Is it Safe to Drive While Microdosing THC?

Microdosing THC has health benefits—but is it safe to drive while low doses of cannabis are in your system?

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Driving while microdosing THC is generally considered safe, as long as you take a small enough dose that it won’t cause any psychoactive effects. Additionally, low-dose cannabis consumption has many purported benefits, without the psychotropic properties usually associated with smoking weed.

What is Microdosing Cannabis?

Microdosing refers to the practice of consuming smaller-than-usual amounts of a substance for its subtle health effects. Microdosing is a growing trend with substances such as LSD* or psilocybin mushrooms*. Also, Delta 9 THC. Microdosing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) bestows some important health benefits and does not impair cognitive functioning in most consumers.

Many people microdose cannabis for pain and inflammation. There is some evidence that microdosing THC can treat dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s.

According to research on cannabinoids, THC is believed to aid the release of dopamine and serotonin. Both are important neurotransmitters responsible for the feelings of euphoria, satisfaction, and happiness. Boosting dopamine levels in the brain helps stimulate mental focus and clarity.

Recent studies show that cannabis could have a positive impact on diseases that affect memory, like Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s. Researchers found that low doses of THC and CBD slow brain aging, or even prevent the advance of neurodegenerative diseases—mainly by aiding the creation of neurons.

In a study that focused on geriatric patients and patients suffering from terminal illnesses, it seemed that low doses of THC had a positive effect on morbidity and the overall quality of life.

If you’re looking to improve the quality of your life, boost energy, and increase focus, our THC gummies might be the right choice. These fruit-filled edibles are packed with Delta 9 THC and other cannabinoids and are excellent for activating those little gray cells.

For example, our Bliss Gummies allow you to experience all the perks of Delta 9 THC and CBD. They contain an equal ratio of CBD and THC (five milligrams each) that will give you the mildest buzz, just enough to relax after a loooong day.

By contrast, excessive THC doses have potentially impairing effects on cognitive functions. There seem to be risks associated with excessive use of cannabis in adolescence, involving decreased memory, learning, and impulse control.

One study explores the effects of marijuana on mental health, proposing that low doses of THC do more good than higher THC doses. Higher doses seem to increase anxiety, according to the study, and exacerbate anxiety symptoms.

 

Microdosing THC and Driving

When it comes to cannabis use and driving, it’s all about the dosage. It’s clear that high doses of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) impair driving. High cannabis doses (25mg and above) clearly impair driving ability. Low doses (below 10mg), in contrast, seem to have little negative impact on coordination, reaction time, and focus for most individuals.

One rule of thumb: if your dose of THC is causing noticeable psychoactive effects, your driving will be impaired.

Cannabis Effects on Driving

A 2013 study clearly implicated cannabis use in impaired driving. Drivers under the influence of cannabis showed “substantial driving impairment,” particularly with blood levels in the 2–5 ng/mL range.

A 2014 case-control study compared oral fluid and blood test results of 3,000 Colorado drivers before and after the state legalized marijuana. The study showed an uptick in fatal motor vehicle accidents with marijuana-impaired drivers, supporting that cannabis has negative effects on driving.

Oral vs Inhaled Cannabis

However, studies such as those cited above don’t differentiate between THC consumption methods and doses. Orally-consumed cannabis—like microdosing edibles—produces delayed blood levels that are usually much lower than results from smoking.

Dose-Dependent Effects

Not only is orally-consumed cannabis a bit more mellow (because it doesn’t hit the bloodstream as quickly), but the dosage of THC is a major factor. Any edible under 10 mg of THC should have a negligible effect on driving ability for most consumers.

A 2017 study examined the differences between orally-ingested THC and inhaled (smoked) THC across three different dosages:

  1. 10 mg Delta 9 THC—on the higher end of what is considered a microdose
  2. 25 mg Delta 9 THC
  3. 50 mg Delta 9 THC—a fairly significant dose

Here are some of the findings:

  • Effects on driving skills were dose-dependent: participants “showed evidence of significant cognitive/psychomotor impairment after the 25 mg and 50 mg doses,” though not on the 10mg dose. 25 and 50mg THC doses diminished driving ability, cognitive functioning, vigilance, reaction time, and coordination.
  • Oral THC ingestion takes significantly longer to reach the bloodstream and to be experienced cognitively, but it remains in the bloodstream longer than inhaled THC.
  • For the cohort that received a 10mg THC oral dose, blood THC levels did not exceed 1ng/mL, which is generally considered a safe range that does not negatively impact driving skills.
  • In a cognitive test, participants on the lowest (10mg) dose experienced “no impairment relative to baseline task performance,” indicating that sub-10mg doses should be safe for most users.

