Sometimes, we find ourselves in moments when we’re searching for answers to questions we might not openly ask. If you’re typing “how long does a high last” into that search bar or pacing around with your phone in hand, looking for relief, we want you to know you’re not alone. It’s okay to wonder about these things, and it’s okay to seek clarity.
Maybe you’re sitting at your desk, trying to concentrate as you type those words, or perhaps you’re curled up under the covers, seeking solace from the world outside. We care about you, and we hope you’re doing okay. We hope you’re not overwhelmed, but we understand that life can sometimes take us on unexpected journeys.
If you’re researching “how long does a weed high last” because you’re hoping it will end, take a deep breath. Remember, every high has its peak, and from there, it gradually subsides. Like a passing rainstorm, your current experience will eventually make way for clearer skies. You might find comfort in knowing that the intensity of the high usually mellows out within an hour or so.
It’s important to recognize that our feelings and experiences are valid. If you’re looking for ways to manage the duration of your high, consider engaging in calming activities or finding a peaceful environment. Remember, you’re in control, and this moment will pass.
Why the Concern About the Duration of Your Cannabis High?
Maybe things are not as problematic as they seem. Perhaps you’re looking to take the wheel again after a while and wondering how much time to give before driving. Or maybe you’re simply curious about what kind of journey awaits you with different types of cannabis and how you use them.
Maybe you’re planning strategically: that amazing band will start performing at 10 p.m., and you’re aiming to time your session just right so that you hit your peak as they play your favorite song. Or it could be that you’re using cannabis for medical reasons and want to allocate time for your treatment while still keeping up with your tasks.
There are many reasons why you might be wondering, “How long does a marijuana high last?” If you’ve had some encounters with weed before, you probably know how long the effects stick around. Still, you might be interested in learning how to have more control over this aspect of your experience.
And if you’re relatively new to cannabis, having a reliable answer can play a big role in ensuring your session is pleasant. For all those who enjoy cannabis, timing is a crucial element, as they often say.
Exploring the Duration of Being High: Unveiling the ‘Highness Equation
While this might not pass the scrutiny of medical journals, there’s a scientific method you can use to estimate how long your marijuana high might last. We’ll call it the “highness equation.”
This equation considers four main factors that decide the duration of your weed high. Here’s how it goes:
Length of High = ( (dose x concentration) / (metabolism x tolerance) ) x delivery method
So, you multiply the dose you took by the product’s concentration, then divide that by how fast your body processes it and your personal tolerance level. Afterward, you multiply all that by the factor of how you took it – whether you ate or inhaled it.
Simply put, it’s about how much weed you take, divided by how your body handles it, all influenced by how it gets into your system.
Here it is if you want a quick answer – an average or ballpark estimate.
Plan to be high for about 1 to 2 hours if you’ve smoked or vaped weed. If you’ve eaten it, the high might stick around for 3 to 4 hours, sometimes even longer.
But if you’re up for a bit more detail, keep reading to learn about the factors that shape the duration of your high. Once you figure out where you stand, you can try different methods to stretch out the high or shorten it if needed.
The following guide breaks down each part of our “highness equation” to help you gauge how long you’ll stay high after smoking, vaping, eating, or using other ways to consume cannabis. But before that, let’s dig deeper into how various ways of using cannabis can affect the answer to the crucial question: how long does a weed high last?
Duration of the High: After Smoking Weed Flower
The traditional flower remains a favorite despite the increasing popularity of edibles and concentrates. But if you’re wondering how long the high lasts after smoking a joint or a bowl, things can get a bit tricky. You see, the amount of THC in flowers can range a lot – from as low as eight percent to a high of 35 percent. Generally, when you smoke a flower, the high might stick around for up to two hours. However, it’s important to note that the intensity of the high won’t remain constant throughout that time.
Smoking flowers gives you a quick high. The levels of THC in your bloodstream will peak about thirty minutes after your first puff. You’ll then maintain this peak for another half hour before it gradually disappears. After the first hour, the high tends to diminish quite rapidly until the effects of THC wear off. The exact timing varies, but usually, this decline takes about another hour, summing up to a total high duration of around two hours, more or less.
Duration of the High: After Using Cannabis Concentrates (Dabbing)
When it comes to quickly feeling strong effects, nothing compares to dabs. Concentrates like shatter, wax, and budder contain much more THC than the most potent flower. This means the high from dabbing can often stay with you longer than smoking regular weed.
However, the viewpoint matters a lot. Typically, those who opt for dabs are seasoned cannabis users accustomed to more intense effects and have developed a tolerance to THC. So, for these individuals, a dab-induced high might not be longer-lasting than a high from regular weed. On the flip side, if you’re new to dabs or only use them occasionally, the high can linger for a significant period.
This principle doesn’t necessarily apply to concentrates found in vape pens and THC cartridges. Indeed, these oils deliver a more potent THC kick than flowers. Nevertheless, as you don’t usually vape as much oil as you would smoke a flower, a high from a vape pen generally lasts about the same duration as a high from smoking weed. Sometimes, a high from a cartridge can even be shorter than a smoking flower, especially if you’re taking small sips throughout the day.
Duration of the High: After Consuming Cannabis Edibles
Edibles, like brownies, candies, and gummies filled with THC, provide the longest-lasting high compared to other ways of using cannabis. This has to do with how THC gets into your body. Let me explain: edibles usually take a while to start working, anywhere from half an hour to a couple of hours. When it kicks in is uncertain and depends on how your body digests things and how fast your metabolism is.
