Every year, over 46,000 people in the United States lose their lives in traffic accidents, and over 4 million more get injuries serious enough to require medical attention. A drunk driver is suspected in almost 10,000 of these fatalities. Alcohol, as you probably know, is a narcotic that is both legal and easily accessible.
In contrast, although CBD is freely available, it is not officially legal. It is estimated that 64 million adults in the United States have tried CBD at least once. Although it is promoted as a sobering cannabinoid, using it may make it difficult to operate a motor vehicle safely. Is it safe to drive after eating CBD gummies, for instance? This article takes a look at what we have thus far.
Is It Dangerous to Use CBD Before Driving?
Marijuana use has been shown to reduce one’s ability to drive safely. Because marijuana contains the psychoactive cannabinoid THC, this conclusion seems reasonable even in the absence of hard evidence. Cannabidiol doesn’t get you high, so eating a CBD gummy before getting behind the wheel should be fine, right?
The data suggest a positive response to this inquiry. The impact of cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) on driving performance was the subject of a 2022 study published
Subjects in the study performed simulated driving activities after ingesting either a placebo, 1500mg, 300mg, or 15mg of CBD oil. They were cautioned to maintain a secure distance from the vehicles in front of them. Highways and backroads were used as part of the test route.
The average time it took for the test subjects to finish the job after taking the drug was between 45 and 75 minutes.
Between 3.5 and 4 hours after taking CBD, they repeated the simulated test. No sign of intoxication or cognitive impairment was observed at any dose of cannabidiol, according to the study’s authors. Keep in mind that the maximum amount was 1500mg, which is way more than the average person would take on a daily basis.
This Means I Can Use CBD Gummies Before Driving, Right?
This is true, but with a very important proviso. Make sure you get your CBD gummies from a reliable company. The business is poorly regulated, which means subpar goods are still being sold to consumers. There’s a chance that the items you buy don’t have the right amount of THC if the lab that issued the COA hasn’t updated it in a while.
In fact, prior studies have shown that a shockingly high percentage of CBD products on the market contain significantly more THC than the label suggests. In fact, many of these products contain enough THC to get you high. Cannabidiol (CBD) gummies and other cannabidiol products should not have more than 0.3% THC by dry weight.
Although THC can impair driving abilities, CBD does not.
In 2022, researchers looked examined how drivers who regularly used marijuana felt about their own safety on the road. To test the effects of THC, some volunteers were given a placebo while others smoked cigarettes containing either 5.9% or 13.4% THC extracted from cannabis. Marijuana users had considerably reduced driving skills, as measured by the Composite Drive Score (CDS).
This test evaluated hypothetical driving behaviors like keeping up with the pace car and veering all over the road. Roughly half of the regular marijuana users exhibited erratic driving, the study found. Between 30 and 90 minutes post-use, marijuana use was associated with the greatest loss in cognitive capacity. After 4.5 hours, there was no difference between the marijuana and placebo groups.
Furthermore, there was no difference in driving evaluations between those who smoked marijuana with 5.9% THC and those who smoked marijuana with 13.4% THC.
Final Thoughts on Whether CBD Impairs Your Driving Ability
Although further studies are needed, it appears that driving while under the influence of CBD is safe. Since this cannabinoid does not cause inebriation, this finding makes perfect sense.
If you’re set on purchasing CBD gummies, though, only do so from a trustworthy company that stands behind their product with comprehensive, up-to-date third-party lab tests. However, some items contain significantly more THC than the company advertises due to widespread instances of mislabeling.
Driving while under the influence of THC is risky because of the drunkenness it induces and the impairment it causes to one’s ability to drive safely.