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shaking after smoking weed

What Are The Cannabis Shakes and What Causes Them

Have you ever noticed yourself shaking madly after you smoked big amounts of marijuana? We’ve all been there. What you were experiencing is what’s known as cannabis shakes.

It starts on your legs, then your torso, and before you know it your whole body is shaking and you can’t stop it. Cannabis shakes are involuntary muscle twitches and tremors, but they aren’t something you should worry about, they are extremely common.

Cannabis shakes are commonly caused by smoking too much, over-stimulation, anxiety, or strains too high in THC. Let’s get into the causes and how to relieve the cannabis shakes.

1. Too Much Stimulation

Depending on the country of residence, in many places it’s very common to roll the famous spliffs, which if you’re not aware of the slang, it is a joint rolled with tobacco. Perhaps this is exactly the reason for your trembling.

Nicotine is a stimulant, exciting the nervous system and boosting your dopamine levels. Some people like to add tobacco to their joints precisely for this extra boost, however, it can cause the famous shakes and anxiety in higher doses.

Chances are that if you’re smoking such a mix, the responsible for the shakes is the tobacco and not the marijuana.

At the same time, if you had been drinking a lot of caffeine lately, like coffee, tea, or soda, these big amounts of caffeine could be contributing to your shivers.

2. You Need to Relax

Ever been extremely anxious or nervous about something, tried to calm down with some weed, and only minutes later you found yourself shaking uncontrollably? Perhaps it was before a special date, or before making a big announcement, and now you’re visibly shaking and can’t stop it.

We’ve all once made the mistake to mix nervousness with weed and realized what a huge mistake we’d just made.

Smoking or eating cannabis, especially when it’s high in THC, can tend to cause acute anxiety and paranoia and some people can be more sensitive to this than others.

If you’re one of those, or if you’re just having a bad break, the root of your shakes could be pointed to that joint you’ve just smoked.

The main advice we can give you is when you see your body getting out of control in nerves try to breathe in deeply and find calm, perhaps playing some soothing music and getting distracted. Before you realize the shivers will be gone.

3. The Weather Is Just Cold!

Well, another reason why you might be shaking is quite simple, it takes no Sherlock Holmes to realize that maybe the weather is just slightly colder than usual, and when you combine this with some weed it can turn into a shivering day.

It is a common effect to get lower body temperature from cannabis. This is an effect also known as THC-induced hypothermia, but don’t worry, it isn’t as serious as it sounds. THC-induced hypothermia is just the fancy name for that basal body temperature drop.

4. The THC Was Loud

Are you shaking as a side effect of getting way too high? Most of the time, the answer is yes.

The most common reason why you’re getting the cannabis shakes is due to a slight THC ‘overdose’. No, this doesn’t mean you’re od-ing, don’t get freaked out by the word, even less if you’re young and healthy.

We all like to play with fire every now and then, but it is almost impossible to die from smoking too much marijuana so just take a deep breath and move along with the shivers.

5. How Long do Cannabis Shakes Last?

The cannabis shakes don’t usually last too long, although of course, this depends on some aspects, such as the amounts of weed you’ve consumed and how you’ve consumed it.

Method of consumption Cannabis shakes lasting time
Smoking or vaping 15 to 20 minutes for the shakes to fade.
Orally, edibles 2 to 3 hours or more.

If you smoke your marijuana, with a joint, a bong, or a vaporizer then after 15 or 20 minutes you should be feeling fine again. If you took some edibles and accidentally overdid it, bad news is it could take slightly longer for the shakes to fade.

6. How Can You Relieve the Cannabis Shakes?

Now that you know the cannabis shakes are extremely common and not life-threatening at all, we hope we helped with your peace of mind. However, the shakes can make you feel alarmed or uncomfortable so you might want to know some ways to fight them.

The key factor about calming the cannabis shakes is time, waiting for them to calm down. But if waiting is not your ideal option, to your luck it isn’t the only one.

These are some quick cannabis shakes relievers:

  • Attend your body temperature;
  • Start moving around;
  • Get yourself distracted;
  • Breathe deeply;
  • Refrain from stimulants;
  • Consider switching strains or trying some CBD.

Let’s see how to get rid of the cannabis shakes in each case.

Stop thinking about it too much

When it comes to marijuana effects, what some people need to understand is that it’s all in the head. If you think you’re sad, you’ll trigger that emotion, think you’re paranoid, and paranoid you’ll be.

Therefore, it’s essential you’re kind of in a zen state of mind when you take marijuana and that you don’t become your own enemy playing your head a hard time. So, when you feel that you’re about to panic, switch fast from shaking to shushing it off. What we mean is, go and distract yourself.

Being stoned and getting distracted is easy so just try moving around a little, taking a look at your surroundings to see if something catches your attention. Or try some mindfulness and other anxiety-relieving practices by focusing on your breathing, taking deep breaths.

Moving and breathing will help you regain your center and take the focus from your anxiety. Besides, walking and moving around will give you some extra body warmth for your tense, shaky muscles.