 

The study excluded chronic cannabis users. Given that chronic users tolerate the effects of THC better than individuals with no THC in their system, we can assume that daily cannabis microdosing (2.5-5mg) has little impact on driving performance for most users.

Advice on Microdosing While Driving

If you want to be totally safe, avoid driving under the influence of THC completely. However, if you are one of many cannabis users suffering from complex health or mental conditions and rely on microdosing on a daily basis, don’t exceed 10mg of THC per dose, and go as low as 5mg or even 2.5mg if you can get the desired health benefits from these doses. When possible, wait for 6-8 hours after consumption to drive.

Many people microdose cannabis to alleviate chronic pain and inflammation, decrease symptoms of depression and dementia, or to increase focus and concentration. These people should be able to operate a motor vehicle without impairment if they keep their dose to the sub-10mg level.

Note that individual effects vary, and nama CBD takes no responsibility for your driving decisions. It is up to you to ensure that you are being safe on the road.

How Long Do Edibles Stay in the System?

Anything below five milligrams of THC is considered a microdose. The Marijuana Policy Project recommends starting with 2.5 mg of THC. This amount will allow you to function normally and participate in everyday activities without impairment. This also includes operating a motor vehicle.

Remember that microdosing should have little to no noticeable effects. If you think THC affects you particularly strongly, you might be taking more than you need. If this happens, decrease the dosage.

It’s best to start low and go slow. Your ideal dosage depends largely on individual factors like your weight, tolerance, and overall health condition.

If you’re a first time microdoser be sure to read our guide on how to microdose weed to make those therapeutic effects of cannabis work for you.

A great way to start microdosing THC is with our Delta 9 THC gummies. They are perfect for dosage control, so you never have to think about overconsuming. Since they are compliant with the 2018 Farm Bill, our Delta 9 edibles are legal on a federal level across the US!

 

Delta 8 vs Delta 9 THC

Delta 8 is a THC compound found in the cannabis plant. It produces milder euphoric effects and has a lieu of therapeutic benefits like:

  • Improving behavioral problems associated with Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia (agitation and aggression)
  • Stimulating appetite
  • Suppressing nausea and vomiting

 

New research investigates the impact of Delta 8 THC on the brain. It seems that delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol (Delta 8 THC) increases acetylcholine levels. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter that helps sustain memory and learning, and improves the overall mental health.

Read more about the differences between Delta 9 and Delta 8 THC and how they can improve your health. One way to do that is with nama CBD Elevate Gummies. They contain 12.5 mg of Delta 8 THC, are completely vegan, and taste delicious!

 

Cannabis and the Endocannabinoid System

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is one of more than 100 cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. The other most common cannabinoid is cannabidiol (CBD). Unlike THC, CBD cannot get you high. Many people microdose cannabidiol to alleviate chronic pain, reduce stress, and improve sleep quality.

Cannabis contains many more important compounds that interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS).

What is the ECS?

The endocannabinoid system is a network of neurotransmitters and receptors. It helps regulate important bodily functions, such as memory processing, pain perception, sleep, emotions, and others. The human body produces its own endocannabinoid neurotransmitters that interact with two main cannabinoid receptors: CB1 and CB2 receptors.

CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors are stimulated during cannabis consumption. Phyto-cannabinoids (cannabinoids that come from plants) interact with the ECS similarly to our own innate neurotransmitters to regulate bodily functions.

CB1 receptors serve to regulate brain function and are implicated in the pain-relieving effects of THC. They are also responsible for THC’s psychoactive effects. CB2 receptors, in turn, modulate inflammation and the immune system, and are important in controlling the central nervous system.

THC and CBD affect the endocannabinoid system differently. THC binds to and activates CB1 and CB2 receptors. Delta 9’s interaction with CB1 receptors produces analgesic, anticonvulsant, and antiemetic effects—it relieves pain, reduces epileptic seizures, and treats nausea and vomiting.

One study reveals beneficial effects of THC on the cardiovascular system. It seems that Delta 9 THC increases levels of oxygen in our body tissues via activation of CB2 receptors.

Unlike THC, cannabidiol does not seem to bind directly to CB1 or CB2 receptors. Instead, CBD downregulates the effects of both cannabinoid receptors in the presence of THC. According to research, when THC and CBD are taken together, CBD seems to ‘reduce the likelihood of psychoactive effects’ of THC.

