Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana in Colorado: Laws & Penalties

June 26, 2019

The state of Colorado legalized marijuana for medicinal recreational use in 2012.  While residents and visitors to the state may relish in the legality of marijuana use in Colorado, there are, in fact, many laws in place dictating its use —particularly when it comes to operating a motor vehicle. If you are under the influence of marijuana do not drive a motor vehicle.

Not only is it difficult to ascertain one’s own level of impairment when using marijuana, it is also crucial to remember that any amount of marijuana use puts you at risk of driving impaired. Driving while under the influence of any substance puts your life at risk as well as the lives of passengers and fellow drivers. 

Colorado law specifies that drivers with five nanograms of THC in their whole blood can be prosecuted for driving under the influence (DUI). THC is the chemical in marijuana that produces a “high.” Use of THC —whether eaten, smoked, or vaped — causes poor muscle coordination and delayed reaction times. Everyone from marijuana use advocates to law enforcement professionals strongly discourage the use of marijuana while operating machinery, including an automobile.

Although Colorado state law dictates a five nanogram minimum, it is crucial to understand that law enforcement officers have the right to base arrests on something called “observed impairment.” If the officer believes you to be too heavily under the influence of marijuana to be able to drive functionally, you will be subject to a DUI arrest.  The reason for this caveat in the law is because THC affects everyone differently. While five nanograms may no be enough to impair one individual’s ability to drive, as little as two nanograms may be enough to render another person completely unable to drive.

Unlike in many other states, Colorado law enforcement officials are trained to observe and detect marijuana impairment in drivers. Nearly every Colorado law enforcement officer receives professional training through a program called Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE). In addition, many law enforcement agencies across the state have specially trained Drug Recognition Experts (DRE) on staff that can detect impairment from a variety of substances, including marijuana.

In addition, passengers are not immune to the law when it comes to using marijuana in a moving vehicle. Many marijuana users are unclear on how the use of marijuana by a passenger can affect them as a driver. Marijuana is, in fact, included in Colorado’s open container law. This law stipulates that it is illegal to have marijuana in the passenger space of your vehicle if it is: a) in an open container, b) in a container with a broken seal, or c) if there is evidence marijuana has been consumed inside your vehicle. If you are operating a motor vehicle while other individuals inside it are using marijuana, you are still violating the law. It also be noted that is also against the law to consume marijuana on any public roadway in the state of Colorado. If you are a marijuana user who is considering getting behind the wheel of a motor vehicle in greater Denver while under the influence, think again. The consequences are not only illegal —they can be deadly. 

Will I Pass a Drug Test on CBD Products?

June 19, 2019

Will you fail a routine drug test or employee-sponsored drug screening while using CBD products? The short answer is, it’s highly unlikely. But while the odds use of CBD products will make you test negative on a drug test are very scant —it is important to understand that it is still scientifically possible. The long answer is a little more complicated —and lies in understanding what common drug tests search for when they screen patients.

Cannabidiol, more popularly known as “CBD” is a compound found in the cannabis plant, which has gained popularity recently for it's wide rage of  therapeutic properties. 
The 2018 Federal Farm Bill legalized the production and use of CBD across state lines, which has prompted many new users to wonder about whether or not they will pass a routine drug test if they use CBD products. After all, it would be quite unjust to experiment with a new pain relief product only to have it later prevent you an opportunity such as a new job. 

Much like marijuana, CBD can be eaten, drank, or vaped. Unlike marijuana, is not used by proponents to experience a high, but to reduce anxiety, seizures, and a wide range of other health issues. The main difference between CBD and conventional cannabis is that CBD is not a mind-altering substance. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a crystalline compound that is the main active ingredient of the cannabis plant, CBD is not a psycho-active substance —rather, users do get a “high” or “stoned” from its use. There is no amount of CBD that will alter a person’s consciousness.

Because the market for CBD products is so new, regulation on CBD products is wide open. While most CBD products claim to have under 0.3% THC, which is classified as hemp, the products remain so unregulated determining exact THC levels is difficult. The amount of THC is even more difficult to gauge in CBD vaping oil —which, when inhaled, is four times stronger than other CBD products. As of 2018, it’s difficult to know just how much CBD you’re consuming, unless you’re relying on state-certified vendors in a state where cannabis is legal for medical purposes.

