With the legalization of recreational and medical marijuana, we are now seeing a surge in cannabis users, and dare we say, lovers across different states. At the same time, cannabis does have many potential therapeutic effects its crucial to bear in mind that there are also possible short-term and long-term side effects associated with high-THC cannabis. So, in this article, we'll journey to the dark side to discuss some potential side effects of THC, how you can prevent them, and some delta-9 THC alternatives.
What are the Side Effects of THC?
Tetrahydrocannabinol is a psychoactive compound prominent in the marijuana plant. Delta-9 Tetrahydrocannabinol has always been an area of scientific interest due to its diverse therapeutic properties. That being said, it's not the right choice for everyone. Many marijuana users often experience a range of side effects when consuming high-THC cannabis strains. Some of the side effects associated with THC include:
- Headaches and dizziness
Paranoia and Anxiety are Common Side Effects of THC
The science behind how delta-9 THC causes paranoia and anxiety in people is a complicated subject. So for this article, I'll simplify some of the main findings and theories proposed by the scientific community. A study in 2014 analyzed intravenous administration of delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol to identify some cognitive mechanisms which lead to paranoia. Firstly they noted that delta-9 THC would act on cannabinoid receptors found in the amygdala, which is the part of the brain in charge of the fear response. This interaction is one of the factors that can lead to anxiety and paranoia in newbie cannabis users. The study also determined that THC consumption alters many senses, including perception, experience, sights, and sounds. The psychotic symptoms tend to be heightened in individuals who are sensitive to high-THC cannabis or new to cannabis in general.
Immediate Short-Term Effects of THC: The Red-Eye Syndrome
Contrary to popular belief, it's not the smoke of a vape or joint that results in red-eye syndrome. Cannabinoids, including delta-9 THC, bind to the various endocannabinoid receptors found within the body. Through this process of binding high-THC, marijuana will decrease blood pressure in the body through vasodilation. Now the heart detects this sudden drop in blood pressure, so it increases cardiac output to compensate. As a result, we now see an increase in blood pressure. This, in turn, resulted in dilation and increased blood flow to the sclera of the eyes giving its users red eyes.
Dealing with Dizziness
Dizziness or the feeling of being light-headed is another side-effect of THC in cannabis users. We don't know exactly what causes a person to feel dizzy after cannabis use. We theorize that it can be pretty multifactorial. Firstly, as I mentioned above, high-THC cannabis (delta-9 THC) does cause a decrease in blood pressure. As a compensatory mechanism, the sympathetic nervous system is activated, which results in tachycardia (increased heart rate), thus leading to an increase in blood pressure. It seems like this sudden change in blood pressure, or an inability to regulate blood pressure will result in dizziness. On the other hand, another theory suggests that high-THC cannabis can also result in postural hypotension, which means that people cannot regulate their blood pressure when changing their posture. For example, if you suddenly get up and stand while on cannabis, you'll experience a sudden drop in blood pressure, making you feel light-headed.
Delta-8 THC: The Alternative to High THC Cannabis
Over the last few years, delta-8 THC products have risen in popularity across the USA. This is because delta-8 THC is THC without the intensity and side effects. So, how does it work?
Delta-8 THC is actually an isomer of delta-9 THC, which means it has a slightly different molecular structure but behaves similarly.
Just like delta-9 THC, Delta-8 will produce psychoactive effects we commonly associate with marijuana use. In other words, it will get you high! But here's the cool part, the high isn't going to be as potent and overpowering. Instead, it's more progressive, allowing the body's mechanism to adjust to the sudden rush of THC in blood.
Benefits of Delta-8 Tetrahydrocannabinol
There a few benefits of using delta-8 as opposed to delta-9, which is briefly listed below:
- Anti-paranoia and anti-anxiety: Many delta 8 users report that delta-8 thc did not cause episodes of anxiety and paranoia likely because it's not as potent and overwhelming as regular THC.
- Less likely to get dizzy: Users often report that the high associated with delta-8 is more relaxing and less likely to make you dizzy. This may be because this form of THC is a lot less potent.
- Analgesic and anti-inflammatory: Unlike regular THC, delta-8 THC has been shown to reduce inflammation and pain. This was demonstrated in a 2018 study that revealed that topical delta-8 THC decreased pain and inflammation in patients with corneal injury.
Plain Jane Delta-8 Edibles and More
It's not easy to come by reliable and trustworthy delta-8 THC products, particularly because they are really new to the cannabis market. Plain Jane has established itself as a leading player in providing high-quality delta-8 THC products to consumers across North America.
Plain Jane currently develops a wide range of products include delta-8 hemp flowers infused with CBG. Delta-8 pre-rolled joints, and more!