Marijuana has been a victim of false media since the 1920s. In 1930 the marijuana tax act, which illegalized marijuana, was passed. The act was followed by propaganda which tried to justify the illegalization of cannabis. Many people were made to believe that marijuana was a monstrous drug with fatal psycho effects. To worsen things for the drug, there was limited information available for the public in those dark ages, people mainly relied on television programs, newspapers and radio programs for the info, which made it easy for the government to sell its agenda.
With movies like ‘Reefers Madness’ people ended up believing that marijuana was associated with violent behaviour which led to deaths, rape and other violent criminal acts. Unlike today almost no research had been conducted on marijuana. Many of the previous myths on marijuana have been dispelled by the research which has been conducted by the private and governmental organization.
One of the key issues highlighted during its illegalization was marijuana-induced road accidents. This has prompted researchers to find out the difference between marijuana and alcohol-related road accidents. The research found out that there is a high probability of an accident being caused by a drunk than a high person, just mind-blowing!
In a study sponsored by the National Drug Abuse, which employed the use of an advanced driving simulator that replicates real-life driving, 18 adults were subjected to marijuana vapes thrice a month and half of them drunk alcohol. The research concluded that the participants who had taken alcohol deviated off the lanes frequently compared to their counterparts who had the equivalent marijuana levels.
Effects of Combining Alcohol and Cannabis
Mostly known as ‘crossfading’ taking marijuana and alcohol at the same time leaves you in a world of your own feeling like you are floating in space dodging imaginary asteroids.
Well, there has been some research which can help us find out what brings this extraordinary experience. To begin with, alcohol is a depressant but when taken in low quantities creates some sense of excitement and lowers inhibitions. On the other hand the effects of marijuana vary depending on the strain of marijuana as well as the amount in play, but generally, it is a depressant as well.
According to Scott Lukas, Harvard’s Professor of psychiatry and pharmacology, people respond to marijuana and alcohol in different ways depending on the body weight and other body factors. One of Lukas’ studies focused on finding if marijuana affected the rate of alcohol absorption by the user’s body and vice versa.
When one smokes weed, the THC activates the CB2 receptors this in turns affects the rate of alcohol absorption by the body. This effect in reduces the absorption of alcohol from the small intestines into the blood.
On the other hand, alcohol increases the rate at which of absorption of THC into your bloodstream by opening up the intestinal blood vessels to more absorption as confirmed by recent studies. However, the after effect of this procedure is greening out which is a sick/nausea feeling after getting too high and it makes the user feel like vomiting out his life.
Lukas, therefore, advises caution when doing a combo of the two drugs, this is taking into consideration that the THC levels of the cannabis in his experiments were relatively low compared to what is locally available. One should do it in a friendly environment.
Well, Lukas’ research has proved that ingesting alcohol and marijuana at the same time increases the time it takes to get drunk due to the reduced absorption rate of alcohol.
Many other types of research have been conducted since the passing of marijuana tax act of 1937, one thing these researchers have in common is the disapproval of the myths associated with the 1937 act. Due to these findings, many states have introduced marijuana-friendly legislations.
The states of Colorado, Oregon, California and The District of Columbia ate just but a few that have already legalized the use of medicinal marijuana. This move has seen other states push for legalization of cannabis for recreational uses, they just can’t stand the amount of marijuana revenue they are missing.
The greatest challenge for many states, however, is formulation driving regulations related to marijuana usage. A break-through with this challenge will see more states embrace marijuana s a harmless recreational drug. Researchers are keen to develop marijuana level test equipment for traffic use just like the one used for alcohol testing.
Another important thing to consider is that the concentration of marijuana in one’s blood will remain high for almost a month, this fact might lead to incarceration of innocent people who are not intoxicated. Up to now, marijuana has no known levels that can cause impairment.
Negative effects of using Marijuana and alcohol at the same time
- Greening out
As mentioned above, greening out is the feeling of nausea that comes after having a marijuana alcohol combo. It might make the user vomits and lose balance due to spins experienced. The user also sweats a lot and becomes pale.
Since the rate of alcohol absorption is low when taken together with marijuana, it becomes easier to overdrink alcohol. As the voluptuous alcohol taken is gradually absorbed the levels in the blood spikes up rapidly and might lead to death. To make it worse marijuana induces an antiemetic effect which makes vomiting difficult, making it almost impossible for the body to initiate its defense mechanism against excess alcohol, vomiting.
Studies have shown that alcohol used with marijuana makes its users experience paranoia. This leads to users making fatal inappropriate choices in life. Since alcohol and THC are both depressants, they can significantly increase episodes of terror, panic and anxiety.
With all said, marijuana and alcohol taken at the same time can have both positive and negative effects hence we should be cautious when taking the two. It is recommended to ingest regulated volumes or at least be in a safe environment before using it.