Disorientation from Weed or Greening Out: Why It Happens and What to Do About It.
In this article, we will answer the questions, “what is greening out?”, “why does cannabis sometimes make you feel disoriented?”, and “what can you do to mitigate disorientation after smoking weed?”
Disorientation is a common adverse side effect of cannabis. Disorientation
is marked by feeling confused and lost and is defined as “a usually transient state of confusion especially as to time, place, or identity often as a result of disease or drugs.”
For example, have you ever eaten an edible and felt disoriented and confused a few hours later? Have you ever “greened out?”
Disorientation often involves confusion about your surroundings or the state of having lost your direction. The word
originally comes from the French term meaning “to turn from the East,” which conveyed the idea of someone having lost their bearings.
So, why does weed sometimes make you disoriented?
Why Does Weed Make You Disoriented?
Cannabis exerts its effects through cannabinoids, which bind to endocannabinoid (eCB) receptors in your brain and body.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) plays a role in modulating
a variety of processes involved in mood, cognition, regulation of movement, arousal, and food intake.
When you consume cannabis, you flood your bloodstream with cannabinoids, which alters the homeostatic balance in your body and brain. These changes produce euphoria, stimulate the appetite, enhance sensory perception, and may lead to disorientation.
who study disorientation indicate that it has less to do with the inability to store new information necessary for orientation, and more to do with “a confusion of memory traces from different events.”
The ECS plays an important role in time perception, memory consolidation, mood, emotion, and more. For some individuals, cannabis may alter these processes in a way that produces disorientation.
What is Greening Out?
"Greening out" is a state of physical discomfort and mental disorientation caused by ingesting too much cannabis. While the symptoms of physical discomfort vary from person to person, with some individuals experiencing sweats, nausea, dizziness, or increased heart rate, mental disorientation is a common symptom of greening out. This disorientation may lead to anxiety for some individuals.
How to Mitigate Disorientation from Cannabis
Here are some general suggestions on how to mitigate side effects from cannabis, and then we will explore some specific suggestions about how to fix disorientation or greening out from too much weed.
Try a new product
Different cannabis products will contain different chemical compounds like cannabinoids and terpenes, which may exert distinct effects. Use Jointly’s Product Finder
to discover new top-rated products.
Try a new ingestion method
Additionally, the way you ingest a product will change how it affects you. Smoking a joint of cannabis flower may produce slightly different effects from vaporizing it, although both ingestion methods involve heating cannabis and inhaling the active compounds.
Each ingestion method has its own advantages and may produce different effects or side effects. To learn how different weed ingestion methods produce different effects, read our article The Best Way to Take Cannabis for Wellness Purposes
Add in a companion food
Did you know that weed companion foods can enhance your cannabis experience in different ways? Mangoes, dark chocolate, green tea, and thyme are all weed companion foods. Chemical compounds in these foods may alter your cannabis experience, and potentially mitigate adverse side effects like drowsiness.
To learn about these foods and how to add them into your cannabis wellness routine, check out our article Do These Foods Get You Higher?
Find your minimum effective dose
Most adverse side effects from cannabis are caused by ingesting too high of a dose of THC. While you cannot die from ingesting too much cannabis, a THC overdose
is a real risk. The single most effective way to mitigate side effects is to microdose and titrate up your dose until you find the minimum effective dose of cannabis
to get the effect you want.
Turn the dials on 15 factors
According to cannabis experts, there are at least 15 factors that can impact your cannabis experience
and play a major role in whether a cannabis product is giving you the feeling you want, or producing adverse side effects like disorientation.
Perhaps the amount of sleep you got last night impacts whether you experience disorientation from cannabis or not. Or maybe you will discover using cannabis with trusted friends prevents you from experiencing disorientation.
The Jointly app lets you to track the 15 factors that can impact your cannabis experience. As you optimize how you consume cannabis, your favorite cannabis products will perform better for you.
How to Not Green Out from Weed
What can you do to avoid disorientation or greening out from weed?
Ingesting cannabis with CBD could mitigate some adverse side effects by buffering some of the psychoactive effects of THC.
Additionally, on the days that you choose to consume cannabis, make sure you are well-hydrated, got plenty of sleep the night before, and ate a healthy diet to decrease your chances of experiencing disorientation.
If you are still experiencing adverse side effects, try microdosing. For some people, just 1mg might be the perfect dose. Don’t be afraid to break up a single serving into multiple servings: cannabis affects different people differently. Purposeful cannabis consumption involves experimenting and recording your results to find out what works for you as an individual.
Get Started on Your Cannabis Wellness Journey
Jointly is a new cannabis wellness app that helps people discover purposeful cannabis consumption
so they can achieve their wellness goals with cannabis and CBD. On the Jointly app, you can find new cannabis products, rate products based on how well they helped you achieve your goals, and track and optimize your cannabis consumption so that you can enjoy your ideal experience every time.
Download the Jointly app on the App Store
or the Google Play Store
to get started on your cannabis wellness journey today.