Substance Use

What is Cross-Faded? Being Drunk and High

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What Is Cross-Faded? Being Drunk and High on Marijuana

Cross-faded is a term used to describe a combined intoxication experienced by a person who drinks alcohol and smokes marijuana. Alcohol intoxication is experienced as drunkenness, whereas marijuana results in a high. Some individuals intentionally combine these two substances because of the resulting intoxication, while others experience it accidentally, unaware of the risks posed by mixing substances.

Are you concerned about your alcohol and marijuana use or that of a loved one? Zinnia Health can help. It’s not easy asking for help, but our caring treatment professionals can help ease your mind, explain treatment options, and help you take your first steps toward sobriety. Call us at (855) 430-9439 any time, day or night.

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What Happens When a Person Is Cross-Faded?

You’ve likely heard the words drunk and stoned—what happens if you’re both drunk and stoned at the same time? When these two types of intoxication occur simultaneously, the result is a cross-fade. The condition is aptly named for how these two intoxications cross over and fade into each other, resulting in experiencing both conditions simultaneously.

Some people mix these two substances purposely for the resulting intoxication, while others, considering how socially acceptable both substances are, may inadvertently partake of both and not realize the potential risks involved. Mixing alcohol and cannabis use results in several adverse effects, including:

  1. Intensified intoxication. The effects of alcohol and cannabis simultaneously amplify the effects of both substances. With extensive cannabis use, another term is known as greening out. For instance, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) levels are substantially higher in a person who drinks alcohol. The resulting intoxication is intensified, unpredictable, and varies between individuals.
  2. Cognitive and motor function impairments. Alcohol use by itself has this effect—it impairs your focus, memory, and decision-making abilities. The same is true for smoking marijuana by itself—it slows reaction times, ability to perceive situations, and eye-hand coordination. Combining these two substances exacerbates both effects, resulting in compounded impaired judgment, substantially affected coordination skills, and significantly slowed reaction times. Driving while under the influence of alcohol and marijuana can be especially life-threatening to the driver, their passengers, and other travelers on the road.
  3. Additional vulnerabilities. The preceding risks are present any time you drink alcohol or smoke marijuana and are multiplied when taken together. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) explains that using both together increases impairment risks greater than when using either substance alone. This increased impairment also doubles your risk of engaging in dangerous behaviors, such as driving while intoxicated or engaging in random, unprotected sexual activity.

Everyone has a personal reason for using certain substances. Some individuals may have developed a dependence on a drug, while others may have no idea they have a substance abuse issue and think their use is no big deal because many people in their circle do the same.

Such is the case with mixing alcohol and marijuana. This specific combination is so widespread that it’s not viewed as taboo. It doesn’t help that alcohol is legal across the nation, and marijuana’s legalization has reached many states and cities.

In this case, as with many common substance combinations, people mix drugs:

  • To achieve an enhanced high. The primary motivation for most people who cross-fade is the pursuit of an enhanced high. By mixing marijuana and alcohol, some believe they can experience a more intense euphoria. Many users believe that combining alcohol and marijuana will produce a more potent or pleasurable high. This belief often stems from how each substance impacts the brain’s reward system, namely the release of dopamine, which can intensify an enhanced euphoria.
  • To lessen societal pressures. Peer pressure isn’t just a dilemma for teenagers; it affects people of all ages. In certain social settings, the collective behavior of inebriated individuals, such as cannabis users, tends to create a domino effect, making it difficult to resist joining the crowd, especially if you’re concerned about how others see you.
  • The fear of missing out, or FOMO, can contribute to young people deciding to cross-fade. In certain social settings, there may even be an unspoken expectation to keep up, which could involve using multiple substances and experiencing the effects of marijuana on the brain’s cannabinoid receptors. 
  • Because they simply don’t know any better. Most people aren’t aware of just how dangerous cross-fading can be. Because alcohol and marijuana are commonly consumed social substances, their combined risks might not be immediately obvious to everyone. A study published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence highlighted that many adolescents and young adults underestimate the risks of substance use, particularly mixing substances like alcohol and marijuana.

Cross-fading is more than just a risky behavior; it’s a potentially life-altering choice with significant health risks. If you’re considering combining alcohol and marijuana, or you know someone who does, Zinnia Health can help you learn about the risks. Call our caring professionals at (855) 430-9439 any time, day or night, with any questions or concerns you have..

What Are the Health Risks Associated with Cross-Fading?

Mixing alcohol with marijuana poses multiple risks to your health. Physical risks and side effects can depend on the amount of alcohol (like binge drinking) or marijuana use. For instance, some marijuana users have discovered that edibles typically have several “doses” in just one “treat,” and knowing you’ve consumed too much cannabis is often not apparent until it’s too late.

Physical side effects of cross-fading can include:

  • Dehydration
  • Overheating
  • Toxicity
  • Alcohol poisoning
  • Stressed liver function
  • Cognitive effects and diminished motor skills
  • Constricted blood vessels
  • Increased heart rate
  • Elevated blood pressure

Some of the more common mental health risks are:

  • Worsening depression
  • Extenuated anxiety
  • Prolonged paranoia
  • Panic attacks
  • Poor mental faculties

Overlapping and boosted substance effects include:

Further research is needed, but some suggest that marijuana addiction is possible. Drug addiction is one of the most potent concerns when you mix alcohol and marijuana. The combination of substances increases your chances of developing dependency.

Dependency is scary because as your body becomes more and more dependent, it can lead to more significant drug misuse, drug abuse, alcohol abuse, and drug addiction.

Heal for Good With Zinnia Health

If you or someone you know is struggling with cross-fading, reaching out for professional help is crucial.

At Zinnia Health, our compassionate team of experts is trained to guide you through recovery, focusing on holistic healing methods that treat the whole individual. Our team of experts is here to help you navigate the complexities of alcohol and marijuana addiction and find a sustainable path to recovery. Call us today at (855) 430-9439.

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(855) 430-9439
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