THC content varies widely among marijuana strains and among products made from cannabis. Even with edibles, customers may not understand just how much THC they will ingest.
The way it’s consumed, the type of product and individual tolerance all play a part.
Surprisingly, raw cannabis contains very little of the components that “get people high.” It’s the addition of heat from burning, vaping or cooking raw cannabis that activates the compounds.
Heating triggers a chemical process known as decarboxylation, which converts a chemical compound into THC. More than half of the THC can be lost during in the process.
Here is a guide to better understand the THC content of your cannabis.
When it comes to cannabis, we feel there is no such thing as too much. Some individuals can consume cannabis throughout the day, others may only be able to use it on special occasions. Cannabis has become a very popular substance; In England, about 13.5% of 16- to 24-year-olds have used cannabis on a regular basis in the past few years, and almost one in three people will try it at least once during their lifetime. Of the 6.4% of adults aged 16-59 who reported using cannabis in the past few years, over 40% said they used it at least once a month.
Cannabis has so many beneficial properties. For example; CBD, a cannabinoid in cannabis is known to alleviate pain and reduce anxiety. There are many other cannabinoids in cannabis that can also improve someone’s physical or mental well being.
It’s like adding salt to your meal. Salt enhances the flavour of your meal, whereas pepper changes the flavour of your meal. Cannabis is merely enhancing your day, it won’t make you want to do things you would not feel inclined to do when sober. Who wouldn’t want their day enhanced?
While we feel that there is no such thing as too much cannabis, we agree you can inhale too much smoke. Smoke is a carcinogen, it can lead to cancer and other negative health issues. You know that feeling when your lungs feel tight in the morning and you have a persistent cough? That may be a sign you are getting too much smoke in your lungs.
No need to fret, there are several alternative methods you can use to get cannabis in your system.
How Do I Reduce The Amount Of Smoke Entering My Lungs?
There are so many products on the market that can reduce or completely eliminate the need for smoke when consuming cannabis.
Vaping is my personal favourite method of consuming cannabis. A vaporizer works by heating up the cannabis flower or concentrate on an electric heating element. Heat is then applied to the dry flower or concentrate and allows the cannabinoids to boil and evaporate without burning the plant. Cannabinoids tend to vapourize around 284F, and begin to combust at 465F. Vapourizers will apply temperatures within this range and some even allow you to customize the heat setting.
There are two main types of cannabis vapes: Dry herb and concentrate (also called a dab pen). With dry herb vapes you get to choose the cannabis strain you put in it, even homegrown weed from a Grobo could go in one of these vapes. Dab pens come with concentrate in them, and are usually non- refillable. An added bonus is that vapes tend to be very discreet, with less smell and a smaller “cloud”.
Dabbing is the term used for when you are smoking concentrate. While this isn’t the cleanest method, it is significantly better for your lungs than regular cannabis flower. Think about it this way: concentrate is much more potent than dry flower, so you need less of it to get to where you need to be. You are only exposing yourself to the unhealthy compounds once with concentrates, whereas you may need numerous hits of dry flower to feel the same effects. Check out our video about how to make your own honey oil. This is a homemade concentrate you can dab!
Ingesting cannabis is another easy way to get the effects you’re seeking without harming your lungs. This method is best for those with very sensitive lungs, as the above two options still involve inhaling something other than clean air. To make the cannabinoids in cannabis active for consumption, it needs to be decarboxylated. Decarboxylation is a fancy term for heating up cannabis so that THCA (a non- psychoactive cannabinoid) turns into THC, the well loved cannabinoid everyone knows. Most often the decarboxylated cannabis is then infused into an oil so that only the active compounds remain, and the plant material is disposed.
Depending on where you live, many companies sell edibles of varieties. I have seen infused gummies, baked goods, drinks, even salad dressing. Honestly, the options are endless when it comes to edibles. Get creative, make your own edibles!
This method works by absorbing the cannabinoids into your mucus membrane. Products such as THC sprays and oils are quite common. Simply drop the oil droplets or spray the liquid under your tongue and wait for the effects to kick in. With legalization in many regions and the popularity of cannabis, new products are constantly hitting the market. I’ve seen infused gum and lollipops that also work this way. The bonus of this method is that the effects kick in faster as they don’t need to be digested.
