It's safe to assume you have already heard recommendations for the healthiest and safest ways to smoke weed, but you should know that there are numerous hidden dangers lurking behind those tips.
You may have heard that bongs are a safer way to smoke since they filter out toxic contaminants. Or maybe you've been advised that dabs are the safest and much healthier way to smoke marijuana, or perhaps you believe that vaping weed is the healthiest. Whatever you may have believed about a safer way to smoke, we are here to tell you the reality.
If you are searching for the healthiest ways to smoke cannabis, bear in mind that there is really no "completely" safe/healthy way to do it – even with the cleanest, pesticide-free buds. Weed smoke contains the majority of the chemicals and carcinogens found in tobacco smoke, making it highly detrimental to your health. Let’s first look at some similar reasons why one should not smoke weed.
Related Article: What is Medical Marijuana? | What are its Uses & Side Effects?
Reasons Not to Smoke Weed
People who favour marijuana above other drugs frequently give a variety of reasons that they think prove it to be safer or at least less toxic. Many of these reasons are based on the fact that cannabis is a naturally occurring drug, hence its various names such as "herb," "weed," or "grass." Although it is undeniable that marijuana can be found in nature, this doesn't really imply that it is safe. Many "naturally occurring" plants and substances are toxic as well. There are many reasons, like the following, why one should avoid smoking cannabis
- Marijuana Smoke Is Carcinogenic
Even though smoking may not be the only way cannabis smokers consume the drug, it is by far the most common method. The smoke produced by marijuana, whether it be from a bong or joints, has most of the same "carcinogens" as cigarettes—chemicals that can cause cancer.
- Causes Lung Damage
Marijuana smokers are more likely to suffer from lung damage. Research conducted in New Zealand found that the respiratory damage caused by marijuana smoking is similar to the harm caused by smoking up to 5 cigarettes. Most consumers are also unaware of the long-term impacts of cannabis.
- It Can be Addictive
One of the many reasons why most marijuana supporters argue that it is safer is because it is not as addictive as some other drugs, such as heroin. However, some people do become addicted to weed, with estimates ranging from one in every six pot smokers getting hooked on the drug.
- It Has the Power to Destroy One’s Ambition
When someone smokes marijuana for the first time, they often feel "baked" or "hazed," and the high is mainly described as soothing instead of stimulating. People who smoke cannabis on a daily basis end up naturally feeling these sensations more often. As a result of their continued use of the drug, most consumers fail to achieve their life goals and lose ambition.
- Other Consequences
Besides the fact that it can have an immense impact on one’s body and mind, it can also alter a person’s personality and even impact their IQ level. Heavy consumption of cannabis in the teenage years can lead to a lower IQ level when the users reach adulthood. On top of that, it is undeniable that a pot habit can be highly costly for a person.
Aside from the initial expense of marijuana, there are also several long-term expenses associated with decreased earning power because of poor job performance. All of this can add up to thousands of dollars yearly.
The Healthiest Ways to Smoke Weed
There is no completely safe way to smoke marijuana. But if you must smoke, there are certain methods that might be somewhat less damaging than others. Here's how the various ways compare, and also a few smoke-free options to consider.
The Inhalation Method---to vape or not?
When you use a vaporiser, you're still inhaling a foreign gas, so it's not as beneficial as many other methods. However, because the process removes practically all of the "smoke" created by smoking marijuana, there is far less lung irritation and a considerably lower risk of asthma or COPD.
Vaping, most importantly, just heats the herb. As a result, vapers do not inhale most of the toxins released from burning and smoking weed. When THC enters their lungs and gets absorbed, they just experience the same effects. For health-conscious people, vaporizers are considerably superior to smoking.
There is growing evidence showing that vaping has negative health effects. Inhaling vitamin E acetate, a chemical substance present in many vaping products that contain tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, is a significant cause of concern.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), this additive is associated with thousands of incidents of vaping or e-cigarette product use-associated lung injury and death.
This risk, however, appears to be limited to vaping concentrates rather than flowers. According to a 2006 study, vaping natural cannabis rather than concentrate is less damaging to your lungs than smoking.
