Let me guess. You popped back a THC edible, and before the psychedelia hit, a thought came over you: Do edibles make my eyes red? Then, an onslaught of other intrusive questions broke through: Will anyone be able to see that I’m totally baked right now? Isn’t it just the smoke that makes your eyes red?How do I make my eyes NOT red? Thus, here you are, trying to find the one true answer––fast. First, take a deep breath. The ganja is supposed to relax your nerves, not excite them. Let the plant do its job. Next, let’s help you plan ahead, because yes, edibles do make your eyes red. Last step, take another deep breath for good measure.
Many baby Weed-Os might think the smoke from a joint, bong, or pipe makes their eyes as red as three number three ball in billiards. This is a common misconception amongst even the most experienced users. In full transparency, it took an embarrassing moment for me to learn this marijuana truth––and I’m a lifelong wake ‘n baker! You did not just say it’s the smoke that makes your eyes red––what a nerd! That’s trauma right there, folks.
So, we’ll spare you a similar moment and teach you how the THC molecule makes your eyes red with or without smoke. Then, we’ll teach you how to avoid it because (even though it’s 2022) there are some places where high-red eyes might not be the most appropriate. You might be at one of those places right now. No judgment here.
What Are THC Edibles?
With the recent explosion of the hemp market, THC edibles have become all the craze. But what are they? When hemp growers cultivate their crops, they use different processes to isolate and extract the THC molecules, leaving behind most of the surrounding plant matter.
Companies and brands then formulate these THC molecules as an oil to infuse a variety of edible treats. This oil usually contains an array of different cannabinoids that enhance THC’s patented, psychoactive effects. From cookies to gummies to drinks to candy, if you can eat it, there’s probably a THC version out there.
Do THC Edibles Get You High?
When you think of weed’s effects, THC is the molecule behind it all, the compound that incites the plant’s iconic euphoria; it is also why your eyes get as red as they do––more on that later. Inside your body is a system of receptors that were discovered only recently. This is called your endocannabinoid system, and it’s uniquely equipped to handle and process cannabinoids like THC. It does so with the help of CB1 and CB2 receptors scattered throughout your nervous system.
These receptors bind with the cannabinoids and light up. CB1 receptors are predominantly located in the brain, attached to wide-ranging neurons––they are also found in other areas like your retinas; again, more on that soon. These receptors bind with THC, not CBD––which explains why CBD doesn’t incite any psychoactive effects.
So, when you eat THC edibles, the THC compound makes its way through your digestive tract, where the liver absorbs and ushers it through the bloodstream, flushing it towards the brain.
Why THC Makes Your Eyes Red
Remember when I said most CB1 receptors are found in your brain? Well, there are other CB1 receptors located in other parts of your body. In fact, many are found in the anterior parts of your eyes.1 When THC molecules surf through your bloodstream, they inevitably reach the blood vessels in your eyes and bind with the receptors. This process dilates and expands the blood vessels, making them much more noticeable against the whites of your eyes. When the blood vessels expand, they cover the eye in a darker, redder hue––the classic Stoner Eyes. This process can also dry your eyes out, further reddening their appearance. Over time, as the THC is washed out of the bloodstream, your eyes will gradually return to their normal appearance.
Do Your Eyes Get Red From Edibles?
As mentioned earlier, yes, THC edibles make your eyes red. When you eat a THC edible, the cannabinoid tumbles through your digestive tract before getting held up and absorbed by your liver. The liver takes the cannabinoids and hands them to the bloodstream, which carries them through the body on a cardiovascular joy ride. Because their primary mode of travel is the bloodstream, cannabinoids can be found in just about any area of your body.
Once the THC molecules from the edible reach your eyes, they bind with the CB1 receptors and expand the ocular blood vessels––just like when you smoke the ganja.
Solution for Red Eyes from Edibles
So, now, I’m guessing you have red eyes, and you want to hide them. Although cannabis legalization is sweeping across the country, and its use is becoming less taboo, there are still places where red eyes might feel out of place. If you’re in this predicament now, the best course of action is to find yourself eye drops specifically designed to get rid of red eyes. Most drug stores and gas stations carry these. When you find some, only a couple of drops in each eye will do. The de-reddening effects happen almost immediately.
Another option is to accept your fate. Red eyes? Who cares? Let ‘em judge. It’s 2022! You’re just grooving through this chaotic, troubled world.
Whatever path you choose, CBD.co is the only place to get the best products that’ll redden your eyes, soothe your soul, and take you to Island Bliss. We have an expertly curated collection of the best hemp products on the market, delivered right to your door. You get the eye drops; we’ll bring the dank.
- Alex J. Straiker, Greg Maguire, Ken Mackie, James Lindsey; Localization of Cannabinoid CB1 Receptors in the Human Anterior Eye and Retina. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 1999;40(10):2442-2448.