THC has recently gained quite popularity, thanks to its medical benefits. But, what is THC? THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the compound responsible for the upshot of psychosomatic. It gives the brain the feeling of marijuana’s effects of being high. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), THC is like the natural cannabinoid chemicals found in the human body.
THC impersonates the natural chemical cannabinoid CBD, produced in the brain, changing brain functions. Tetrahydrocannabinol powers the neurons and alters the process instead of everyday brain communication through neurons. THC is very much like cannabinoid CBD, but still, it can reverse the effects of THC.
Uses of cannabis have a long history, perhaps thousands of years. China is the first country that discovered the usages of cannabis. These people didn’t know what did THC stand for. This led them to use cannabis for food, textiles, and medicine.
Eventually, it was later introduced to Europe and America. By then, it became famous for ritual and recreational purposes. Then, around the 1930-40s, anti-drug campaigns begun against its use, and many countries passed laws prohibiting marijuana. Although, in recent years, some state governments have allowed the usage of THC and CBD for their beneficial usages.
In this article, you can read more about THC and how exactly does it work!
What is THC?
Before we proceed with THC, do you know what is delta 9 THC? Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ-9-THC) or delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol is the other name of THC. THC is a cannabinoid molecule in cannabis that acts as a psychoactive ingredient, which gives the brain nearer marijuana effect to feel high. One can find THC in resin, which secretes especially from the glands of reproductive organs of the marijuana plant.
The chemical formula of THC is C₂₁H₃₀O₂, with a molecular mass of 314.464 g/mol. But, it is very much alike in molecular mass and structure to its correspondent CBD, which weakens the effects of THC. According to NIDA, THC distressed the brain in retention, desire, actions, attentiveness, coordination, memory, and sensory.
Due to this, doing day-to-day tasks, especially driving, operating, etc., may be dangerous while under the influence of drugs. THC is medically beneficial for medical purposes. It can boast numerous health benefits –help treat depression, anemia, epilepsy, and even eating disorders, anorexia.
THC works by involving the cannabinoid receptors. You can find these receptors in the brain and nervous system. THC can be absorbed in body fat and organs for four weeks and the hair follicle. As a result, one can detect THC after ingestion of 20 hours in the body.
The results will be the same even though the psychoactive effects last two to three hours a day. You can also take tests that can identify THC even after 90 days; although it is an unreliable method of detecting THC, Urine testing is one of the simple ways to detect THC.
How to Take THC?
Mostly, THC is famous as marijuana, AKA the dried leaves of the Cannabis plant. But there are several different ways that THC can be ingested by:
- Inhalation: This is the reckless and easy method of consuming, which produces the quickest psychoactive effects. People start to feel the impact within minutes of smoking THC.
- Oral Ingestion: You can orally consume THC in the form of capsules, tinctures, etc. this method of consumption might take longer, but its effect lasts longer
- Topical application: You can use THC as lotions, balms, oils, and bath salts exposed to the skin. It is mainly used for medical purposes to reduce pain and inflammation. THC affects from this method of application do not have psychoactive effects.
- Sublingual administration: You can consume THC as candies, sprays, or dissolvable strips or salt or powder, lozenges placed under the tongue. Its psychoactive effects are quick and last longer.
What is THCa?
So, what is THCa? THCa, termed tetrahydrocannabinol acid, is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in live cannabis, only in minute quantities in the living plant. The health benefits of THCA affect the body by consuming raw cannabis-like cannabis juicing.
THCa is medically proven to heal pain and is an ideal cannabinoid for symptoms of conditions as arthritis, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson and seizures. THCa is always compared to THC and is the acidic precursor to THC.
Dry cannabis slowly converts THCa in to THC. Or Instead, invisible to heat or sunlight, then also THCa will convert to THC. Heat accelerates the conversion of THCa to THC, a process known as decarboxylation.
THC Effects on The Body
According to NIDA, THC excites cells in the brain to discharge dopamine, creating exhilaration. However, it also hinders memory and retention of the information that affects the brain. THC can encourage hallucinations and cause delusions. In addition, the THC effects can last about two to three hours after ingestion.
Due to this, we are doing day-to-day tasks, especially driving, operating machinery, or doing any physical activity, which may be dangerous while under the influence of THC drugs. THC will build up in the body over time, so how repeatedly a person uses THC concludes how long it remains in the body. THC in occasional users can last for one to four days of last use and 90 days in prolonged users.
A person’s method of consuming THC plays a role too. For example, if one’s body takes slower to process the THC in an edible form, it will stay in the body for a longer duration than smoking. THC is absorbed in body fat and organs for up to four weeks, and in the hair follicle, THC can be identified even after 90 days. However, mostly Urine testing is done to detect THC, which is an unreliable method of detecting THC.
THC Effects on the Brain
Marijuana’s effects make it the most popular drug, most commonly and illicit drug in the world. According to NIDA, THC can trigger a setback in schizophrenic symptoms. Researchers determine that cannabis has a variance risk on susceptible as opposed to a non-susceptible person. Suppose a young person with a genetic vulnerability to schizophrenia or those with psychiatric disorders or depression in their families should avoid THC use.
