Medical Marijuana Month: 13 FAQs About CannabisWritten by Chris Weatherall on Feb 28, 2019
Whether you’re a cannabis enthusiast or new to the industry, you likely have some questions about the plant and the process. Since February was Marijuana Awareness Month and April is Cannabis Awareness Month, in honor of both, Kind Meds is answering some of the most common cannabis-related questions.
Q: What Are The Effects Of Using Cannabis?
A: Cannabis is a plant whose leaves and flowers contain chemicals that can produce a psychoactive reaction when smoked or ingested. The active ingredient in cannabis, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), can produce a range of effects on the user, including:
- Feelings of pleasure or well-being
- Reduced anxiety
- Decreased nausea
- Increased appetite
- Mouth dryness
- Anxiety or paranoia
- Bloodshot eyes
The exact effects one gets from cannabis will depend on the dosage, type of cannabis, method of use, and the individual. Different strains can produce different effects. If you aren’t sure whether cannabis is right for you, speak to your doctor about your options.
Q: Are There Different Forms Of Cannabis?
A: Cannabis comes in three forms: marijuana, hashish, and hash oil. The leaves and flowers of the cannabis plant are marijuana. Most people who use marijuana smoke it for the desired effects. It is the least potent of the three forms. Hashish comes from the resin of the plant. It is typically smoked in blocks or eaten with food. Hash oil is the most potent of the forms and refers to the oil of a block of hashish.
Q: Is Cannabis Illegal?
A: Cannabis is illegal under federal law. However, eight states have legalized recreational use of cannabis and 33 states have passed medical marijuana laws. Thus, people living in states that have legalized some form of cannabis may use the products according to state law. However, they are technically still engaged in illegal activities in the eyes of federal lawmakers.
Q: How Does Medical Marijuana Work?
A: Medical marijuana programs in most states require citizens to obtain medical cards to qualify for legal cannabis prescriptions. Once a patient has a valid card, he or she can purchase up to a maximum amount of marijuana from a dispensary or pharmacy. Unless the state also legalizes recreational use of marijuana, the patient cannot use cannabis outside the regulations of his or her medical card.
Q: What Are The Health Benefits Of Medical Marijuana?
A: Marijuana as medicine can have a range of health and wellness benefits for patients suffering from many different injuries or illnesses. Marijuana can soothe anxiety and help manage chronic pain. It can also alleviate depression, as well as symptoms of HIV, MS, Parkinson’s disease, Crohn’s disease, hepatitis C, PTSD, and arthritis. It can also help cancer patients manage pain and increase their appetites during chemotherapy treatments.
Q: What Is The Difference Between Cannabis And CBD Oil?
A: CBD oil is a cannabis derivative. It does not contain THC, and therefore cannot produce a “high” effect. CBD oil can have medical benefits on its own, even without psychoactive properties. It can help relieve pain, prevent seizures, manage depression, soothe anxiety, and more. Many people can purchase hemp-based (rather than cannabis-based) CBD oil without medical marijuana cards in states that do not legalize recreational marijuana.
Q: What Is The Difference Between Marijuana And Hemp?
A: Hemp is not the same as marijuana, despite some people using the terms interchangeably. Both are cannabis, but hemp is not psychoactive. It contains very low levels of THC. Hemp is used in the production of many materials, including clothing, plastic, and food. Marijuana, on the other hand, is consumed for medical and recreational purposes, generally for its psychoactive and painkilling properties.
Q: What Are The Ways To Consume Cannabis?
A: One can consume cannabis in many different ways. Inhalation is one of the most common ways to consume marijuana. People can inhale marijuana by smoking it through hand pipes, water pipes, hookahs, one-time use devices, vaporizers, or rolled joints or blunts. Users can also consume cannabis orally, through tinctures, pills, or edibles. It is also possible to absorb cannabinoids through the skin, in the form of oils, lotions, and rubs.
Q: Is Cannabis Dangerous?
A: Cannabis can have short-term negative effects, such as anxiety, paranoia, problems concentrating, trouble with memory, and poor coordination. This can make it dangerous to consume before driving or operating heavy machinery. Although cannabis does not alter the brain’s chemistry like addictive substances, studies show that people may become dependent on the lifestyle. People who smoke cannabis may be at risk of problems such as lung disease or respiratory issues. It is not possible to overdose on cannabis.
Q: Which Type Of Cannabis Should I Use?
A: The two main varieties of cannabis are indicas and sativas. Indicas produce more relaxed effects, while sativas can increase focus and creativity. Most people choose indicas for evening use and sativas for daytime use. Both can treat pain, increase appetite, and treat anxiety or depression.
Q: What Are Edibles?
A: Cannabis edibles are items you can eat, made with marijuana or cannabis oils. Edibles are an alternative to smoking for people who want to experience the same effects. It is possible to purchase edibles in states that have legalized cannabis use, as well as to make them at home with the right cooking techniques. Edibles come in a large variety of forms, including baked goods, savory dishes, drinks, and candies.
Q: Is Ingesting Cannabis The Same As Smoking It?
A: No. Ingesting cannabis orally will produce different effects than smoking or inhaling it. Smoking marijuana can lead to feeling the effects almost immediately. Ingesting it, however, can take 30 minutes to two hours to feel the effects. Ingesting marijuana can also produce longer effects than inhalation depending on the dosage and potency of the product. The amount of THC present in an edible can vary, especially in homemade edibles. This can make it harder for the user to control how much THC he or she consumes.
Q: Where Can I Buy Cannabis?
A: Check your state laws to see if medical and/or recreational cannabis is permitted where you live. If your state has only legalized medical marijuana, you will need to obtain a medical marijuana card. Then, visit a medical marijuana dispensary and show your card to purchase marijuana. You may only purchase a certain amount based on the limits of your prescription.
If your state has legalized recreational marijuana, you do not need to obtain a medical card to legally purchase cannabis products. Your city may or may not have approval to sell recreational marijuana near you. Research where you can buy it in your state. Then, visit your local dispensary to purchase marijuana in a variety of forms. Kind Meds is Arizona’s highest quality medical marijuana dispensary, located in Mesa, Arizona.