Alcohol and weed are two of the most popular recreational substances in the world. However, can these two substances be safely mixed? Is it safe to smoke weed after drinking alcohol, and vice versa? Let’s take a closer look at these two recreational substances in order to find out what they do to your body, and whether or not it is safe to combine them.
What is alcohol?
Alcohol refers to an alcoholic drink or a drink which contains a substance called ethanol. Ethanol is produced through the fermentation of various foods, such as grains, fruits, and sugar. Alcohol comes in many different forms and can be consumed “straight” without any additions or as part of a mixed alcoholic drink. Common alcohol drinks include wine, beer, vodka, rum, and gin.
What does alcohol do to your body?
Some alcohol is immediately absorbed into your bloodstream through the mouth, whereas the rest travels to your stomach and intestines where it is absorbed. The fact that most alcohol is absorbed through the stomach and small intestines are the reason why it can sometimes take a while for you to feel drunk from alcohol, as your body still needs to fully process the majority of the alcohol consumed. For most people, this takes about an hour to 90 minutes.
The more alcohol you drink, the higher your blood alcohol concentration level; the higher this level, the more you begin to feel “drunk which can cause feelings of euphoria, lightheadedness and sometimes even dizziness. Alcohol can impact your ability to think clearly as well as impact your motor skills and your ability to control yourself.
What is Weed?
Weed, also called marijuana, refers to a drug derived from the cannabis plant. Weed is a combination of dried Cannabis flowers which is typically consumed in a “cigarette” or “joint” format, though it can also be consumed as edible or vaped. Weed can be used recreationally as well as for medicinal purposes. Recreational weed has become legal in many different parts of the world over the past few years, including several states in the United States.
What does weed do to your body?
For the most part, the effect of weed on your body is similar regardless of how you consume it, though different types of weed consumption can alter how long it takes for your body to feel the effects. In general, inhaling weed through marijuana smoke results in the quickest-acting effects whereas consuming it as an edible takes the longest.
When you smoke or otherwise consume weed, it enters your bloodstream and from there begins to impact your body. Weed triggers a release of dopamine, which causes you to feel high and euphoric. Weed can cause impaired judgment, a slowed reaction time, and more difficulty controlling your motor controls and coordination, as well as an increased appetite, also know as munchies. And if you have had munchies after smoking weed, then you know that you have experienced rummaging through your kitchen cabinets or getting a large order of take out food to satisfy your hunger.
What will happen if I mix alcohol and weed together?
What happens when you mix alcohol and weed together? It will depend on a number of factors, including the amount of alcohol consumed, the amount of weed consumed, as well as which of the two you decide to use first.
While mixing alcohol and weed is not inherently dangerous or even a bad idea, there are some things you will need to consider when mixing the two so that you don’t suffer any ill effects. Let’s take a closer look at what happens when these two substances are combined.
Alcohol before Weed
If you drink alcohol before you decide to use weed, then the effects of the weed will be intensified. The reason for this is because having alcohol in your bloodstream increases the amount of THC absorbed into your bloodstream when you smoke or consume weed. The end result of this is a much stronger high.
In some cases, the result of drinking alcohol before consuming weed is something referred to as a “green out.” This can cause nausea, excess sweating, and dizziness.
In general, it is recommended that you don’t drink alcohol before weed if you are sensitive to weed or THC or if you don’t have a lot of experience drinking before consuming weed. It is best to proceed with some caution the first time you try this to avoid ‘green out.’
Weed Before Alcohol
If you smoke or consume weed before drinking alcohol: The results of this are not as conclusive as what happens when you drink before smoking weed. Some studies have suggested that smoking weed before consuming alcohol results in a slower rise of blood alcohol levels, which can delay a feeling of drunkenness. This delayed feeling of drunkenness can cause problems because you may consume more alcohol than you normally would in order to feel drunk, which can result in much higher blood alcohol content than you intended. And then it hits you like a bus, boom. Party over.
If you do decide to smoke weed before drinking alcohol, remember not to drink as much, because your feelings of drunkenness are likely delayed. It is better to wait an hour or two before having another drink than to drink too much, too quickly and wind up excessively drunk.
Notably, some studies have found that consuming alcohol and weed together can increase your risk of dependence on weed, alcohol, or both substances. Some studies have also found that if you consume alcohol and smoke weed then your cognitive function will be noticeably decreased compared to your cognitive function after just smoke or just consuming alcohol. Nonetheless, your body coordination will be off with either substances, but especially both.
Combining alcohol and weed is not necessarily dangerous, but many people choose to avoid combining the two because it can result in intensified effects which some people may not be able to handle. In general, it is better to either avoid combining the two or to start small so that you can see how your body handles a combination of alcohol and weed. And remember: always err on the side of caution when it comes to mixing these two substances until you know how your body will react because everybody is different.