Smoking cannabis can be fun and all, but sometimes the smoke can get everywhere. Like in someone else’s face. Sometimes, that person may claim to slightly feel the effects of being high, even if they did not smoke first-handedly. So, how is this possible? Are they really feeling high, or do they just think they are? Let’s find out!
What is a Contact High?
A contact high is a feeling of euphoria, giddiness, or happiness experienced after being in close proximity to somebody who is under the influence of marijuana.
Is A Contact High Possible?
Can you get a contact high from a person next to you smoking marijuana? The answer is yes, and no. You cannot get a “full high” from secondhand smoke, but you can get a slight feeling of it. Also, enough secondhand smoke from marijuana can leave traces of THC in your blood and/or urine. Now, it is much harder to get a contact high from marijuana that is being smoked outdoors. However, if you are with people that are smoking in a room with all the windows shut, then the chances of you getting a contact high are much larger.
Secondhand Marijuana Smoke Scientific Facts
All of these facts were proven in a study done by John Hopkins University. In this study, two tests were performed. The first test placed 12 subjects (6 smokers and 6 non-smokers) in a small room that was unventilated. The 6 smokers puffed away at 10 joints, each with marijuana that contained 11.3% THC (that’s some good stuff right there). After the joints were smoked, the room was full of smoke (a.k.a. “hotboxed“). The 6 smokers were obviously high, and the 6 non-smokers claimed to have slight symptoms that come with the effects of marijuana. These symptoms included feeling pleasant, tired, and less alert. The non-smokers’ blood and urine were also tested, and all came up positive for THC.
The second test that took place had the same subjects and same scenario, the only difference was that the room was now ventilated. After this test, the non-smokers did not report the same feelings that they had in Test 1. Their blood and urine were also tested again, however, this time it did not come up as positive for THC.
The study resulted in two findings: those exposed to marijuana in “extreme” conditions can receive a contact high, while those exposed to it in “non-extreme” conditions (which is most cases) most likely only think that they have a contact high, and do not actually have one.
How Does A Contact High Feel?
So, you can get a contact high from being exposed to marijuana in small, unventilated rooms with many people smoking in it. If this does happen, what are some of the effects that you can expect from a cannabis contact high?
First of all, as the study had shown, those with a contact high felt more pleasant, tired, and also less alert. In some cases, you can even feel hungry. It may not be hungry like the munchies, but you may still feel the need to eat.
If you check out Reefer Post’s strain reviews, you’ll notice that we list all of the effects that a strain has to offer. Now, do not expect to get these same effects if you experience a contact high. You may only feel some slight effects. And again, this is only if you are exposed to marijuana smoke in extreme conditions.
Is THC Still Active In Secondhand Smoke?
Multiple studies have been done to test whether THC is still active in smoke after it has been exhaled. These studies found that most of the THC are absorbed when the smoke is first inhaled. And for those who like to hold in their hits, even more of the THC and cannabinoids are absorbed. The longer you hold in your hit, the more THC your body will absorb (leaving less for someone to get a contact high).
If you put all these points together, it is quite difficult to get a contact high from marijuana. You would need to be in a small, unventilated room with many smokers who all did not hold in their hits. This is not a common scenario, meaning you would actually have to try to get a contact high. So no, you will not get high from passing by someone that is smoking weed, unfortunately.
After all this, it seems to be much easier to just get a firsthand high than to go out of your way to get a contact high. If you want to enjoy marijuana, then smoke it yourself. Thanks for reading!