Our Relax Plus Gummies offer the precise dosage of THC and CBD every time. They are a terrific fighter against stress and chronic pain with only 5mg of THC and 25mg of CBD. The refreshing watermelon taste makes these gummies a great addition to your microdosing routine. Because of low THC doses, these delicious edibles do not cause cannabis intoxication and should not affect your driving ability.

The Entourage Effect

THC and CBD each have potent therapeutic effects on our brain and body when acting on their own, but seem to have a synergistic effect when taken together that exceeds the effect predicted by their individual capabilities. There are many differences between THC and CBD, and they work together in a hypothetical synergy termed the entourage effect.

Many cannabis users report beneficial outcomes from the entourage effect. These include relief from insomnia, improved quality of sleep, relief from chronic pain and inflammation, and lower anxiety.

Taking cannabis products that contain more than one cannabis compound is the best way to produce the entourage effect. Our full spectrum gummies contain cannabidiol and Delta 9 THC, as well as terpenes and other cannabinoids—CBN, CBG, etc.

Broad spectrum CBD also combines CBD with other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids, but it doesn’t contain THC. Try our broad spectrum CBD gummies if you want to steer clear of THC.

In addition to CBD and other cannabis compounds, full spectrum CBD products contain THC. Our gummies with CBD and THC will reap the benefits of combined cannabinoids for the ultimate entourage effect.

To learn more, check out our guide to the differences between full spectrum and broad spectrum CBD. Also, make sure to read our detailed comparison of CBD isolate and full spectrum CBD.

 

The Legality of Microdosing Cannabis

There is a legal distinction between hemp and marijuana; hemp is federally legal, as are edibles derived from hemp (such as all of our products). Marijuana, on the other hand, is federally illegal—though a number of states have legalized it.

Is Delta 9 Legal?

Delta 9 THC is federally legal in the US if the products containing Delta 9 meet the criteria of the 2018 Farm Bill. Under the Farm Bill, hemp-derived THC that contains 0.3% or less THC content by dry weight is legal to consume across the US.

All our Delta 9 THC gummies are compliant with the Farm Bill and therefore legal on a federal level. However, marijuana laws differ from state to state, so you should read more about state-by-state Delta 9 legality. As of the end of 2022, only Kansas and Idaho have made Delta 9 illegal in all forms.

Is Delta 8 Legal?

Delta 8 THC is federally legal if derived from hemp and if the product contains no more than 0.3% of THC by dry weight. Despite federal legality, different marijuana laws on Delta 8 apply to different US states.

As of 2022, fourteen US states have made Delta 8 THC illegal:

 

  • Alaska
  • Arkansas
  • Arizona
  • Colorado
  • Delaware
  • Iowa
  • Idaho
  • Kentucky
  • Montana
  • Mississippi
  • New York
  • Rhode Island
  • Vermont
  • Utah

 

Is CBD Legal?

The Farm Bill extends to cannabidiol, as well. Hemp-derived CBD is currently legal on a federal level. CBD extracted from marijuana is still considered illegal.

Our CBD gummies for sleep are available for online purchase. They contain CBD derived from the hemp plant, THC, CBN, and melatonin to help you relax and have a restful night of sleep.

 

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Microdosing THC FAQ

Does cannabis improve working memory?

Researchers at the University of Florida came to a conclusion that cannabis smoke improves working memory accuracy—for female rats but not males. Their research demonstrated that doses of THC administered to male rats in the study didn’t seem to affect them at all, but in female rats “exposure to cannabis smoke significantly increased choice accuracy.”

Acute cannabis consumption seems to enhance working memory performance in a delayed response task in rats. More research involving human subjects is needed, as well as more research on marijuana and driving. However, there are clear indications that low THC doses do not cause cannabis intoxication or lead to drug-impaired driving.

Can CBD relieve driving stress?

Many people experience stress while driving. Driving stress is now considered a condition that affects a person’s driving skills. CBD and THC are said to reduce stress and anxiety by reducing the presence of the stress hormone in the body. There are studies that confirm CBD’s stress-alleviating properties by regulating our body’s response to stress.

CBD seems to bind to cannabinoid receptors in the ECS that regulate mood and emotional state. Cannabidiol does this by enhancing the flow of serotonin, boosting concentration and acting as a mood stabilizer.

A different study explores the way CBD influences dopamine levels in the brain. Dopamine is also linked to memory and awareness, but more importantly, to the ability to focus. When lacking dopamine, our attention suffers as a result. Because of this, microdosing edibles helps with ADHD.

