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what is thc-o

What Is THC-O? [A Full Review of This Synthetic Cannabinoid]

What is THC-O? This synthetic cannabinoid is similar to Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (Delta-9, Delta-9, D9, D9-THC, D9 THC, or THC). However, the difference between these two cannabinoids lies in their potency, as THC-O is three times stronger than THC! Unlike many cannabinoids, THC-O does not occur naturally in cannabis plants. THC-O is extremely potent in effects compared to traditional THC, which may be subject to more rigid regulations in some regions. This raises questions about its legal status and effects compared to other more commonly available cannabinoids.


Keep reading to unravel the enigma that is THC-O; we’ll explore its origins, how it compares to other cannabinoids, and how you can benefit from it. And if you can’t get your hands on THC-O, we’ll suggest several worthwhile alternatives that will meet your needs.






What Is THC-O?

THC-O, also known as THCO, THC-O-acetate, THC acetate ester, O-acetyl-THC, or AcO-THC, is a synthetic cannabinoid sourced from cannabis plants. It is reportedly three times stronger than THC. THCO is a THC analog and is not derived from hemp like other hemp-derived cannabinoids such as THC, CBD (Cannabidiol), CBG (Cannabigerol), and CBN (Cannabinol). In terms of chemical composition, THCO is structurally similar to THC. THCO is up to three times stronger than THC.


Adding an acetyl group alters how the compound interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS), a complex internal network of cell-signaling receptors that help optimize overall mental and physical well-being. THCO has three times more binding efficiency to your ECS receptors, providing more potent and long-lasting effects on the brain and central nervous system (CNS). However, these effects are subjective. How you feel will be dependent on the type of THC-O product you consume and your overall experience and tolerance to regular THC products.



scientist making thc-o



How Is THC-O Made?

Making THCO is a multi-step process that utilizes specific equipment. To obtain THC-O-acetate, we must synthesize it from CBD. Let’s break this down for you in simple steps.


First, we extract CBD, a naturally occurring hemp plant cannabinoid, and convert it to Delta 8 THC (Delta-8 THC, D8, D8-THC, or D8 THC). We then mix Delta 9 with acetic anhydride, a colorless liquid. The mixture of these two compounds produces the end product: THCO.


Do not attempt to produce THCO at home. Although it may seem simple, the chemical process required to make synthetic cannabis products must be prepared by certified professionals who have proper training and experience in the craft.



What Are The Benefits of THCO?

While much is not known about this cannabinoid, THCO is believed offers similar benefits to THC. Let’s examine some of the potential benefits of THCO a little more.


THCO for Sleep

Are you tired of dealing with the frustration of not getting good sleep? THCO can help! This cannabis plant derivative has natural stress-relieving and euphoric benefits. These aid a good night’s rest.


THCO’s effectiveness is possible through its interaction with your ECS, which plays a role in your biological clock (circadian cycle). Thanks to its deeply relaxing properties, THCO is better taken when one is ready to rest.


THCO for Relaxation and Uplifting Mood

THCO’s euphoric properties produce various effects, such as stress relief, relaxation, and mood elevation. When taken in milder doses, it helps relax the mind and body and manage restlessness. It also creates a sense of pleasure, contentment, and euphoria. This, in turn, helps boost mood and confidence while encouraging social interaction.


THCO for Physical Discomfort

Like other naturally occurring and novel cannabinoids, THCO is associated with managing physical discomfort. It is also may provide anti-irritating properties. Research is ongoing to determine how much of these properties THCO possesses.


THCO for Elevating Euphoria

Though it is suspected that THCO can alter one’s perception of time and sensory information (or, as some like to refer to it, “psychoactive effects”), there is no evidence to back up such a fact. Anecdotal evidence further suggests that THCO, for some, may induce a similar effect.



young woman relaxing in field



What Does THC-O Feel Like?

THC-O creates a sense of euphoria. This explains why most enthusiasts feel at peace and happy after THCO consumption. Some consumers claim the compound has excellent psychedelic effects and a “more spiritual” tone. However, these are all anecdotal The only way you can truly judge THCO’s effects is to try it yourself. However, always be cautious, as this is more potent than your usual THC encounter.


Does THC-O Make You Sleepy?

Yes, THCO can make you sleepy. THCO’s strong sedative effects can cause drowsiness in some consumers. Nevertheless, individual responses differ due to genetic factors, dosage, tolerance level, and other personal factors.



How Long Does a High From THC-O Last?

THCO euphoria lasts approximately 6 to 8 hours, depending on dosage, individual metabolism, and tolerance levels. This synthetic cannabinoid’s intensity may lengthen the high compared to regular THC, resulting in a more prolonged effect. Individual responses, however, may also be responsible for the variation in duration of effects.



Potential Risks and Side Effects of THC-O

Overconsuming THCO can lead to mild and brief side effects. THC enthusiasts should approach it carefully, as its effects are distinct from what they’re used to. If you consume too much, you may feel intense euphoria, increased appetite, upset stomach, vomiting, lethargy, and drowsiness. If these symptoms arise, stop using THCO products and find a calm space to relax. Stay composed and hydrated, and rest as needed. You should feel better in a few hours.



Is THC-O Legal?

THC-O legality depends on local laws and regulations in a particular state. In some locations, hemp-derived THC-O products may be available for purchase from licensed dispensaries, smoke shops, or online retailers. However, due to its euphoric effects, THCO may be subject to stricter regulations in some regions. You need to research and understand the legal status of THCO in their region before purchasing or using products containing this compound.


