Reactions to cannabis vary and the cannabis of today is significantly stronger than what most casual users in their youth expieremented with. THC levels in plants regularly test in the high 20-30%; whereas, in the 1970s and 80s, THC levels were closer to 5-10% mark. There are a few simple rules to follow for a safe cannabis experience.
#1 - SLOW & LOW
Microdosing or the act of ingesting less that half of the recommended dose of a new medicine is a best practice when introducing new methods of cannabis consumption and even new strains via old methods. It is generally recommended to take a few puffs off of a joint and wait 10 minutes before hitting it again. Getting too high, especially in the beginning, can be more panic inducing than medicating.
#2 - Concentrates are NOT for beginners
Concentrated levels of THC often do not offer the therapeutic benefits many new users can receive from Cannabis. Instead, they may feel anxious, sick, a general unease, nausea, or a number of other irritating but not life threatening symptoms. It is recommended to start with a lower THC product like flower or an edible. Also, consider vaporizing dry flower as a healthier alternative to smoking.
#3 - Are Edibles for me?
Edibles are an easy and discreet way to ingest cannabis. Since cannabinoids bond to oil, any oil based carrier will work well for extracting the cannabinoids. (ex. butter) Keep in mind that edibles have a much longer onset than other methods of consumption. This has benefits as it is usually a more mild sensation and there are no increased cancer risks that come with smoking. However, it is more difficult to titrate dosages and sometimes onset can occur as late as 12 hours after consumption. Products have recently been hitting the recreational markets that allow for specific time release of THC/CBD and offer patients with more control over feeling high. Many companies are also opting for CBD only products.
For edibles it is wise (even for seasoned marijuana users) to use ¼ of the normal recommended serving size on the packing (always read the label). Generally, 10mg is the single serving. Onset of edibles is slow (45mins- 2 hours average, there are outliers.) We recommend not planning outings for 12 hours after initially ingesting edibles and having a responsible party with you until you understand how your body reacts.
#4 - If you have a question, ASK the doctor!
We love our budtender and local pot head as much as the next guys but if you are on pharmaceuticals, drugs, drink, herbs, vitamins, have a pacemaker, or have vaginal dryness (I am so serious on this one) ASK the doctor about drug interactions and best practices with cannabis use. If we aren’t here to be a resource for you, what are we hear for? While research is limited due to federal restrictions on Cannabis, there are states developing successful cannabis research programs. Drug interactions with cannabis can and do occur.