There’s a lot of speculation about COVID-19 these days, and smoking cigarettes has been linked to worse outcomes if you become infected. While no one knows for sure, the safest course of action is probably to avoid introducing any foreign substances into your lungs — cannabis included. But that doesn’t mean you have to stop enjoying the benefits of cannabis. Consider it an opportunity to get out of your comfort zone and try something new, like an edible, a tincture, or a topical.
Get Your Edible On
Cannabis edibles are a varied, versatile bunch. You can try your hand at baking your own with some of the recipes we’ve shared here, like banana bread, tea, muffins, and most recently, guacamole. It takes time, but it can be fun if you’re looking to pass the time during self isolation. If you’d rather get something ready made, you have options. We have delicious infused chocolates that are worth enjoying, and your local dispensary will have no shortage of gummies, drinks, brownies, cookies, even condiments.
The key to enjoying edibles is to follow the golden rule — start low and go slow. Because you eat an edible, the THC must be metabolized by the liver before eventually making its way into the bloodstream. That means effects are intense, but they take a lot longer to kick in. It depends on individual metabolisms, but people start noticing effects somewhere between thirty minutes to a full two hours after indulging. Be patient — it’s worth it.
Try a Tincture
If you’re missing the quick onset of effects you get with smoking, a tincture is a great alternative. The ritual aspect that comes with smoking cannabis may be lacking, but effects are quick. And with CBD, THC, and CBD/THC varieties, you can get a tincture that will perfectly suit your needs. Plus, tinctures are incredibly easy to dose.
Use a Topical
Cannabis topicals — think oils, lotions, balms — are applied to the skin for localized pain relief. These are a great option for treating sore muscles, joint tension, menstrual cramps, dry, itchy skin, general dermatitis, even headaches. And because the cannabinoids in the topicals don’t reach the bloodstream, you won’t experience the head high that comes from smoking or using edibles. That makes a topical a great choice if you want the therapeutic benefits of cannabis without any cerebral action.
Playing it Safe
It’s a good idea to keep combustible and aerosolized cannabis out of your lungs these days, but there’s no reason to battle anxiety, insomnia, or chronic pain solo. Your favorite budtender will have recommendations for consumption methods that will spare your lungs and still get you your medicine.