THC-O-acetate (THC-O) and delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol (delta 8 THC) are two cannabinoids that have been getting a lot of buzz lately and are becoming more widely available on the market due to growing demand. These two cannabinoids share one major thing in common: they both have properties that will get you high. But, they are also completely different in terms of the high they produce, their overall effects, and many other factors that ultimately mean that you shouldn’t assume that your experience with one will be just like the other.
If you’re fairly new to the world of psychoactive cannabinoids, you may not know which of these two is right for you.
Delta 8 THC and THC-O: Two Psychoactive Cannabinoids Derived from the Hemp Plant
Delta 8 THC and THC-O are quite different from each other in terms of their ultimate effects, but that doesn’t mean that they share some things in common.
- Both come from the same plant material (hemp).
- Both are federally legal due to the 2018 Farm Bill, as this piece of legislation permitted the sales of all hemp-based products containing less than 0.3% delta 9 THC.
- Both get you “high”, which is why they are commonly compared to one another.
- Each can have an impact on the endocannabinoid system.
- Each compound generally come in the same product forms, due to being isolated and concentrated to produce pure cannabinoid extracts, which can be blended with other ingredients.
Speaking of common delta 8 and THC-O product types, here are the ones you can find on the market today, or will find down the road:
- Vape Carts/Cartridges: Pre-filled vape oil cartridges that attach to any 510-threaded vape pen device. They contain delta 8 THC or THC-O mixed with terpene profiles in various strain options. Vapes, like all inhalable products, take effect within minutes, with effects lasting for about a couple of hours. The effects tend to be quite potent as well.
- Disposable Vapes: Also come in a variety of strains, and these devices are all-in-one systems that never need to be charged, assembled, or refilled (when the e-liquid runs out, the entire device is disposed of), making them 100% maintenance-free.
- Flower: Is raw CBD flower buds infused with either a delta 8 or THC-O extract. Available in a wide variety of strains, and you can find both pre-rolls and loose buds on the market depending on your needs.
- Dabs/Concentrates: Are flash-vaporized through a dabbing device, which melts the concentrate at a very high temperature. Due to being naturally extremely potent, which is why they are not as beginner-friendly.
- Tinctures: Both delta 8 and THC-O tinctures are oil-based formulas, which dilute pure cannabinoid extracts in a carrier oil. They come in various concentrations and absorb below the tongue through the sublingual tissue. Effects usually take 30 minutes to activate, and last for about 4 to 6 hours.
- Edibles: Edible-based products, with gummies being the most popular. They are associated with long-lasting effects (8 or so hours) and a body high sensation.
Delta 8 THC: A Mild Psychoactive with Huge Popularity
Delta 8 THC is a cannabinoid that naturally occurs in the hemp plant. It exists in about 0.1% of the plant’s chemical composition. Delta 8 is actually the result of delta 9 THC which has oxidized as the plant has aged. Its chemical properties undergo a transformation that allows it to convert into an entirely new cannabinoid.
What is the High Associated with Delta 8?
The high that you get with delta 8 THC is known for being about 30% milder than delta 9 THC. You’ll definitely experience psychoactive effects, but not as strongly as you would if you consumed delta 9. A lot of people say that the high that comes with delta-8 is very pleasant and mellowing, while never causing a total lack of mental clarity which can happen with delta-9. Still, because it’s a more mellowing cannabinoid, many people prefer it in the evening, and even at bedtime before they go to sleep.
Is Delta 8 Beginner-Friendly?
In terms of the psychoactive cannabinoids of the hemp plant, delta 8 THC is perhaps the most beginner-friendly of all. Its high is generally mild compared to others in the plant, which means that those with no tolerance to the intoxicating properties of cannabis can gently ease into the effects as desired. It is true that any psychoactive cannabinoid can cause feelings of anxiety in some individuals with very low tolerances if they take too high of a dose. Still, as long as you stick to a small serving size, you will likely find the experience to be very enjoyable.
What are the Other Properties of Delta 8 THC?
Delta 8 THC isn’t just for getting “high”. This cannabinoid was discovered decades ago, and a surprising amount of research has gone into understanding its effects that go beyond the psychoactive.
