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Dosing: how much is enough? or too much?

Choosing the right consumption method and dosing strategy depends on individual preferences, medical needs, and desired effects. It's essential to start low and go slow, especially with oral methods, to avoid overconsumption and adverse reactions. Consulting with a healthcare professional or cannabis specialist can provide guidance on dosing and consumption methods tailored to individual needs.

​Unfortunately, it's not as straight as an answer as you may be looking for!

 

Here are some basics to get started:

  • Cannabis dosing refers to the amount of cannabis consumed, typically measured in milligrams (mg) of cannabinoids, such as THC or CBD.

  • Dosing cannabis accurately is essential for achieving desired effects while minimizing potential side effects or adverse reactions.

  • Factors that influence cannabis dosing include individual tolerance, body weight, metabolism, and the potency of the cannabis product.

  • Start with a low dose (2.5-5mg) and gradually increase until desired effects are achieved, while being mindful of tolerance and sensitivity.

Consumption methods have different effects on dosing. Some could be highly concentrated and some could take hours until onset! 

​Here's a breakdown for you:

  • Inhalation Methods (Smoking, Vaporizing)

    • Inhalation methods offer rapid onset of effects, typically within minutes.

    • Dosing may be more challenging to control due to variability in inhalation techniques and lung absorption.

    • Effects may be shorter-lived compared to oral methods.

  • Oral Methods (Edibles, Capsules)

    • Oral methods have a slower onset of effects, typically taking 30 minutes to 2 hours to kick in.

    • Dosing is more predictable as cannabinoids are metabolized in the liver before entering the bloodstream.

    • Effects may last longer compared to inhalation methods.

    • Start with a low dose and wait at least 2 hours before increasing to avoid overconsumption and potential discomfort.

  • Topical Methods (Topicals)

    • Topical methods provide localized relief without psychoactive effects.

    • Dosing is applied directly to the affected area, and absorption through the skin varies.

    • Effects may be subtle and may take longer to manifest compared to inhalation or oral methods.

  • Sublingual Methods (Tinctures, Sublingual Sprays)

    • Sublingual methods offer rapid onset of effects similar to inhalation methods.

    • Dosing is precise and easy to control by administering drops or sprays under the tongue.

    • Effects may last longer compared to inhalation methods but shorter compared to oral ingestion.

After getting a general idea of dosing and how different consumption methods can be affected by it, here are some guidelines to get started:

  1. Start Low and Go Slow: Begin with a low dose (2.5-5mg) and gradually increase until desired effects are achieved. This approach helps minimize the risk of overconsumption and potential adverse reactions.

  2. Consider Potency: Pay attention to the potency of the cannabis product, especially when using edibles or concentrates. Start with products containing lower levels of cannabinoids (e.g., THC or CBD) and adjust accordingly. Prior to 2018, the average THC potency of flower was 15%. In dispensaries, it can range from 17%-28%, and going higher than 30%. Concentrates, such as dabs, oils, shatter, and edibles can be upwards of 95%. 

  3. Follow Product Recommendations: Follow dosing recommendations provided by the product manufacturer, especially for edibles and tinctures. These recommendations typically indicate the amount of cannabinoids per serving.

  4. Be Patient: Allow sufficient time for the onset of effects, especially with oral methods. Effects can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to kick in, depending on metabolism and individual physiology.

  5. Keep a Journal: Keep track of your cannabis consumption, including dosage, consumption method, effects experienced, and any side effects or adverse reactions. This can help you identify optimal dosing for your individual needs.

  6. Seek Professional Guidance: Consult with a healthcare professional or cannabis specialist for personalized dosing recommendations, especially if using cannabis for medical purposes or managing specific health conditions.

  7. Avoid Mixing Substances: Avoid consuming cannabis with alcohol or other substances that may potentiate its effects or increase the risk of adverse reactions.

Remember that individual responses to cannabis can vary widely, so it's essential to listen to your body and adjust dosing accordingly. If you experience any discomfort or adverse effects, stop consumption and seek medical attention if necessary.

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