Drug screens traditionally only search for THC specifically when trying to determine whether the subject has been using marijuana. No matter how much CBD is present when you submit a drug test, it will not about a failed result for THC if you have not been using THC. According to one analyst, CBD has the potential to trigger a “false positive” on a THC screening if an individual is consuming over 1,000 milligrams of CBD on a daily basis. To bring that amount into perspective, it is is estimated that most high-frequency CBD users consume an average of 140-to-180 milligrams daily. Lots of common, legal products can cause false positives for a variety of substances, not just CBD. 

New research shows that CBD can stay in a person’s system for more than 10 days. In summary, if you have not been using THC, CBD alone will not make you fail a drug test. It is also important to understand that use of CBD does not counteract the presence of THC in CBD users. Contact Altitude today for all your THC and CBD questions. We’re happy to help!

Too Much of a Good Thing from Your Denver Dispensary: Understanding the Pot Whiteout and What to Do About It

June 12, 2019

If you smoke a lot, you’ve probably experienced the feeling of being too high. While smoking a strain heavy in CBD can help mitigate the effects of THC, it’s still possible to overdo it. And when you have too much of a good thing, you run the risk of experiencing a whiteout. Think of this as the cannabis equivalent of getting blackout drunk. Unlike overindulging with alcohol, there aren’t any lasting effects. But there are ways to make the experience less uncomfortable. Here are a few tips to help so you can enjoy your products from your favorite weed shops in Denver without fear.

Know the Symptoms
The symptoms of a whiteout are, thankfully, easy to spot. Most people report feeling dizzy, incredibly drowsy, nauseous, weak, or any combination of those symptoms. In some rare cases, it is possible to lose consciousness. If you feel off or have a friend that looks like they’re going to be sick while smoking, stop smoking immediately. 

How to Mitigate the Symptoms
Unlike alcohol overdoses, cannabis whiteouts don’t last for an entire night. In fact, the symptoms often pass in as little as a few hours. But there are things you can do to get yourself back to feeling normal faster.

Find a Quiet Spot
Avoid loud noises, bright lights, and tons of activity. These can make dizziness worse and increase feelings of paranoia and overall discomfort. But a quiet space doesn’t have to mean a dark space. Just stick with a table lamp and keep things dim. 

Sip on Something Sweet
It’s thought that whiteouts are often triggered by a drop in blood sugar. The easiest way to boost your blood sugar quickly is to sip on soda, fruit juice, or sugar water. Sip slowly and make sure the fluids stay down. 

Just Relax
It’s easy to feel stressed and worried when you’re experiencing a whiteout. But letting your feelings of anxiety get the better of you can make the experience worse. Take a few deep breaths and see if you can calm yourself down. Put on some music, focus on the words of a TV show, or do something to get your mind off things. 

Use CBDs
If you have plain CBD on-hand (CBD tinctures, edibles, or concentrates work great), use it! CBD helps make severe highs more tolerable and might help you recover faster from the whiteout. Just make sure your CBD products don’t have THC. Otherwise, you’ll make the problem worse. 

Always Use Cannabis Responsibly
The best way to avoid a whiteout is to use your marijuana products responsibly. If you feel like you’re high, let the high mellow a bit before indulging in more. And always start with the smallest dose possible, especially if you’re using edibles. This will help you avoid overly intense highs and make sure you enjoy your experience every time. When you’re ready to stock up on new gear or replenish your stash, stop by one of our convenient locations in the Denver metro area. 

Why You Should Never Buy CBD Products Online Instead of at the Best Dispensary in Denver

June 5, 2019

If you’re like most people, you turn to the internet for almost everything. It’s the perfect place to get information on that music video you vaguely remember seeing when you were five. And it’s the best place to buy a ton of things you use every day. In fact, more than 79 percent of Americans buy items online each year. But some things are always best bought in person. Here’s why you should never buy CBD products online and instead need to head to your Denver dispensary.

Quality Standards
When you’re buying products online, you’re buying something unknown even if it looks like a high-quality product. There’s no way to tell for sure if the item you’re ordering is, in fact, the high-quality CBD product you’re expecting. And many online retail sites have scammers selling low-grade products masquerading as great CBD concentrates. 

