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THC-O vs THC-P: What’s The Difference?

THC-O vs THC-P illustration for blog header

The cannabinoid scene is bustling, and many exciting discoveries are being uncovered daily. Because of the vast numbers of compounds being introduced to the market, differentiating each can feel like navigating a maze. 

For instance, what are THC-O and THC-P, and what are their effects? Is THC-P stronger than THC-O?

You've probably also heard of other compounds like delta 8 and delta 9, which can make things even more confusing.

If you're looking to compare these different compounds, we've compiled this comprehensive guide just for you. This guide will explore their strength, effects, chemical structure, and side effects. We'll also examine the main differences between THC-O and THC-P vs delta 8.

Let's get into it! 


THC-O, also known as THC-O-acetate, is a synthetic compound that cannot be found naturally in hemp plants. THC-O is not a naturally occurring cannabinoid. THC-O can only be synthesized in the lab via a series of chemical reactions.

On the other hand, THC-P, also known as tetrahydrocannabiphorol, is a naturally-occurring compound that can be derived from the hemp plant.

Even though THC-P can be found in the hemp plant, it is typically still synthesized in the lab. This allows sufficient quantities of this compound to be manufactured for sale in an economically-viable way.

In short, THC-O is not naturally-available, while THC-P is. Nonetheless, both are still synthesized in a chemical lab for sale. 

Before we compare the strength and effects of the compounds, we'll take a quick look at what their more popular cousin, delta 8 THC, is.

So, what is delta 8? 

Delta 8 is yet another compound naturally found in the hemp plant. However, finding a strain rich in delta 8 would be mission impossible. Similar to THC-P, delta 8 is only available in extremely minute quantities in the hemp plant

Hence, the only method to supply sufficient delta 8 products for sale is by converting CBD or delta 9 into delta 8 through chemical processes in the lab. 

Can I make THC-O or THC-P at home?

Even if you consider yourself a chemistry veteran, synthesizing THC-O, THC-P, or delta 8 in your garage could spell disaster. 

Incorrect techniques and use of apparatus may leave a higher concentration of toxic impurities in your product, not to mention that you'll be handling flammable and volatile chemicals. Additionally, you may end up with an illegal product that does not meet the criteria for compliance. 

Your safest bet would be to purchase these from a reliable vendor who has conducted third-party tests on their end products

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Synthetic Cannabinoids Structure

If we were to dive deeper into the chemical structures, you'd notice that they look somewhat similar.

All their molecular structures are basically variations of delta 8 online. Delta 8 is one of the most famous cannabinoid compounds in the scene, which can also be naturally derived from the hemp plant. 

We'll explore the differences between the chemical structures of the compounds below:

  • THC-O structure: THC-O is usually converted from delta 9 THC in the lab though it not considered one of the synthetic cannabinoids. During this conversion, an acetate group is added through a process known as isomerization. 
  • THC-P structure: The only difference between THC-P and delta 9 THC is an extra two carbons. THC-P has two extra carbons and a total of seven carbons in its side chain, while delta 9 THC only has five. It is considered one of the synthetic cannabinoids.
  • Delta 8 structure: The main difference between delta 8 THC and delta 9 THC is the position of the carbon-carbon double bond. In delta 9 THC, this carbon double bond is positioned at the ninth carbon. Meanwhile, the double bond is on the eight carbon in delta 8. That's virtually the only difference. Delta 8 THC is not one of the synthetic cannabinoids.

As you can see, there are only slight differences in structure between delta 9, delta 8, THC-O, and THC-P. Nonetheless, the effects of the synthetic cannabinoids and the natural cannabinoid can vary quite prominently.

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The THC-O experience is typically intertwined with a euphoric lift and hallucinogenic effects, such as heightened emotions and visual or auditory hallucinations. 

The effects of THC-P are much less researched, simply because this compound is one of the newest players in the market. However, based on anecdotal reports, THC-P also produces a euphoric (and somewhat psychedelic) lift. 

Delta 8 Effects

Delta 8, on the other hand, brings about a smooth, mellow, and prolonged buzz that is quite different from that of THC-P and THC-O. The effects of delta 8 vs THC-P and THC-O are much more subtle and toned down.

If you're looking for something that won't keep you couch-locked, delta 8 is definitely the safer option, and it's also the more manageable choice for those new to the experience. 

Say you're keen on getting your hands on some high-quality delta 8 gummies. If so, we have exciting news for you. Delta North's Delta 8 Gummies are one of the best-tasting, premium-grade delta 8 gummies available in the market. All gummies are manufactured in a cGMP-compliant facility under rigorous standards to assure quality. 

What about the strength?

So, is THC-P stronger than THC-O? 

The answer is a yes. THC-P is generally around ten times stronger compared to THC-O. But don't let this fool you. THC-O is still a relatively strong cannabinoid compound. 

It's around three times stronger compared to delta 9 THC, and approximately four times stronger than delta 8 THC. 

The difference in strength between each compound is attributed to their molecular structure. Though the differences in structure seem small and insignificant, they can alter how each compound interacts with the receptors in your body. 

Because of the molecular structure of THC-P (the two extra carbons that form a longer side chain), it has a stronger affinity for your body's receptors. This means it is more effective at binding to receptors, making it the strongest of the lot. Hence, you will need a much lower amount of THC-P to experience its effects

In short, the differences in effects of THC-O vs THC-P are attributed to their molecular structure, where THC-P binds more effectively to receptors in your body. However, both compounds can produce a powerful euphoric high, making them less suitable for beginners. 

