Whether you’re a beginner or veteran cannabis user, it’s important to know how long your high may last and why. Considering different strains, individual factors and consumption methods will affect the length of your high, you can’t always use your past experience to gauge a high’s longevity. So how long do you stay high after smoking, and what affects marijuana’s effect time or duration? Here, we’ll answer those questions, as well as sharing some tips and tricks to extend or shorten your high when necessary.
Why Do Highs Differ?
Marijuana can affect people in uniquely individual ways. Internally, effects can differ from person to person and externally, a variety of factors can affect highs as well. To best figure out how weed highs can vary, let’s review what aspects surrounding your intake can make a difference.
Quality Over Quantity
Sometimes it’s not about how much you smoke, but the quality of what you smoked. Top shelf goods come at a higher cost because their high is a step above the rest. High-quality weed, edibles and concentrates are ‘premium’ due to the potency and purity of the product, which will ultimately determine how high you’ll get. For example, one strain may only carry 11% THC while some contain up to 30%+. Theoretically, you could smoke multiple low-potency buds and still not be as high as hitting high-potency weed only once.
It might seem odd, but where you smoke can affect the intensity of your high as well. Surprisingly, your mood and surroundings can change the type of elevation you experience. If you’re in an unfamiliar area or with an unfamiliar group, your high might feel more anxious and can even seem like it lasts longer. Ideal effects are normally felt when you’re comfortable or at ease. This is why one strain can work wonders when smoking at home but feel totally different in a social setting.
Similar to food, everybody metabolizes substances differently, so a person with a faster metabolic rate will experience a different high than someone with a slower rate. If you process substances more slowly, your high may be longer than that of others. Vice versa, if you process substances quickly, your highs could be shorter in length.
Tolerance Is Key
You’ve probably seen tolerance at work when smoking with (or being) a first-time smoker who’s much more heavily affected by THC. Marijuana duration, or how long your high lasts, depends on tolerance. Those who are frequent smokers build a higher tolerance and may therefore have to consume more to achieve longer-lasting highs. However, besides frequency of use, some of the other factors behind increased tolerance are a person’s age, size, longevity of use and individual body chemistry.
High THC Strains
How Long Does A High Last?
To answer the question ‘how long does a weed high last?’ you first have to ask yourself how you’re consuming. Marijuana’s effect duration heavily depends on the way you intake cannabinoids, and thus how they’re absorbed into the body. Next, we’ll cover the top three ways to ingest THC and how they differ in terms of the length of your high.
When inhaling marijuana through smoking, it’s absorbed into the bloodstream through your lungs. THC travels directly to your brain, delivering its high almost immediately. Marijuana effects typically peak in the first 10-30 minutes after inhaling. However, the duration of the effect from smoking is shorter than that of other consumption methods. Depending on tolerance and the amount consumed, highs begin to dissipate after around 60-90 minutes. The full session usually takes 3-4 hours, with the ‘afterglow’ effects being present for up to 6 hours after smoking.
Considering the ability to contain high doses in small packages, THC-infused edibles deliver the longest highs out of all consumption types, even for those with a high tolerance. Normally, a high lasts 4-6 hours when consuming edibles. However, when considering tolerance, less tolerant users could experience highs lasting up to 8-12 hours. Keep in mind it also takes 45 minutes to an hour for effects to be felt, this due to the THC being absorbed through the digestive system and being metabolized via the liver.
Marijuana effect time with dabbing is medium-long and practically immediate. Just like with smoking or edibles, the duration of a high when dabbing is highly dependent on a person’s tolerance. Especially considering that the concentrates used to dab are far more potent than the standard flower you’d smoke in a bowl or joint, they increase tolerance much faster. Someone who dabs frequently normally feels the effects wear off between 1-2 hours, but if you’re new to dabbing, your high could last for twice as long.
Can I Extend My High?
Of course, there are a few ways you can make your high last longer. While it may seem obvious for some, increasing the potency of the product you ingest or inhale is one of them. Higher potencies can break down built tolerances and extend how long psychoactive effects are felt for even the most frequent users. On the other hand, some choose to increase the quantity they smoke too, meaning you might have to smoke again to lengthen your high or smoke more at one time. The surest way to ensure a lengthy high when you need one is to choose an edible. No matter the dose, effects will be felt for at least 4-6 hours.
Can I Stop My High?
If you’ve overdone your marijuana consumption, you may face such symptoms as cotton mouth, red eyes, tiredness and anxiety. Luckily, if you’re looking to lessen the effects of your high, there are ways to do so. Patience is most important, as your high will deteriorate over time no matter what your method of consumption. Some say ingesting black pepper will help lessen a high, along with drinking more water. Other tips include taking a cold shower, taking deep breaths, or using CBD to counteract or balance the THC’s effects. For more information, read our full guide.
High Timing & Longevity Under Control
With the price and precious nature of marijuana, timing or extending your high can be important to cannabis connoisseurs and beginners alike. Now that you can answer ‘how long does a high last?’ and are aware of the factors involved in marijuana’s duration, you can be more conscientious of your choices and environment. Even better, if your high is too much, too long, too little or too short, you now have the strategies to curate your ideal elevation experience.