Published: June 19th, 2016
Categories: Cannabis Info
When talking about the effects of marijuana, we often use “high” and “stoned” to describe them. Sometimes we don’t even make a distinction between being high or feeling stoned. We might use both words as a way to simply say that we’re, well, pretty baked.
Obviously, this isn’t exactly the most “scientific” way to describe things since there is a notable difference between what it can mean to be “high” or how it is when we feel “stoned”.
Let us take a closer look at this difference between being high” and being stoned to clear up some of the confusion.
If we want to keep it simple, we could describe being high as the effect where we feel that we have more energy, both physically and mentally. We feel “pumped”, adrenaline is rushing through the body and we may feel like we want to dance, take a walk, or take on some other physical activity.
While the cannabis high can make the entire body feel energised, this energy boost is usually affecting our minds even more. Cannabis literature often mentions a “cerebral high”. It means that we’re becoming creative, our imagination runs wild and we come up with many new ideas and thoughts. We are optimistic and confident and worry less. Should we have any pains, it can help us entirely forget about them.
When we are "very high” we may even experience stronger psychoactive effects, like visuals and hallucinations, although nowhere near as pronounced as those from stronger psychedelic drugs like LSD.
Feeling stoned is pretty much the opposite of what it feels to be high. Rather than feeling that we get new energy, we feel a pleasant, heavy relaxation coming over us.
The best example of feeling stoned is the “couchlock” effect. This is pretty much a description for becoming heavily stoned. The user becomes lethargic and almost paralysed where they sit. We’re “locked” to the couch and can’t move. Or we just don't want to. Slight difference there. We don’t really feel like interacting with others and want to just enjoy the calming and relaxing effect from the weed.
With cannabis, the stoned feeling can often follow the initial high, but not always.
If you smoke weed, you will likely know about the two main types of cannabis: indica and sativa.
In general, Sativa strains are normally those that can give us the energetic and creative 'high' while indicas are the ones who give the pleasant and relaxed feeling, also called 'being 'toned'.
However, even with “pure” strains - those that are 100% indica or 100% sativa - this doesn’t always mean that a particular sativa would “guarantee” a high or that a pure indica strain would always make us stoned. This is not an exact science and can depend on various things. The same weed can affect people differently.
It also depends on how the cannabis is grown and especially the timing of harvesting. For example, when harvesting a sativa way too late and all trichomes are already turned heavily in a brown/amber color (pretty handy that pocket microscope!), even the purest sativa can give you a major couchlock.
Most of us enjoy both of the effects of cannabis, combining the high and the stoned feeling. You may feel like you want to kick back and relax at one moment and another time you’d perhaps like some inspiration and want to stay active, say when you’re being creative during the day. Likewise, maybe you’d like to relax but not so much that you’re “locked” to the couch “stoned out of your mind”.
This is why cannabis breeders combine various indica and sativa strains into new strains (so-called hybrids) that can combine the “high” and the “stoned” effect into a new one. A strain can have more of the one effect and less of the other, or it can be balanced. This way, cannabis can often have both effects without either one being too overpowering.
Some smokers prefer a specific sativa during the day and some more relaxing indica at night. The best thing you can do is when you try several strains to find the one with the effect you like best. Do your research. Do your experiments. Have a safe flight!