Tip: for those who vape:
Oil is much better than wax or a bud in a vaporiser. Wax contains leftover fat and butane, which can be problematic when it is heated and then inhaled. Of course, the bud is perfectly natural, but the oil is significantly more potent (delivering up to 2 times more THC.) Those who are health-conscious but also want to get the most value for their money should try vaping weed oil instead of the flower.
Isn't it True that Bongs Filter out the Toxins?
A common myth is that using a bong automatically filters out all the "bad things" (such as resin and tar). While it is true that some of the bad stuff may get filtered out, but unfortunately, it is insufficient to make a big difference. According to Healthline, this is medically proven.
Most bongs contain a double percolator that mixes clean air with your marijuana smoke to soften the rip. However, cannabis tar, resin, and other microscopic toxic bacteria continue to find their way into your body.
**When smoking marijuana out of a bong, use a mouthpiece for a healthier experience.
2. Edible Method
Cannabis use is frequently associated with smoking. Marijuana usage usually brings to mind images of a pipe, a bong, or — most commonly — the traditional "joint." However, smoking is not for everyone.
Some consumers have cardiovascular diseases that prevent them from smoking. It isn't always the most discreet or easy way to intake cannabis. Especially given the risk of the coronavirus pandemic, most users may prefer to avoid putting their lungs at risk.
Moreover, some people, particularly the elderly, prefer traditional tablets, pills, and capsules according to their treatment.
If you'd like to avoid inhaling THC entirely, you could try delicious marijuana foods and beverages. These enable you to experience the amazing benefits of marijuana by just eating a great snack or maybe drinking a cool THC-infused beverage. There are also other options to pick from.
Thanks to advancements in infusion technology, you can now get cannabis-infused baked products, candy, cooking oil, seasoning packets, breath strips, sodas, chocolates, mints, and a variety of other items.
Some consumers produce edibles at home by decarboxylating cannabis, infusing it into butter, and mixing it into their recipes for brownies, cakes, cookies, and other baked goods. It can also be found in the form of gummies, mints, and truffles. You may also make a psychoactive beverage by brewing cannabis in coffee or tea. To make things even easier, several marijuana shops provide premade edibles. Day by day, companies are introducing new forms of CBD like dabs, patches, toothpicks, and even beard/hair oil.
What Are the Benefits of Using Edibles?
One of the reasons why cannabis-infused edibles are so popular is the ability to feel the same effects without vaporising concentrates or smoking flowers. It makes consumption a lot easier and saves consumers from lung damage. (We all know how to eat and drink).
What's difficult and perplexing about edibles is that the effects might take about 30 minutes to two hours to come into effect. The cannabis in the edibles has to pass through one's digestive system and then into the bloodstream. That's why it can take hours for the drug to kick in, with the strength of the effects steadily increasing to a peak. Depending on the dosage, the duration of your high might range from a few hours to a whole day.
Trying Edibles For The First Time:
It can be difficult to try edibles for the very first time, but it's all about going slow and steady, as explained in the four steps below. Here are the main takeaways for having the best edible experience possible:
- Try edibles that contain both CBD and THC.
- Start with no more than 2 mg of THC.
- Look for products that are easy and simple to dose.
- Wait for at least two hours, ideally 24 hours, before consuming more.
3. Oral Method
The oral method of consuming cannabis involves ingesting cannabis through the mouth. This is similar to the edible approach. The only difference is that it is not mixed with food in this case.
*People who use marijuana medicinally for long-term chronic pain frequently prefer the oral method because it lasts longer and requires less frequent consumption. *
Oral delivery is commonly assumed to mean consumption through the digestive system before entering one's bloodstream, but that isn't always the case. Unlike sweets or drinks, tinctures are primarily a topical application taken via the mouth and rapidly absorbed into the blood.
Marijuana tinctures are indeed a popular method for health-conscious consumers looking for a particularly safe and simple way to absorb THC. Tinctures can be used without inhaling or eating anything by just placing your desired amount under the tongue and simply holding it for a minute or two.
They're pretty popular among medicinal marijuana users since they provide a small dose of THC anytime you need it. Just place some drops under the tongue and wait for the effects to kick in. Cannabis tinctures are also popular among consumers who prefer not to experience psychoactive effects.
can also be used in various other ways. For example, for simple, easy-to-make marijuana beverages and edibles, you can quickly add a dose to your drink or food whenever you want. Some tinctures can also be applied topically to the skin for quick absorption. They are an excellent choice for anyone because they are so convenient, versatile, and safe to use.
