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Cannabis for Medical Use, Cannabis Technology, Introduction, Science of Cannabis

What Are the Weed Shakes & How Can You Prevent Them?

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Martinis. Espresso. Cold temperatures. Bodies on the dance floor. What do these things all have in common besides probably describing Frank Sinatra’s daily lifestyle back in his heyday? Shaking. Whether you’re shaking your booty to some tunes, shaking from the cold or shaking up a batch of some delicious beverage, we are all overcome by ‘the shakes’ from time-to-time. But we’re not talking about milkshakes today, because what has us all shook up for today’s blog has to do with weed shakes.

Shaking after smoking weed, shaking while high or uncontrollable shaking after eating edibles can occur to people with little experience or tolerance to cannabis. Some people experience shaking from edibles because of the delayed reaction to cannabinoids as they are digested and absorbed. In other cases, stoners might start shaking while high due to overstimulation, panic attacks, anxiety or heightened perceptions.

Shaking after smoking weed isn’t necessarily always bad news – it can mean you’re just tired, or you’re responding to newfound sensory stimuli while under the influences of cannabinoids & terpenes. The main takeaway from this introduction to weed shakes is that they’re very common, they can occur often, but they almost always go away without incident.
To better understand the weed shakes let’s shakedown the latest on what causes you to shake after smoking weed, why cannabis makes us feel certain ways, and how you can avoid shaking while high if it’s become a problem for you.

What Are the Weed Shakes?

Instead of saying “I am experiencing a particularly troublesome episode of muscle spasms, cramps and tremors”, we usually stick to simpler terms like “I’ve got a bad case of the weed shakes”. Weed shakes are essentially just muscle spasms that come in waves, can distract you from your high, or have the potential to cause you discomfort.

Shaking while high might be annoying and cumbersome, but it’s never a serious detriment to your health or wellbeing. Think of weed shakes more like your body’s way of telling you that you’re lacking something or that you’re experiencing too much of another thing.

Before we look into the symptoms of uncontrollable shaking after eating edibles or smoking weed, let’s go over some of the main causes for those ‘cannabis jitters’ or weed shakes we sometimes experience:

Definitely Dehydrated

It sure would be helpful if we got the shakes as intensely as those uncontrollable shakes after eating edibles, eh? That way we’d never let ourselves go thirsty, as we often do in our busy lives. Staying hydrated should be one of the easiest and most fundamental functions of our daily lives, but sadly a staggering number of people don’t drink enough water.

Although the weed shakes aren’t necessarily a direct result of being dehydrated, how much fluids you’re having – or not having – can impact how you’re feeling while high. When you’re dehydrated you’re much more tense as muscles and joints stiffen, your circulation runs slower and your brain doesn’t operate efficiently.

Shaking from edibles can be of particular notice when you haven’t been drinking enough water. Edibles require a lot of energy and processing time to be absorbed through the digestive system, then the endocannabinoid system. Water is the lubricant of life, so imagine without enough hydration your engines will be working in overdrive to complete the task of processing these phytocompounds.

To prevent your system from crashing or convulsing in error codes, stay hydrated from the moment you wake to the moment before you rest your head on the pillow and you’ll avoid the shakes.

Temperature Fluctuations

Everybody knows that colder temperatures cause your body to shiver, so naturally the weed shakes might just be a response of your body reacting to drops in temperature. While cannabis has been reported to lower your body temperature, the merits of this will require more scientific study before we can say exactly what is going on.

Nevertheless, we know that cannabinoids can help to reduce inflammation, which can of course lead to lower body temperatures as swelling goes down. In this way, some stoners find that shaking while high has to do with their relaxed state and less with them noticing cold more in their heightened awareness.

Temperature is a tricky one to pinpoint because it affects every person differently – if you’re married to a fellow stoner, we’re sure you’re well acquainted with having the blankets ripped from you only to have them tossed back over you in a heap by your “temperature crazy” partner.

To avoid temperature fluctuations causing you to feel the weed shakes, either smoke it up in a controlled environment, or always bring lots of layers of clothing or blankets if you’re getting high in nature.

Hungry & Hangry

Here’s where things begin to shake down in a more obvious way. Many of us have felt the desperation of hunger, the weakness of low blood sugar, or the shaking/shivering of having no energy because we haven’t eaten enough. Shaking from hunger is nothing new, so it really doesn’t need much explanation or follow-up with regards to the weed shakes.

The only other thing we’ll say about the hunger or hangry shakes has to do with how you consume your cannabis. Shaking after smoking weed is very common when you’re lower in blood sugar, but shaking from edibles is less so because you’re satisfying some of your cravings for sustenance when you eat your weed vs inhaling it. So, if you’re the kind of person whose tummy rumbles like thunder and you really feel the jitters from being hungry, then edibles will be a safer bet to avoid those weed shakes.

Straight Trippin’

Thankfully, cannabis isn’t known to cause convulsions – it actually helps people manage their epilepsy and seizures by calming their minds & bodies. However, when you get so high that the floors become ceilings become walls, it’s not out of the question to expect some bouts of weed shakes.

Hallucinations and psychoactive experiences brought on by cannabis can be a trip worth taking, but even the most stalwart of psychonauts run into buds that rock their senses. When this happens your mind and body can react intensely to emotions, thoughts, sounds, sights and the multitude of stimuli all around you.

Some of these reactions include things like shivering, shaking, muscle spasms or cramps, involuntary physical reactions or curling up in a ball. The obvious way to avoid these symptoms of being too high is to not get so high in the first place. Circumstantially, if you get too high because of happenstance, just remember to breathe deep breaths, drink lots of water and focus on finding your inner calm in a safe, relaxing space.

