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Vaping Medical Marijuana

Vaping Medical Marijuana

Is vaping medical marijuana a viable option for legal patients? Vaporizing and vaping are interchangeable terms. This term refers to the process of heating dried cannabis flower or concentrates to a temperature below the combustion point. Typically, this means roughly 350°F to 440°F. Doing so releases the desired cannabinoids and terpenes. However, harmful tar, carbon monoxide and other byproducts which come with combustion are not created.

Igniting cannabis in a joint or a pipe heats the material and smoke up to a high temperature. This can be harsh on the lungs (hence, the coughing). Vaping heats cannabis oil and flower at much lower temperatures. Thus, releasing the active ingredients into a fine vapor mist.

Research shows cannabis smoke is less toxic than cigarette smoke. But, it can still cause lung irritation and respiratory distress—particularly in immunocompromised patients. Burning cannabis produces over 100 chemicals and compounds, several of them known to be toxic.

The effects of vaping cannabis are similar to those of smoking, with similar onset time and duration. Many patients feel vaping is a healthier option for them. Vaping doesn’t ignite the cannabis material, and thus, releases no smoke or carcinogens. That means many potentially harmful respiratory effects from smoking cannabis can be avoided.

Does Vaping Medical Marijuana Have Benefits Compared to Smoking?

Research on vaping health risks has found people who use vaporizers report fewer respiratory problems than those who smoke cannabis. The health benefits of vaping cannabinoids can be especially significant for medical cannabis patients. They often consume more cannabis on a regular basis than casual or recreational users for relief of their symptoms.

Vaping also provides the added benefit of producing a virtually odorless vapor. That means it can be done discreetly and without lingering smells.

MMJ Vape Tech

All vaporizers have a heating source and a delivery system. However, there are numerous styles of vaporizers on the market today. Popular iterations include:

  • Stationary tabletop models,
  • Boxy portable vaporizers, and
  • Pen-style vapes.

Many people find pen vapes with pre-filled cartridges of high-quality oil distillates. The Clear makes these. We feel they are the easiest types of vaporizers to use. The Clear product line features the cleanest and purest THC and CBD products on the market. Quality pen vapes are highly effective and discreet. They’re also the easiest for using on the go.

Pre-loaded vape pens also allow for precise dosing, which is particularly important for patients who are new to concentrates. Pen vapes give users the ability to control exactly how much or how little they want to consume, without wasting any oil.

Distillates is a highly pure form of cannabis oil. It offers advantages for medical cannabis patients looking to benefit from cannabinoids without exposing themselves to any impurities.

Many patients prefer vaporizing this type of highly purified oil. Ultimately, because it provides strong, specific cannabinoid and terpene formulations designed to be impactful.

The Endocannabinoid System: Designed for Consuming Cannabis?

The Endocannabinoid System: Designed for Consuming Cannabis?

The endocannabinoid system helps cannabis produce therapeutic and psychoactive effects in people. Is this because our bodies are hardwired to consume cannabis? Naturally, cannabinoids are the active chemical compounds in the cannabis plant.

The human endocannabinoid system is a major system that works to help maintain homeostasis within the body. Homeostasis is the body’s natural ability to maintain balance, and the functions necessary for life.

The ECS plays an important role in a number of physiological functions. Subsequently influencing the central and peripheral nervous systems, and peripheral organs.

Evidence states that all vertebrate species have an endocannabinoid system. Cannabinoid receptors, endocannabinoids and metabolic enzymes are the three main parts.

Endocannabinoid Receptors

The two main cannabinoid receptors are CB1 and CB2 receptors. Mainly, CB1 receptors are in several brain regions. They are also in lower levels throughout the body. These receptors are responsible for mediating the psychoactive effects of THC. CB2 receptors are in immune cells, seen throughout the body.

Endocannabinoids

First on our list: Endocannabinoids. These molecules that bind to and activate the body’s cannabinoid receptors. The body synthesizes endocannabinoids the same way it synthesizes cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. Surprisingly, endocannabinoids are occur naturally within the body. The two main endocannabinoids are anandamide and 2-AG.

