As restrictions on marijuana use loosen up across states, many people look to marijuana – not only for its medical benefits but also for recreational purposes. And considering how the marijuana industry is continuously growing into a behemoth, it can be safely assumed that many people now use marijuana. Safe, healthy, and optimal marijuana use isn’t rocket science. But it is essential to understand its delivery methods to facilitate flexible consumption and optimize its incredible benefits. This is what this article will show you. It discusses marijuana, its dynamics, the delivery systems, and helps you identify the delivery system that works for you.
Marijuana (also referred to as cannabis, hemp, weed, and pot) is a group of three plants – Cannabis sativa, Cannabis indica, and Cannabis ruderalis. These three plants all have psychoactive properties. So, once any of these plants is harvested and dried, you would have one of the world’s most popular drugs. Studies recognize the medical, relaxing, and calming effects of marijuana. These therapeutic benefits represent the primary reason for its use in most US states. It is employed to treat a range of medical conditions, including chronic pain, inflammation, anxiety, osteoporosis, glaucoma, and poor appetite. However, these benefits are probably not the most exciting thing about marijuana: its flexible consumption, calming, and relaxing effects are its strongest points. You would understand better once you consider how cannabis interacts with your body.
Dynamics of Marijuana
Marijuana interacts directly with your body through the endocannabinoid system (ECS), an extensive network of receptors. The human body itself produces neurotransmitters, which are identical to tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a compound found in marijuana. Studies show that these endogenous cannabinoids bind to receptors in our brain and other areas in our body. The two main types of these cannabinoid receptors are CB1 and CB2. On the one hand, the CB1 receptors are mostly found in the brain and central nervous system. They are involved in regulating learning and memory, regulating metabolism, appetite, bone mass, and heart function, reducing nerve inflammation and degeneration, pain, and addictive tendencies.
On the other hand, the CB2 receptors are located outside the nervous system, mainly in the immune system. They are primarily involved in allergic and autoimmune conditions, inflammatory and neurodegenerative diseases, osteoporosis, chronic pain, and stress responses. Overall, the ECS is the system through which the human body regulates pain, mood, sleep, appetite, the immune system, and many other bodily functions. In doing this, it makes use of the endogenous cannabinoids in marijuana, which may be taken into the body in several ways, or systems.
Marijuana Delivery Systems
By ‘delivery,’ what’s meant is getting the benefits of marijuana into your bloodstream. Marijuana delivery systems largely determine the onset of effects. The delivery systems may also be influenced by the nature and severity of medical issues to be treated, and the user’s medical history. These methods are broadly categorized as inhalation, nasal spray, oral and topical.
Inhalation is the process by which dried cannabis plant is heated, and the smoke or vapor produced is absorbed into the lungs, and then bloodstream. It exists in two forms: smoking and vaporization. Smoking occurs the cannabis flower, burned to produce smoke, is then inhaled. It may be via rolling papers, hand pipes, water pipes.
Similarly, vaporization, often said to provide a healthier alternative to smoking, gives all the benefits of smoking without the actual smoke. During vaping, the temperature never gets too high to burn cannabis. And since there’s no lingering smell, vaping is a worthy choice if you want to be discreet with your marijuana. Vaporizers can be desktop, portable, or disposable and may work even with dry herb and concentrate oil and wax. For experienced marijuana users, dabbing or flash vaporization is often a great choice. However, due to its THC concentration of 60-90%, this is not recommended for starters.
Nasal sprays are fast becoming a top choice for marijuana users. This is why infused nasal sprays are regarded as the new marijuana industry brainwave. This is mainly due to the growing interest of pharmaceutical companies integrating cannabis compounds into nasal sprays. When inhaled into the nasal cavity, natural nasal sprays have a fast onset of effects. Hence, apart from their recreational purposes, nasal sprays are used as quick relief for treat seizures, muscle spasms, and chronic pains.
This ranges from tinctures, oils, and edibles. While marijuana-infused food and beverages take two hours to absorb into the bloodstream through the digestive tract fully, sublingual tinctures take effect almost immediately.
Marijuana tinctures are alcohol-based cannabis extracts. If you need a fast-acting, accurate dose of cannabis, you can simply place 2-3 drops under your tongue. You may incorporate it into your drinks and even recipes for slower absorption. Similarly, marijuana oils are in the form of ingestible oil capsules. They are typically oil-based but ingested like edibles. They provide a low-calorie alternative to infused drinks and foods such as marijuana edibles. Marijuana edibles refer to any marijuana-infused food or drink. These may be in the form of chewing gum, cheddar crackers, chocolate, and cannabis-infused wine. They last longer in the body, all the while producing an intense full-body high. As part of efforts to control the uncertainties of infusing marijuana in carbonated drinks, advances in-house laboratory testing help control usage via accurate dosing.
Topicals are ideal for relieving persistent aches and pains. Marijuana-infused creams, balms, salves, and patches have anti-inflammatory benefits and help you keep a clear head. Topical marijuana can treat acute pain, muscle soreness, psoriasis, and other skin conditions.
In any case, a consideration of the right delivery system must begin with the medical condition being treated. For instance, for users suffering from insomnia anxiety disorders, reducing stress and panic attacks, vaping marijuana is recommended due to its fast onset relaxing effects (within two to three minutes). Similarly, natural nasal sprays and marijuana tinctures are recommended for immediate results. Knowing this is key to optimizing the incredible benefits of marijuana.