Apart from psychiatric problems, THC use has also links to impaired motor and sensory skills. THC use increases the chances of vehicle crashes or similar tasks for roughly four hours after consumption.
THC vs. CBD
Regardless of the two compounds having nearly exact chemical makeups, THC and CBD perform differently.
THC is the psychoactive element in marijuana that gives a person the sensation of being high. However, CBD acts as an equalizer to the effects of THC. At the same time, THC prompts sleepiness & lethargy, whereas CBD can get upsurge energy in the body.
CBD can reduce little THC’s effects by dipping anxiety and stress. Unlike THC, CBD won’t get anyone high because CBD does not excite cannabinoid receptors in the brain as THC does. Instead, it reduces/changes how those receptors react to THC. Another significant difference between THC and CBD is legality.
THC vs. THCa
THC gets us elevated, whereas THCa doesn’t. The reason behind this is the shape of the THCa molecule. THC has a giant molecule that doesn’t fit into cannabinoid receptors. THC is always compared to THC and is the acidic precursor to THC. Dry cannabis slowly converts THCa into THC. Or Instead, if visible to heat or sunlight, then also THCa will convert to THC. Heat accelerates the conversion of THCa to THC, a process known as decarboxylation.
Uses of THC
THC swanks a variety of uses, both medicinal and recreational. Among many, THC can be used as syrups, edibles, oils, tinctures, drops, in medicines, lotions, and balms for anti-inflammation. You can also use THC for pain relief and calming anxiety. Currently, a medication named “Marinol.” Marinol mixes with synthetic THC and is the only FDA-approved THC medication.
THC-containing drugs may help patients with Insomnia, Anxiety, Depression, Inflammation, Muscle spasticity, Symptoms associated with HIV/AIDS, Inflammatory bowel disease, Irritable bowel syndrome, Migraines, Glaucoma, Multiple sclerosis, Nausea, Post-traumatic stress disorder, and Seizures.
THC medicinally helps patients to relieve symptoms of certain diseases. However, since cannabis is illegal in some countries, research on THC is restricted.
Some of the Developing Benefits So Far
Prolonged pain relief is the most common purpose why people look for medical marijuana. As per researchers, patients with chronic pain found THC increased the probabilities for pain improvement by 40%. However, experts require time to conclude more about THC and its relation with pain. Plus, what doses and combinations of THC are most therapeutic for relieving pain for the patients are not yet indeed disclosed
Lessens Nausea from Chemotherapy
Nabilone and dronabinol drugs ease nausea and vomiting symptoms during chemotherapy treatment. Both of these drugs are oral THC-containing medications. A study of chemo patients also confirms the above findings, that those who took a THC-containing medicine with treatment-experienced less nausea and vomiting than patients who didn’t.
Reduces Muscle Spasms in Multiple Sclerosis and Paraplegics
THC reduces muscle spasms, a symptom experienced by patients with Multiple Sclerosis and paraplegia. As per research, THC used in combination with other drugs improved muscle spasms. You can apply THC via THC wax or oil. But, you may wonder what is THC wax or oil? THC wax or oil is the pure extraction from the cannabis plant. You can find other THC products like THC lotion, THC gummies made with THC wax and oil.
Sleep disorders are one of the symptoms in patients with health problems like cancer. THC-containing drugs can improve sleep problems and reduce the time to fall asleep. THC may affect sleep quality or give relief from chronic diseases.
The Medicinal Effects of THC
According to NDIA, marijuana is beneficial for medicinal purposes for more than thousands of years. However, few states have also legalized the drug for recreational use only. Some of the FDA-approved drugs are Marinol, Syndros, and dronabinol.
These medicines help to treat nausea and vomiting. They help accompany cancer medicine and increases appetites. Studies have shown that when appropriately used, THC has many medical benefits too. For example, when taken in small doses, THC is may be able to improve memory. But it doesn’t mean that people started consuming raw marijuana as a better drug than prescription pills because it is natural. Indeed, there have been many health benefits of THC and cannabis.
For example, THC had shown to help increase appetite in an eating disorder, possibly- anorexia patients, help with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, and even help cancer patients. In addition, THC may help provide pain relief and reduce inflammation for some patients.
What Are The Side Effects of THC?
When doctors are optimistic about the use of THC, it has some adverse side effects too. Studies claim that there may be more destructive effects of THC. There is always a link between cannabis smoking and respiratory symptoms associated with it.
People who smoke cannabis have more chances of respiratory symptoms. According to NDIA, the use of THC can lead to certain psychiatric conditions, such as:
- Development of schizophrenia
- Hyper mania in people with bipolar disorder diagnoses
- Increased incidents of suicide attempt
- High occurrences of social anxiety disorder
According to the NIDA, about 40% of people who used marijuana will become addicted. Plus, it involves binging and symptoms of withdrawal when not using the drug. However, THC is one of the effective medicines that can cure various severe conditions despite certain disadvantages. Additionally, it provides relaxation to the body suffering from painful diseases like cancer. It is always advisable to consume THC under the guidance of experts. In addition, it will help to understand more about what is THC.