Metabolic Enzymes

Broadly, metabolic enzymes maintain & repair all body organs & tissues. Metabolic enzymes in the ECS break down endocannabinoids after their use.

Emerging Research

Emerging cannabinoid research is modulating the activity of the ECS. This may present effective therapeutic treatment options for a wide range of diseases and conditions. This includes mood disorders, spasticity, neuropathic pain, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury, cancer, glaucoma, osteoporosis and more.

The endocannabinoid system plays such a large role in promoting homeostasis within the body. Thus, cannabinoid-based treatments may hold tremendous promise for certain patients. Cannabis presents an option to those with diseases and conditions that don’t respond well to traditional treatments. Ultimately, a growing number of preclinical studies and clinical trials are underway. They are already uncovering novel therapeutic approaches for such cannabinoid-based treatments.

Learn more about The Clear’s THC distillate and hemp-derived CBD.

Image source: Pixabay

What Are Terpenes?

What Are Terpenes?

What are terpenes? Maybe you’ve heard the term mentioned before. Allow us to explain, and let you know why are they important.

Terpenes are the chemical calling cards of the natural world.

They are the volatile organic molecules secreted by flowers that shout “visit me!” to bees buzzing in your garden. Terpenes are the carriers of the perfect fragrance you catch when hiking through a pine forest. They are also the carriers of that concentrated scent you inhale when the budtender whips the lid off a container of cannabis at a dispensary. When herbalists tout the power of aromatherapy through “essential oils” from herbs and plants, they’re talking terpenes.

If there were such a thing as smell-o-vision, terpenes would be its A-list stars.

Terpenes scintillate for a good reason. Many creatures navigate the world with their noses. So, smell—along with its close cousin, taste—unite the memory and learning centers of the brain. Even nasally challenged humans associate particular aromas with happy or comforting experiences. I.e., that cinnamon thing mom had going for the holidays. However, terpenes can serve as warning signs. The stink in stinkbugs is their terpene reminder to stay away.

Many terpenes are sticky and odorous to protect the plant that secretes them.

Hence, the ubiquitous funky fragrance of cannabis sativa.

Cannabis-Specific Terpenes

Upwards of 100 different terpenes have been identified in cannabis, and this aromatic advance guard can help you distinguish between various strains and their effects.

For instance, the terpene myrcene, which smells musky or earthy, is associated with a sedative effect. Myrcene-heavy indica strains make you collapse in-da-couch.

The citrusy scents of a limonene terpene in a strain, on the other hand, signals an opportunity to brighten your mood. Strains that contain the aptly named pinene are said to boost alertness and memory. Peppery caryophyllales often waft from CBD-heavy strains than can help ease a variety of ailments.

Let terpenes be your guideposts along the cannabis trail. They can help you follow your nose to your preferred destination. This graphic from strain database Leafly associates the major terpene fragrances with their therapeutic and psychotropic effects (below).

An infographic showing what terpenes are and specifically, what they do.
Terpene spectrum. Photo courtesy of www.leafly.com.

There’s dozens more scents and sensibilities to explore. Just like a honeybee seeking out its favorite terpene-laden flower, you can sidestep confusing strain names. Learn to select cannabis by associating the effect you’re after with the fragrance of the associated terpene.

Smelling What We’re Stepping In

Cannabis terpenes are not just another pretty or putrid smell. The psychoactive properties of THC, anti-inflammatory qualities of CBD get all the credit for the potency of pot. However, there is more emerging evidence for the “entourage effect.” This theory yields which terpenes enable, enhance or moderate the high—and the health effects—of cannabis.

The landmark study Taming THC was published in the British Journal of Pharmacology. It details how various terpenes can limit the downsides of cannabis. Subsequently, also amp the benefits. So, if you’re not making terpenes part of your cannabis experience, you’re probably missing out on important information about brain and body benefits.

Which strains work best for you? There’s only one sure way to find out! See if they pass your sniff test.

Image source: Pixabay