling rests partly in your hands.
Even though it’s tricky to precisely determine how long you can expect for the high to last, we hope this quick rundown was helpful. It is always a good idea to start low and slow if you are a beginner. This way you can observe your reactions and gauge the amounts that work best for you.
Everyone's body is different, and everyone will perceive the high differently, but there are a few factors that can help you tell how long you'll be high for.
How long does a weed high last?
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- The science behind how long a high lasts: everyone is different
- How long does a marijuana high last?
- What does being high feel like?
- How much weed does it take to get high?
- How you feel vs. the weed in your system
- How to bring down your high?
- How to increase the length of your high
Cannabis serves a wide variety of purposes in the modern world, with new medicinal uses and products appearing every day. But for the majority of marijuana users who come to the plant recreationally, the goal is still to experience the cannabis high.
Marijuana highs can facilitate a wide variety of sensory and psychological effects, including mild reverie, euphoria, increased sensory awareness, and some therapeutic benefits. But if you’re a new or less experienced user, you’d want to know: How long does a high last? What duration are you committing to when you smoke a bowl, eat an edible, or take a dab?
Marijuana highs can facilitate a wide variety of sensory and psychological effects, including mild reverie, euphoria, increased sensory awareness, and some therapeutic benefits. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
The science behind how long a high lasts: everyone is different
Much of your reaction to cannabis, whether it be therapeutic or the duration of the high it produces, will depend on your own biological makeup. Different types or strains of cannabis can produce different effects. One variety may produce a more intense high, or one that lasts longer than another. But the same plant can also produce different effects in others.
Out bodies interact with cannabis by way of the endocannabinoid system (ECS) — the series of receptors, lipids, and enzymes that help the body maintain internal balance and regulate several bodily functions. When cannabinoids, compounds indigenous to the cannabis plant such as THC and cannabidiol (CBD) , interact with the body, they produce an effect by binding to cannabinoid receptors, where they are then broken down by enzymes. Our cannabinoid receptors have genetic variations from person to person, which in turn can alter the effects of cannabis , including the duration of intoxication.
How long does a marijuana high last?
So, how long does weed last? There are several factors that determine the answer to this question, but the primary driver on the cannabis high duration is the method of cannabis consumption. Your own biological makeup, along with the chemical makeup of the cannabis you’re ingesting, will also determine how long a cannabis high and potential side effects will last. That being said, the rate of THC blood saturation through to the eventual expungement of THC from the body provides a general window of duration in most people, which varies depending on how cannabis is being ingested.
When smoking cannabis, the onset of the high is nearly immediate and THC levels peak within the first 30 minutes to an hour after inhalation. The high from smoked marijuana can last up to several hours, though the intensity will generally decrease after the first hour or so.
Cannabis edibles are a whole different story. As edibles are absorbed through the digestive system and THC is metabolized through the liver, it takes anywhere from 20 minutes to 3 hours for the onset of effects. Depending on the amount of THC consumed, the amount of time an edible high can last upwards of 9 hours, with the peak generally lasting from 1 to 3 hours.
When dabbing concentrates , the onset of effects is also nearly immediate, but the duration depends largely on individual tolerance. Those who dab high-THC concentrates often may feel the effects wearing off within 1 to 2 hours, while someone entirely new to dabbing may be wiped out for the day.
When dabbing concentrates, the onset of effects is also nearly immediate, but the duration depends largely on individual tolerance. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
What does being high feel like?
The specific qualities of a cannabis high will change over time, regardless of the form you take. Similarly to how long a weed high will last, you can expect the specific qualities of a high to change from person to person, and from cultivar to cultivar. Most cannabis cultivars bring with them a general list of qualities that most people experience from them, from hunger to cerebral stimulation, or creativity to couch lock.
Some cultivars will quash anxiety, while others will increase anxiety. As the high wears down, the more euphoric aspects typically wane and sleepiness replaces them. Again, all of these effects depend on the chemical makeup of a given cultivar, as well as your genes.
How much weed does it take to get high?
The amount of weed needed to feel high also depends on several variables. THC is the intoxicating component of cannabis, and though other cannabinoids play a role in either contributing to or enhancing the cannabis high, the THC percentage of a cannabis product will impact how long you’ll be high when you consume it. However, the method of consumption is an even bigger determining factor. For example, the effects of eating a 50 milligram edible will last longer than smoking a 0.5 gram joint with 20% THC.
THC percentages don’t tell the whole story, but they do provide a general idea of what a user should expect with flower or concentrate products. In the case of edibles, instead of THC percentage, the key factor to potency is the quantity of THC in the product, which is typically measured in milligrams.
How you feel vs. the weed in your system
How long you stay high and how long weed stays in your system are two very different things. As drug tests are looking for THC metabolites, it can take upwards of a month for the compounds to completely leave your system, depending on body mass index (BMI), metabolism, frequency of use, the potency of the product, and genetics.
How to bring down your high?
If you’re experiencing a particularly intense high, it’s important to remember that it shall pass, and cannabis is non-toxic. No deaths from a marijuana overdose have ever been reported. For those who want or need to come down from a particularly intense high as quickly as possible, there are several tactics that may prove effective, such as taking very deep breaths, ingesting black pepper , hydrating, taking a cold shower , and consuming CBD oil , which may be able to counteract the intoxicating effects of THC by way of the entourage effect.
How to increase the length of your high
The higher the amount of THC, the less cannabis needed to achieve a high. If you want to know how to increase the length of your high , you can either smoke weed again, opt for the longer-lasting intoxicating effects of an edible, or consume cannabis products with higher levels of THC.
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