Is It Safe to Drive After Consumed Cannabis CBD?

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Should you use CBD and drive? It depends. If you are thinking of using hemp-based CBD oil or other hemp-based CBD products, there is not much to worry about. Hemp has negligible traces of the psychoactive THC, so you should not worry so long as you watch the dosage.

However, it may not be safe to drive after consuming Sativa, Indica, or Hybrid cannabis CBD.

What’s the worry?

The cannabis strains used for consumption through smoking, vaping, or other means do contain more than a trace of THC as well as larger percentages of CBD. The real question is if it is safe to drive after consuming cannabis with a high enough CBD content to treat medical problems: seizures, spasms, chronic pain, anxiety, stress, depression, migraines, PTSD, PMS, and many more.

CBD does affect your brain. It increases the level of anandamide (the “bliss” molecule) by slowing its reabsorption into the body, and it supports the level of GABA (Gamma-aminobutyric acid) which modulates neurotransmission. This reduces anxiety and increases relaxation.

These effects may enhance your mood, but they are not intoxicating. So, you should not experience any functional impairment.

However, there are side effects felt by some people. They may notice fluctuations in blood pressure, feelings of lightheadedness, and some drowsiness. These are clues to stay home or give your keys to someone else.  

  • Perhaps, you are a first-time user.

  • The dosage may be too high, or

  • The THC potency may reduce the CBD’s benefits.

Cannabis strains with high CBD potency can be sedating for some people. Some people may want that sedation to relieve pain, anxiety, depression, or stress. But, the promise of sedation should keep you from behind the wheel.

5 High CBD strains to avoid.

While hemp-based CBD oil and related products are legal and available in all states, cannabis CBD is legal in those states that have approved medical marijuana and/or recreational cannabis. Those same states are struggling to find ways to test for THC and CBD in your breath or blood. Lacking a reliable standard, enforcement varies. So, if you plan to use and drive, you had better know the regulations in your state.

There are also questions about your safety and that of others. There is a moral standard here as well as a legal one. If you — or others — recognize a change in your behavior or sobriety, you should not drive. If you use cannabis in combination with alcohol and/or other drugs, you are a danger to yourself and others as well as subject to arrest.

If you are looking for cannabis strains and have enough sense to stay off the road, you might try: 

  • Grape Ape: People enjoy the strong grape aroma and sweet taste. But users with insomnia and other sleep and appetite disorders. It may ease your pain, stress, and anxiety with relaxing sedation. Grape Ape boasts 21% CBD over 18% THC. This is a just before-bed strain that induces deep full body sedation too profound to let your operate machinery.

  • Mazar Kush: This strain is only one of a family of Mazar influenced strains. The Mazar Kush delivers the effects of 20% CBD for therapy of chronic pain, chronic stress and anxiety, insomnia, muscle spasms, PTSD, and migraines. It has a complexly rewarding aroma and taste of orange, blueberry, and citrus. But after a brief euphoric high, you will find yourself immobilized.

  • ACDC: This legendary favorite has 20% CBD and a measly 1% THC. ACDC is a daytime strain that creates clarity and focus following relief from multiple medical issues. Muscles, tissues, and nerves relax, but there is no deep sedation. Nonetheless, the high CBD content is likely to show up in any testing if you are driving under its influence. This concern applies to Harlequin and Catatonic, too.

  • Harle-TSU: The Harle-Tsu hybrid contains up to 21% CBD and less than 1% THC. Depending on the individual, it may or may not proceed from mild euphoria to a deep full-body relaxing relief from scores of medical problems. The CBD content may show up in testing, but the real concern for drivers is that the physical response can give you a false sense of your coordination.

  • Pennywise: An apparently balanced strain with 15% THC to its 12% CBD, the effects can be risky. Pennywise reportedly helps those with spasms, PTSD, chronic pain, and more. However, the euphoria has pushed some users to paranoia. That threat should keep you off the road.

What’s the best advice?

The best advice is to avoid driving when using medical or recreational cannabis. But the best advice presents some problems.

There is no standard for “inebriation” when it comes to using cannabis. Police recommend rules of thumb when consuming alcohol. For example, four beers or two shots of liquor could get you fined or arrested depending on the percentage of alcohol in your blood.

The common standard for Driving Under the Influence of cannabis is usually based on observation of your driving and physical coordination when you are pulled over. For most people in most cases, fines or arrests are for drivers heavily under the influence of THC.

While cannabis strains high in CBD generally do not present difficulty, they may affect individuals differently. So, responsible users should monitor their own use and that of friends.

If you are using hemp-based CBD oil, you should not worry — if you stick to the recommended dosing. If you are using oil, shatter, wax, or another cannabis derivative, you must research the strain from which it comes. You want to know the CBD content and its balance with THC.

If there is a moderate to high THC content, chances are your driving puts you, your friends, and family at risk. And, if you are mixing the cannabis use with alcohol or other inebriants, you must drive.