The Couch

Can You Overdose on Edibles? Greening Out Symptoms and Treatment

Many have been there before; whether it was from smoking flower, or eating edibles, you know when you’ve had too much. Most often, we see more severe reactions amongst those who have ingested too much activated THC. It may be obvious, but it’s because, when you’re smoking, you know when to stop. With edibles, you’re in for whatever you eat, and there’s no backing until it’s already too late.

Don’t get sucked into the twilight zone of an edibles overdose

Ways to Overdo It

The obvious advice for this situation is to not eat too many edibles. Yet, most people who do end up “greening out”, or overdoing it, have heard that warning. It’s hard to know what’s too much, but it can also be totally circumstantial.

The recommended dosage is 10mg of THC in whatever you’re ingesting, but this can even be too much for some people, depending on their body, metabolism, and how often they use THC. Sometimes, this dosage can be too much for people, even when all of those factors imply that it wouldn’t be. One must also take into account the strain the THC comes from. Some people do worse with Sativas, and some do worse with Indicas. It’s all about knowing your body and being as cautious as you can be. Go off of past experience from smoking flower, take into account how your body usually reacts to substances, and, above all, start out small. Ambition won’t help you here. Ease your way into edibles consumption, and make sure you’re getting the good stuff.

Another thing to keep in mind, when considering going too far, is what you already have – or don’t have – in your body. You never want to eat edibles on an open stomach. Some people may think that doing so will make the effects stronger, or that things will work faster, but all it will do is make the THC hit you harder, while less CBD is absorbed, which can cause anxiety and paranoia. Mixing alcohol into the mix can also cause you to absorb more, which for many people can send them straight into the spins.

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Greening Out: What it Feels Like

You may already know the symptoms of greening out. Fast heartbeat. Racing thoughts. General mental, and maybe even mobile, imparity. And then of course, the paranoia and anxiety that might make you think you’re going to die. All the good stuff. Don’t worry though; you won’t die. There have been no reports of that yet. But, now that edibles are easy to come by, more and more people are taking too many at one time and finding themselves in situations where they feel these things. You want to avoid greening out, if you can, because these symptoms are going to ruin your experience. To make sure your experience remains a good one, suppliers label their edibles, so no one gets mixed up and eats one by accident.

When Colorado first legalized cannabis, we started to see reports of greening out. People were reporting this as overdosing, which you could technically call it, but it is not as life-threatening as overdosing on other substances. Don’t let that downplay the situation though. There have been reports of fainting and near-seizure-like symptoms, so it can be very serious.

What You Can Do to Counteract It

Like I said before, unfortunately, once you’ve eaten the edibles, there’s no going back. Especially if you already deal with an anxiety disorder, you know that it’s not that easy to get rid of these kind of attacks. However, there are ways you can try to dampen those greening out symptoms, once you feel them coming on.

If you feel your heart beating too fast, try taking some deep breaths, take a warm shower, and/ or try to simply rationalize any speeding thoughts. Remember to always drink water, during a greening out situation. Hydration will help your body process the THC, but it will also work to calm you down, as you quench a sort of need in you. Stick to room temperature water, as a sudden blast of cold water can sometimes do more harm than good, as far as soothing your mind and body.

It Happens

One thing to keep in mind during all of this is that greening out can happen to anyone. Don’t let one bad experience make you feel like you have a problem, or like you can’t handle your THC. If cannabis use is seriously affecting your general mental health, life, relationships, and productivity, then it’s an issue, but, if not, you just made a simple mistake. Simply acknowledge serving sizes and remember to stay more cautious in the future, so that your experiences can remain good ones.