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Mixing Alcohol and Marijuana

While it is possible to mix the use of alcohol with marijuana, doing so increases your risk of alcohol poisoning, higher THC levels, and increased impairment. People typically choose between alcohol vs marijuana, and in some cases, both. In reality, marijuana is the substance that drinkers use the most often. Combining these drugs can be risky and unsafe, but people sometimes do so to increase the effectiveness of both or lessen the negative effects of one.

Marijuana Vs Alcohol

When using alcohol and marijuana together, one may begin to realize that the effects of one (or both) set in much more quickly and strongly than they would otherwise.

Both alcohol and marijuana affect the nervous system. The parts of the brain that control memory, thought, pleasure, and the perception of time and senses are affected by marijuana. Alcohol is a depressant that has a profoundly negative impact on memory, judgment, cognition, motor skills, and the entire nervous system.

Tetrahydrocannabinol is one of marijuana’s primary active components (THC). Alcohol and THC both have psychoactive effects. THC affects the brain’s cannabinoid receptors, which may hurt cognition.

The amount of THC taken into the body increases when people smoke marijuana and drink simultaneously. This indicates that users of marijuana and alcohol may experience a “higher high,” but the lows may also be intensified. For instance, signs of poor judgment are more noticeable.

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Cannabis/Marijuana Drug Facts


Cannabis sativa or Cannabis indica plant parts that have been dried include the leaves, flowers, stems, and seeds referred to as marijuana. The plant contains the psychoactive substance THC as well as other related substances.

Common Street Names:

  • Astro Turf
  • Blunt
  • Boom
  • Dope
  • Grass
  • Herb
  • Home Grown
  • Mary Jane
  • Pot
  • Smoke
  • Weed

Short-Term Effects:

  • Shifted senses (like seeing brighter colors)
  • Changed perception of time
  • Variations in mood
  • Decreased ability to move
  • Thinking and problem-solving challenges
  • A weakened memory
  • Hallucinations
  • Delusions
  • Psychosis

Long-Term Effects:

  • Brain development issues
  • Breathing issues and coughing if you use marijuana frequently
  • If a pregnant woman consumes marijuana, her unborn child may experience developmental issues both during and after pregnancy.

Alcohol vs Marijuana Statistics

Marijuana is the most commonly used federally illegal drug in the United States; 48.2 million people, or about 18% of Americans, used it at least once. About 15 million people struggle with an alcohol use disorder in the United States, but less than 10% receive treatment.


CDC – Marijuana and Public Health

48.2 million

Marijuana is the most commonly used federally illegal drug in the United States; 48.2 million people, or about 18% of Americans, used it at least once.

Source: CDC

15 million

About 15 million people struggle with an alcohol use disorder in the United States, but less than 10% receive treatment.

Source: NIA

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What is Marijuana?

Marijuana is a dried, crumbled mixture of marijuana plant parts that might be green, brown, or gray. Chemicals in the plant influence your brain and can alter your mood or level of consciousness.

People use marijuana in a wide variety of ways, including:

  • Smoking it like a cigarette or cigar by rolling it up
  • Using a pipe to smoke it
  • Eating it after combining it with food
  • Making it into tea
  • Using plant oils for smoking (dabbing)
  • Vaping

Effects of Mixing Marijuana and Alcohol

While some people might mix alcohol and marijuana to get a higher high, doing so can be risky. Marijuana and alcohol have unexpected effects, and combining the two makes this worse. When there is alcohol in your blood, THC is absorbed more quickly, which increases the possibility of unpleasant side effects.

A greater level of intoxication results from combining the two substances than from taking each one alone. Your risk of accidents and injuries may arise as a result. When drinking or using marijuana, you may place yourself in difficult or dangerous circumstances, and the combination of alcohol and marijuana increases the likelihood of this.

It’s also important to remember that if you consistently combine marijuana and alcohol, you stand a higher risk of becoming addicted to one or both of the substances. Additionally, your dependence on the other meaning will likely increase if you try to cut back on marijuana or alcohol.

Some studies show that those who drank alcohol had considerably greater blood levels of THC than those in a placebo group. So it’s not a good idea to drink alcohol while trying to detox from marijuana.

a guide alcohol poisoning
According to recent studies, marijuana is healthier than alcohol in terms of both health advantages and risks.

Marijuana vs Alcohol Effects on the Brain

The effects of marijuana on the brain can either be short-term or long-term.

Short-Term Effects:

THC enters the bloodstream quickly from the lungs when marijuana is smoked. The substance is transported throughout the body by the blood to the brain and other organs. When THC is used orally or topically, the body absorbs it more slowly. In that case, they typically experience the effects 30 to 60 minutes later.

THC affects particular brain cell receptors that often respond to substances resembling THC. These organic compounds contribute to healthy brain growth and operation. The brain areas with the highest concentration of these receptors are overactivated by marijuana. People get a “high” as a result of this.

Effects include:

  • Shifted senses (like seeing brighter colors)
  • Changed perception of time
  • Variations in mood
  • Decreased ability to move
  • Thinking and problem-solving challenges
  • A weakened memory
  • Hallucinations
  • Delusions
  • Psychosis

Long-Term Effects:

Marijuana has an impact on brain development as well. Marijuana use can change how the brain develops connections between the areas necessary for thinking, memory, and learning when people use it as teenagers. How long marijuana’s effects last and whether some alterations may be permanent are still being researched.