Things to Do When Your Friend’s Feel Too High
The term “Greening out” is often used to describe that feeling when you consume too much cannabis. Many would describe the feeling as being nauseous, dizzy, disoriented, and overall very unpleasant. Many consumers have discovered their tolerance level, but if you ever end up in a situation where someone you’re with consumes too much for their tolerance level, here’s a few tips on how you can help them:
1. Stop panicking.
Although there are zero reported deaths after an overdose of marijuana, some may feel extremely nervous and start panicking after smoking cannabis. Sometimes, after getting high, so many things can rush into your mind all at once, making you feel stressed. Reassure your friend everything is going to be fine, it’s just an uncomfortable feeling.
If someone feels uncontrollably zoned out after smoking, encourage them to drink some water or juice to get rid of the extreme feeling. In order to tackle the dryness in their mouth, all you have to do is hydrate yourself immediately.
3. Use some pepper.
Some people tend to become pretty paranoid after smoking marijuana. Use of a handy ingredient like pepper can help in resolving the issue sometimes. In order to help with that dreadful feeling, recommend they sniff or chew on some peppercorns. It often provides almost instant relief.
4. Try taking them for a short walk.
A change of ambience often helps! Taking a short walk helps the circulation of blood and oxygen into their brain and body. The fresh air also helps in lightening one’s mood and is good for distracting their mind while they are too high. Although, they should not go for a walk if they are feeling light headed, they should remain seated and try taking a nap. If your buddy does feel up for a walk make sure you go with them!
5. Grab some food.
To get in touch with reality, you need to get their hands upon some nutrients and protein. Eating can help someone sober up really quick.
6. Take a shower.
Taking a bath or shower helps someone to relax in a state of high. It freshens the mind up and boosts the energy. Recommend they take a quick shower and hopefully they feel better soon.
7. Offer CBD (cannabidiol) oil.
This is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid which apparently helps in reducing anxiety. When CBD enters the body, it reacts with the endocannabinoid system and produces a feeling of calmness.
It is sometimes used with THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) in order to maintain a balance and reduce paranoia.
What Is A Tolerance Break?
Do you ever reminisce about the first few times you got high and the strong effects you felt, but you find you never reach that level anymore? When consuming cannabis regularly, you can develop a tolerance to it, meaning that you need more cannabis to feel the same effects you would have previously felt with less. This is when some individuals will take a break from using cannabis to allow their tolerance to lower. This is beneficial as it can help reduce the damage being done to your lungs as you will need less product after the tolerance break. If you are a heavy cannabis consumer, even 48 hours will make a difference to your tolerance. If you could make it an entire week without consuming any cannabis of any form that would be ideal. 1 week would be a major reset to your system and once you start up again, it will feel like the first time you got high. During that week, your lungs will also get a chance to heal and you will feel better the next time you smoke.
Smoking, whether using a joint, bong or a bowl, results in more THC loss when inhaled — typically between 60 to 63 percent. A vaporizer loses about 46 percent.
How tolerance may influence effects
Frequent cannabis use can result in a tolerance to THC. Beginners may want to start with lower potency products or smoke less.
Smoking vs. eating
When smoked, THC reaches the bloodstream rapidly after being absorbed by the lungs. With edibles, the liver metabolizes the THC — a much slower route. It can take from 30 minutes to 2 hours to start feeling the effects, which tend to be stronger and last longer compared to smoking or vaping.
Baking with cannabis can lead to much more unpredictable results. Home cooks may be less consistent in the amount used, cooking temperatures and serving sizes.
Store-bought edibles can be found in many forms, such as candies, gummies, chocolates and beverages. In California, edibles must be labeled with THC content in milligrams. Lab tests and measurement methods vary within the industry but these labels are one way to estimate the effects of the edible.
Compare edible products
While the typical suggested dosage for low tolerance users is 10 milligrams, new consumers should consider starting with 5 milligrams, according to the Marijuana Policy Project.
While we do not feel that there is such a thing as too much cannabis, science is still being conducted. We are excited to read more empirical studies on the effects of cannabis use, but for now our personal experiences tell us it is okay as long as you protect your lungs. Consider taking a tolerance break, switch up your methods of use, and simply be aware of your body. If your lungs feel heavy and less effective than they were previously, it’s most likely time to switch something up.