Adjust your body temperature

Independent on the cause of your shakes, it won’t help to sit there panicking or focusing on how uncomfortable you’re feeling. You should rather try to take control of the things you can actually control.

The surroundings play a major part in the emotional state we’re set to, even more when psychoactive substances are involved. No wonder why techno parties are so full of stimulants like psychedelic lights everywhere.

So, when you smoke a joint, if the place where you’ve done it can be described as warm, comfortable, and safe there should be nothing to worry about. If it turns out that you were already feeling unsteady even before smoking then imagine afterward. Head somewhere you don’t need to keep one eye open.

If you find yourself with the cannabis shakes in a social situation, it’s okay! Sometimes a big social gathering can be slightly overwhelming and there is no crime in taking a break alone to regain your chill.

Sometimes it’s just the lighting or the music causing your uneasiness. These two are major influential aspects of atmosphere construction, so bad illumination or ugly music could be the reason why you’re feeling on the edge.

Lastly, all your cannabis shakes could be attributed to is cold! If you’re shivering and the weather is in fact quite chilly then get warm! Get some cozy blankets or a big coat and you’ll feel the shivering calm down as soon as your body temperature goes back to normal.

Say no to stimulants

As we said, tobacco works as a stimulant, and so does coffee or other caffeine drinks. So if you notice yourself on a caffeine high perhaps it’s time to say no to stimulants for some time.

If you want to stop the cannabis shakes every time you smoke maybe it’s time to start rolling only green joints and start ordering decaf.

If using plain weed feels too plain for you, cough-snob, you can still spice it up with something else, there are many herbs that make great tobacco alternatives.

Just skip anything that’s charged with stimulant properties or you might end up back at the start with the shakes remastered, sounds like an indie band’s name.

Try other strains

Some of the causes for the shakes, such as over-stimulation, anxiety, or too much THC as strongly tied to the strain you’re consuming. There are vast amounts of different marijuana strains, each of them with its own personality, a.k.a. compounds balance.

Generally speaking, Sativa-dominant strains are the most stimulating ones, and more likely to induce anxiety than Indica-dominant ones. While lots of people enjoy the boost perceived after smoking a pure Sativa, others aren’t such a good match for these strains.

For those who are more prone to anxiety or paranoia, we strongly suggest Indica-dominant strains.

If you feel like you’re slightly in the middle, then of course why shouldn’t you try a balanced hybrid? Just inform yourself, ask other users or cannabis connoisseurs for recommendations.

Use CBD to chill the chills

It wouldn’t be surprising that the reason why you’re having the cannabis shakes is simply that your strain is too high on THC content. When this is the case, looking for strains higher on CBD could be the solution.

CBD or cannabidiol is the non-psychoactive compound in cannabis, and research has found that it helps to ease some of THC’s side effects. Science has also found that CBD has anxiolytic properties, which might help to target your anxiety.

Depending on what uses you’re giving to your cannabis, medical or recreational, you could choose a strain with a 1:1 THC and CBD ratio, or one that’s slightly higher on CBD.

Have you ever turned into a living vibrator after smoking one? Those are the cannabis shakes on you. Let's see why you experience them.

Tremors — from marijuana use or anxiety?

I have smoked marijuana on and off for about a year, not ever more than about once every other week. The last two times I smoked, I experienced uncontrollable tremors in my leg. It wasn’t painful like a muscle spasm, but it was uncomfortable and unsettling. Was this merely nervousness (this was the first time I had people “over” at my own suite to smoke and I was a little worried that my roommates would be angry)? Or, could this be a side effect of the drug?

Signed,
Reefer Madness

Dear Reefer Madness,

It is unsettling when our bodies do something seemingly without our control. In this case it may not be possible to tell whether marijuana or nervousness about your roommates’ reactions was the cause of your tremors, as muscular tremors and shaking are common side effects of both marijuana and anxiety. Tremors are on of the list of possible physical reactions people can have to marijuana, as are nausea, headache, and increased appetite. Pot has been known to lower the seizure threshold for those with seizure disorders, which means it can make having a seizure more likely for those predisposed to them.

Shaking and trembling of the limbs is also a very common side effect of anxiety and panic, which you said you may have been feeling about having people over to your suite. If this was the first time you experienced the shaking but have smoked pot on and off for about a year, is it possible that the combination of being on edge about your roomies mixed with the jittery feelings marijuana can bring on was a double-edged sword? Perhaps when smoking in the future it would be a good idea to do so in an environment that feels comfortable with people who are safe and familiar. If the tremors do sneak up on you again, taking a moment to collect your thoughts combined with some deep slow breathing may help get you the extra oxygen and calming rhythm to relax your muscles and your mind. If your nervousness continues or is concerning, you could take an opportunity to reflect on the pros and cons of continuing to smoke.

Dear Alice, I have smoked marijuana on and off for about a year, not ever more than about once every other week. The last two times I smoked, I experienced uncontrollable tremors in my leg. It wasn't painful like a muscle spasm, but it was uncomfortable and unsettling. Was this merely nervousness (this was the first time I had people "over" at my own suite to smoke and I was a