While second-hand smoke from cigarettes has been widely researched and conclusions support the dangers of cigarettes for non-smokers, the effects of second-hand marijuana smoke is less understood.
Can you get high from someone else smoking weed? Simply, no, and if you claim that you are getting high on someone else’s weed smoke, it’s likely all in your head.
There have been 2 main studies that looked at the effects of marijuana smoke on non-cannabis users. In 1985 the Journal of Forensics attempted to look at the effects non-smoking volunteers who hot-boxed a car with others who were smoking joints. While most of the 10 volunteers reported discomfort from the excessive smoke from their counterpart’s joints, and some even had trace amounts of THC in their systems, none reported a euphoric or psychological high.
In 2010, a study in the Journal of Analytic Toxicology re-examined the issue, having participants hot-box a room where 16 joints were being smoked. It was only after the exposure to 16 joints did the participants report feeling some psychoactive effects.
Yet, other specialists are quick to de-bunk the contact high beliefs and attribute any reports of a psychoactive effect or a contact high to the placebo effect.
Scientifically, when marijuana is smoked, the THC is immediately absorbed into the lungs, leaving only trace amounts in the air once smoke is blown out and very little chance that a contact high can actually happen. A contact high is just a “psychological phenomenon” according to the Director of the Medical College of Wisconsin’s Neuroscience Research Centre.
While a contact high isn’t really possible, there can be no doubt that being a non-smoker in a group of smokers will be an entertaining experience.