Can you overdose from THC? It depends on what you mean by overdose. Usually, the term implies taking too much of a substance to the point of death.
But in common parlance, talking about overdosing on THC could mean simply taking too much. And that is subjective for every individual.
A connoisseur may smoke multiple joints daily, perhaps eating a 100+ mg cookie before bed. Other consumers, on the other hand, may prefer a single bowl. And maybe only on the weekend.
So overdosing on THC is going to mean different things to different people. Essentially, it means you’ve taken enough cannabis to feel uncomfortable.
But can you fatally overdose from THC? There’s no scientific evidence, but that hasn’t stopped politicians and public health busybodies from claiming you can.
Can Enough THC Kill a Child?
A Virginia mother has been charged with the murder of her four-year-old son after he died from allegedly consuming a large amount of THC.
The four-year-old accessed his mother’s cannabis gummies, but according to the mother, the gummy was half THC and half CBD.
Nevertheless, the news release from the Sheriff’s Office said, “The child’s toxicity level showed a high level of THC.” And that “The attending doctor told detectives that if medical intervention occurred shortly after ingestion, it could have prevented death.”
Apparently, the child ate an entire jar full of cannabis gummies.
It’s stories like these that politicians and public health busybodies latch onto, like the Temperance Movement on alcohol.
A 156-member House Republican Study Committee recently released a report blaming state-level cannabis legalization for “an explosion of marijuana use among children.”
The Committee recommends if or when the US legalizes cannabis, edibles “in the form of candy or beverages” should remain banned.
Likewise, in Canada, edibles are capped at 10mg of THC. As the government begins its Cannabis Act review, public health busybodies call for a ban or more restrictions.
But is any of this justified? Can enough THC kill a child? What about an adult?
Can You Overdose on THC?
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the chemical in cannabis that produces the “high” most people seek.
It is a phytocannabinoid, meaning plant-based cannabinoid, that mimics our system’s endogenous (that is, natural) cannabinoids.
THC’s effect on the brain and body is benign for a healthy adult. You can’t fatally overdose with large doses of edibles.
The only side effect of concern is an increased heart rate. However, this concern is nothing like that of cocaine. Cocaine is the leading cause of drug-related visits to hospitals.
Someone who tries cocaine for the first time could have a heart attack. Cannabis, particularly THC, does not have this reputation.
And while researchers try to link poor cardiovascular health to cannabis users, the evidence is far from conclusive.
Smoking cannabis (like smoking anything) can lead to poor lung health, eventually affecting the heart.
As well, if you’re a child with a developing heart or an older person with a failing heart, unnecessarily increasing your heart rate with a large dose of cannabis edibles is not recommended.
But, say you do that. And then you have a heart attack and die. Was it poor heart health that killed you or the THC?
It’s similar to how the corporate-state counted COVID deaths during 2020-21. If you died from a car accident but tested positive for COVID, it was a COVID death.
If a four-year-old consumes an entire jar of cannabis gummies, their small developing heart may not survive the shock to the system.
Can you call that an overdose of THC? What about a child allergic to peanuts? We can say the peanuts killed him, but was it not the child’s physiological state that was the ultimate cause?
Peanuts, like cannabis, are approximate causes.
Can You Overdose on CBD?
Suppose a toddler has eaten more THC than an average adult can handle, then yes. In that case, it’s possible to overdose because of the impact cannabis fatally can have on a developing heart.
This is no different from alcohol or cleaning products. There are thousands of household items that can kill a child.
But what about adults with poor hearts? Hundreds of millions of people have been gaslit into trying an experimental vaccine. The consequences have been negative impacts on the heart.
So now we have former healthy adults who are developing heart problems. THC, especially smoking THC, may negatively affect their overall cardiovascular health.
So what can these connoisseurs do?
Take CBD, of course.
CBD modulates the effects of THC in the brain. But it also reduces inflammation and oxidative stress, reducing heart disease.
Clinical trials looking at daily CBD use and cardiovascular health don’t exist. But then again, neither does the link between THC and heart attacks.
Most cannabis studies are observational. And the ones looking at heart health don’t consider that cannabis users sometimes also smoke cigarettes or drink high fructose corn syrup.
And there is far more evidence that these latter two are more damaging to the heart than cannabis.
Can You Overdose on THC?
Can you overdose on THC? You can undoubtedly take enough to feel uncomfortable.
But can you die from too much THC?
Not if you’re a healthy adult. One of THC’s side effects is an increased heart rate. If you have a poor or developing heart, then too much THC may cause an issue.
But so far, these cannabis studies are observational. They do not conclusively prove that THC, or any phytocannabinoid, can cause an increased risk of heart attacks or death.