Delta 8 THC and Delta 9 THC are similar, but are they exactly the same?
If you consume Delta 8 will you experience the same kind of high as you do when you consume traditional D9 THC? And how long does delta 8 high last?
Keep in mind that the way delta 8 affects you depends on the delivery method used, the manufacturer and other factors (like your biology and tolerance level).
Keep reading to learn about how long a delta 8 high typically lasts, so you know what to expect when consuming the best delta 8 products.
Key Takeaway Summary
- The effects of delta 8 are similar to a mild version of traditional THC, and the length of its effects could be similar.
- Each product style offers a different onset and duration of effects, but in general, Delta-8 effects can last anywhere from 1-3 hours inhalational, and if ingested could last up to 8 hours because of the production of a similar 11-OH intermediate metabolite after digestion, 11-OH-Δ8-THC.
- Typically, Delta 8 effects wear off quickly if inhaled, but edible Delta 8 THC undergoes a chemical change in the liver (same as Delta 9 THC edibles) that causes it to stick around in your system for much longer.
How Long Will A Delta 8 High Last?
Before we get into the details, it is important to note that there are currently no publications that report on the exact duration of Delta-8 effects in humans.
So, the information provided is more like a ballpark estimate of what the average effects are for Delta 9 and people who take Delta 8 products and share their experiences.
Every person has a unique biology with a different metabolic rate. Meaning that each person will metabolize Delta 8 THC differently, especially when taken in different routes (smoking, consuming edibles, etc), which adds to the difficulty of determining how long a delta 8 high will last.
This basically means that a D8 product you take might wear off faster for you than it does your friend, even if you took the exact same dose in the exact same way.
The duration of the high might also be affected by the dosing style. Remember, just like each person metabolizes Delta 8 THC at their own rate, they also absorb it at their own rate.
So, if you vape delta 8 THC it may have a different duration of effects compared to if you consume delta 8 THC in edible form.
Everyone is different. If you decide to try Delta 8 THC or cannabis-derived products, you should always start low and go slow. Meaning starting with the lowest possible dose and increasing as necessary.
You should never drive or operate heavy machinery after activating your cannabinoid receptors. Even if it’s with Delta 8 from hemp, because it still interacts weakly with CB1 receptors that causes psychoactivity.
How Long Do Delta 8 Gummies Last?
There are two different categories of edibles: digested edibles and those that dissolve. Although similar, they do contain important differences.
Keep in mind that just like Delta 9, Delta 8 also has an 11-OH intermediate metabolite that is stronger than its parent molecule which only appears if ingested orally. This metabolite lasts longer and is why edibles are generally stronger.
Ingested edibles are processed completely through digestion. Examples of these are infused cookies, brownies and other sweet treats. They must be chewed and swallowed before the body can begin to break them down and use them.
Edibles must completely pass through the digestive system and then be metabolized by the liver before effects are felt. Because this is a slow process, it can take up to two hours for the effects to kick in.
But this also means that they have a longer duration, and sometimes don’t wear off for as long as 6-8 hours.
With digestible edibles, most people will feel effects hit in less than three or four hours after consumption, with peak effects wearing off slowly after that.
Dissolvable Edibles (Oromucosal or Sprayed)
Dissolvable edibles dissolve in the mouth. They’re partially absorbed by the mouth’s mucous membranes. Anything left over is swallowed and digested slowly.
This partial (but quick) absorption from the mucous membranes allows some effects to kick in in as little as 15-30 minutes for some people. These fast effects may start to fade one or two and a half hours quicker than traditional, digestible edibles.
The portion that’s swallowed still travels through the digestive tract and is processed just like traditional edibles. These effects last longer, just like with other edibles.
Whatever type of edible you choose, both still have longer-lasting effects than smoking or vaping.
I personally prefer edibles that are orally ingested when taking Delta 8 for several factors.
For one, Delta 8 THC is much milder than traditional Delta 9. Because of the milder effects (and my personal tolerance level), I prefer to take a higher dose of Delta 8 THC edibles. This way, I feel the effects for a few hours throughout the day.
Another reason I prefer D8 edibles, is that smoking or vaping Delta 8 THC produces greater psychoactive effects for me than eating it. The effects wear off so quickly, though that I don’t find it worth it to keep vaping.
I’d honestly rather have the mild high of a Delta 8 edible that I only have to eat once, instead of feeling like I need to smoke all day.
