Consumption Methods: Different Ways to Use Cannabis

With so many different types of cannabis products on dispensary shelves, today’s cannabis consumer has a lot of choice when it comes to consumption methods. But if you’re new to cannabis or it’s your first time shopping in a dispensary, where do you even start?

That’s what this post is for: We are going to break down the different ways your body can make use of cannabis along with the different product types available. Let’s dig in!

Cannabis Consumption Methods: The Many Different Ways To Use Cannabis

If you’re new to the world of cannabis, there’s no need to feel overwhelmed by big dispensary menus or strange cannabis terms. Here’s our quick guide to the different types of cannabis products you can find at our dispensary, and how to use them.

Inhalation: Smoking and Vaporizing

Inhaling cannabis smoke is probably the most common way to consume cannabis. For centuries people have smoked cannabis for recreational, religious, and medicinal purposes. Smoking is a classic, easy and effective way for many people to enjoy the benefits of cannabis.

Vaping Cannabis

If inhaling cannabis smoke is something you’d prefer to not do, you can try vaping cannabis instead. Vaping uses heat to hit specific vaporization points of flower compounds (like cannabinoids and terpenes), turning them into a vapor that does not contain the same contaminants that combusted smoke does. Many people feel that vaping is a more health-conscious alternative to smoking.

Dabbing Cannabis

Dabbing is one of the newest ways to use cannabis and has quickly become a preferred consumption method for many cannabis patients. Dabbing is, in fact, a method of vaporizing that utilizes specific equipment (a dab rig or portable dab pen) to vaporize cannabis concentrates. Some types of concentrates can reach THC levels of as high as 99% (such as distillate), making them several times more potent than regular cannabis flower. Because of their high potency, concentrates should be consumed with caution and in very small quantities.

Inhalation: Onset time 5-15 minutes, duration of effects 2-4 hours.

Ingestion: Edibles and Capsules

Eating cannabis is a great alternative to smoking or vaping. Not only does consuming edibles or capsules avoid exposing the lungs to smoke or vapor, but ingestion also produces long-lasting effects that can last upwards of eight hours. Edibles and capsules are a very popular option for both recreational and medical consumers, and they can also be used for microdosing.

Ingestion: Onset time 1-2 hours, duration of effects 6-8 hours.

Sublingual: Tinctures and Oils

Tinctures and oils can be applied under the tongue (sublingually) using a dropper for precise cannabis dosing. These concentrated liquids have many advantages. Sublingual tinctures and oils have become a favorite among medical cannabis patients, health-conscious consumers looking to avoid inhaling cannabis smoke or vapor, and anyone looking for a discreet dosing method. As compared to edibles, they have a faster onset of action and avoid being processed by the liver, meaning more cannabinoids actually make their way into the bloodstream. Tinctures and oils can also be added to foods and beverages and consumed like an edible.

Sublingual: Onset time 15-30 minutes, duration of effects 2-4 hours.

Topical: Creams, Salves and Lotions

Topical cannabis creams can be applied directly to trouble areas on the skin to provide localized relief. These creams, salves, and lotions are infused with cannabis compounds which can be absorbed into the skin. This method of consumption won’t cause intoxication, but it may work to soothe localized pains and aches. If you’re struggling with things like muscle or joint pain, a topical cream may help.

Topicals: Onset time 15-30 minutes, duration of effects 2-4 hours.

Transdermal: Patches and Gels

Transdermal patches and gels are similar to topical creams and salves in that they are applied topically, but they are designed to penetrate all layers of the skin to enter the bloodstream. Just apply the patch or gel to your skin and let it do its thing! Clean, discreet, easy-to-apply and super precise when it comes to dosing, transdermal patches and gels are a great consumption method that often gets overlooked.

Transdermals: Onset time 15-30 minutes, duration of effects varies by product.

Find All These and More at UpTop

We hope you found this primer on the many different ways to consume cannabis (aka consumption methods) helpful and illuminating. Do you have any lingering questions about cannabis consumption methods or products? Don’t hesitate to reach out and ask: We’re always here to lend a hand!

Feel free to stop by our Framingham dispensary or any of our dispensary locations to talk to our team about the variety of consumption methods and products we stock, or browse our entire menu online from the comfort of home. Either way, we hope to serve you soon!