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Does Delta 8 Get You High?

Delta-8 has become quite popular over the years, thanks in major part to its unique characteristics especially compared to its more popular counterpart, Delta 9 THC. THC in general is the major ingredient responsible for the psychoactive nature of cannabis. That is, when you consume cannabis derived products and get high, the major chemical responsible is THC (short for tetrahydrocannabinol). But THC itself exists in various forms, all with their own unique effects on the human brain – which is where Delta-8 THC comes in. So what exactly is Delta-8? Is Delta 8 strong? Is it the same as Delta 9 or regular THC? What are its unique properties? And most importantly, does delta 8 get you high? We provide answers to these questions and more below.
does delta 8 get you high
Chris Dorcey
Inheal Editor
Post date

April 27, 2023

Time to read
11 mins 28 secs

What is Delta 8?

When people refer to THC in cannabis, they are most likely referring to Delta 9 THC, which is the primary psychoactive compound in cannabis. Delta 8 THC, on the other hand, has only recently started to attain a higher level of popularity.
Among many other properties which we’ll examine later, one of the distinguishing features of Delta-8 is that it exists in much smaller amounts than Delta 9. Another important difference is in their chemical structure.
In Delta 9, the double bond is located on the 9th carbon atom while in Delta-8, the double bond is located on the 8th carbon[1] atom. This seemingly simple difference in double bond placement results in a lot of noticeable variation in their effects – one of which is how high they get you.

Does Delta 8 get you high?

So Delta-8 is quite different from Delta 9 in terms of chemical structure and abundance. But is there a difference in their psychoactivity? Or in short, does Delta 8 get you high? Well, the answer is yes. But while Delta-8 does get you high, there is a significant difference in terms of how high it gets you[2], how fast it sets in[3], how profound the euphoria is[4], and the side effects that come afterwards[5].

delta 8 product

Delta 8 Product High vs Delta 9 High

Is Delta 8 strong? Does Delta 8 get me high? These are all questions we have already touched upon. But how does Delta 8 compare to Delta 9? Below are some differences between the psychoactive properties of both compounds.

  • Intensity – In terms of intensity, Delta 8 is regarded to be less potent than Delta 9. Research has shown that it produces a milder form of euphoria, which makes it suit a different set of individuals who wish to enjoy being high but not too much.

  • Onset – Additionally, it has been reported that products associated with Delta-8 have a slower onset compared to Delta 9. This means that if two people consume both, the person who consumed Delta 9 will feel the effects much faster than the one who consumed Delta-8.

  • Duration – The effects of Delta 8 do not last as long as that of Delta 9. So while Delta 9 kicks in faster and lasts longer, Delta 8 kicks in slower, and will give a milder high that doesn’t last as long.

  • Side Effects – Lastly, it is agreed that because of the milder nature of Delta 8, it does not come with some side effects of Delta 9 such as anxiety and paranoia, which again makes it attractive to those who wish to enjoy being high but not too much and without experiencing these side effects.

5 major benefits of Delta 8

Delta 8 has been shown to have some potential therapeutic benefits. We take a look at some of them below.

  1. Delta 8 for Pain Relief
    Delta 8 has been found to be quite capable of acting as an analgesic. Analgesics are compounds that can be used for pain relief. Several studies have found that Delta 8 can be particularly effective for reducing chronic pain, including those caused by conditions such as arthritis and neuropathy[6].
    One of the most fascinating aspects of Delta 8 acting as a pain relief agent is the fact that it can do so without causing the onset of a great deal of euphoria like Delta 9 does. This makes it an appealing alternative for those who wish to manage pain without necessarily wanting to get high.
  2. Delta 8 for Anxiety Management
    Another noteworthy benefit of Delta 8 is its capability to help manage anxiety. A few research studies have suggested that the anti-anxiety effects of Delta 8 is a function of its ability to bind to certain receptors in the brain that are capable of regulating anxiety[7].
    Again, Delta 9 can also perform this role and bind to the same receptors. But the major difference is that Delta 8 can do this without actually causing a great deal of psychoactivity and accompanying side effects.
    It should also be said that more research is needed to fully understand the role of THC in managing anxiety.
  3. Delta 8 for Nausea Treatment
    Delta 8 can also be employed to help reduce or completely stop nausea and vomiting[8]. It is often employed in this role in cases where people have conditions that predispose them to constantly feel nauseous. One of such conditions, of course, is cancer, particularly for cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.
    Even though Delta 9 is also capable of reducing vomiting, a study found that Delta 8 is actually more effective in doing this than its more popular counterpart. The study examined the effect of Delta 8 and Delta 9 in children undergoing chemotherapy.
    Delta-8 can also reduce nausea caused by other conditions such as motion sickness.
  4. Delta 8 for Stimulating Appetite
    Anyone who has ever consumed cannabis will tell you that one of its most obvious effects is the fact that it gets you hungry. This has been backed up by numerous studies.
    An interesting thing to note, however, is that Delta 8 is also capable of performing the same function. Again, this makes it a noteworthy alternative for anyone looking to employ it in this direction
    Delta 8’s activity for appetite stimulation is backed on by a lot of research studies[9], but as always, more research is needed to understand more about the topic.
  5. Delta-8 for Neuroprotection
    According to a handful of research, Delta 8 is capable of exhibiting certain neuroprotective properties, which, simply put, means that it can help protect the brain from damage or degeneration. A particularly interesting study[10] enumerated the results of Delta 8 on mice with brain injuries. During the research, it was found that Delta 8 did reduce inflammation and improved cognitive function
    Another research[11] carried out on rats found that Delta 8 is also capable of protecting against damages to the retina. These, among other studies, serve as the basis for the opinion held by many that Delta 8 can be a potential source of treatment for conditions such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.
delta-8 gummies get you high

