We’re going to assume you know almost nothing about medical marijuana and focus on the real basics of the drug, what it does and how a California medical marijuana card might benefit you. Medical marijuana isn’t for everyone, so before using it, you should know what you’re using and how to use it.
What Is Marijuana?
This may seem simple, and on a basic level, everyone knows what marijuana is. However, on a factual level, far fewer people know exactly what it is. This commonly leads to the drug being demonized even though countless studies have shown that there are health benefits of using the MMJ in moderation. Marijuana is, by far, the most used recreational drug in the United States.
First things first, medical marijuana is nothing more than a plant. The drug is made of the shredded leaves and sometimes flowers of the cannabis sativa plant. Whatever strain or whatever form of cannabis someone uses, they are all psychoactive, which means they are mind-altering. The plant is made up of hundreds of chemicals, but the most powerful one is called tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). When consuming marijuana, THC has the biggest impact on your brain.
How Do You Use Medical Marijuana?
For the majority of users, marijuana is consumed through rolling loose leaves into a medical marijuana cigarette called a joint. Joints are sometimes mixed with tobacco to cut the intensity of the weed. Others prefer to use a bong, which is a large water pipe that heats the drug into smoke, which is then inhaled. Vaporizers are another common form of medical marijuana consumption that works as mini bongs. With the legalization of medical marijuana and your CA weed card, there have been numerous forms of consumption methods introduced, including edibles, oils, drinks and more.
What Is the Common Medical Marijuana Lingo?
There are numerous terms that you might hear people use to describe medical marijuana, and the list is ever growing. Here’s a short list of the most common terms and exactly what they mean.
- Joint: A rolled cigarette-like way to consume medical marijuana
- Bong: A water pipe that allows you to inhale weed
- Blunt: A hollowed-out cigar where the tobacco is removed and replaced with marijuana
- Hash: Medical marijuana mixed with tobacco
The most common nicknames for marijuana include weed, pot, reefer, grass, dope, Mary Jane, ganja, herb, chronic, boom and skunk.
What Is Being High Really Like?
If you’ve never experienced a medical marijuana high, you might associate it with films and TV shows that depict the effects of marijuana. When you consume medical marijuana in moderation, the most common effects are a heightened sense of well-being and euphoria. You’ll find yourself talking a lot more and, inevitably, laughing a lot more as well. At its height, the high will give you a feeling of introspective dreaminess, which will eventually tail off into sleepiness and then, most likely, sleep. You’ll also experience feelings of exaggerated emotional and physical sensitivity and strong feelings of camaraderie if you are in a group setting.
The drug will also have a direct impact on your speech patterns, which will be slower. Your ability to carry out a conversation will be impaired as a result of this. Weed also affects your short-term memory. The typical high from marijuana lasts for around two hours but can last for as long as 12 hours if you overindulge.
*You will probably not hallucinate animals driving cars!
Is Using Medical Marijuana Safe?
This question is a lot more complicated than you might think. To put it in the most understandable terms possible, it is scientifically proven that marijuana is safer for you than either nicotine or alcohol. In the case of alcohol, marijuana is actually more than 100 times safer for you, but this, of course, does not mean that it is 100 percent safe. Marijuana is slowly becoming legalized across the United States because of the health benefits it offers those who use it. The most common medical use for marijuana is for people suffering from some form of slight mental illness including anxiety, depression or stress, but there are physical benefits to the drug as well. Marijuana can be used to help treat and even prevent cancer and glaucoma, and it is an excellent form of medication for those suffering from intense or debilitating pain. As the drug becomes more popular and is slowly legalized across the U.S., new health benefits are being discovered almost every day.
Of course, like all good things, there are drawbacks to marijuana as well. Although there is no research that indicates occasional marijuana use leads to any health issues, there are issues with long-term and heavy marijuana consumption. Issues include memory capacity and, in the most severe of cases, schizophrenia.
With moderation, marijuana is safe, but if you’re deciding to take that step to get your California weed card, make sure to talk to your health professional about how much you should use, when you should use it and how often. With that advice, you’ll be good to go.