On February 13, 2023, the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), declared that any synthetic cannabinoids, including THC-O-acetate, are federally illegal since they do not naturally occur in hemp plants. This means that THCO is illegal on a federal level. However, state jurisdictions have the power to decriminalize the consumption of THCO.


As of April 2024, THC-O is legal in the majority of states and the District of Columbia. These states include:


  1. Connecticut
  2. Florida
  3. Georgia
  4. Hawaii
  5. Illinois
  6. Indiana
  7. Kansas
  8. Kentucky
  9. Louisiana
  10. Maine
  11. Maryland
  12. Massachusetts
  13. Michigan
  14. Nebraska
  15. Nevada
  16. New Jersey
  17. New Mexico
  18. North Carolina
  19. Ohio
  20. Oklahoma
  21. Oregon
  22. Pennsylvania
  23. South Carolina
  24. South Dakota
  25. Tennessee
  26. Texas
  27. Virginia
  28. Washington
  29. West Virginia
  30. Wyoming


THC-O has been decriminalized in Alabama, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Dakota, and Minnesota.



american flag with cannabis plant THC-O legal



States where THC-O is illegal include:


  1. Alaska
  2. Arizona
  3. Arkansas
  4. Colorado
  5. Delaware
  6. Idaho
  7. Iowa
  8. Mississippi
  9. Montana
  10. New York
  11. Rhode Island
  12. Utah
  13. Vermont



Will THC-O Show up on a Drug Test?

Yes, THC-O will show up on a drug test. This is because drug tests will detect THC metabolites in the urine, blood, or hair. And since THCO is a variation on the THC molecule, it will be detected. Judging from how long Delta 9 lasts in your system, it is safe to assume THCO takes days or weeks before it leaves the body. We strongly advise you to refrain from consuming any THC-O products if you undergo frequent drug testing.



The Best THC-O Alternatives

THC-O, a synthetic derivative of THC, has gained popularity over the years. However, issues about legality, tolerance level, and individual preferences have left many seeking an alternative that can provide similar results. Let’s compare and contrast THC-O with other cannabinoids to see how it stacks up.


THC-O vs THC: Is THC-O Stronger Than THC?

Yes, THC-O is potentially three times stronger than THC. This arises from THCO’s capacity to bind to your ECS receptors three times more effectively. However, these effects are subjective. Previous experience with THC products, personal tolerance, metabolism, and several other factors can affect your experience with THCO.


THC-O is not to be taken lightly. Always start with a low amount, gauge your feelings, and proceed to higher doses. This advice is not just for first-time consumers but experienced THC enthusiasts as well!


THC-p vs. THC-O: Is THC-p Eleven Times Stronger Than THC-O?

THC-p is the world’s strongest cannabinoid and is 33 times stronger than THC and 11 times stronger than THC-O. While both THC-p and THCO offer unique effects and potential benefits, you must take into account several factors when assessing which one is right for you.


In many regions, the production and distribution of synthetic cannabinoids, including hemp-derived THC-O, may fall under rigid regulations. This gives hemp-derived THC-p a competitive advantage in terms of availability and being federally legal. THC-p is a potent cannabinoid with a higher affinity for cannabinoid receptors compared to THC-O. This increased affinity could translate to enhanced potency, making THC-p a promising option for individuals seeking powerful euphoria.


Enthusiasts who seek a long-lasting effect may see THC-P as a better option. Those who show a preference for natural compounds with well-established effects and safety profiles may vouch for THC-p as well.


THC-O vs Delta-8 THC: Which Is More Relaxing? 

Delta-8-THC’s relaxing effects and ability to offer a clear-headed and focused experience put it on the list of THCO alternatives. D8 is structurally similar to Delta-9 THC. It is known for its mild euphoria and ability to boost moods, soothe the body, and quiet the mind.


However, don’t expect Delta 8 THC products to be as strong as THC-O-acetate products. If it’s potency you’re looking for, THC-O is your cannabinoid. But if it’s relaxing effects you seek, Delta 8 THC is for you!


CBD vs THC-O: Do You Want Optimum Wellness Benefits or Euphoria? 

CBD is a non-euphoric cannabinoid that works with your ECS to help optimize several key biological processes and is a great alternative to THC-O for wellness enthusiasts. If you enjoy the uplifting feeling THC-O gives, consider skipping CBD. But if you’re okay with not feeling euphoria and prefer focusing on how THC-O may help with stress, discomfort, and sleep, then CBD might be for you.






What Is THC-O? [A Full Review of This Synthetic Cannabinoid]

THC-O stands out as one of the latest and most fascinating derivatives of THC available. It delivers euphoria three times more potent than traditional THC. Your tolerance will determine your experience. Unlike naturally occurring cannabinoids, THCO is synthetic and manufactured through a safe and meticulous multi-step process. Due to its synthetic nature, THCO is deemed illegal at the federal level. Nonetheless, many states permit the purchase and sale of hemp-derived THC-O products within their borders.


If you’re interested in trying this cannabinoid, do so with caution as the intensity might be overwhelming for some, even the most seasoned THC enthusiast. Always ensure legality to enjoy your products containing THC in peace. If you find it hard to obtain THCO products in your area, you’re in luck. Several hemp-derived, federally legal cannabinoids can help fill the void and provide similar experiences. Choose Delta 9 THC for intense euphoria, Delta 8 THC for a milder euphoric experience and relaxation, CBD products for non-euphoric wellness support, and for those seeking an even greater thrill, THC-p products offer euphoric effects eleven times stronger than THCO! Discover all these options and more here at Exhale Wellness; elevate your wellness journey today with our diverse selections!

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