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Dr. D. Cannabis

Quick Start: Cannabis How to use Copy

How to use cannabis as a personalized medicine video

Cannabis, a Personalized Medicine from Don Davidson MD Films on Vimeo.

The science of medical cannabis is incredibly complex and grows more so the more we research. Scientists are still unraveling how many parts of the endocannabinoid system function and how we can modulate the system in helpful ways.  Medical cannabis strains allow us to achieve therapeutic effects because they interact with our body through cannabinoid receptor and other mechanisms which have shown to produce a variety of beneficial effects. Cannabis cultivars very wildly in their cannabinoid and terpene profiles, thus users should learn about the cannabinoid and terpene profiles of the strains and how to interpret what effects those can have. Heated cannabis contains different cannabinoids than raw cannabis. Raw cannabis is high in THCa and CBDa – both which are biologically active. Other minor cannabinoids such as THCv, CBC, CBG, and many others as well as terpenes such as betacarophellyne, terpinolene are all now looked at as very important molecules for what people are beginning to understand they can do to the human body. Tinctures and capsules are commonly used as a baseline dosage, while vaping allows for control of breakthrough pain or anxiety – as well as being a more bioavailable delivery route for cannabinoids to the brain tissue. The most commonly commercially available cannabinoids today in high concentrations are THC and CBD. To see if a culitvar may have more energetic properties you should examine the terpene profile looking for high levels of terpenolene and other stimulating molecules.


Vaporizing cannabis is heating the cannabis to a temperature hot enough for the cannabinoids to vaporize and be inhaled but below the burning point of the leaf matter, thus greatly decreasing the amount of carcinogens you inhale.

There are two major type of vaping one using a small device that vaporizes ground up cannabis buds or a pen type that accepts a cannabis oil concentrate. There are also larger desk top at home models that blow heated air across ground bud to inflate balloons. Both work well, but the vape pens win for convenience these days.

Time of onset of effects of cannabis by vaping are 5-10 minutes and last about 2-4 hours. New users should take 1-2 inhalations and wait 15-20 minutes before evaluating if they are comfortable or they need to medicate more inhalations for relief.

Vaporizing is proven to deliver the active cannabinoids patients desire without the harmful byproducts of smoke. See this article.



Vaporizing whole marijuana

Dry cannabis is ground in a grinder and then sprinkled into a small oven or chamber that will heat and vaporize the cannabinoids while you inhale through the mouthpiece.

Since terpenoids have the lowest boiling point, around 132°F, they are typically the first compounds to be released by vaporizing. Studies have found that the sweet spot for vaporizing cannabis is around 338°F, even though cannabinoids [the medicinal compounds found in the cannabis plant] begin to vaporize at 285°F.

Dr. D. Cannabis
Dr. D. Cannabis
Dr. D. Cannabis


Vaporizing oil/concentrate

These concentrates give you the benefit of only needing a very small amount of the product to get the same effect as smoking. The oil is heated until vaporization occurs while you inhale through the mouth piece. The heating element is either activated by depressing a button or even by the simple act of inhaling on the device.

Dr. D. Cannabis
Dr. D. Cannabis
Dr. D. Cannabis


Smoking Cannabis

Smoking cannabis is an efficient way to deliver its benefits. Currently science has shown that smoking cannabis does not cause lung cancer. Recent research has only correlated smoking cannabis with a slight increase in gum disease.

Smoked cannabis acts as a bronchodilator believe it or not!


Food containing cannabinoids. For example: gummy bears, cookies, or brownies. 2.5 to 5 mg of THC is a common starting recommendation, but follow manufacturers recommendations. Time of onset is 1-2 hours and effects can last about 4-8 hours. Cons can be that these products are hard to dose and often contain lots of sugar. Be careful not to overdose, you can’t take out what you put in.


Medical Cannabis Beverages


Cannabis-infused teas, coffee, juices, smoothies, and sodas. You can make your own cannabis tea by steeping cannabis in hot water. Time of onset varies between 30 minutes to 2 hours. Duration of effects last about 3-8 hours.

Dr. D. Cannabis
Dr. D. Cannabis
Dr. D. Cannabis


Tinctures, Sprays, or lozenges

Tinctures and sprays are extracted cannabinoids mixed into an alcohol or coconut solution. With a tincture you drop the manufacturers recommendation of drops under your tongue to start with and then wait 15 minutes to an hour or so to feel the effects. The same rules apply for sprays and lozenges you let dissolve in your mouth or under your tongue.