Is It True, Can You Get High On CBD?
Posted on May 12th, 2021
There are many myths and misconceptions surrounding cannabidiol, better known as CBD. One of the greatest of these is the thinking on the question, can you get high on CBD. This misconception almost surely results from the fact that CBD comes from the cannabis plant. And the fact of the matter is that marijuana, a variety of cannabis, is indeed capable of getting you high.
But what exactly is getting high, why is getting high a problem, and, at the end of the day, can you get high on CBD really? Let’s tackle each point one by one.
What Is Getting High?
Getting “high” basically describes a feeling of euphoria or happiness, relaxation, and an altered sense of perception of reality. This high is a result of certain chemicals in the body acting on the reward and pleasure centers located in your brain. Some of these chemicals the body can certainly produce naturally on its own in some manageable measure. Yet, you can also pretty well introduce substances into your body that are capable of triggering a high. People refer to it as getting “high” because it results in the feeling of lightness or floating.
What Types of Substances Make You High?
Exercise, extreme sports, and activities that we enjoy all result in the release of chemicals called neurotransmitters. Of those neurotransmitters, the likes of sufficient amounts of serotonin and dopamine result in a natural high. Substances such as drugs and alcohol can mimic the action of these neurotransmitters. On top of that, they can also trigger the release of the amounts your body produces in order to get the same feeling of high.
There are a number of substances available on the market that can result in experiencing a mild to extremely high. These substances are in a variety of pharmaceuticals like pain killers, cough serum, and other prescription medications. These medications commonly contain opioids, central nervous system depressants, hallucinogens, and stimulants.
A good example of a nervous system depressant is alcohol. On the other hand, a stimulant can be something as simple as caffeine or sugar or, on the more extreme side, amphetamines. Most drugs, whether prescription, alternative or recreational, fit neatly into one of the four categories mentioned.
Cannabis is an exception to the rule and acts as a nervous system depressant, stimulant, and hallucinogen. The substance can therefore result in different types of “high” in different people, or the “high” can depend on the variety of cannabis used.
The problem is that these effects referred to as psychoactive properties, don’t just cause good feelings. They come with multiple negative side effects that range from mild to severe and can have mild to serious consequences as well.
What Happens Chemically in The Body When You Get High on Cannabis?
Cannabis contains compounds called cannabinoids that interact with the endocannabinoid system in your body. That system is there to regulate a variety of different bodily functions. It fulfills this regulatory function when cannabinoids interact with the receptors from the endocannabinoid system.
There are two types of receptors – CB-1 and CB-2 receptors. CB-1 receptors are primarily in the brain and central nervous system and regulate mainly brain-related functions. CB-2 receptors are mainly in the gastrointestinal tract and the immune system and regulate immune functions.
One of the cannabinoids found in cannabis interacts with the CB-1 receptors. This cannabinoid is called tetrahydrocannabinol or THC. When THC interacts with the CB-1 receptors, it stimulates the reward and pleasure centers in the brain resulting in feelings of euphoria and getting high.
CBD or cannabidiol is another cannabinoid that exists in the cannabis plant but doesn’t have any of the psychoactive properties of THC. It interacts primarily with the CB-2 receptors and, therefore, might have very potent therapeutical benefits.
Is It Dangerous to Get High on Prescription Medications?
As mentioned above, there is a downside to the high experienced when taking some types of prescription medications. Commonly there are side effects that can result in a range of problems that can make you feel ill, trigger a health condition or even be fatal. It is very important to only use prescription medications according to your doctor’s instructions. Never use more than the recommended dosage.
Prescription medications that cause a high can also be habit-forming and extremely addictive. This is because they overstimulate the reward center of the brain. Thus, ultimately resulting in progressively craving more and more of the drug to get the same feeling of pleasure. This can result in organ damage and overdose, which may be fatal.
Is It Dangerous to Get High on Cannabis?
