The most common thought that comes to mind when you think about consuming cannabis or marijuana is smoking — usually, a joint or packing it into some type of pipe device. However, smoking is not for everyone. In fact, it’s not for a lot of people. There are some downsides to smoking. You find a lot of people who just feel the act of smoking has a stigma associated with it. Think stoner who is too high to do anything productive. If you have any type of compromised lung issues, smoking can be hard on the lungs. For people who don’t smoke often, it can feel like a burning sensation in their lungs. Then, the smell can linger and absorb into your clothes and hair.
Thankfully in today’s evolving cannabis industry, they have recognized a demand for individuals wanting to consume cannabis, but prefer alternative methods for consumption than smoking. We’ve put together four alternative ways to consume cannabis if you don’t like to smoke.
Edibles are hands down the most diverse in variety when it comes to options. It seems like there has been just about every food and drink you can think of that’s infused with cannabis. It runs the gamut. From your basic gummy to entire gourmet meals being consumed, all infused with cannabis. I recently watched a Netflix special where Chelsea Handler invites guests over for a dinner party where everything is infused with cannabis. It was a full-on food experience.
While most consumers who go for edibles take the simple route with something like a piece of candy, the one thing you have to be cautious about is dosing. Edibles have to process through the body. This can take time. Always be cautious, especially your first time. Try a little bit at a time and wait at least an hour to analyze its effects. A common issue people have is thinking it’s not effective and taking more before feeling its full effects.
You may have heard this word before. It’s common in holistic medicine and different tinctures can be found in health food stores nowadays for a variety of different herbs and extracts claiming to help with many different ailments, but what is a tincture? A cannabis tincture, in particular, is basically an alcohol-based infusion. It is consumed sublingual or under the tongue and can enter the bloodstream almost immediately.
You can use measuring devices, like a dropper, to distribute an exact amount of product. This will help you in deciphering the right dose for your needs.
Something unique about a tincture is the diversity in which you can consume it. While a straight shot under the tongue is great, the alcohol can be too much for some. Some other interesting ways you can incorporate a tincture is by adding it to regular things you consume. Think, putting a dropper into some herbal tea or a smoothie. You can get creative and try to add it to different foods after the cooking process.
3. Ingestible Oils
Separate from the oils used in things like vaping or dabbing are ingestible type oils. This is a simple, discreet, and easy way to consume cannabis. You can often find these types of oils in a pill form or within a plastic-type applicator. Similar to edibles, you need to be mindful of the body’s ability to process it. It takes time. So after consumption make sure you are waiting before analyzing its full effects and deciding to consume more.
Topicals are becoming more popular because of their ability to offer you the medicinal effects locally to specific areas and bypass the psychoactive components. They are great options when you are trying to manage pain and inflammation in certain parts of the body. The topical creams, ointments, etc. can absorb into the skin and offer anti-inflammation and analgesic effects.
I want to mention a couple of other methods just for the purpose, but they still possess the motion of inhaling. Vaping and dabbing. They are technically different than traditional smoking, but you are still inhaling, which can still agitate the lungs of some individuals. These inhalation methods do provide a much smoother and cleaner feeling than smoking and are becoming increasingly popular within the cannabis industry. In fact, vaping is the most popular way to consume cannabis outside of the traditional flower.
What is vaping?
Vaping is a method that heats up a cannabis-infused oil through a specialized vaping device, turning it into a vapor that you inhale.
What is Dabbing?
According to Leafly.com, “dabs are concentrated doses of cannabis that are made by extracting THC and other cannabinoids using a solvent like butane or carbon dioxide, resulting in sticky oils also commonly referred to as wax, shatter, budder, and butane hash oil (BHO). They’re heated on a hot surface, usually a nail, and then inhaled through a dab rig.”
Whichever way you consume cannabis, just make sure you do it responsibly. Research the different methods in detail and have a good understanding about what you are consuming. Always be cautious of dosing. Overdosing can lead you into an uncomfortable experience with what is supposed to be something that brings you relief or enjoyment.