In this day and age, there are a lot of different ways to consume cannabis. This is great, considering that a lot of people tend to be turned off of marijuana and its plethora of health benefits thanks to one bad experience from smoking the flower itself. This week, we want to dive deeper into the pros and cons of all of the current delivery methods for THC available to us. So if you struggled with cannabis in some way in the past, you could still achieve the desired effect and health benefits that cannabis offers by trying a different delivery method.
Currently, there are 5 main delivery methods. There are multiple ways to get cannabis into your system with each delivery method. For example, the inhalation (or smoking) delivery method includes smoking rolled joints, vapes, and bongs. Topicals come in lotions and creams as well as transdermal patches. Edibles come in confections, drinks, and gummies. Oral deliveries can include pills or capsules. There are even multiple types of suppositories, including tampons! Bottom line, there are plenty of ways for your body to process THC and CBD. All you have to do is pick the one that makes the most sense for you and your mind and body.
The inhalation delivery method is the fastest acting, so it provides the quickest relief. By inhaling cannabis smoke, you’re introducing cannabinoids like THC into your lungs which spreads the THC through your blood and to your brain in a matter of seconds. For some, this sensation is too intense, and it causes anxiety. For others, it provides a pleasant mental effect as well as physical pain relief. The downside to inhalation is that the highs usually peak after 15 minutes and you’ll need to take another hit after 45 minutes or so.
With oral delivery, you take a cannabis-infused tincture or a hash oil capsule and hold it under your tongue until it’s absorbed into your bloodstream. You can expect to start feeling the onset of effects in 15 minutes, so it’s crucial that you dose yourself correctly. As with any orally delivered THC product, start at a lower dose and work your way up so you can stay in control of your high and avoid having anxiety. Oral products are often longer lasting, too. Some tinctures can leave effects on the body for up to 24 hours.
Edibles get a bad reputation even though they’re by far the easiest way to consume cannabis safely. With edible delivery, you have to digest the THC and begin metabolizing it in your body before you can start to feel the effects. This can take as little as 30 minutes for some people and up to two hours for others. Some people get impatient waiting for the high to kick in so they’ll take another dose. When the dose finally kicks in, it’ll be twice as intense, effectively turning people off of edibles. If you start with a low dose and be patient, you’ll be pleased to find a pleasant, euphoric high that is always consistently dosed, which helps to avoid anxiety from cannabis.
Topical delivery is mostly for people who suffer from pain. Topicals won’t get you high, but they will provide all of the benefits of CBD and THC for the body. Spreading some lotion or a salve on arthritic hands can help clear up the pain in a few minutes, though they will need to be reapplied frequently. Transdermal patches are patches that consistently release the right dose to the affected area through the day.
A newer delivery method, suppositories are great for people who have chronic pain or gastro issues like IBS and Crohn’s Disease. They also work for people who suffer from menstrual cramps, people who have trouble eating and keeping food down, and people who don’t like to smoke. They kick in in a matter of minutes, but won’t cause you to feel high in the head, just better in the body.