It can be intimidating to consume cannabis for the first time, but you do not need to worry. There are many ways for you to safely use marijuana and still get the most out of it. However, you might have a few questions about this plant before using it. Keep reading to learn the answers to some common questions about marijuana.
1. What Does It Feel Like to be High?
Many people choose to use marijuana because of the euphoria it can cause. It might make you feel giggly or happy. But it can affect each user differently. Plus, each kind of marijuana has different effects. For instance, some strains are highly energizing, and they can make you feel uplifted during the day. But others might make you feel more tired, so they can be good to use in the evening.
Some strains are high in CBD, which means they will not have much of a psychoactive effect. Instead, these strains can be upbeat and relaxing, and they can soothe your anxiety, allowing you to get more done.
Regardless of what strain you pick, you might notice some common sensations:
- A Slowed Sense of Time
- Trouble with Short-Term Memory or Forgetfulness
- Euphoria, Bliss, and Laughter
- Feeling Like It Is Hard to Move
- Paranoia and Anxiety
- Feeling Like Your Body Is Heavy
- Feeling Happy and at Ease
2. Is Cannabis Harmful to You?
There is no clear answer to this question yet. Many cannabis users believe that marijuana can have potential health advantages. However, the research on this subject is not conclusive. With marijuana, it is often difficult to come up with conclusions on regular usage. Part of the reason for this is that it is regulated and even illegal in some countries, so it is hard to do studies.
However, if you use it in moderation, similar to caffeine, research suggests that you will not cause long-term damage to your brain. It is also unlikely to cause cancer or lung impairment. But you might want to consult with your health care provider before starting to use cannabis. That is especially true if you are under the age of 25 or may be at a higher risk for psychotic disorders. Because cannabis can raise your heart rate, you also will want to check with your doctor before using it if you have a heart condition.
3. Can Smoking Marijuana Damage the Lungs?
The answer to this question is also unclear, and the answer can be yes or no. Breathing in ashy, hot smoke can irritate your lungs’ tissues. Plus, you are also breathing sticky resin in, and that can cause you to cough mucous and even be more prone to bronchitis.
However, the irritation caused by smoking is likely not long-lasting. Instead, once you stop smoking or even consume marijuana differently, the symptoms can vanish. The research suggests that smoking in moderation will not cause your lung function to decline. Many other studies have not linked marijuana with a higher risk of throat, head, or lung cancer.
4. Can Brain Damage Occur After Using Cannabis?
The research is not clear on this question. Some research has suggested that there is a link between a lower IQ and cannabis. However, other research has refuted this suggestion because there was no difference between identical twins that consumed and did not consume it.
Of course, teens and even adults under the age of 25 might want to stay away from using the herb too much. However, some pharmaceutical companies have been looking into the potential neuroprotective properties of marijuana. They are trying to create drugs based in cannabis that could treat or prevent brain damage.
5. What About Cannabis and Psychosis?
Some people believe that using cannabis can be linked with a higher risk of psychosis. It can cause paranoia and anxiety in some people depending on the dosage, the research has not been able to link psychosis and marijuana directly. But the answer to this question is still complicated.
For example, if you are already prone to psychotic issues, then you might want to avoid using too much marijuana. Plus, if you use it early in your teen years, you might have a higher risk of psychosis when you are older. But the evidence about this is not conclusive yet.
6. What Is a Cannabis Strain?
Not every marijuana flower is the same. You might have heard about OG Kush and Blue Dream, among others, but you might be wondering if these types are that different. The answer is that yes, depending on the plant, you might notice very different effects. You should first understand a bit more about marijuana strains.
The strains are plant lineages that breeders have selectively crossbred to create certain growth patterns and effects. These are often bred over several generations. In some cases, the lineage is passed through a cloned plant, and in other cases, they are phenotypes from a plant that was grown by seed.
The strains can have varying levels of THC and CBD in them, and that is one thing that will determine the effects. Some of them are nonpsychoactive, so you will not get high. But other strains can make you feel tired, while others make you feel more energetic and clear-headed. Knowing the type of experience that you want to have beforehand can help you pick out the right strain to use. You might want to have several types of strains in your stash for different moods.
7. Is There a Difference Between Indica and Sativa Strains?
Often, you will find marijuana at dispensaries labelled as a sativa, indica, or hybrid. An indica strain is often more sedative, and it can make you feel drowsy and ready to relax on the couch. On the other hand, sativa strains are used more often during the day.