For example, research shows that individuals with a chronic marijuana use disorder who began smoking extensively in their teens experienced an average IQ loss of 8 points between the ages of 13 and 38. Those who gave up marijuana as adults didn’t entirely regain their lost mental faculties. Adult marijuana smokers did not experience significant IQ decreases.

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Regarding alcohol vs marijuana, marijuana is usually the better choice since, according to research, it has more advantages and fewer risks.

Is Marijuana Safer Than Alcohol?

Is marijuana worse than alcohol? Marijuana use has historically been significantly less common than popular alcohol consumption. is marijuana safer than alcohol and tobacco? As a result, compared to alcohol, we know much less about the long-term effects of marijuana use. However, there seem to be some similarities between alcohol and marijuana usage regarding addiction, memory, and cognitive issues. Additionally, there are parallels between the two in terms of drug interactions. For instance, cannabis usage may impair the liver’s ability to break down other medications, putting users at risk of receiving lethal amounts of prescription medication.

Marijuana is harmful to the developing brain, just like alcohol is. Marijuana use is not recommended for those under 21 or breastfeeding or pregnant. The connection between marijuana and chronic diseases is a key distinction between the two substances. There isn’t enough information to confidently say that marijuana does not contribute to chronic diseases. For instance, some research indicates no connection between marijuana usage and lung cancer, while others indicate a higher risk of bronchitis and other lung damage.

Why Marijuana is Safer Than Alcohol?

Is alcohol worse than marijuana? According to some studies, marijuana is healthier than alcohol in terms of both health advantages and risks. However, extensive research is required to properly understand these relative risks and benefits. Some people have tried to look up “how to clean a marijuana pipe without alcohol” because they prefer using marijuana to alcohol.

It is unsafe to drive under the influence of either substance because they affect thinking and memory. Both drugs have a high sensitivity in the developing brain. Avoiding them is advised for teenagers, pregnant moms, and nursing mothers. Alcohol or marijuana abuse is associated with the highest dangers when used heavily. In some western areas, the coalition to regulate marijuana like alcohol have started since marijuana is much safer than alcohol and can be used for alcohol withdrawal in some cases.

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Marijuana for Alcohol Withdrawal

The main issue when suddenly stopping alcohol intake is the false expectation that, after years of dependence, your body would rapidly become free of alcohol and its harmful effects. To get real results, the quitting process must be continuous and progressive.

You will nevertheless crave alcohol to soothe your cravings, which is where marijuana can help. As a result, there is a straightforward response to the question, “can marijuana help with alcohol withdrawal? ” The answer is yes.

Alcohol vs Marijuana Top FAQs

  1. Is marijuana better than alcohol?

    Some research suggests that marijuana is better because it has more health advantages and fewer health risks.

  2. Can marijuana help with alcohol withdrawals?

    Marijuana reduces cravings and withdrawal symptoms and can also lessen the impact of alcohol withdrawal.

Does Marijuana Help With Alcohol Withdrawal?

By reducing one’s cravings and withdrawal symptoms, marijuana lessens the impact of alcohol withdrawal. For example, sleeplessness is a common relapse trigger and a substantial side effect of alcohol withdrawal. Sleep deprivation can overwhelm you and make your symptoms worse. However, consuming some foods before bed can prepare you for much-needed rest and recovery. Additionally, marijuana has stronger effects and produces a “high” that lasts longer than alcohol. Further, since marijuana might make you feel more fulfilled than usual, it can help you control your alcohol cravings.

Additionally, marijuana use can alleviate the tension, worry, and depression that occur with the alcohol withdrawal process. Indeed, studies show that moderate marijuana usage helps ease these emotional conditions without the risks of addiction and withdrawal associated with alcohol and certain prescription drugs. Due to these reasons, some people use medical marijuana for alcohol addiction.

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Marijuana and Alcoholism Treatment

We work with highly skilled addiction professionals to give patients the motivation and resources they need to stop drinking alcohol and keep themselves healthy and sober over the long term. We offer dual-diagnosis treatment programs for people with these diseases and co-occurring mental health issues.

Alcoholics who also suffer from marijuana can receive a full We Level Up NJ treatment plan that includes evidence-based and cognitive behavioral therapy. Some patients with drug use disorders may be qualified for treatment at a specialized facility like ours, depending on how seriously their alcohol addiction has affected them.

To discuss your treatment options and find out how we can help you as you begin your recovery, get in touch with us immediately if you are battling alcohol addiction. We will support you at every step. We Level Up NJ provides proper treatment with a 24-hour medical team to aid your recovery through our program for medically assisted detox. Call us today to speak with a treatment specialist and take back your life. Our counselors will respond to your concerns because they know your difficulties.

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Search Alcohol and Marijuana Rehab / Detox & Mental Health Topics & Resources


Is marijuana better than alcohol and tobacco?

Marijuana was found to be better and safer than both alcohol and tobacco.

What is a liquid marijuana alcohol drink?

It is a marijuana infused alcohol drink that doesn’t contain any marijuana despite having it in its name.

Marijuana vs alcohol driving

Under any or both of these substances, it is recommended not to drive or operate machinery.

Can you mix rubbing alcohol with marijuana?

Rubbing alcohol and marijuana have their own set of uses; it is recommended not to mix the two.