Author: James Anderson

Weed & Alcohol: Here’s What Happens When You Mix Them

weed and alcohol mixed

A shortage of fluids makes a severe hangover the next morning more likely, and dehydration can require medical treatment in severe cases. If you’re old enough, you may remember hearing in the anti-drug class at school that when taken together, alcohol and cannabis double the effects of one another. While there is no evidence of a doubling effect, the research does indicate that the two substances do augment the effects of one another. Drinking alcohol and getting high at the same time – sometimes known as “crossfading” – can enhance the effects of both and potentially lead to some real side effects.

weed and alcohol mixed

Other laboratory research has been used to examine driving-related skills and performance following co-administration of both alcohol and cannabis. Perez-Reyes and colleagues [67] conducted an investigation examining the interaction between alcohol and cannabis on plasma concentrations, subjective intoxication, and psychomotor performance. Alcohol (0.42 g/kg, 0.85 g/kg, or placebo) was administered to participants over 30 min, and cannabis (2.4% THC or placebo) was administered 15 min later. Findings from this research suggested that the performance impairment of driving-related skills attributed to alcohol were potentiated by cannabis.

If you aren’t careful, the duo can lead to a case of the spins or a green out, two reactions that can turn a fun night out into a nauseated night in. However, the body of existing research is likely to grow and evolve as more states begin to legalize marijuana use.

Smoking weed after drinking alcohol

This type of research is difficult to conduct, however, due to the classification of cannabis as a Schedule I substance that restricts researcher access to cannabis products [102]. There is a substantial body of research examining the efficacy of pharmacotherapy and behavioral treatments for alcohol [84–88] or cannabis use disorders [78, 89–92]. To date, however, there is little research evaluating the efficacy of interventions specifically for the co-use of cannabis and alcohol. If a person has been drinking and smoking weed, higher THC levels in their blood from drinking may increase the risk of a bad reaction. Because physical and mental impairment can be more pronounced when you combine cannabis and alcohol, it can be hard to know if someone’s symptoms are due to a marijuana green-out or excessive alcohol intake.

weed and alcohol mixed

If you take medication, talk to your doctor before using weed, alcohol, or both. They may weaken the effectiveness of your medication or increase your risk for certain side effects. Remember, consuming weed and alcohol together can make you feel either more or less intoxicated than you would if you were using just one or the other. When mixing weed and alcohol, there are a lot of other variables to consider in addition to which one you use first. If using weed does indeed slow the absorption of alcohol, it might also delay feelings of drunkenness.

If weed use does slow down the increase in blood alcohol levels, this may cause people to drink more than usual. In turn, this could increase risky behavior and the likelihood of alcohol poisoning. As the research indicates, people who use both alcohol and weed together tend to consume more of both.

The effects of alcohol and THC were evaluated alone, and in combination, across separate sessions, in a within-subjects, randomized, double-blind design. The authors reported no evidence for synergistic effects of acute combinations of very-low-dose alcohol and THC on subjective or physiologic response, or on cognitive performance. An interaction between ethanol and THC was observed, however, on ratings of desire to consume more of the administered drug. THC, when combined with ethanol, decreased the elevated ratings of wanting more ethanol after ethanol administration. Consequently, THC may either dampen ethanol’s effects or replace desire for more.

Too much of a good thing can be a real bummer, even if the worst thing that happens is a bad hangover (or a bad “weedover”). Luckily, this is easy to avoid by just knowing your limits and not overdoing it. If you’re going to use alcohol and cannabis together, we recommend starting low and going slow. The researchers wrote in their conclusion that in states with legal cannabis, policymakers should consider requiring distributors to include warning labels about the risks of combining cannabis and alcohol on cannabis product packaging.

How To Handle a Bad Reaction

Alcohol can dehydrate you quite quickly, and if you haven’t had enough fluids, this can heighten the intoxicating effects of alcohol. Cannabis can also leave you with a dry mouth (“cottonmouth”) and make you feel parched. Taken together, alcohol and cannabis can compound these side effects of one another, so it is imperative that you stay hydrated if you are consuming alcohol or cannabis – together or on their own.

Combining the two substances also leads to a greater degree of impairment than taking either one on its own. You may put yourself in risky or dangerous situations if you’re drinking or using marijuana, and an alcohol and marijuana combination makes this even more likely. The authors of a 2017 review suggest that people who use alcohol and weed together typically consume more of both drugs. This higher intake may increase the risk of dependence on alcohol, weed, or both. Their combined use can cause blackouts, memory loss, and an increased likelihood of engaging in risky behaviors. Combining weed and alcohol can increase the effects of both drugs and cause adverse reactions.

  1. Ten minutes later, they used a vaporizer to inhale either a low or a high dose of THC.
  2. But there are a lot of variables to consider, including which one you use first and how you consume them.
  3. Edibles produce a high that can be more potent and unpredictable at times – even for seasoned cannabis users.
  4. People who smoke weed after drinking alcohol often experience a stronger high.

Cannabis and alcohol intersect at countless get-togethers – and nights kicking back at home. If you are mixing the two, there are a number of considerations to keep in mind. The researchers state that a critical factor to determine is whether or not the differences between users and non-users were provoked by exposure to alcohol or if these issues were present beforehand. At the same time, CBD can have a relaxing, sedative effect, which could potentially be heightened if taking a depressant like alcohol. Read on to learn more about the potential reactions and what to do if you have a bad one. If you or someone you love is struggling with a marijuana addiction, consider calling a marijuana hotline.

Can You Overdose On Alcohol & Marijuana?

Data from the 2005 and 2010 National Alcohol Survey show that people mixing marijuana and alcohol experienced triple the rate of negative social consequences and double the rate of self-harm than those who just drank. The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals.

Marijuana use may contribute to cognitive decline, poor attention and memory, and lowered IQ, especially in the developing brain. Talk to your doctor or reach out to a mental health professional to discuss your options. Knowing when to seek professional help for AUD/SUD can be difficult. If you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol or marijuana addiction, help is available. BetterHelp offers affordable mental health care via phone, video, or live-chat. Mixing the two, also known as cross-fading, can result in unwanted effects.

This is because alcohol increases the absorption of weed’s main psychoactive ingredient, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Combining weed and alcohol can cause violent physical reactions consistent with a marijuana overdose. Getting drunk and stoned at the same time is sometimes referred to as getting crossfaded. But while most people drink and smoke pot at the same time to enhance their buzz, mixing the two drugs isn’t always a pleasant experience. If you think you’re abusing these or other substances, help is available.

Side Effects of Mixing Weed and Alcohol

Even small amounts of edibles can produce strong highs, depending on the amount of THC and other cannabinoids that they contain. The American Psychological Association suggest that adolescents’ developing brains are especially vulnerable to long-term damage from weed use. Turns out, you might not need much alcohol to change the way your body absorbs THC.