The effects from different strains can vary widely, but sativa strains are believed to produce more of a euphoric and cerebral experience. You might choose to use this strain before having a night out. Or you might use it to try to get through the workday or chores at home. Hybrid strains will have a mix of these effects. They can be sativa-dominant, indica-dominant, or an equal blend.
Although you can tell the difference between sativa and indica strains based on their appearance, effects, and heritage, researchers believe that the differences between the two strains might be more complicated than first thought. Some researchers even believe that the industry needs to reconsider how it describes and classifies different buds. However, more research is still needed to determine if this is necessary.
8. Why Does Cannabis Make You Hungry?
When you use marijuana, your body thinks that you are hungry and tells you it is time to eat. Some research has shown what cannabis does to your brain and appetite. One of the main cannabinoids, THC, can target the olfactory bulbs of your brain. That can make you taste and smell more. With these heightened senses, you might have a bigger appetite.
The study focused on mice, but it is believed that this is how it works in humans, as well. The team gave some of the mice THC and then allowed them to smell almond and banana oils. When the mice were high, they smelled the oils more than the control group did. The mice that were high ate more, as well.
Also, some of the mice had been genetically engineered and did not have a cannabinoid receptor. These genetically engineered mice were not affected by the THC and appetite. It is believed that the same brain process happens in humans who use cannabis.
The receptors are part of your body’s endocannabinoid system, which controls pain, your emotions, appetite, and memory. However, other parts of the brain can also be affected. It is believed that the effect on your brain’s dopamine levels also plays a role.
9. What Are the Differences Between THC and CBD?
Some types of stains give you more of a psychoactive high, and others do not produce euphoria. The nonpsychoactive strains have more CBD in them. This is a chemical that some people use to try to help with epilepsy.
The strains that make you high have more THC in them. This cannabinoid can connect with the receptors in your brain. This allows it to alter your mind while you are under its influence. CBD can also interact with your brain’s cell receptors, but this does not happen in the same way that THC does.
THC can engage your cell receptors, but CBD will not do so directly. Instead, CBD will go to the side of the receptors. It is not entirely clear what happens there. However, since it does not engage the cells directly, it will not alter your mind.
10. Is There a Difference Between Recreational and Medical Cannabis?
Many times, you can use the same strains that medical patients use, and they can use recreational strains. But there are still a few differences. The main one is that medical cannabis comes in a wide range of varieties that you can’t usually find for recreational use.
For instance, a cancer patient who wants to try to reduce the size of their tumour might want to use a full extract that has a high concentration of THC. Often, medical users choose nonpsychoactive strains because they want to get more of the CBD. They might use this type of strain to try to reduce their stress after a long day. However, the psychoactive strains are usually more popular among medical users.
11. What Are Cannabis Terpenes?
The terpenes are made in the same glands of the marijuana plant that make CBD and THC. They are aromatic oils that give your favourite cannabis strains flavours such as mint, berry, pine, and citrus. They might also play a role when it comes to differentiating effects from different strains. It is believed that some terpenes might promote stress-relief and relaxation, and others might help you to focus more.
They are found in other flowers and plants, and their goal is to bring in pollinators while repelling predators. Many things can impact the way that the plant develops terpenes, including age, climate, weather, type of soil, and fertilizers.
There are more than 100 identified kinds of terpenes in the plant, and each strain often has its own composition and type of terpenes. For instance, the strain Cheese smells like cheese, and the strain Blueberry smells like berries.
The terpenes might also factor into the effects that each strain can have on you. That might be part of the reason that sativa and indica strains have different effects. Of course, more research is needed to determine how this works.
12. How Do You Pick the Best Cannabis?
No matter where you choose to purchase your cannabis, you will want to ensure that you pick some from a quality source. One of the best ways of picking out a strain is based on the smell. It should have an identifiable, pungent smell. It might be sweet, diesel-like, or earthy, but it should be high in terpenes. If the buds were not grown well, they might not have any smell, or they could smell like hay.
If there are acidic, citrusy hints, then you might have a sativa strain. On the other hand, if your pick has a chocolaty, coffee-like scent, you might have an indica strain. You might notice hints of both if you have a hybrid. The colour should be greener and not brown. If it is brown, then you might have a bud that did not come from a healthy plant, showing that it is inferior.
Knowing more about cannabis can help you make the right decision when it comes to using the herb. And with a bit of experimentation, you will be able to find your favourite strain to use, whether you prefer smoking or another form of consumption.