But when the THC finally starts to work, it hits you strongly. This is because the THC that gets into your bloodstream from your liver is more “potent.” In simple terms, it’s more powerful in how it affects your body and how much it can use it. Depending on how much you take and how your body handles THC, the high from an edible can last up to 8 hours. But if that seems like a long time, don’t worry. The most intense part of the high usually happens about two hours after you take it, and then it gradually becomes less strong. Simply put, the high gets milder during those last few hours.
So now that you understand the general idea of how long a cannabis high can stick around when you use different types of cannabis, let’s go into the specific things that make the highs shorter or longer for different people.
In a nutshell, it’s all about getting to know your own body and how it reacts to the stuff in cannabis and the effects that come from it.
The Duration of Your High Depends on THC Connecting with Your Endocannabinoid System
Your experience of being high involves a lot of different things happening inside your body. These things decide how strong the effects are and how much you feel them. This is why you might read about studies saying that the effects of cannabis can last anywhere from 5 hours to a whole day.
From a scientific viewpoint, this can make sense. But it’s good to remember that THC, the main thing in cannabis that makes us high, can interact with our bodies in ways that don’t always make us feel high, especially when the levels are lower.
This is where the lower part of what we’ll call the “highness equation” comes in metabolism multiplied by tolerance. This part of things makes the high not last as long. It affects how much you feel the effects of THC. Simply put, these factors are like the brakes that slow down how long the high lasts.
The combination of Metabolism and Tolerance
There’s a common idea that a person’s weight decides how high they get and how long that high lasts. But your metabolism plays the biggest role in figuring out how long your high sticks around.
How long you feel high depends on how much THC (the main thing that makes you high) is in your blood. Your blood takes this THC to a group of receptors called the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
Your body’s job is to process what you consume – breaking it down, using what’s needed, and getting rid of the rest.
If your metabolism works quickly, your highs might not last as long. Your body is kind of racing against time.
Then there’s something called tolerance that’s a bit mysterious. We often talk about having a high or low tolerance for weed. But we’re really talking about how sensitive we are to dopamine and other brain chemicals. These chemicals get released by our brain when THC connects with the ECS.
Here’s the good part: cannabis doesn’t completely use up all our dopamine, so we don’t need to keep increasing the amount we use to get the same effect.
However, this also means that THC has its limits. This is why regular users eventually reach a point where, no matter what they do, they can’t get any higher. When this happens, the answer to the question “How long does a high last?” might not be so satisfying.
For most people who use cannabis often, the same amount will give a similar experience every time. But for heavy users, even a short “tolerance break” can bring back their sensitivity to its original state, making the next high feel more like the first.
For an Extended High, Think About Increasing Your Dosage or Opting for Stronger Products
Now that we’ve looked at what can make your high shorter let’s explore what can make it last longer. This part is pretty easy to understand.
If you bring more weed into your system, there’s a good chance your high will hang around for more time. You can do this by smoking strains that have higher levels of THC. Alternatively, you might want to try vaping concentrates or, even more effective, distillates with high THC levels, sometimes above 85 percent.
Another way is by taking a larger amount. This doesn’t just make your high last longer, but it also stretches out the most intense part of your experience. This way, you enjoy the high for as long as your body allows. So, considering how long a high from smoking flowers compares to vaping concentrates is a big thing to consider.
Estimating High Duration: The Impact of Dose x Concentration Calculation
The first part of our “highness equation” is pretty clear, but a few things are worth discussing again.
If you’re new to using cannabis, starting with smaller amounts is a good idea. You don’t need to take big puffs or smoke often because others might do it. If you’re interested in that, you’ll get there at your own pace.
Right now, enjoy what you have – something experienced cannabis users often miss: those exciting moments when just a little bit made you feel amazing. (Maybe that’s why dabbing is popular – it’s a way to try and feel that first-time magic again, that really strong happiness.)
The rest of us often try to bring back that first experience by using higher and higher strengths and fancy technology for larger amounts. Take a big dab of 2 grams at once, and you’ll probably feel high for most of the day. Try 20 grams, and that high might last for a whole week.
So, when it comes to how much you use, it’s pretty simple. Smoke or vape more if you want the high to last longer. Even better, have your sessions spread out. This can help you regain feeling high when the strong feeling disappears.
And about the strength of your use, go for strains with a lot of THC and not much CBD. (CBD can weaken THC’s effects, so the high doesn’t last as long.) Or, you can use concentrates and extracts for a really strong experience.
Choosing How to Consume: Inhaling or Eating?
We’ve covered every part of the “highness equation” except the one that brings them all together: how you use it.
If you’ve tried both ways, you might already know that edibles usually give you a longer-lasting high than inhaling.
This happens because of what THC does in your body when you eat it versus when you breathe it in. In simple terms, your digestive system changes THC into a different form with a strong effect compared to heating it up.
So, how long does a high last with edibles? This different form, called THC-COOH or carboxy-THC, stays around for a while. But your body takes some time to make it. That’s why you often need to wait about 45 minutes to an hour for the effects of an edible to start.
Once that THC-COOH gets into your blood, you’re in for the long run until your body finishes dealing with it. This can be around three to four hours on average, sometimes even more.
For those who want a long high and are okay with waiting a bit for an edible or a drinkable cannabis product to start working, consuming your weed this way is the choice.
High Duration: Your Personal Weed Experience Varies
How long does it take to feel high from eating cannabis? How much time does a marijuana high stay after smoking? In a bigger picture, what’s the length of a high? If there’s one thing to learn here, it’s the intricate science behind a cannabis high and the many factors that shape the answers we’re after.
But there’s no single, fixed answer. How long you feel high is personal and can vary. No need to compare yourself to others.
So, how long will your high be? If you’re expecting about one to two hours when you inhale cannabis and around three to four hours when you eat it, remember that it could be longer if you use more or stronger stuff or shorter if your metabolism is fast or you’re used to it, you’re on the right path.