How to Choose and Dose Cannabis Concentrate
Published on 10/13/21
For the average medical and recreational cannabis consumer out there, the idea of taking a hit from a dab rig or figuring out how to use cannabis concentrates can easily seem like more trouble than it's worth. It can be a real headache trying to pick the right concentrate, dose it correctly, and get the most bang for your buck if you're just used to pre-rolled joints and ounces of flower.
Thankfully, Leafwell is here to break everything down for you. We've already given you a full breakdown of the types of concentrates you can get at your local medical dispensary, what to expect from each one, and why many consumers are opting for them when it comes to getting the most from their money spent. After all, there's a reason why cannabis concentrate sales have shot up by as much as 40 percent earlier this year as consumers have gotten a better understanding of what different types of concentrates exist, what they have to offer, and how to get the most out of them!
Today, however, we're focused on dosage. We're going to give you some tips and tricks to keep in mind before using your cannabis concentrates, what tools and equipment you'll need to get the most out of your products, and what pitfalls to avoid when it comes to using cannabis concentrates.
Always Read the Label
As a general rule, cannabis concentrates are much more potent than the standard cannabis flower, tinctures, and transdermal creams you'll find at your local medical dispensary. On average, concentrates have between 50 to 90 percent THC levels, while the traditional flower usually comes in around 10 to 35 percent.
So while we always recommend that patients read the labels on any of their products, this is especially important if that product is a cannabis concentrate. If you've ever had a little bit too much of an edible too quickly, then imagine how concentrates with much higher THC levels on average would impact you. To put it bluntly, it would be a really bad time for anyone involved.
As both the medical and recreational cannabis industries have grown, so has the understanding and accuracy of dosage. As researchers and cannabis product producers have gotten better understandings of their products, they're able to make sure the dosage is as accurate as possible. That accuracy carries over to the product labels.
Do Your Research and Talk with Budtenders
When it comes to medical cannabis, there's, unfortunately, no such thing as the concept of "try before you buy." That can be tough for medical patients with fixed or limited income, especially when in so many places the prices of medical cannabis products can be extremely high. So getting the wrong product could be the difference between keeping your symptoms in check and dealing with chronic pain or other health issues. That's why it's so important to do as much research on the products you're spending your hard-earned money on.
The best way to get a better understanding of a product is to talk with the budtender at your local dispensary. Not only do these people work hands-on with the products you're looking to buy, so they have a deeper understanding of the product itself, the cannabinoids in them, and the proper dosage, but they are likely medical patients themselves. They might have some first-hand knowledge of the cannabis concentrates products they're looking to buy and would be able to provide some helpful insight.
With that being said, as everyone's endocannabinoid system (ECS) is different, what may work for one person may not necessarily work for another. So, whilst there is much to be learned by asking budtenders and other medical marijuana patients, there may well be some trial and error involved before you find the right cannabinoid-based medication for you.
If you're not in the mood to chat with a budtender, then you can always turn to the internet. Pull up your search engine of choice, look up your local dispensaries product menu, then copy and paste some names into the search bar. You're sure to find some testimonials online about the proper dosage, the equipment you'll need, and personal testaments to the quality of the product.
Get the Proper Equipment
Cannabis concentrates aren't like the standard flower you pick up from the dispensary. You won't be able to just grind it up and throw it into a rolling paper. Instead, you'll need to make sure you have the proper equipment to get the job done and get the most out of your concentrates.
For example, you'll want to get a dab rig that lets you have some decent control over the temperature of the concentrate you're using if you want your dosage to be correct. That's because for concentrates like waxes, shatter, or crumble, you'll need to heat it up to use. To get the most out of that high THC content, however, you'll need to apply enough heat. If you apply too little, you won't be getting the most out of your dab. Too much, and the vapor you're inhaling will literally be too hot to handle.
Another aspect to consider when dabbing is using the right tool itself. Dabber tools come in a million different shapes, sizes, and styles, so getting the right one that's a fit for you will be super important to your dosage being consistent. For example, a scooper tool would be much more effective than a pointed dabber tool when it comes to something sticky like a sap, while a pointed tool should be your go-to option if you're looking to break up shatter into little shards.
As a general rule a dabber tool with a broad tip, like a paddle, is likely going to be versatile and consistent enough for you to get an accurate dosage no matter which type of concentrate you're opting for.
Start Slow and Low
If you're not super familiar with concentrates or if you've never used a particular product before, our recommendation is to use the "slow and low" approach to figure out your proper dosage.
Since figuring out your proper dosage can be a complicated process that's dependent on factors like your age, sex, tolerance level, other medications, and a variety of other factors, you should always start with a tiny amount of the product. For example, if you have a gram of dabbable or vapable cannabis concentrate, check your product label to figure out the recommended dose. If it's, for example, 5 grams, take half of that portion. Wait a bit, see how that bit you consumed affects you, then if you need more add another gram. Rinse and repeat until you get the desired results, and boom! There's your proper dose.
Rushing into things too quickly, especially with concentrates, is the recipe for a really bad time. Just make sure to check your labels, do your research, get the proper tools and equipment you'll need, and then take our "slow and low" approach to make sure you have the best possible time with the fewest downsides.