Over the Stimulation

You don’t have to be blitzed out of your mind to be over-stimulated while high on cannabis. Many people find cannabis sharpens certain senses while dulling others, so it’s easy to become overwhelmed by certain stimuli that would normally be no problem for you.

Cannabis affects people very uniquely across a wide spectrum, so it’s fruitless to try and predict what weed will do, what to which people, and how often. Instead, we consume cannabis and build a relationship with this wondrous weed with the understanding that its constantly teaching us new experiences, providing novel perspectives, and influencing our physiology in profound ways.

To be over-stimulated isn’t always a bad thing, but when it strikes and causes you to feel jittery, lost, or overwhelmed then we’ve got a secret for you: C-B-D. Cannabidiol has this incredible power to center you, bring you down from a high, and calm your nerves that might be firing off on all cylinders. Keep CBD in mind any time that you need to shake off those weed shakes, because it is very capable at doing just that.

How to Stop the Symptoms of Shaking While High

There are a number of reasons why you might be shaking from edibles or after smoking weed, and like with many of the effects from cannabis they seem to be variable from person-to-person. As we’ve come to understand the causes and effects of the weed shakes throughout this blog, now let’s focus our attention on what you can do about preventing them or minimizing their impact on you.

Drink. More. Fluids.

We already talked about the importance of staying hydrated in this very article, but here’s a more in-depth look into how cannabis causes dry mouth and how you can avoid this and other symptoms – like weed shakes – by committing to a weed-water, water-weed schedule.

Channel Positivity

Leaving your bad moods or negative energy at the door can seem impossible sometimes, but it’s really essential to having a positive relationship with cannabis. Even if you need to smoke a joint after a long day at work in order to feel positive in the first place, a little grounding work with your mood can help you to avoid nagging symptoms like weed shakes, getting too high, or losing your mind to the experience.

The Law of Attraction states that what you put forth, you shall receive in return. This can apply to almost anything, but most of this theorem centers around energy. If you go into your next weed session with an open mind, positive energy and good vibes you’ll always have exactly the kind of cannabis experience you need.

Control, Balance, Destress

Did you get what we were trying to spell out there? CBD is oftentimes the answer to cannabis’ questions, especially when you need something to help you get out of a bad high. Whether you’re trying to calm your frantic mind or quell the weed shaking while high, Cannabidiol is your go-to, oh-sh!t, get-out-of-stoned-jail-free-card option.

We’ve written a lot about CBD over the years, so there’s a ton you can learn about how this miraculous cannabinoid can enhance your life. Check out these blogs on the wonders of CBD:

Essential Tips for Buying Hemp-Based CBD Products

CBD For Women

Setting Is Everything

Where you take edibles or light up a joint can sometimes be even more influential on your experience than what you’re actually consuming. Because setting is such a personal choice for every stoner, we won’t list the ‘top places for the most efficient high of your life’. We will leave you with these guides to some of the most savvy, groovy, vibey and positive kinds of environments to consume your cannabis:

Unique Cannabis Related Decorations to Spruce Up Your Home

It’s not what you know, it’s who you know, and sometimes it’s not what you’re smoking but where you smoke it that leads to the best experience.

Medi-cine? Medi-tate

Calm. Serene. Centered. Joyous. Balanced. Free. These are but a few colors and shades of feelings that you can expect from the kaleidoscope of experiences when you meditate with cannabis. Even if you’re getting ripped out of your mind, including some meditative practices while under the influences of marijuana is truly transcendent.

Cannabis opens your mind’s eye, energizes your spirit, fills your heart and expands your horizons. Add the peacefulness and vibrant energy you get from meditation and you’ve got yourself a potent combination that can help you to feel positively balanced, inside and out.


How to stop the cannabis shakes?

The best way to stop the weed shakes is to take deep breaths and calm yourself down. If you are not capable of relaxing your mind or body of your own volition, then drinking lots of water or caffeine-free tea, listening to relaxing music, or laying down and distracting yourself with a book or active hobby like drawing/writing can also help to alleviate the symptoms of shaking while high.

What are the weed shakes for?

Uncontrollable shaking after eating edibles or smoking weed are usually a sign that you’re getting too high, too quickly. Shaking after smoking weed can also indicate that you were not in a good physical or mental space before consuming cannabis.

Why do I twitch when I’m high?

If you’ve ever started shaking from edibles kicking in, or you notice you start getting jittery when you’re high, you might be experiencing the symptoms of the weed shakes. This isn’t a serious condition, but it can signal that you’re dehydrated, fatigued, nervous, anxious, or becoming overwhelmed by the psychoactivity of the cannabis itself.

Is it dangerous if you shake after using marijuana?

Shaking while high on cannabis is very rarely dangerous, but if you suffer from seizures or epileptic disorders then you have to be careful in managing your dose. Cannabis can’t cause involuntary shaking to the point of being dangerous to your health – in fact cannabis can help to treat the symptoms of epilepsy. Nevertheless, if you have a condition whereby you suffer seizures, the hallucinogenic properties of cannabis can contribute to bouts of shaking, shivering, thrashing or loss of consciousness – in very doses, of course. Generally speaking, the weed shakes are harmless and will dissipate as your body processes cannabinoids & terpenes through your ECS.

What does it mean when you start shaking after smoking weed?

Shaking after smoking weed can indicate several things, but usually it points to one of the following causes: dehydration, malnutrition, anxiety, nervousness, insomnia, mood swings or over-stimulation. Some people get the weed shakes whenever they’re under the spell of the munchies, while others experience strong shivers and shakes due to the strong hallucinations they’re experiencing from the cannabis. Shaking from edibles or after smoking weed is rarely serious – just drink lots of water, rest and relax as best you can and they will subside.

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