Marijuana capsules are an interesting alternative for consumers who would like to avoid the dangers associated with smoking marijuana. Capsules function similarly to edibles. To use them, just simply swallow the capsule with some water as you would do with medicine. After that, wait for the effects.
These are incredibly beneficial for those who wish to avoid inhaling THC as well as those who are trying to avoid taking potentially harmful cannabis edibles. They're also perfect for obtaining a quick hit of CBD or THC when you need it. One of the best parts about taking capsules is that each pill contains a set amount of THC or CBD. This makes it much easier to keep track of your dosage. Just take an extra capsule of the same amount when you need more.
4. Using Beauty Products/Topical Applications
Consuming weed via beauty products is one of the healthiest ways out there. Cannabis-infused ointments, salves, creams, lotions, and balms will not get you high. Since these products can not reach your brain or the bloodstream, you are unlikely to feel any psychoactive effects when they get absorbed through your skin.
The benefits of using cannabis in topical form for sore/aching joints and muscles, inflammation, and burns are well-established and provide relief within just 15-30 minutes. Cannabis patches, which are still relatively new on the market, are an even simpler and more effective way to apply cannabis to the skin.
Related Article: The Importance of Hygienic Smoking During Covid
How Much Cannabis Should You Use?
How much cannabis you use is another key aspect of safe and responsible cannabis consumption. When you take too much cannabis or use it irresponsibly, negative side effects and life penalties are more probable.
Start low and go slow is a basic adage to increase advantages and reduce dangers. This entails beginning with a small serving size and gradually increasing it over the course of several days or weeks.
How Much For Ingesting/Edibles?
For cannabis edibles, drinks, and tinctures, it's generally thought to be best practice to start with 1 mg to 2.5 mg of THC. If low-dose edibles are difficult to come by where you live, pick products that can be easily divided into even portions.
The effects of THC after ingesting an edible cannot be undone. To prevent undesirable side effects, wait at least 3 hours before taking additional. CBD edibles often don't damage the mind or the body.
How Much for Inhaling/Smoking
Starting with a small dosage, a low-THC product, or both is crucial. You can measure how many puffs, or inhalations, you take to be a modest amount of cannabis. Take just one inhalation at first, then wait at least 15 minutes before taking more.
Low-THC products have a low concentration of THC. For instance, a high-THC vape cartridge could include 700 mg, or 70%, of THC in it. 350 mg, or 35% THC, might be found in a low-THC cartridge, which could have half that amount (or less).
Customers can select inhalable goods with ostensibly "balanced" ratios of THC to CBD in the majority of regulated marketplaces. It's wise to start out by selecting products that are well-balanced and have a high CBD content.
If You Still MUST Smoke, Keep These Tips in Mind
If you still want to smoke marijuana after knowing all the risks, please consider the following harm-reduction measures to make smoking a little safer:
- Don't hold your breath when inhaling. By doing so, you expose your lungs to more tar with each breath. Don't be greedy; exhaling more quickly is healthier for you.
- Use FDA approved rolling papers.
- Rolling papers may appear to be harmless, yet some contain hazardous chemicals and flavourings.
- Use only glass pipes and bongs. Plastic bongs may include chemicals such as phthalates and BPA, which are linked to adverse health effects like cancer.
- Keep your items clean. Maintain the cleanliness of your pipes and bongs, and avoid rolling your weed on filthy surfaces.
- Don't share/trade joints or swap mouthpieces. It's fine to share your stash, but not your joints, pipes, or bongs. When you share these, you are technically exchanging spit with the other person, exposing yourself to a risk of infection.
Now that you know all about the different ways to consume cannabis, it’s up to you to figure out which one works best for you. Remember, use cannabis responsibly and be sure to consult with a healthcare professional or a registered dispensary if you have any questions or concerns.
We hope this article has helped open your eyes to all the amazing recreational and health benefits of marijuana and shown you how to use cannabis in a way that maximizes those benefits. Have fun exploring all the different ways to enjoy this miracle plant!