Urban Myth: Holding In Your Toke Gets Your Higher
If you happen to be one of the many cannabis users in Canada, you’ve probably been told by a fellow stoner, “ hold your toke in, it gets you higher.” If you’re low on herb, this can almost seem too good to be true. I too have fallen victim to this claim, so I decided to look into the truth of it. After all, not letting oxygen into your body can be harmful enough on its own, let alone when carbon monoxide and toxins are added to the situation. Does holding in your toke really get you higher? Well lets just say it really is too good to be true. Let’s walk through the reasons why.
When I first fell victim to the claim of this myth, I believed it just as much as the stoners that convinced me it was true. Why did I feel higher when I held tokes longer? Oxygen deprivation is the reason you feel like you’re getting higher when you hold in cannabis smoke, a seemingly obvious explanation lost in the haze. Oxygen deprivation alone can cause someone to feel intoxicated, not to mention it can also be incredibly harmful to the brain. Holding your breath for just 30 seconds can be enough to make someone faint. The effects include lightheadedness and dizziness, which could understandably be confused with potent cannabis. The effects can be accelerated when you add the chemicals released into cannabis smoke.
So how long should you hold in your toke? Studies show that the psychoactive compound in cannabis, THC, is almost entirely absorbed instantly when smoked. To be precise, 95% of THC is absorbed in the blink of an eye. This is only the case for smoking cannabis, as edibles take longer to absorb into the bloodstream. Please do not go eat a bunch of edibles because you read that it should kick in instantly and you think you need to eat a whole batch. This could result in couch lock, munchies, and excessive sleeping.
All jokes aside, it is important to know the truth to this myth. Holding in cannabis smoke can cause increased levels of tar and other chemical retention in your lungs, which can put you at an increased risk of lung infections and diseases, as well as cancer. Tell your friends, family, neighbors, kids; tell whomever you know that tokes up about the information you just learned. Now that cannabis is legal in Canada, it will be important to debunk these kinds of myths to increase the safety and knowledge surrounding cannabis use. Seek out credible sources to learn about cannabis, and if it seems too good to be true… it probably is.