According to the National Cancer Institute, delta 8 may offer properties that can aid with:
- Low appetite
- Poor sleep
- Even having an emphasis on its neuroprotective properties that may impact neurological equilibrium.
While the hemp landscape evolves in our country, more data will come out to demonstrate the unique effects that this cannabinoid can offer in more clinical settings.
THC-O: The New, More Potent Cannabinoid on the Block
THC-O-acetate is a fairly new addition to the hemp market, and most haven’t heard of it before 2021. But, this cannabinoid has, in fact, been around since the 1960s. Unlike delta 8 THC, which is found naturally in the plant, THC-O is not. It’s produced by applying acetic anhydride to tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA), the acidic predecessor to tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) naturally present in raw hemp. This creates a chemical reaction that changes the properties of the compound to create something entirely new: THC-O.
Short history lesson: THC-O-acetate was invented more than half a century ago by the United States Military, initially as a means to incapacitate opponents by basically getting them so high that they were no longer threats. Then, this cannabinoid disappeared for decades, before changes in hemp laws led to cannabis companies exploring the possibilities of producing legal, hemp-derived THC-O.
The High Associated with THC-O
We mentioned that delta 8 THC is quite mild, and not as intoxicating as delta 9 THC. Well, when it comes to THC-O-acetate, the opposite is true. THC-O may be about 3x as psychoactive as delta 9, which gives it the potential to be extremely potent. Remember, THC-O was specially developed to be powerfully intoxicating.
Not only can this compound get you very high, but its properties might be psychedelic at high doses. Psychedelic drugs can be hallucinogenic, but many people say that the hallucinogenic properties of THC-O-acetate are quite mild compared to other psychedelics that are used recreationally. Still, it’s nicknamed “the spiritual cannabinoid” for a reason, and a good portion of people use it specifically for this purpose.
Another thing to keep in mind with THC-O-acetate is that once it’s activated in your body, you may not be at your most functional level until it wears off. This means that you should only take it when you have a good deal of free time with no real commitments.
Is THC-O Beginner-Friendly?
Ultimately, we don’t recommend that THC-O-acetate is someone’s first psychoactive cannabinoid. Again, because the effects are so potent, this can be too much for individuals new to cannabinoids that get them high. With all cannabinoids, a tolerance is built over time. This means the first time someone takes THC-O for instance, it can be too strong. Starting with delta 8 THC or another milder form of THC could help a person’s tolerance build to the point that THC-O is not as powerful of an experience.
What are the Other Properties of THC-O?
As of now, we don’t really know what the other properties of the cannabinoid are outside of its intoxicating qualities. THC-O-acetate was created with one purpose, which is to be highly psychoactive. Clinical researchers have therefore not had an interest in examining potential benefits associated with taking the compound. Now that THC-O is available on the market, researchers may begin paying increased attention to it, and then studying it in clinical settings.
Bottom Line: Which Cannabinoid is Better?
Obviously, this comes down mainly to personal preference. Everyone has their own goals when taking hemp, and some people want to enjoy a mild buzz (delta 8 THC) or something very powerful (THC-O). And, like we said, if you’re totally new to hemp, or even just new to THC-based cannabinoids, you should definitely get your feet wet with delta 8 before jumping into something as powerful as THC-O-acetate.
At Farma Barn, hemp enthusiasts can find both delta 8 and THC-O products in order to experiencer their effects for themselves. We offer premium-grade delta 8 and THC-O in various product options to personalize your routine while enjoying these cannabinoids on your terms.
Now, before trying either of these cannabinoids, there are a couple of things to keep in mind:
- Both of these cannabinoids can impair driving, as can any intoxicating substance. So, you should strictly avoid driving while under the influence of either of these hemp derivatives.
- Each can cause a failed drug test. Why? Because all THC-based cannabinoids are broken down in the body by the same enzyme, known as THC-COOH. This is the enzyme that’s identified in a positive urine test. Essentially, if you’re drug-tested after consuming one of these cannabinoids, you will test positive, which, for example, can threaten your employment.
- Finally, these cannabinoids are banned in the following states:
- New York
- Rhode Island
Meaning, if you live in any of these states above, you will not be able to purchase delta 8 THC or THC-O from Farma Barn or any other commercial hemp company.