How long does a Delta 8 THC High Last From A Tincture?
The effects of a Delta 8 tincture are similar to Delta-8 edibles that dissolve in the mouth. This is because it undergoes a similar mixed method of absorption as oromucosal sprays.
The liquid is absorbed by the mouth’s mucous membranes and can take effect quickly in comparison to other edibles, coming on in 30 minutes or less and lasting for up to five or six hours.
This is the same experience many in the cannabis community might report having when consuming Delta 9 THC, but with a milder, less euphoric experience.
Delta-8 THC Effects VS Delta-9-THC Effects
While research is scarce regarding the differences between Delta 8 THC and Delta 9 THC effects, a 2022 review of Delta 8 THC vs Delta 9 does outline some distinct differences between the two cannabinoids.
After reviewing several studies, researchers found the biggest differences between the two is the “weaker potency” of D8 compared to D9. It was also discovered that the metabolism of the two is similar, and both contain the active 11-OH metabolite that makes them more potent when taken in digestible edible form.
In the review, researchers also concluded that it’s possible Delta 8 THC has a lower potency because of its relationship with CB1 receptors. It might also contain a different balance of CB1 vs CB2 activation.
There’s also plenty of purely anecdotal evidence that describes what someone might expect when consuming Delta 8 THC.
Delta 8 THC is similar to Delta 9 in chemical structure, which could support the idea that the effects are similar. Keep in mind, however, even though the effects may be similar they aren’t exactly the same.
An earlier study, conducted by famed cannabis researcher Dr. Ralph Mechoulam and his team, found that Delta 8 THC may be only about half as potent as Delta 9. This is in line with what many people say about Delta 8 being milder than Delta 9.
Something else many people share is that they’re less likely to experience some of the negative side effects they’ve experienced with Delta 9, such as paranoia, anxiety, dry mouth or becoming overly sedated.
If you take the accounts of other cannabis consumers into consideration, Delta 8 THC effects are relaxing and therapeutic. Yes, they’re similar to traditional THC effects. But they come with less intensity and possibly fewer negative side effects.
The mild effects may be ideal for those who want to maintain mental clarity. D8 might also be a good option for people who are sensitive to traditional THC products. It could also be perfect for people completely new to THC. Delta 8 can still help relax and unwind without completely hitting you in the face with intense effects.
Many people say the experience of a Delta 8 high wears off quicker than a Delta 9 high. But this all depends on each person and things like their metabolic rate, tolerance levels, etc.
How Long Does Delta 8 Stay In Your System?
How long does Delta 8 stay in your system?What if you’ve consumed D8 and need to pass a drug test?
While the effects might wear off completely within eight hours, this doesn’t mean that all the Delta 8 is completely out of your system.
Unfortunately, there is not enough research completed to know exactly how long Delta 8 stays around after ingestion. Currently, the excretion estimates are believed to be similar to Delta 9 based on very minimal research with lab animals.
According to the recent 2022 paper, “The terminal elimination half-life of Δ8-THC has not been reported in humans. The terminal half-life of Δ9-THC is up to 4 days in chronic users…”
However, this applies only to the original substance that was ingested (i.e. Delta 8 or Delta 9) and not the metabolites that have been formed since then, which is what drug screenings are looking for. The most common drug tests look for the THC metabolite THC-COOH, which is a metabolite that Delta-8 can turn into.
In general, we know that Delta 9 THC can stay in saliva for up to 78 hours after ingestion and in blood or urine for up to 30 days or more for a frequent consumer. A single exposure may trigger a positive test result in the urine for up to 72 hours, and in the saliva for up to 24 hours.
Looking at this, we might be able to assume that Delta 8 will behave similarly to Delta 9 here as it has in other areas. If you have to take a drug test, Delta 8 is likely going to show up. This is because your standard drug test will look for THC metabolites.
The amount of time it will take your body to process all the trace amounts of THC (no matter what kind) differs for every person depending on several factors, namely body weight and metabolism.
Wrapping Up How Long The Delta 8 High Lasts
Delta 8 is a smooth and relaxing hemp plant that is federally legal under the 2018 Farm Bill.
Wondering exactly how long delta 8 will keep you high? The most important thing to remember is that everyone responds to Delta 8 differently. You might expect your experience to last up to five hours.
Keep in mind, your experience will be uniquely yours. Just follow dose recommendations (start low and go slow), and have a good time!