Does THCa Turn Into Delta-9 When Smoked?

Posted by Team DMV on Feb 20th 2024

Does THCa Turn Into Delta-9 When Smoked?

Vapes, edibles, and tinctures are relatively new methods of taking cannabis. Smoking has been an age-old way of consuming cannabis. Almost every cannabis-derived flower, such as THCa, is best enjoyed when smoked.

But that is not why you are here today. You’re here to find out if THCa turns into Delta-9 THC when smoked, and that’s exactly what we will discuss here.

To start with, THCa transforms into Delta-9 THC when smoked through decarboxylation, a chemical reaction that removes a carboxyl group, releasing CO2. In easy words, heating THCa converts it into THC by burning off the “a”, which is the acidic molecule distinguishing the two chemicals. Eating THCa extracts won’t get you high, but heat-involved processes like smoking and vaping THCa will.

Does THCa Have Any Benefits?

Let’s get into another crucial yet unanswered question: if decarboxylation is necessary to enjoy THCa, does it have any benefits apart from intoxication? THCa is under research since it is somewhat new, but early evidence suggests that it has potential neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory properties and can enhance overall well-being.

What About Side Effects?

Everything consumed beyond limits can have side effects. It’s the same with THCa. Since there is little research on this compound, we cannot say for sure that it has risks or any side effects. It is non-intoxicating when raw. So, you won’t get overwhelmingly high upon consumption. Still, when it turns into THC, and you exceed the appropriate dosage for your body, you may experience side effects like:

  • Red Eyes
  • Fatigue
  • Dry Mouth
  • Dehydration
  • Dizziness

These are mild side effects. However, it is best to be mindful when evaluating how much THCa you should consume.

How to Use THCa?

You can consume THCa in different ways because the market has various products, such as THCa gummies, THCA vape cartridges, THCa pre-rolls, and THCa tinctures.

Some seasoned users prefer THCa diamonds, crystallized products with high potency. You can dab, vape, or add them to other concentrates or flowers for an added kick.

If smoking THCa to enjoy Delta-9 THC seems too much for you or you want to avoid the psychoactive effects, you can eat it or turn it into juice. Blending it with protein shakes or other nutritious edibles is a popular way of using it. Some even mix it with sauces or salad dressings to enjoy earthy flavors.

Quick Note: Before ordering, it's smart to check if Delta 9 is legal in Georgia. Ask: "Is THC Legal in Georgia?" Stay informed!

What Are the Other Methods of Taking THCa Instead of Vaping?

Dose Differently: THCa


It is nearly similar to smoking as it too converts THCa to Delta-9 THC. Vaping involves heating THCa flower or extracts to release the cannabinoids without burning like smoking. This heating process is called conduction, unlike smoking, which involves combustion.

Vaping at low temperatures allows enjoying a unique flavor profile because the terpenes stay nearly intact, producing unique effects.

Many consider vaping a safer alternative to smoking THCa because it decreases the amount of combustion byproducts and carcinogens that can damage the lungs.


Those who have never tried it may find it a little strange, but you can cook cannabis and infuse it with edibles. Cooking THCa involves decarboxylation.

You can bake the flower at a low temperature to activate the process. After the conversion, you can infuse it with oil, butter, or other fats and use them to make gummies or brownies.

Be cautious when cooking with cannabis-derived products because you may not be able to measure the potency and dosage. Also, edibles take longer to kick in but stay for extended periods. Start with low doses and wait at least 2-3 hours before increasing it.

Final Words

Smoking THCa is just one way to convert it into THC. THCa does not get the user high, but THC does. That is the main difference between the two. Enjoy the potential therapeutic benefits of hemp today.