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Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you’ve consumed a bit too much cannabis and thought, “I got too high”? It’s a common experience for many cannabis users. Especially those who are new to it or experimenting with different strains and forms of consumption. In this blog post, we’ll explore what happens when you overconsume cannabis. We’ll look at why it can lead to feeling uncomfortably high, and most importantly, what you can do to mitigate the effects and regain control. So, let’s dive in and learn how to navigate the highs and lows of cannabis consumption.

Cannabis Overconsumption – A Common Experience

Pretty much anyone who consumes cannabis on a regular basis has been higher than they wanted to be at some point. You smoke more of the joint than you meant to, or you thought the weed was less potent than it really was, or you thought that edible wasn’t kicking in, so you ate some more… It happens to everyone!

“I got too high!” My personal encounter with overconsumption

The first time I really over-consumed, I was eating some homemade peanut butter cookies that my husband and I infused with butter we made from a bunch of old weed, kief, and AVB. Like with most homemade edibles, we had no idea how much THC was in it. That butter sure was green, though.

A close-up image of green cannabutter.
Green cannabutter, often used in edibles, can sometimes lead to the feeling of ‘being too high’ if not dosed correctly.

Although I didn’t have much experience with edibles yet, I’d always had a high tolerance to most things, and THC was no exception. I often smoked 1-gram joints, with little effect, multiple times a day, so I figured that edibles would be similar. I ate a couple cookies and waited half an hour. I didn’t feel anything, so I ate a few more. I probably ate a few more after that because they were delicious. Unfortunately, I also had NO IDEA about the experience I was about to have.

A close-up image of peanut butter cookies
Peanut butter cookies infused with cannabutter – delicious but potent. Remember, when it comes to edibles, start low and go slow to avoid getting too high.

Unsettling effects of getting too high

So, I didn’t know it yet, but the weird thing that happens to me when I over consume THC is that I dissociate and temporarily lose pieces of my short-term memory. And when you’re about 6 cookies in, you’ve definitely over-consumed your weed. Things started to feel weird around the 60 minute mark. I looked at my husband, and KNEW that I knew him, but I couldn’t quite figure out who he was. I started to wonder about other people I knew…were they even real people? Was my husband real? Was I? Where am I? What is this video game I’m in? What level is this house? WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE?

All the details are wavy and weird after that. I remember holding my husband’s shirt by the collar and screaming in his face, “WHY DO PEOPLE EVEN DO DRUGS?” I stared at his teeth for awhile, because they felt familiar to me. I think I finished a lasagna that was in the fridge. I ended the day with 3 hours on the couch watching TV shows and eating potato chips. It wasn’t really my finest hour.

Five tips to handle overconsumption

Since then, I’ve learned a lot about cannabis. How to choose the proper dose for the effect I’m looking for, what to expect from consuming edibles, and how to estimate your THC content with homemade edibles. One thing I’ve picked up are some tips and tricks about what to do if I DO over-consume. I share them below, in case you ever find yourself higher than you want to be.

Remember this is only temporary

Keep in mind that the experience will be over soon.  If you’ve smoked or vaped some weed, you should start feeling less high within half an hour or so.  If you’ve consumed edibles, it could take a bit longer, up to a couple of hours. But no matter how unpleasant you’re feeling, remember that this will pass, and you’ll be feeling better soon.  No one has ever died from a cannabis overdose, and you won’t be the first!

Surreal image of an infinite clock spiraling in on itself, symbolizing the distorted perception of time when one has got too high on cannabis
The perception of time can become distorted when you’ve gotten too high, with moments feeling like they’re spiraling into infinity.

Take some CBD

CBD works by blocking your endocannabinoid receptors, which are the same receptors that THC interacts with, giving you the feeling of being high.  When you consume CBD, the cannabinoid goes to work preventing some of the THC in your body from interacting with the receptors in your brain, helping you feel less high.  Keep in mind that while CBD can help to dull the effects of being too high, it can also prolong the experience.

Sniff or eat some peppercorns

Black peppercorns contain high amounts of the terpene caryophyllene.  When you eat peppercorns, the caryophyllene helps to block THC’s access to your endocannabinoid receptors, just like CBD.   Eating a peppercorn while you’re feeling high is really quite an experience anyways, so you might want to try this one just for fun.

Drink some lemonade or orange juice

Consuming on an empty stomach can make you feel higher than you anticipated.  Having something to eat or drink can help you relax and settle into your cannabis experience.  There’s also something about the bright flavour of lemon that really helps bring a muddled, too-high brain back down to Earth. 

Rest & relax

Think back to tip #1: this experience is only temporary.  If you can adapt to it, you may actually enjoy it!  Get yourself somewhere comfortable where you can relax and ride it out and let whatever happens happen.  You’ll be back down to earth in no time and can use your experience to help you make your own best consumption choices in the future.

A person laying on a couch covered with a blanket, feeling the effects of consuming too much cannabis.
Overconsumption can lead to intense effects. Here, a person lays on a couch, experiencing the sensation of having gotten too high.

Learning from overconsumption experiences

Overconsumption of cannabis can be an unsettling experience, but it’s also a valuable learning opportunity. It’s a reminder of the importance of understanding your personal tolerance levels and the unique effects of different cannabis products. Remember, everyone’s cannabis journey is unique and it’s okay to stumble along the way. The key is to learn from these experiences and use them to make more informed decisions in the future. So, the next time you find yourself thinking “I got too high,” don’t panic. Instead, remember these tips, take a deep breath, and know that you’re not alone. With time, patience, and a bit of trial and error, you’ll find the balance that works best for you.