How long does Delta-8 THC get you High?

Like with all strains and compounds of the cannabis plant, the exact duration of your Delta 8 high depends not just on the compounds in question, but also additional factors such as how much of it you took, what method of consumption you took it through, and even your own biological makeup which determines your tolerance levels. That said, there is a general consensus among experts on the question, “how long does delta-8 thc get you high?” The consensus is that Delta 8 high does not last as long as Delta 9. The exact average duration varies, but many agree that Delta 8 only lasts between 2 – 8 hours. If you consume it through edibles and tinctures, it takes about 30 minutes to kick in and peak effects may last for about 2 hours. If you consume it through a vape, however, you feel the effects immediately and peak effects may last for about 5 hours.

How high does Delta 8 get you?

Now you don’t have to wonder, “does delta 8 get me high?”. It does get you high, make no mistake about it – but how high does delta 8 get you? Well, it does not get you as high as Delta 9. Since there are many factors that determine how high you’ll get on any substance, it is hard to put an objective value on how high Delta 8 gets you. One thing that is undeniable, however, is that Delta 8 high is not as intense as Delta 9 which is why it is often referred to as a “mild high”. Many believe that Delta 8 is only half as intense as Delta 9. Additionally, thanks to its mild nature you usually don’t have to worry about anxiety and paranoia.
how long does delta-8 thc get you high

Why does Delta 8 get you high?

Having known the difference between D9 and D8, it is natural to wonder, why does delta 8 get you high? Well, Delta 8 gets you high because even though there is a difference in the double bond placement compared to Delta 9, in the end they are still very similar compounds capable of causing certain chemical reactions in the brain. Delta 8, just like Delta 9, is capable of binding to the CB1 receptors in the brain and the central nervous system. Once the compound binds with these receptors, a reaction occurs that ends up in dopamine being released. Dopamine, in this case, is responsible for the euphoric and psychoactive effects that we experience whenever we consume THC, either the Delta 8 product or Delta 9 variation. And of course, as we’ve iterated earlier, the major difference is the intensity of the high.

How many mg of D8 does it take to get you high?

The exact amount of D8 it’ll take to get high depends on several factors, one of which is your biological make-up (body weight, metabolism, etc) and tolerance levels. The same amount of Delta 8 gummies consumed by two people may lead to a greater degree of psychoactivity in one person than the other.
For instance if one or two delta-8 gummies get you high, it doesn’t mean the same will happen to your friend.
Another factor that may affect how many mg of D8 it takes to get you high is the mode of consumption. Delta 8 exists in various forms including delta 8 dabs, carts, flowers, moon rocks, pens, edibles, live resin, pre-rolls, vapes and concentrates..
Vaping a Delta 8 product and consuming edibles will produce different results with different duration and intensity. So again, if a few delta-8 gummies get you high, the result in liquid form may differ.
That said, it is usually advisable to start with a low dose of about 5 – 10 mg and gradually increase the figure as you get close to your desired effects for safe use.

is delta 8 strong

What kind of high is Delta 8?

Most people refer to Delta 8 high as a “mild high” while some others, at the same time, refer to it as a “clear-headed high”. There is no contradiction between both terms. 

Saying it is a mild high means that Delta 8 is less intense than Delta 9. Thanks to the lower intensity, you don’t have to worry about getting too high or experiencing anxiety and paranoia.