Is sativa or indica better?

Indica strains are said to induce deep relaxation and soothe the mind because of higher CBD levels. This makes indica great for battling stress and anxiety.

Sativa strains are associated with energy and focus, bringing an uplifting effect due to higher concentration of THC.

Hybrid strains combine indica and sativa. They can be indica-dominant, sativa-dominant, or contain equal elements of each strain. Hemp Euphoria Gummies contain equal ratios of CBD to THC to bring out the best of both. Bursting with strawberry flavor and packed with a custom formulated blend of indica-dominant and sativa-dominant cannabinoids, these vegan edibles will bring relaxation and focus.

What does the entourage effect feel like?

You will hardly be able to feel the entourage effect at work. The entourage effect refers to the longer-term benefits you get from combining multiple cannabinoids, as opposed to any immediate psychological effect you might notice.

The best way to start feeling the benefits of the entourage effect is after at least a month of continual use of cannabis microdosing products. If you experience improvement in mood and focus, if you sleep better or feel much less stressed out or anxious, congratulations—you’re experiencing the entourage effect.

Are there any risks associated with consuming Delta 9 THC?

Yes, if you consume more than our recommended microdoses of Delta 9, you may experience paranoia, confusion, increased anxiety, and sedation.

If you do happen to experience cannabis impairment, do not operate machinery, cook, or drive under the influence. Listen to your body and make sure to recognize these symptoms of overconsumption.

Can I mix alcohol and cannabis?

Mixing alcohol and cannabis significantly increases the negative impact on driving skills. A recent British Columbia roadside survey and traffic safety reported that cannabis consumption alone has low crash risk. However, when combined with alcohol, the risk of fatal motor vehicles crashes increases greatly.

A study shows how excessive use of alcohol can cause memory loss. Alcohol dependence potentially leads to brain damage, as a different study suggests. The combination of cannabis and alcohol may worsen the potential negative impact on memory.

Drunk driving or driving under the influence of drugs is a more common problem than driving while microdosing cannabis. More research is needed to discover more effects of cannabis on driving.

When should I take CBD for focus?

The ideal time to do it is whenever you feel it would fit best into your routine. Some people tend to use their CBD products in the morning. Starting your day with smaller doses to boost energy and focus is a perfect way to get the best out of your microdosing edibles.

Others prefer munching on their CBD gummy later during the day, some even before bed. And there are cannabis users that opt in on microdosing consistently through the day.

Can I get substance use disorder from cannabinoids?

Many people are concerned about the potential for cannabis abuse associated with regular cannabis consumption. Let’s say this loud and clear: microdosing cannabis does not lead to addiction or abuse. Low doses of THC and CBD also have very little side effects or symptoms of withdrawal, as anecdotal evidence in people who stopped using cannabis reports.

CBD has a low risk of addiction. In addition, cannabidiol can be helpful in alleviating symptoms of withdrawal from other addictive substances, like alcohol and opiates. Some research shows that CBD can successfully mitigate other forms of addictive behaviors.

Does CBD cause memory loss?

CBD does not cause memory loss. On the contrary, CBD is believed to help improve cognitive and memory function and prevent memory loss.

Cannabidiol is considered to have neuroprotective properties: it helps protect neurons responsible for maintaining cognitive functioning from damage or degeneration.

Can CBD reverse memory loss?

There is no substantial evidence that CBD can reverse memory loss. However, recent studies have found that regular cannabis use seems to slow down loss of memory function associated with dementia and Alzheimer’s.

A 2016 study found that CBD may support cognitive function and reduce memory impairment by helping increase the connection between brain cells.

What's the difference between Delta 8, Delta 9 and Delta 10?

Delta 10 is the newest form of THC on the market. One of the main differences between Delta 8, Delta 9, and Delta 10 is that Delta 10 produces the mildest effects of the three Delta cousins.

However, Delta 10 involves a highly complicated and potentially dangerous extraction process. Delta 10 is produced mainly by Delta 9 conversion through the process of isomerization. If not done correctly, this process can lead to a subpar product.

Does THC show up in blood tests?

THC substances may be detectable in your body on a drug test for days to weeks after the last time you microdose. The length of time THC stays in your body will depend on many factors—the strength of the edible and your body’s tolerance to THC substances.

Here’s a chart to help you get a better understanding of the type of test and the approximate detection time:

 

Type of drug test

Detection time

Urine testing

3-30 days

Blood testing

3-4 days

Saliva testing

1-3 days

Hair testing

Up to 90 days

 

 

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