Cross Faded

What Does it Mean to be Cross-Faded?

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), alcohol and marijuana are the two most commonly abused substances within the United States. In many cases, these intoxicants are abused together; a habit that is commonly referred to as getting cross faded.

Getting cross faded means abusing a combination of two different substances, particularly those that will produce the most enjoyable cross faded high a person can experience; most commonly, that of getting drunk and high at the same time.

There are a few reasons as to why someone may want to combine their alcohol and marijuana use in an attempt to achieve an optimal cross faded experience, including:

  • Enhancing both drug effects
  • Increasing their intoxication levels
  • Losing all inhibitions and achieving a feeling of freeness
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Understanding How Alcohol Affects the Body

Alcohol is a central nervous system depressant, resulting in a number of physical and cognitive effects when consumed. If used in an excessive amount, these effects can become quite dangerous, and even life-threatening if not properly managed.

Due to the disruption this substance causes to the brain’s communication pathways, long-term abuse of alcohol commonly results in changes to the way a person’s brain looks and works.

Chronic alcohol use can make it harder for individuals to maintain control over their motor skills, memory, speech, and judgment abilities. This may make it harder to maintain relationships and responsibilities, as well as cause a higher likelihood of injury or other impairment.

How Alcohol Affects the Body

This may also cause neurons within the brain to begin shrinking, a side effect that may be particularly harmful for young adults who are drinking alcohol in problematic ways.

Because their brains are still developing, regularly introducing a chemically-altering substance into their system will significantly, and potentially irreversibly, impact the structure and functionality of their central nervous system.

Another significant issue that may occur if someone chooses to drink alcohol in large quantities, particularly if binge drinking, is alcohol-induced blackouts. These refer to gaps and inaccuracies in a person’s memory regarding things that happened during their drinking episodes.

Blackouts occur due to the person’s alcohol use temporarily blocking the process of short-term to long-term memory consolidation within the hippocampus. With chronic alcohol abuse, this can lead to more severe memory issues, including Alcohol Dementia and ‘Wet Brain’ Syndrome.

The Dangers of Drinking Too Much Alcohol

Aside from the extreme risk of addiction that comes with chronic alcohol abuse, this substance can have drastic side effects even with short-term use alone. These mainly manifest through the potential dangers associated with alcohol’s impairment of coordination and judgment.

However, there is also the risk associated with binge drinking, or continuing to drink past the point of intoxication. If someone who is already drunk continues to consume alcohol, they may experience alcohol poisoning, or an alcohol overdose.

This is characterized by having so much alcohol within the bloodstream that the brain’s ability to continue to provide basic life-support functions, such as a person’s ability to breathe, their heart rate, and body temperature regulation, becomes significantly impaired or stopped.

This can result in several dangerous, and potentially life-threatening side effects, including:

  • Mental confusion and disorientation
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Vomiting
  • Seizure
  • Trouble breathing
  • Slowed heart rate
  • Clamminess
  • Reduced motor function or reaction times
  • Dangerously low body temperature

These effects, if not treated properly or quickly enough, can lead to permanent brain damage, coma, and even death. If you or someone else is displaying any of these symptoms while drunk or drinking, seek emergency medical help immediately.

Understanding How Marijuana Affects the Body

Addiction and Using Alcohol or Marijuana

The second most popular drug in the US is marijuana, or weed, a psychoactive substance that directly affects the brain’s cannabinoid receptors. Marijuana users often experience several different effects due to the drug’s main active ingredient,Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

When using cannabis, the blood vessels absorb THC and travel to the brain. Once it reaches the hippocampus and orbitofrontal cortex, a person’s ability to form memories and properly focus will be significantly impaired.

While smoking marijuana is the common method of this form of substance use, individuals may also choose to ingest cannabis-infused edibles, or mix a THC-based powder into a liquid base and drink it.

Various side effects may occur from cannabis use, including impaired thinking, reduced motor skills, and slowed reaction times. These can cause various complications when attempting to engage in potentially dangerous activities while under the influence, such as driving.

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The Dangers of Using Too Much Marijuana

Although fatal cannabis overdose is extremely unlikely, many individuals can and do get very sick from using too much weed. This is often referred to as a “greenout,” or the overstimulation of the brain’s cannabinoid receptors that occurs from ingesting too much THC.

Putting too much cannabis into the body can cause a number of physical and cognitive side effects which, while likely not life-threatening, can be extremely uncomfortable. These may include:

  • Extreme anxiety
  • Dizziness and disorientation
  • Poor coordination
  • Poor verbal communication
  • Shaking and chills
  • Sweating
  • Dilated Pupils
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Trouble breathing
  • Upset stomach
  • Nausea and vomiting

The likelihood of experiencing a greenout significantly increases when combining marijuana and alcohol, with many of these effects being drastically enhanced as a result.

What Happens When You Combine Two Very Different Drugs

Many people who are drinking alcohol while consuming marijuana find that these overlapping drug effects can make them get drunker and higher faster. However, because these substances are very different drugs, their interactions are equally unstable and unpredictable.

Combining drugs such as weed with alcohol can produce a number of side effects even extending past a potential risk of addiction. When cross faded, individuals may either experience highly pleasant effects, or those that are extremely unpleasant, with little in between.

The Desirable Side Effects of Getting Cross Faded

The sedative and cognitively impairing effects caused by consuming alcohol makes combining marijuana with this substance capable of producing even more mind-altering symptoms.

If someone is using both marijuana and alcohol, no matter how little they are drinking, the THC levels in their blood will be significantly elevated. This is particularly true when smoking cannabis, as this will produce a much faster high.