Saying it is a “clear-headed high” means that even while you’re high on cannabis products containing Delta 8, your mind is not really clouded and you don’t actually lose control of your behavior. You can still think clearly and function normally even while on the substance.

Which are Delta-8 side effects next day?

Most Delta 8 side effects are based on anecdotal reports and they include, among others, dry mouth and dizziness. Naturally, the cannabis sativa plant is known to leave your mouth dry so this is no surprise. Additionally, people may experience drowsiness, but this is usually a function of consuming large doses and even when it happens, it is reported to be accompanied by a pleasant feeling.

This is another reason why the Food and Drug Administration, FDA issues warning that it is advisable to start with low doses of products containing Delta 8 when you’re just starting out and simply work your way up until you’re satisfied with the overall effects.

The Legality of Delta 8

One of the appeals of Delta 8 that the products have, particularly over its Delta 9 counterpart, is the fact that it’s legal. This is all thanks to the farm bill passed in 2018. The bill declared the legality of hemp, so long as it contains less than 0.3 percent of THC. You see, while Delta 9 THC is derived in abundance from marijuana (which is illegal at a federal level) CBC and Delta 8 THC can be gotten from hemp derived sources (which is completely legal in the United States). This is why Delta 9 is explicitly listed as a controlled substance but of course Delta 8 is not.

Final Thoughts

Delta-8 is an incredibly interesting substance to say the least. Like its Delta 9 counterpart, it does get you high, but unlike Delta 9, this compound offers a lot of unique benefits including a different, more pleasant kind of high. Its legal status as an hemp derived cannabidiol CBD extract, along with the numerous health benefits that we’ve highlighted above are just a few of its other appealing characteristics.

Citations

  1. Mechoulam, R., & Hanuš, L. (2000). A historical overview of chemical research on cannabinoids. Chemistry and Physics of Lipids, 108(1-2), 1-13.
  2. Wiley, J. L., Marusich, J. A., & Huffman, J. W. (2014). Moving around the molecule: Relationship between chemical structure and in vivo activity of synthetic cannabinoids. Life Sciences, 97(1), 55-63.
  3. Paudel, K. S., Hammell, D. C., Agu, R., Valiveti, S., & Stinchcomb, A. L. (2010). Cannabidiol bioavailability after nasal and transdermal application: Effect of permeation enhancers. Drug Development and Industrial Pharmacy, 36(9), 1088-1097.
  4. National Cancer Institute. (2021, February 16). Cannabis and cannabinoids (PDQ®)-patient version. Retrieved from
  5. Rausch, L. K., & Sorge, R. E. (2020). Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol displays similar reinforcing effects to delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol in rats but less adverse effects in female rats. Behavioural Brain Research, 379, 112365.
  6. Russo, E. B. (2008). Cannabinoids in the management of difficult to treat pain. Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management, 4(1), 245-259. doi: 10.2147/tcrm.s1928.
  7. Maurya, N., Velmurugan, B. K., & Singh, S. K. (2020). Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol: A new hope for patients with anxiety? Journal of Cannabis Research, 2(1), 1-11. doi: 10.1186/s42238-019-0015-6
  8. Kaur, R., Ambwani, S. R., & Singh, S. (2016). Endocannabinoid system: A multi-facet therapeutic target. Current Clinical Pharmacology, 11(2), 110-117. doi: 10.2174/1574884711666160823144243
  9. Lapoint, J., Meyer, S., Yu, D., & Piper, B. (2020). Delta-8-THC displays antiemetic properties and reduced psychoactivity. In Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior (Vol. 198, p. 173078). Elsevier.
  10. Amenta, P. S., Jallo, J. I., Tuma, R. F., & Elliott, M. B. (2014). A cannabinoid type 1 receptor agonist, 2-arachidonoylglycerol, attenuates deficits in synaptic plasticity in a mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 42(3), 859-874. doi: 10.3233/JAD-140093
  11. Bouskila, J., Javadi, P., Elkrief, L., Bouchard, J. F., Ptito, M., & Casanova, C. (2016). Cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 modulate the electroretinographic waves in vertebrates through a differential mechanism. Journal of Neurophysiology, 116(3), 1291-1301. doi: 10.1152/jn.00892.2015
Disclaimer

The statements regarding the medicinal or health value of Delta 8 have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Delta 8 products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Information on this website or in any materials or communications from Inheal is for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Please consult your healthcare provider before making any healthcare decisions or for guidance about a specific medical condition.

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