There are many things that can occur when mixing alcohol with other substances and cannabis is definitely one of the no-nos after you’ve been drinking. Sure, a casual cocktail or two with a puff or two isn’t likely to send you over the edge, head in toilet, unable to speak, but if you go a good four or five cocktails deep and then smoke a fat doobie, chances are you’re going to regret it.
But why? Alcohol and cannabis are two of the most widely accepted recreational mind altering substances there are. Shouldn’t they play nice together? The short answer is no, though of course, everyone’s bodies will handle the combo differently. Your reaction may not be so extreme, but you are a lot more likely to clam up, space out and maybe get the spins if you drink and smoke.
According to reporting by VICE, two studies on the topic, published by Scott Lukas, who is a professor of psychiatry and pharmacology at Harvard Medical School, take a deeper look at what’s going on in our bodies when the two substances are imbibed together. One study examined how cannabis affects the absorption of alcohol, the other looked at how alcohol affects the absorption of marijuana, specifically the cannabinoid THC.
While the first study showed that smoking before drinking actually lowers your blood alcohol level, it turns out that if you drink before you smoke instead of smoke before you drink, your THC levels go through the roof. It seems that alcohol opens up the blood vessels in your digestive parts, welcoming THC through the expanded pathways and leading to an intense high.
So logic can only insist that dabbing, eating edibles or even vaping after drinking are special no-gos. The more THC you ingest, the higher that alcohol is going to get you and the more likely you are to get nauseous and, in the best case, feel a strong urge to lie down.
Just think before you imbibe, whether it be the alcohol/cannabis combo or one of the two substances respectively. If you have experience with one or both, you know your limits, at least separately. Just tone it down a few notches if the evening is going to get layered.
“If you’re sitting alone in your bedroom, and you’ve got pillows all around you,” explained Lukas, “and you’re well hydrated, and the bed’s not too far off the ground, the risk is low.”
So don’t take the risk! Don’t get intoxicated to the point of no return on alcohol and then think a few dabs before hitting your pillow-filled bedroom is a good idea. It just isn’t. Keep your head about you and enjoy responsibly.