Data Max

Search

Why Do I Feel High When I’m Not? The Science

Table of Contents

Have you ever had a moment where you felt as though you were high even though you hadn't consumed any drugs or alcohol? It can be a bizarre sensation that leaves you feeling disoriented and uneasy. But, rest assured, it is more common than you might think. In this article, we delve into the reasons behind this phenomenon and explore what could be causing it.

What Does It Mean to Feel High Without Any Substance Use?

Feeling high without consuming any substances means that you're experiencing an altered state of consciousness that is similar to being intoxicated. You may feel more aware of your surroundings, experience changes in perception, and have heightened emotions. This occurrence is not exclusive to people who use drugs or alcohol, as it can also occur in individuals who have never used substances before.

Causes of Feeling High When not on Drugs

The sensation of feeling high without substance consumption could stem from various reasons. Here are some of the common causes:

Sleep Deprivation

The lack of restful sleep can result in hallucinations and other sensory disturbances. These hallucinations can create a sense of feeling high, which can be similar to the experience of being intoxicated. If you're experiencing this feeling, it might be a sign that you need to prioritize getting more restful sleep. Sleep deprivation can cause a wide range of symptoms, including mood changes, cognitive dysfunction, and sensory disturbances.

Stress and Anxiety

Stress and anxiety can cause changes in brain chemistry that can lead to feeling high without any substance use. When you're stressed or anxious, your body produces more cortisol, which can cause changes in your perception and sensory experiences. Cortisol is the hormone responsible for your body's stress response, and elevated levels can cause physical and mental symptoms that can be similar to being high. Stress and anxiety can lead to numerous health issues, so it's crucial to manage them effectively.

Medical Conditions

Several medical conditions like migraines, epilepsy, and bipolar disorder can cause symptoms that mimic the feeling of being high. These conditions can cause changes in brain chemistry that can lead to altered states of consciousness and perception. For example, migraines can cause visual disturbances and sensory changes that can make you feel high or disoriented. Epilepsy can cause seizures that can alter your state of consciousness, and bipolar disorder can cause extreme mood swings that can lead to feeling high or low.

Nutritional Deficiencies

Nutritional deficiencies can also cause changes in brain chemistry that can result in feeling high without any substance use. For example, a deficiency in vitamin B12 can cause hallucinations and other sensory disturbances. A lack of nutrients can lead to numerous health issues, and it's essential to maintain a healthy diet to ensure that your body and brain have everything they need to function correctly.

How to Manage Feeling High Without Any Substance Use

If you're experiencing this feeling and it's causing distress, there are several things you can do to manage it. These include:

Getting Enough Sleep

Getting enough sleep is crucial to maintaining good mental health. Make sure that you're getting at least 7-8 hours of sleep each night to ensure that your brain has time to rest and reset. Establishing good sleep habits, such as avoiding caffeine before bedtime, setting a regular sleep schedule, and reducing blue light exposure from electronic devices, can help you achieve more restful sleep.

Reducing Stress and Anxiety

Reducing stress and anxiety is essential to preventing feelings of being high without any substance use. Practice stress-reducing techniques like meditation, yoga, or deep breathing exercises to help calm your mind and body. Regular exercise can also be helpful in reducing stress and improving overall mental health.

Consulting a Doctor

If you're experiencing this feeling frequently or it's causing distress, it's important to consult a doctor. They can help you identify any underlying medical conditions that could be causing the sensation and develop a treatment plan to manage it. Your doctor may recommend therapy, medication, or lifestyle changes to help manage your symptoms.

Avoiding Triggers

If you've identified triggers that may be causing the sensation of feeling high, it's important to avoid them. Triggers can vary from person to person, but common ones include caffeine, alcohol, and certain foods. Keeping a journal to track when you experience the feeling of being high and what you were doing before can help you identify triggers.

Conclusion

Feeling high without consuming any substances can be a strange and unsettling experience, but it's not uncommon. Several factors can cause this sensation, including sleep deprivation, stress and anxiety, medical conditions, and nutritional deficiencies. If you're experiencing this feeling, there are several things you can do to manage it, including getting enough restful sleep, reducing stress and anxiety, consulting a doctor, and avoiding triggers. By taking steps to manage this sensation, you can improve your overall mental and physical health and prevent it from causing any distress.

Caroline Buckee

Caroline Flannigan is an epidemiologist. She is an Associate Professor of Epidemiology and is the Associate Director of the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics.

Leave a Comment

Scroll to Top