What about THC-V?

THC-V is a rather interesting and unique cannabinoid compound. You may experience a boost in mental clarity with THC-V. THC-V has also earned the nickname 'diet weed' thanks to its appetite-suppressing properties

THC-V has also gained quite a bit of popularity, and you may be curious about the differences in effects and strength of THC-V vs THC-P and THC-O. 

THC-V Compared

When comparing the effects of THC-V vs THC-P and THC-O, you'll notice that THC-V pales in comparison to the other two compounds in terms of strength. THC-P and THC-O are much stronger compounds and are more likely to lead to psychoactive and hallucinogenic effects.

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Side Effects And Safety

Studies regarding the side effects and safety of the compounds are very limited.

Because these two compounds have only just been discovered in recent years, their properties and safety have yet to undergo a stringent examination under scientific lenses. Most of what we know comes from anecdotal reports.

Because THC-P is much stronger than THC-O, you may be more likely to experience side effects from consuming THC-P vs THC-O.

Reported Side Effects By Consumers

Some possible side effects of THC-O include:-

  • Hallucinations 
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Fatigue 
  • Grogginess 
  • Seizures 

The side effects you may experience from THC-P are somewhat similar, including the following:-

  • Dry mouth
  • Red eyes
  • Insomnia 
  • Fatigue 
  • Nausea and vomiting

On a side note, there are some differences in side effects between THC-P vs delta 8. Because of the much greater strength of THC-P, it is more likely to lead to feelings of anxiousness and stimulating side effects. In contrast, delta 8 is less likely to interfere with your sleep or leave you constantly feeling keyed up or on edge. 

While not everyone may experience adverse effects from consuming THC-O or THC-P, bear this in mind.

Little Is Known About The Two Compounds

Little is known about the safety of THC-O and THC-P. Third-party testing isn't standard practice yet, and many manufacturers are not transparent about the contents of their products.

If you choose to purchase THC-O, THC-P, or delta 8, ensure you do so from a reliable vendor who has conducted third-party testing. 

Delta North's Delta 8 Gummies 1000 mg are third-party lab-tested to ensure their safety and compliance. You can check the results of these tests through the Certificate of Analysis available on the Delta North website. 

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Method Of Usage

Like other cannabinoids, you can consume THC-O and THC-P through various methods, including inhalation, tinctures, and edibles.

Edibles Consumption

Edibles are one of the most versatile and popular ways of consuming THC-O and THC-P. Any edible THC will need to be processed by your stomach and metabolized by your liver before entering your bloodstream. THC-O and THC-P edibles generally take 30 minutes to an hour to kick into effect.

Tinctures Consumption

Tinctures are liquids placed under your tongue. These liquids contain a cannabinoid compound, which passes directly through the membranes of your mouth to enter the bloodstream. This method of usage takes a shorter time to bring about effects compared to edibles. You may notice THC-O's effects after 50-60 minutes and THC-P's effects within half an hour.


Inhalation allows the compound to be absorbed directly by your lungs into your bloodstream. This method is the quickest to display any associated effects. THC-O's effects unveil after about 20 minutes or so, while THC-P takes about 10 minutes.

The time of onset of THC-P vs THC-O depends on the method of usage and the compound itself. In general, THC-P kicks into action quicker compared to THC-O

Legality Of The Two Compounds

Thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, you can expect pretty lax regulations surrounding THC-O and THC-P products.

According to this Farm Bill, hemp products and derivatives containing less than 0.3% delta 9 THC are deemed federally legal. Effectively, the farm bill made THC-P legal.

Hence, the compounds are generally considered legal substances unless explicitly declared illegal by state laws.

A key piece of information to bear in mind is this: Third-party testing helps detect the percentage of delta 9 THC present in the product and hence, determines whether it is legal under the 2018 Farm Bill.

Always Get 3rd Party Testing

The percentage of delta 9 detected in the product will be explicitly displayed on a Certificate of Analysis, which should be available on the website if you're shopping online.

If you're looking to buy delta 8 online, Delta North is a reliable place to get your goods. The gummies have been third-party lab-tested, and no detectable traces of delta 9 has been found, assuring their compliance.

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Final Takeaway

THC-O and THC-P are two of the strongest natural & synthetic cannabinoid compounds available in the cannabis industry. They are less suitable for beginners, and even veterans may find these hemp-derived cannabinoids and their effects overwhelming. However, they're gaining popularity due to relatively loose regulations controlling their sales and purchase.

Delta 8 gummies are fantastic THC alternatives to THC-O and THC-P, especially if you're looking for something smoother and calmer.

If you'd like to understand the effects of the different delta 8 strains, feel free to check out our guide, "Does Indica Make You Sleepy or Hyper."

Alternatively, you can read up more on delta 8's legality. A good starting point would be the legality of delta 8 in Knoxville TN.

Disclaimer: Always speak with your doctor regarding the psychoactive effects of conventional THC and synthetic cannabinoids. Information provided in this post is for informational purposes and should not be taken as medical advice.

author avatar
Clayton McCall

Clayton is a Senior Content Specialist, researcher, and holistic healthcare practitioner. Having been in the supplement industry for more than 15 years, Clayton brings a wealth of experience to the delta 8 space. His publications include alternative therapy, stress and coping, and alternative health.


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