Getting medical cannabis patients to switch to a vaporizer from ‘blazing a doobie’ is often difficult. Particularly if you are a connoisseur, the pungent and alluring scent of premium cannabis is a pleasure unto itself, which is often the case when dealing with reputable medical cannabis providers. On a personal level, I have never experienced such a variety of wondrous tasting cannabis as I have been provided by Canadian Licensed Producers over these past four years.
I do not enjoy the persistent, full onslaught effect or the pervasive brain fog that invariably strikes not long after smoking despite my best efforts to find the right amount.
Medical cannabis is, well, a medicine. We understand all medicines have specific, physician prescribed guidelines for use; however, due to past restrictions on clinical research, emerging science and the spectrum of individual cannabinoid tolerances can be vague with respect to administration. ‘Blazing’ joints/bongs/pipes may have unsavoury side effects, more so for those unaccustomed to the superior effects of medical grade cannabis. Often, patients find the sudden, full onslaught impact so disagreeable that they discontinue use and once again, succumb to the powerful allure of pharmaceuticals. It is not like your pain is going away, eh? Accordingly, a vaporizer capable of mitigating disagreeable consequences while concurrently extracting the medicinal cannabinoids is essential and needed to provide relief from your mental or physical trauma.
I have purchased several handheld personal units over the past decade. Science has also demonstrated undesirable toxic compounds are extracted from the combustion of organic materials due to the extreme temperatures applied when ‘blazing’. Additional toxins are released into the smoke stream during inhalation. Sulfur from the match? Butane and lighter fluid from the lighter? Purchasing cannabis from unregulated sources or growing your own but negating to properly purge toxic vegetation/blooming agents or pesticides from the buds prior to harvesting can also pose a significant threat to your health. Many of these chemicals are not fit for human consumption.
Buy from a legal source!
Be wary of unregulated or illegally grown ‘weed’ from suspect and/or even friendly sources.
Be the master of your own domain!
However… pain dictates, eh? You can take precautions by using a vaporizer set to a temperature that activates THC or CBD, but does not combust the cannabis and release harmful toxins. Compared to combustion required for ‘blazing’ a joint, bong, or pipe, vaping accords allows you, the patient (not the recreational stoner), the ability to extract natural and beneficial cannabinoids while substantially reducing your risk of inhaling searing hot toxins. Or, equally important, getting too ‘baked’ to enjoy your quality of life. When using medical cannabis with a temperature controlled vaporizer, you can regulate the intensity of the adverse side effects by controlling the buzz threshold at all times.
Cannabis is a short lasting, natural medication with what I have found to possess powerful and trauma relieving properties. When vaping, relief may be experienced within seconds depending on the strain/strength of the cannabis. I have found that setting my desktop vaporizer (the Volcano Digital) at temperatures between 330-340F/165-170C releases an effective dose of nearly pure THC, the primary cannabinoid I find most effective at addressing my complex neuropathic pain. I have also found that setting my vaporizer to a slightly higher temperature will release CBD, the cannabinoid that I find relieves my physical and mental trauma, in a safe manner. It is important to note that CBD does not have the “buzz” side effects that THC possesses. I have noted that on a personal level, I would rather ingest CBD in the oil based form and have incorporated 5-10 mgs per day into my routine.
What is micro dosing you ask? And Blazer, how do I incorporate it into my daily pain management regimen? First, allow the vaporizer to come to temperature before commencing with five inhalations at your own pace. I have found that, particularly with morning/breakout pain, five to ten short inhalations are required before the medicine has a definitive impact on the levels of pain. Take normal puffs, perhaps enjoy the floral bouquet, and exhale slowly. Once you feel the pain subsiding…. STOP! Turn your vaporizer off. Worry not… the essence is contained within the unit’s baking chamber and unlike re-’blazing’ a bowl or joint, the taste remains pure until the targeted cannabinoids have been released. Pause for five minutes before reassessing your pain. By this time, you should be able to judge the effects and are perhaps experiencing a certain level of feel-good euphoria. This is inevitable, yet under ideal conditions, the ‘buzz’ will be light, refreshing, and often contributes to improvements on how you perceive your quality of life. If you find the ‘buzz’ effects to be too powerful, which may be the case when resorting to cannabis strains with high THC percentages, dial the temperature down in five degree increments until you find a zone wherein your metabolic tolerance is conducive to pain relief. Maintain this temperature threshold and incremental approach throughout the day as pain dictates.
If you require assistance in obtaining a prescription for medical cannabis as did I, contact Apollo Cannabis Clinics. I can only attest to what I have experienced, and due to Veterans Affairs Canada’s stringent guidelines, they require an annual prescription from a healthcare practitioner and a biannual corroborating consultation report from a specialist physician. Apollo provided me with a fantastic General Practitioner as well as a Pain Specialist. I had the option to meet with them via secure teleconference, in person, or over the phone. The service has always been great and most importantly, the relevant documentation required by Veterans Affairs Canada was successfully submitted in an expedient manner. Apollo took care of setting up my prescription with my Licensed Producer and when noting that I was due for a new vaporizer, sent me a nice PAX-3 with no out of pocket cost!.
Too easy, eh?
Blazer aka Michael Blais CD
The content of this article contains the thoughts and beliefs held by Michael Blais and in no way reflect the beliefs, thoughts or opinions held by Apollo. Make sure to consult with a licensed healthcare practitioner before consuming any medical cannabis product.