But when you buy from your favorite dispensary, you’ll know exactly what you’re getting. Each product is carefully researched before it’s brought into the store. And we take care to validate the quality of those concentrates. Further, products sold in the dispensary are made from domestic hemp and cannabis only. This means the products are guaranteed to be pure and free of harmful chemicals and toxins that negate the effects of the CBD itself. 

Only Hemp CBD is Sold Online
Online retailers cannot legally offer CBDs made from cannabis to consumers outside of states where cannabis is legal. This means the vast majority of CBD concentrates you find online are derived from hemp. Though they’re still beneficial, they lack many of the important nutrients and cannabinoids found in cannabis-derived CBD products. At a local dispensary, you’ll be able to get CBD concentrates derived from cannabis, giving you more bang for your buck.

Unknown Concentrations
Every CBD concentrate, tincture, and edible available at your dispensary has a known concentration of CBDs. The concentration is determined through independent lab testing and is consistent across the entire production line every time the manufacturer issues a new batch. When you buy CBDs from your dispensary, you know exactly what you’re getting. The same is not always true for online retailers. They may sell products that have never gone through lab testing or have any type of concentration information on the label. You’ll be getting an unknown product and won’t be able to set a dosage for yourself without a lot of trial and error. 

The truth is, there are a lot of options to choose from when you’re shopping for CBDs online. Finding the right product for your needs, your budget, and your concerns can be tough. By shopping with your local dispensary, you’ll spare yourself the stress of having to research product after product just to find out which ones are suitable. Our experienced budtenders will help you find the right concentrate for your needs whether you want CBD oil to use in a homemade lotion or are looking for a CBD-heavy strain of marijuana to give you a more mellow high. Stop by one of our three locations today. 

5 Tips From Your Denver Dispensary to Tame That Too-Intense High

May 29, 2019

You’ve smoked for a while and have an idea of how marijuana from the best dispensary in Denver hits you. But that doesn’t mean your experiences will always be consistent. New strains, products, and even different smoking devices can change the way you experience your high. Even experienced users can end up feeling the strange sensation of being “too high.” So, what can you do? Should you just ride it out? Before you panic, try these simple tips to help you tame your too-intense high.

Start with CBD
THC is the psychoactive component of cannabis that gives you the high. And the more THC the products have, the easier it is to get super stoned. If you feel your high getting too potent, reach for a CBD product. CBDs help mellow out the THC by clinging to your brain’s cannabinoid receptors and preventing the THC from taking hold. Pick up a CBD tincture or grab a CBD vape cartridge to keep on hand when you’re trying new strains. The sooner you use it, the sooner you’ll tame that overly intense high.

Drink Tons of Water
This is great advice no matter what you’re doing, but when you’re feeling an intense high, staying hydrated can help your body rid itself of the THC a bit faster. We’re not saying drink gallons of the stuff—just keep a water bottle on hand and take a few sips every time you think about it.    

Take a Nap
If you feel like you’re too high to do much of anything, give yourself permission to take a nap and rest. This will let the bulk of your high wear off without you consciously experiencing the effects. By the time you wake up, your high will have calmed down and you’ll be able to enjoy the feeling without a problem. 

Find Something to Do
When you’re stoned past your limit, it’s normal to feel a bit paranoid and panicky. Instead of giving into those feelings, find something to distract yourself. Put on a movie you love, stream a new show, or clean up the house. Believe it or not, a little distraction can make even an intense high feel more bearable. 

Get Active
Physical activity is one of the best ways to help you overcome those intense highs. No, you don’t have to go to the gym—if you’re that high, you shouldn’t be leaving the house anyway. Just walk around your home, do some pushups, jog in place, and step outside for a bit of fresh air. This will help clear your head and can be used in conjunction with any of the other tips to help get you back to your normal high faster.

Getting too high can be a stressful experience. Use these tips to help you keep your high at normal levels and enjoy your bud as you’re meant to. And if you find a strain too strong for your preferences, stop by Altitude and let our budtenders help you find a product you’ll enjoy time and time again.