Cannabis continues to be a popular object of recreational drug use. With regulation loosening in many places in recent years, that fame is bound to continue.
What makes it big in the first place?
The answer lies in compounds known as cannabinoids, which have psychoactive and therapeutic effects. The compound responsible for the former is known as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). This comes in two popular commercial forms, known as delta8 THC and delta-9 THC.
When people talk about THC, they usually refer to delta-9 THC as the most common form. But in places where cannabis is prohibited, delta-8 THC enters the picture as a safe alternative.
While these compounds are similar, both have key differences you should know as a smart cannabis consumer. Read on to learn more.
What Is Delta-9 THC?
Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol is one of the many naturally occurring compounds in the cannabis plant. Being the primary psychoactive compound, it’s responsible for its euphoric effects and health benefits, such as pain relief, increased appetite, elevated mood, and deep relaxation.
However, delta-9 THC also has side effects depending on the amount consumed, the user’s tolerance and sensitivity, and the product type. Some common side effects include confusion, dry mouth, red eyes, heightened anxiety, and paranoia.
What Is Delta-8 THC?
Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol is a less common compound in cannabis. It’s a rare form of THC since it can only be found in small amounts, specifically less than 1% of the total cannabinoid content. Because of this, delta-8 THC is known to have a milder psychoactive effect than delta-9 THC.
Delta-8 THC has benefits such as improved appetite, better sleep quality, reduced inflammation, and improved cognitive skills. But like delta-9 THC, it also has side effects depending on the dosage, which include dizziness, dry mouth, impaired coordination, and paranoia.
If you want to use these compounds for medical purposes, check out reliable product websites like Hemponix for more information.
What Are The Key Differences Between Delta-8 And Delta-9 THC?
Delta-8 and delta-9 THC are not just different in their potency and concentration. Here are more specific ways they’re distinct from each other:
1- Chemical Structure
One of the critical differences between the two substances is their chemical structure. In delta-8, the less common compound, the double carbon bond is located at the 8th carbon atom. Meanwhile, delta-9 has it on the 9th, hence, the names.
Although the chemical structure is slightly different, the difference in the placement of carbon atoms has varied effects on the body.
2- Extraction Method
Delta-9 and delta-8 are taken through different extraction methods.
For instance, the former is extracted directly from the cannabis plant using a solvent like ethanol, butane, or cooking fats. The plant material is then treated to produce delta-9 extracts. Depending on the extraction method, the final product may have approximately 5% to 90% THC.
On the other hand, delta-8 uses a complex conversion process using specialized catalysts to turn cannabidiol (CBD) into it. Consequently, the end product contains 0.3% THC or less.
3- Product Types
Delta-8 and delta-9 are consumed through inhalation or ingestion. But these compounds are used in diverse ways.
For example, delta-8 is typically taken through edibles, vapes, capsules, and tinctures. Meanwhile, delta-9 can be consumed by smoking cannabis flowers alongside other products.
Delta-9 THC is federally legal since it’s a schedule I controlled substance. But individual states have the authority to regulate this compound’s use, possession, and sale. Recently, 18 states have legalized the use of delta-9 products for adults.
On the other hand, delta-8 is federally legal as long as its THC content is within the federal limit of approximately 0.3%.
Delta-8 and delta-9 are also different in terms of accessibility. Delta-8, for instance, can be delivered to various state lines. This means you can find this product in several supplement stores, gas stations, vape shops, and other retailers.
On the other hand, delta-9 THC products are more regulated, so they’re only available at licensed dispensaries. Because of this limitation, these products can’t be shipped across state lines.
A typical psychoactive dose of delta-8 is around 15 milligrams. Doses of 25 to 30 mg may produce a moderate effect. But anything higher than that may get you high.
Meanwhile, the standard dosage for delta-9 is 5 to 10 mg. A moderate dose is 15 to 30, with anything above it resulting in a strong psychoactive effect.
Because of this dosage difference, using these compounds per instructions is highly advisable to avoid some adverse side effects.
Know Which To Choose
Delta-8 and delta-9 THC are popular cannabis-related products due to their medicinal and recreational benefits. But despite their similarities, these compounds have key differences which warrant some consideration before use. Keep the above information in mind if you’ve considered using either one.