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January 11, 2023
Delta 8

How Long Does a Delta-8 High Last?

So, it’s your first time with a delta-8 gummy and you have a few questions. Before you try delta-8, we are here to answer them, starting with the one that everyone seems to ask: how long does a delta-8 high last?

In this post we’ll cover a few basic points:

  • What is delta-8 and what does a delta-8 high feel like? Delta-8, an isomer of traditional THC, produces a mild version of classic THC effects
  • How do delta-8 THC and delta-9 THC compare? The duration of effects from delta-8 and delta-9 may be similar although the effects of delta-8 may feel more mild, subjectively.
  • How long does a delta-8 high last and which factors influence how long delta-8 stays in the body? In general, delta-8 effects can last between 3 and 8 hours, but each kind of product offers a different onset and lasts for more or less time.

What is Delta-8 THC and How Does it Work?

Delta 8 THC is a mildly psychoactive cannabinoid found naturally in tiny amounts in hemp plants. Unlike delta 9 THC—the main compound that lends marijuana its psychoactive qualities—delta 8 is less potent and is considered a minor cannabinoid.

Delta 8 THC is produced from hemp flowers with high amounts of CBD because cannabis plants don’t naturally produce large amounts of delta 8 THC. These are therefore hemp products, not cannabis products, and federally legal.

Users say that since the source material contains a lot of CBD, the delta 8 THC high is milder and more balanced. Other cannabinoids such as CBG and CBC and terpenes such as limonene and caryophyllene also influence the entourage effect of the plant.

Another difference between delta-8 THC and delta-9 THC is legality. Based on the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp contains less than 0.3% delta 9 THC. Those plants that contain more than 0.3% delta 9 THC are classified as marijuana plants and although they may be legal in many states, these are still illegal federally.

So thanks to the Farm Bill, because it is derived from the hemp plant, delta 8 is considered legal in the United States at the federal level, and many manufacturers use it in new products. Popular delta 8 products include pre-rolls, vape cartridges, and other inhaled products, and gummies, soft gels, tinctures, caramels, and other edibles.

Anecdotal reports from delta 8 users indicate that delta 8 THC can help treat anxiety, pain relief, and relaxation. Users also say low doses of delta 8 THC can produce uplifting effects. At higher doses, the effects of delta-8 THC may induce sleepiness and can be sedative.

Okay, well, what does a delta-8 THC high feel like if it’s not exactly the same?

The high from delta 8 THC depends on the dosage, method of consumption, and other compounds such as terpenes that the product contains. Here are some examples.

For a more uplifting delta 8 experience, a sativa-dominant strain for daytime use that has an energizing effect on the mind and body is a good choice. Indica-derived delta 8, however, is a better relaxing nighttime choice.

Delta 8 THC gummies work similarly to CBD gummies except they are made with delta 8 THC distillate. These edibles deliver a more intense, lasting body high than inhalable forms of delta-8 THC.

Delta 8 THC vape cartridges contain distillate with terpenes and like delta 8 THC dabs, joints, and other inhaled products, vapes deliver an immediate high.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate delta-8 THC products—or any cannabis plants or cannabis products—so you have to use your own best judgment to get the best quality products.

How Long Does a Delta-8 High Last?

The high from delta 8 products can last from 3 to 8 hours. The exact amount of time depends on the person, the method of consumption, and the dose. If you take edibles, like candies or gummies—anything that requires ingestion—you will feel the initial effects of delta-8 after about 30 to 45 minutes and peak effects within 2 hours.

Tinctures work just like hard candies or other edibles that dissolve and are absorbed by the mucous membranes. These produce effects within 30 minutes that last 3 to 5 hours.

If you smoke or vape delta 8, the effects hit you almost immediately, they will peak after about 30 minutes, and disappear within about 5 hours.

So, depending on the person, the dose, and the delivery method, a delta-8 THC high will last anywhere from 3-8 hours.

What Dose of Delta-8 Will Get You High?

Each individual personal tolerance level determines the amount of delta 8 THC that produces a buzz. A first-time user may even prefer a microdose, while heavy cannabis users who have built up a high tolerance to delta 9 THC will probably need more.

How Would You Compare the Feeling to a Delta-9 THC High?

Many people wonder how a delta-8 high compares to a regular delta-9 high. Is delta-8 milder or less intense? Overall, yes. In fact, some evidence indicates it is half as potent as delta 9 THC.

Delta 8 THC produces milder psychoactive effects than delta 9 THC because it is a double bond analog of delta 9. This means that although both cannabinoids have a double bond, each has its double bond located at either the 8th carbon chain (delta 8) or the 9th (classic delta 9 THC).

They also interact with cannabinoid receptors in slightly different ways. Both activate the CB1 and CB2 receptors as part of the endocannabinoid system (ECS). However, because delta 8 THC has less affinity for the CB1 receptor than delta 9 THC, it’s milder and less likely to overstimulate that receptor. Higher doses of delta 9 THC in particular can produce these negative effects with overstimulation.

When you take delta 8 THC, the risk of paranoia and anxiety is greatly reduced compared to delta 9 THC. Some users who try Delta-8 say that delta 8 produces similar effects with a more awake feeling and no brain fog. This means the effects of delta 8 allow users to keep thinking and functioning without impairment or as many of the negative side effects as classic THC.

However, using both delta 8 THC and delta 9 THC produces THC metabolites. If you want to ensure your delta-8 experience doesn’t show up on a drug test, make sure to check out How Long Does Delta-8 Stay In Your System?