Do Edibles Make Your Eyes Red? What to Know

Every person responds uniquely to cannabis, but a few common symptoms can indicate when someone's consumed cannabis. These include the munchies, giggles, and telltale red, bloodshot eyes. But despite common misconceptions about red eyes only appearing during smoking, all cannabis - including edibles - can make your eyes turn red.

a person with a red irritated eye

THC, rather than smoking or other consumption methods, produces the common stoner eyes individuals develop with cannabis use. Whether you've eaten edibles, smoked a joint, or vaporized with a portable cartridge, delta-9 THC is responsible for red eyes.

Read on to learn why THC in edibles makes users' eyes turn red and how to avoid or reduce red eyes when using weed.

Key Takeaways

  • Edibles and all THC-containing products will make users' eyes turn red because of THC's effects on the circulatory system.
  • Edibles are much stronger than other consumption methods, so starting with a low dose and waiting to observe effects is important.
  • Eye drops and lots of water can help get rid of red eyes.

What are Edibles?

Cannabis edibles are food or drink products that are infused with extracted cannabinoids or made with infused ingredients. Famous examples include pot brownies or CBD gummies, but edibles can be concocted as nearly any food or drink with the right infused ingredients.

Edibles often produce stronger intoxicating effects per THC dose than other consumption methods. The digestive system processes THC into the much stronger 11-hydroxy-THC, which is 2-3 times more potent than simple delta-9. 

Sometimes, novice users can be overwhelmed by the strength of edibles, even if they're used to the same dose size in other consumptions. Edible potency also depends on weight, metabolism, current tolerance levels, and other factors. As such, the best advice is to start low and slowly increase the dosage until you find an effective amount.

It's also important to wait until you can feel the full effects of edibles before consuming any more in a single sitting. Edibles take at minimum 90 minutes to start taking effect and can last for up to 9 hours, depending on their potency. Consuming too much THC too fast can lead to uncomfortable symptoms such as dizziness, nausea, and - in rare cases- hospital trips. 

Do Edibles Make Your Eyes Red?

Edibles are a smokeless, discreet, and delicious way to get high, but they should be approached with proper due diligence and patience. But like all THC-containing products, they will make your eyes turn red.

Marijuana has varying effects based on each strain's cannabinoids, terpenes, and other chemicals. Further, it affects every person differently depending on their unique cannabinoid system. But a few telltale signs are common symptoms of cannabis consumption, and red eyes are one such symptom. 

Why Does Marijuana Make Your Eyes Red?

Red eyes from cannabis are due to THC's impact on blood pressure and blood vessels. When THC enters the body via smoke or edibles, the cannabinoid increases heart rate and blood pressure. The body gets hit with a quick kick to the circulatory system but returns its heart rate and blood pressure to resting levels after about 10 minutes.

After the first 10 minutes, the blood vessels begin to dilate all over the body; the phenomenon is most visible in the tiny capillaries in the eyes. As blood rushes to your eyes, the whites begin to turn red and shiny, producing the signature red-eye look that cannabis use is associated with. 

Interestingly, this increased blood flow helps relieve the intraocular pressure associated with glaucoma, a common qualifying condition in many state medical marijuana programs. 

How To Get Rid Of Red Eyes

Sometimes, those consuming edibles will want to be more discreet about their use and seek to eliminate the so-called stoner eyes. Luckily, a few options are available for individuals who wish to alleviate red eyes while still enjoying infused cannabis edibles.

First, pick up some basic eye drops from your local pharmacy or convenience store for fast-acting results. Many eye drops can quickly clear the redness from the eyes by providing some much-needed hydration. 

Some specialized eye drops also specifically target eye redness, containing active ingredients like tetrahydrozoline or naphazoline that help tighten the eyes' blood vessels. Using these active ingredients sparingly is important, as they can cause your eyes to dry out and become even more red with too-frequent use.

Another natural method of mitigating the appearance of red eyes is to drink more water. While drinking more fluids won't immediately dispel red eyes, it'll help relieve the dryness that consuming THC can cause and help them go away more quickly. 

Finally, wait for your body to process the red-eye-causing edibles in due course. Edibles take hours longer to digest and metabolize than other consumption methods, so it may be better to save edibles for evening-time use where you won't be around others who might be suspicious of your glossy gaze.

The Bottom Line

Edibles are a delicious, discreet, and convenient way to consume cannabis, but any product containing THC will produce cannabis' signature red eyes. Eye drops, frequent hydration, and waiting for the high to decrease are the only surefire ways to remove red eyes from edibles. 

However, CBD-containing edibles won't produce the same red eyes as their delta-9 counterparts – discover infused CBD gummies and more in EVN's shop.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this blog and by this website is for general informational purposes only. It is not intended to be professional medical advice, a medical diagnosis, or medical treatment. Please consult your health practitioner with any questions you have regarding a medical condition. 

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