For some, a cross faded high can produce feelings of ultimate euphoria. In addition to this, a person who is cross-faded may experience feelings of relaxation, increased sociability, spiritual enlightenment, or decreased inhibitions that may be empowering or enjoyable to the user.

However, the more THC a person consumes while simultaneously drinking, the stronger and more dangerous the effects from being drunk and stoned will become. This is where cross-fading can become a highly negative experience.

The Negative Side Effects of Being Cross Faded

Cross Faded Infographic by Nicole R

While simultaneous alcohol and marijuana use may produce some pleasant side effects, there are also several negative consequences that may result from the combination of the substances.

This is because any kind of substance abuse poses the risk of causing unpredictable reactions and side effects. So, combining two substances that can significantly alter a person’s sense of control and judgment, such as alcohol and marijuana, will significantly increase this risk.

Poor interactions from getting drunk and high at the same time can manifest in several ways, most commonly psychologically. However, poor physical reactions may occur as well.

Psychological Consequences

Many people who experience a bad trip while cross faded will develop severe psychological side effects. These may include:

  • Increased anxiety
  • Extreme paranoia
  • Increased risk of psychosis

When getting both drunk and high, a person drastically increases their likelihood of experiencing panic attacks, auditory and visual hallucinations, and other distressing mental side effects. Thus, it is never recommended to use both alcohol and marijuana at once.

Physical Consequences

In addition to the various psychological effects being cross faded can have on a person, this combined substance use can also produce several physical symptoms that can potentially cause permanent damage if not properly addressed. These may include:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Reduce cognitive and motor functions
  • Abnormal heart rate
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dizziness
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Understanding Cross-Fading Overdose

One of the biggest risks of combining cannabis use with alcohol is the loss of inhibition this activity may lead to, which can result in several problematic behaviors in itself. One of these is the inability of a cross faded person to properly measure their substance intake.

Because of the way cross fading can be mentally impairing, individuals may be more likely to continue consuming alcohol or weed in dangerous amounts. This can cause them to have a higher risk of experiencing a greenout or alcohol overdose, or even both.

Because of the combination of these substances, these overdose effects may be significantly worsened and have a far more rapid onset than if the individual were to have used them separately.

One of the more concerning side effects associated with this form of overdose is uncontrollable vomiting. Someone who has lost consciousness or effective motor functions and vomits while laying down may accidentally choke and suffocate; especially if they are alone.

The risk of experiencing a cross-faded overdose may be significantly increased for more frequent users who have built a tolerance to these substances, as they will likely need to take larger amounts of each in order to achieve a desired effect.

If you or someone else is cross faded and expressing any alcohol overdose or greenout symptoms, it is crucial that you immediately call for emergency medical assistance in order to prevent permanent or potentially fatal damage from occurring.

How Do I Know if Someone is Addicted to Combining Alcohol and Marijuana?

Combining Alcohol and Marijuana

Admitting that you or a loved one is struggling with any form of addiction, let alone one involving both alcohol and marijuana use, can be extremely difficult. However, because of the extremely hazardous nature of these habits, it is crucial that the addicted individual gets the right help.

This, of course, cannot happen without first accepting that there is a problem. There are several signs that can be looked out for when attempting to determine if someone has become addicted to getting cross-faded, including:

  • Spending large amounts of time and money acquiring, using, or recovering from the effects of marijuana and alcohol use.
  • Giving up previously enjoyable activities or relationships in order to continue getting cross-faded.
  • Continuing to get cross-faded despite this causing difficulties with personal relationships or responsibilities.
  • Developing a tolerance to alcohol and/or marijuana, and needing to use these substances in larger doses or more frequently in order to achieve a desired effect.

If you recognize any of these behaviors in either yourself or a loved one, this is a good sign that it is time to start seeking professional addiction treatment services, before these habits and their consequences have a chance to get any worse.

What to Do if Someone Is Struggling with Cross-Addiction

Once it has been confirmed that you or a loved one is addicted to getting cross-faded, you can start taking the necessary steps to overcome these substance abuse habits. This will entail seeking out professional addiction treatment and recovery services.

Addiction is a highly personal disease, meaning every individual will likely require different levels of care in order to successfully achieve sobriety.

For those struggling with both a cannabis and alcohol use disorder, this treatment process will likely start with their participation in a medically-supervised detox program. This may then be followed by inpatient or outpatient treatment, depending on the severity of their addiction.

While some individuals may not progress past these programs, those who feel they require continuing external support in their recovery journey may benefit from participating in aftercare programs.

These may include traditional 12-step sober support groups, such as Alcoholics Anonymous (NA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA), or other non 12-step alternative recovery programs.

Many individuals may also seek out therapeutic treatment services to learn better stress-management and coping skills, as well as identify and address any potential underlying causes of their addictive behaviors.

If you are unsure about what level of care will best fit your recovery needs, speaking with a healthcare provider or addiction specialist, such as a Find Addiction Rehabs representative, can help you narrow down these options.

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Finding the Substance Abuse Help You Need

At Find Addiction Rehabs, we understand how difficult it can be when you or a loved one is struggling with addiction. Especially for those who habitually get cross-faded, this behavior will only cause further strain and hardship upon both themselves and their loved ones.

Our hotline is available 24/7 so that we can help people like you who are struggling with substance abuse to find addiction treatment centers and recovery services that are capable of providing all of their personal care needs.

So make the right choice; call now, and we will help you take the first step on your path to overcoming addiction and achieving a happier, healthier, successfully-sober you, today!

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