Although the crossfaded term itself is new, the phenomenon is far from novel.
You may have heard party-goers and revelers alike exclaim that they’re crossfaded — but what does this mean?
It’s a catch-all term to describe the conscious mixing of substances, the most common combination being cannabis and alcohol, and while the effects are enjoyed by many, they could be disastrous if you’re not unaware of what’s to come.
So before you jump on the crossfaded bandwagon, consider learning more about its effects, how it affects your body and how you can actually survive being crossfaded.
What is Crossfaded?
Put succinctly, crossfaded means being high on cannabis while drunk from alcohol.
It is the sum effect of interactions between these two psychoactive compounds. By consuming cannabis and alcohol at the same time, the effects of this result in more potent impacts and impairment.
Depending on who you ask, one of the worst things is being overly drunk at the same time you’re high.
On the other hand, if dosing is kept to a responsible level, being high and drunk can lead to an enjoyable crossfaded experience.
How Does it Feel?
While at low doses, it can feel great, things can rapidly regress.
For those who get crossfaded beyond their tolerance, truly distressing experiences can occur.
Effects include nausea, vomiting, dizziness, disorientation, and paranoia. A potential escalation of negative symptoms includes panic attacks, greening-out, and getting the spins.
In the right dosage, the combination of the energizing and uplifting effects of these two drugs can be enjoyable.
You could experience the euphoria of being high while getting an energy boost from alcohol. Unfortunately, the combination of these drugs leads to a smaller optimal ‘window‘ with the potential for over-consuming and negative effects as those described above.
Why Does a Crossfaded High Happen
Science has not fully explored this issue, and looking into the neuroscience of it can get awfully complex. Based on the studies we do have, it appears that ethanol enhances the absorption of THC into the bloodstream.
For example, researchers determined that marijuana may alter ethanol bioavailability. This word describes how effective our body processes a drug and the ultimate impacts of that substance on our physiology.
Furthermore, the effects of weed were detected more quickly, with more euphoria and higher plasma THC levels when consumed alongside ethanol. This led researchers to conclude that ethanol may increase the absorption of THC, leading to increases in positive subjective mood effects of smoked cannabis.
Alcohol may enhance the absorption of THC, leading to enhanced intoxication and more rapid effects. Alcohol may also help us notice and enjoy the benefits of cannabis more intensely. This research ultimately provides evidence for why consumers love getting crossfaded.
Sadly, getting crossfaded is not all good news, and it can lead to distressing events.
Due to these changes in bioavailability, those who choose to crossfade can easily consume too much of either or both substances combined in one event. If you find yourself in one of these situations, the tips below will help you determine what you should do.
How to stop a Crossfaded High
Broadly speaking, having good knowledge and exercising proper restraint as you consume is the best policy. That said, we all make mistakes. If you are crossfaded from alcohol and marijuana and don’t know what to do, you’ll find plenty of useful tips below.
How long does it Last?
The answer truly depends on how much of each substance you consume. The same goes for the delivery method for your cannabis. Smoked or vaped cannabis will have effects fading much more quickly than with edibles or oils, for example. Overall, the only way to stop the effects is by waiting them out. Beyond that, there are ways to make the situation less distressing and end potentially earlier. We’ll discuss these tips below.
Get into a comfy place
Wherever you are, get somewhere safe and comfortable. Ensure you are a safe place practically speaking (like not on the road or in a boat) and emotionally seeking (somewhere you feel secure).
Find support or solitude
Go it alone or with people you trust. If you are having vomiting and alcohol-related effects, staying near someone you trust may be the best call.
When it comes to consuming too much weed plus some alcohol, then being alone is unlikely to be dangerous. As opposed to weed, over-consumption of alcohol comes with more life-threatening potential.
Drink as much water as you can
A simple tip, drink lots of water! It doesn’t matter if you’re thirsty or feeling sick to your stomach. Drink as much water as you can safely tolerate, at least a glass or two. Doing so can help your body to feel better at the moment. Also, this has the added benefit of helping you feel better the next day as well.
Eat some food
Unless nausea and vomiting get in the way, do your best to get some decent food inside of you to stop a crossfaded high. This will not only help you at the moment, it’ll often help you feel much better the next day. Try to eat at least a little bit of something before going to bed.
Sleep it off if you can
Unless you are severely impacted, sleeping it off is the best call. If you are incredibly crossfaded, including puking, it may be best to stay awake for some time first. Stay awake long enough to drink lots of water, and eat a bit of food if you can. This also ensures you don’t have potential mishaps in bed (from mild things like pissing the bed to more deadly concerns like puking in your sleep)
Best Way to Avoid Getting Crossfaded
The best way to avoid getting crossfaded is simply by not consuming both substances on the same occasion. It truly is that simple. Now for those who want to consume both, here are some tips. Make sure you understand how long each substance lasts, such as how alcohol can take a while to take effect but can last several hours. Always give time for both alcohol and cannabis to take effect before consuming more
More broadly, unless you have experience with consuming both, start low and go slow.
From a practical standpoint, this could look like consuming less than half of each substance (compared to how much you would consume of them separately). If you have a low tolerance or are worried about potential negative effects, go with a lower number like a quarter of your normal for each.
Once you try this amount out, see how it affects you, and the next time you’re consuming both, increase the amount only slightly.
Doing this over several events can help you determine how much of each you require for the desired effects when combined.
Final Thoughts On Getting Crossfaded
As mentioned, the combination of alcohol and cannabis can be an enjoyable recreational experience, but it can easily go too far. If you are combining more than one drug at a time, ensure you exercise extreme caution until you are certain about your tolerance levels.
It should also go without saying, but you should not be driving or partaking in reckless behaviors while on cannabis or alcohol. And more importantly not when you are crossfaded, as the impacts compound between the two substances.
Finally, as mentioned, start with a much lower dose of each than you would normally consume in isolation.
Only after a successful experience should you feel comfortable with increasing either dose slightly. Doing so can help you avoid the side effects and potential overdose concerns from the co-consumption of weed and alcohol. If you maintain this caution, getting safely crossfaded can definitely make for an entertaining evening.