Compared to other prescription medications that make you high, the risks associated with cannabis use are relatively low. However, this does not mean that there are no negative consequences. Cannabis can result in elevated heart rate, which can be dangerous for those who suffer from cardiovascular disease or heart problems.
It can also lead to lowered inhibitions, poor decision-making, and greater risk-taking, which could result in accidents, injuries, or harm. In addition, cannabis makes you drowsy and affects your motor coordination, balance, and reflexes which can impair mobility and movement. It is exceptionally dangerous to drive after using cannabis, for example.
What Is CBD?
As mentioned above, CBD or cannabidiol is a cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant. It interacts with the CB-2 receptors that are part of the endocannabinoid system. It either inhibits or excites the release of certain hormones and chemicals in the body in order to regulate the immune system and other functions in the body. As a result, both research and enthusiasts attribute to it many different health benefits based on that ability.
What Are the Health Benefits Of CBD?
The health benefits of CBD are still under research. To date, the cannabinoid appears to hold much promise in managing the following health conditions:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Protect the brain against the progression of diseases like Alzheimer’s, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s, and stroke.
- Cancer to prevent tumor growth and shrink existing tumors.
There are many more theorized health benefits that are still under research in order to confirm the capabilities of CBD triggering it.
Where Does CBD Come From?
CBD comes from the cannabis plant. However, manufacturers primarily extract CBD from the hemp plant. Hemp, or cannabis sativa, is a species of the cannabis plant that has greater concentrations of CBD than the other species, which is marijuana.
What Is the Difference Between Hemp and Marijuana?
There is some argument as to whether hemp and marijuana are different species of the cannabis plant or if they are, in fact, the same. Some scientists believe they are different species while others do not. The scientific name of hemp is cannabis sativa, whereas marijuana goes by the name of cannabis indica.
Hemp plants are generally taller and have longer, slimmer leaves. Marijuana plants, on the other hand, tend to be bushier and have broader leaves. Traditionally, mankind grew hemp only for the fibrous stems from which they manufactured cloth, paper, and other products. However, we now also grow the plant with the express purpose of extracting CBD as well. On the other hand, marijuana growers expressively want the plant for its psychoactive properties.
In order for it to be hemp, a cannabis plant cannot have a concentration of THC higher than 0.3%. Generally, marijuana plants have greater concentrations of THC than CBD. THC is the psychoactive cannabinoid in cannabis.
Can You Get High On CBD?
The quick answer to whether can you get high on CBD is that you should not be able to get high from CBD. CBD mainly comes from the hemp plant, which contains less than 0.3% THC; as a result, CBD products do not contain more than 0.3% THC as well. As a matter of fact, it is a requirement for CBD products to contain less than 0.3% THC in order to be legal.
These trace amounts of THC are negligible and, therefore, cannot make you high. However, it does come down to dosage. If you are going to use large amounts of CBD or use it often, you are also increasing the amount of THC that you are consuming. It is, therefore, possible to get high on CBD if you happen to take an excessive amount on in a short span of time. However, it is quite unlikely.
If you experience concern about getting high by using a CBD product, read the label. The CBD product should inform you of how much THC it has. If it doesn’t, contact the producer to find out.
Alternatively, look for broad-spectrum CBD or CBD isolates. These two types of CBD products use extraction processes that remove or eliminate all the THC entirely from the product. CBD isolates are the purest form of CBD and your best option in avoiding THC altogether.
Full-spectrum CBD products, on the other hand, do contain THC. However, these amounts are usually within the federally regulated limit of 0.3% or less. These trace amounts should not make you high. It is important to follow the dosage instructions carefully in order to avoid using too much and getting high. Remember, whether can you get high on CBD comes down to whether you use too much too frequently.
How to Best Use CBD?
If you are new to using CBD, it is always best to start with the lowest dosage possible and gauge the effects. If you aren’t experiencing any benefits, increase the dosage slightly until you do. Never exceed the maximum recommended dosage. Also, don’t ingest excessive amounts of CBD frequently in order to avoid fully the chance of getting high.