How-To “Get Back to Normal” After You Get Too High

How-To “Get Back to Normal” After You Get Too High

Posted by Lori Ann Reese on 04/13/2021 in How-Tos

Medical content reviewed by Dr. Joseph Rosado, MD, M.B.A, Chief Medical Officer

Got Too High Sober Up from THC

You packed your bowl. Grabbed a bottle of water and turned on Netflix. Your dog? He doesn’t mind as you puff on your pipe and slide into that happy Sativa sweet spot. “Ahhhh…”. High! And then your girlfriend tells you that her parents are coming over later this afternoon. Saturday’s chill (and earned) smoke sesh ruined. 

But more importantly, after smoking a whole bowl or a joint, now what do you do? Clearly, you are going to be high AF when they arrive. Opening the windows and lighting some candles is going to take care of the cannabis smell. But how do you ‘come down’ from a really great high? Her dad doesn’t really like you anyway, and you need a strategy. 

A little bit of a disclaimer? There is no way to detox from cannabis rapidly. So, if you are expecting to go from 0-60 and then back down to zero again, you’re in for some disappointment. But if you want to at least come down a few levels where you won’t sound like one of the dudes from ‘Dazed and Confused,” there are a few ways to mellow your mellow.

1. Eat Something to Reduce Your High

Ever wonder why you sometimes get the munchies after smoking weed or eating an edible? That is because THC lowers your blood glucose level. Have you ever heard someone say, “you eat, you peak?” That is because eating a snack or meal that is high in glucose will elevate your blood sugar. And that will, in most cases, stop your ‘high’ from escalating.

Eating something after taking edibles is very effective in moderating your high. If there is more food in your digestive tract, it naturally lowers the impact of THC on your system. It is absorbed with other nutrients. Don’t expect a meal or snack to completely sober you up. THC must work its way through your bloodstream and body. But it could help accelerate the process.

2. Drink Some Water

Head to the fridge or sink and down a couple of glasses of water. Or brew up a pot of coffee, stat! Cannabis has a tendency to dehydrate the body. So, rehydration is important to help your body eliminate THC from your system. 

Coffee has caffeine. Glorious caffeine, a natural drug that also boosts your energy and mental acuity or alertness. Coffee also counts as water in terms of rehydration. It can’t hurt, and it may help. At the very least, you may escape the ‘dry mouth’ symptom.

Smoked Too Much Weed
Photo Credit: patronestaff | Deposit Photos

3. Take a Cold Shower

This may be more myth than fact, but some people find that taking a cold shower sobers them up. At least, it makes them feel more alert. And allows them to shake off some of the grogginess that you may be feeling when you have consumed too much weed. The adrenaline rush of really cold water may help your body metabolize THC faster and get it out of your system in a shorter period of time.

Some clinical studies have suggested a cold shower can increase alertness, reduce fatigue and decrease anxiety. Sure, they suck because who likes to stand in frigid water? Brrr! But don’t be tempted to take a hot shower because warm water can intensify your high. And make it last longer. Stay out of the hot tub if you are trying to sober up!

4. Have a Short Nap and Sleep Off Some of the High

There is no evidence to suggest that taking a short nap will help your body get rid of excess amounts of THC. But one of the benefits of taking a nap? It is the ability to fast-forward a few hours without enduring the very high uncomfortable side effects. You are likely to wake up thirsty or hungry afterward. And slightly less wasted.

5. Ingest or Sniff Some Terpenes

Some natural terpenes have the ability to mellow out THC intoxication. Think of it as an emergency aromatherapy session. Terpenes are oils that give plants a unique smell. And terpenes are also part of the ‘entourage effect’ that provides medicinal aromatherapeutic benefits when you smoke raw bud.

The good news is that you may have some of the powerful, sobering terpenes in your fridge or cupboard. Peppercorns to the rescue! Put some whole peppercorns in a plastic bag, and crush them. A rolling pin works well, or just bang them up a bit. Then, inhale. Black pepper has caryophyllene, a powerful terpene that can also reduce anxiety. 

A second terpene you can reach for is lemon. Limonene is the terpene naturally found in lemon fruit. You can detect notes of limonene in certain strains of cannabis. Limonene has been found to reduce the anxiety effects of cannabis. So, cut one open, and start inhaling deeply. The most effective way again is to put it in a paper or plastic bag, sit down, and do some inhalations to help counteract some of the symptoms of being high.

Indica In Da Couch Crash Cannabis
Photo Credit: SarkisSeysian | Deposit Photos

6. CBD Could Work (Or It Might Make You Even Higher)

Ready to roll the dice? If nothing else has worked to back off the psychoactive effects of weed, CBD might be your last resort. Some people find that CBD lowers the intoxicating effects of THC. Taking a CBD edible, vape or oil can boost CYP2C9, which is the enzyme that metabolizes THC.

The science is inconclusive, however. In some animal studies, CBD taken before or after THC did reduce the level of THC in the bloodstream. A dose of CBD can act as a “negative allosteric modulator,” which lowers the activity of the CB1 receptor. Some CBD can also impact the 5-HT1A receptor (serotonin). 

But the wildcard factors that determine whether it will work or not are unknowns. It depends on the potency and amount of THC that you ingested. And it also hinges on the strength or potency of the CBD product you consume. And if you want to avoid getting “sky-high,” choosing a strain that has a high CBD potency can help.

Keep in mind that these suggestions may help you feel less high. And counteract some of the psychoactive effects. But they will not substantially reduce the amount of THC in your body. You will still be impaired but may be able to pull off that sober presentation that you need by the time your future father-in-law arrives. 

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