How To Use Cannabis Without Smoking It
One of the main reasons people are hesitant to try medical cannabis is the belief they have to smoke it. However, that’s simply not true.
In fact, it’s one of the biggest misconceptions about medical marijuana.
Nowadays, there are so many alternative ways to consume cannabis. From vaping to oils and capsules, it’s entirely possible to tailor your delivery method to your specific needs or symptoms.
When it comes to medical cannabis, you don’t have to smoke it to take advantage of its remarkable health benefits.
Here are five different ways you can consume medical cannabis.
Basic Delivery Methods For Marijuana
The three basic types of cannabis delivery methods are inhalation, oral, and topical.
Each method comes with its own set of benefits and provides a completely unique experience to the user.
For example, eating a cannabis-infused snack will result in a delayed onset of effects, while vaping delivers immediate benefits.
Everybody will respond differently to each delivery method, so it’s important to remember that it may take a bit of trial and error to find the method that works best for you.
While this list doesn’t cover every consumption method, the following are a few of the most popular and effective ways to consume medical cannabis.
Vaporizing (or “vaping”) is another way to inhale cannabis without any smoke.
Vaporizers heat the cannabis at a low temperature, allowing its active components to be released without the carcinogens that come from the high temperatures of smoking.
Essentially, vaporizers allow you to experience the therapeutic benefits of cannabis without the odour or harmful toxins associated with smoking.
The one caveat with vaping? You have to purchase a vaporizer. These devices are available in a range of forms and sizes, but the two main types are desktop vaporizers and portable vaporizers (similar to e-cigarettes).
Inhalation delivers vapor directly to the central nervous system, so this method is ideal for those looking for instant effects or immediate pain relief. However, the effects of vaping don’t last as long as oral consumption.
Marijuana as Edibles
The term ‘edibles’ generally refers to any food infused with cannabis.
While marijuana brownies are one of the most common edibles, you can find various forms, including candy, chocolates, or gummy bears.
You’re not limited to sugary snacks, though – cannabis can be added to almost any food made with a high-fat ingredient like butter or coconut oil. Whether it’s a green smoothie or hummus, you can infuse a range of healthy foods with cannabis.
Regardless of the type of food, when cannabis is consumed orally you must keep these important factors in mind:
- Edibles have a delayed onset, meaning it can take anywhere between 30 and 120 minutes to take effect
- The effects will be much stronger and last longer than other methods (anywhere from 4 to 8 hours or more)
Delayed onset occurs because cannabinoids and other compounds need to be broken down in the digestive system. This is why first-time users should always start slowly with a small dose.
Since you don’t have to consume edibles as often, oral consumption can be a suitable option for patients suffering from chronic or severe pain.
Simply put, cannabis oils are highly concentrated solutions made from the marijuana plant’s leaves and flowers. These solutions consist of extracted resin that has been mixed with a carrier oil to create a liquid.
Licensed producers make cannabis oil using advanced extraction methods that preserve the plant’s active components and cannabinoids (including CBD and THC).
Since these products are usually packaged in vials or as capsules, consuming cannabis oil is easy and convenient: it can be administered under the tongue or added to food or drink.
When dissolved under the tongue, the effects will take hold within minutes. If the oil is mixed into food, the effects are similar to edibles: a delayed onset (between 30 and 120 minutes) with long-lasting effects.
Cannabis oils are available with varying levels of THC and CBD, so they’re a fantastic treatment option for a wide range of symptoms. Most commonly, patients use oils to alleviate conditions such as anxiety, insomnia, chronic pain, or epilepsy.
Capsules are one of the easiest and most convenient consumption methods for a number of reasons:
- They offer controlled, precise dosing
- They’re portable and discreet
- They can be taken orally like a vitamin
Marijuana capsules contain cannabis oil, so their effects are similar to edibles. This means they have a slower onset time (between 30 and 120 minutes after ingestion) and they produce a strong, long-lasting effect.
This delivery method is becoming increasingly popular with both patients and physicians in Canada. Not only is it a fantastic option for new cannabis users, but also for those who don’t feel comfortable using other consumption methods like vaporizers.
Topicals are lotions or creams that have been infused with cannabis to provide fast and localized pain relief.
They can be applied directly to the skin to treat everything from muscle aches to inflammation and tension. And since topicals can’t enter the bloodstream, they don’t produce a “high” feeling.
This delivery method is often popular with patients who want the therapeutic benefits of cannabis without any psychoactive effects.
Under Health Canada’s Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations, licensed producers cannot sell cannabis topicals at this time.
Some licensed producers offer topical cream kits with cannabis oil and a carrier gel that you can mix yourself.
Alternatively, you have the option to make your own. (Just be sure to consult with your physician for professional advice.)
How Do You Consume Marijuana?
The above 5 ways to consume cannabis without actually smoking it are just the tip of the iceberg. With recreational cannabis being legal in Canada as of October 17, 2018, we’ll likely see many more non-smokable ways to consume cannabis.
How do you plan on consuming your cannabis? Share this article on Facebook and comment to let us know.
If you need to know how to get a medical marijuana prescription, click the link to find out.
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