A Beginner’s Guide to Cannabis
Table of Contents
If you are reading this article, you have probably decided to try cannabis for the first time. And why shouldn’t you – plenty of Thais are turning to marijuana in this new era of weed legalisation. One research shows 45% of Thai consumers are interested in taking weed for sleep, while another 30% may take it for pain-related issues in the next 12 months.
From new products to research studies, legal & policy changes, and weed awareness, a lot is happening in the Thai cannabis industry. With so much information out there, it is easy to get confused.
Weed Review has prepared this guide for beginners who want to get started with cannabis. Here, you will find all you need to know about trying weed for the first time and how to make sense of this brave green world.
Uses of cannabis
People use cannabis for several reasons. For some, it is a matter of health and wellness, while others want a creative boost to get the work done.
Weed can help improve focus, creativity, appetite, mood, sleep, stress, anxiety, pain, inflammation, and muscle spasms.
From a medical marijuana perspective, research shows that cannabis can effectively treat pain, insomnia, nausea, seizures, and various other medical conditions. In fact, the GPO-approved cannabis oils in Thailand – backed by the Ministry of Public Health – were formulated to help patients suffering from serious ailments.
Type of cannabis products
Choosing the right cannabis product for you as a beginner can be confusing with the plenty of options available. Here is a general guide to help you understand the different products and how to use them.
Also known as buds, weed flowers are becoming incredibly popular in Thailand. These often have a lot of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), with the concentration (in percentage) often mentioned on the label.
When you go to buy weed, you will see three varieties:
- Sativa strains: These are uplifting, mentally stimulating and geared for a cerebral high
- Indica strains: These are the sedative strains suited better for relaxation, pain relief, and sleep
- Hybrid strains: A combination of the two
- CBD flowers have more cannabidiol (CBD) and less THC; you will feel little to no high. Better suited for pain relief, inflammation, and sleep
Different flowers serve different purposes. Some may make you super happy and hungry, while others can just put you to sleep. You may have to experiment with different strains to see what works for you.
If you know what you want, you can buy weed online from reputed stores in the comfort of your home. Alternatively, you can speak to a budtender at your nearby dispensary for a better recommendation.
Edibles & gummies
Edibles such as gummies, brownies, and chocolate bars are food or beverage products infused with cannabis. They can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to take effect and last several hours. The dose is expressed in milligrams of THC.
Edibles are more potent than joints or vapes; a small brownie with 10mg THC can give a stronger, long-lasting high than five joints. This is because your body metabolises weed in the liver, where THC is converted into a more potent compound carrying a far more intense high. For this reason, starting with a low dose is vital, as it can be easy to overdo it.
If you are new to cannabis edibles, Weed Review recommends starting with gummies. The doses are low (~2mg/piece), thus making it easy for beginners to get used to edibles.
Oils & concentrates
These are highly concentrated forms of cannabis, such as oil, wax, and shatter. Note that extracts like wax, shatter, and hash are illegal in Thailand. Moreover, cannabis oils containing more than 0.2% THC require a doctor’s prescription. You can get these at any of the approved cannabis dispensaries in the country.
Some concentrates have a higher THC content and can provide a stronger and faster-acting effect than traditional weed flowers. Once again, it’s important to use a small amount as it is easy to overconsume.
You will also find CBD-infused concentrates, which are non-psychoactive. In fact, CBD oils and tinctures are a popular way of consuming cannabidiol as they deliver better results than smoking – all without the high experience.
Cannabis topicals are cannabis-infused creams, lotions, salves, and balms applied directly to the skin. Topicals are not psychoactive and are typically used for localized pain relief or skin conditions.
How to consume weed
There are plenty of ways to ingest cannabis. As a beginner, you may want to try all the methods to find your preference.
Smoking joints & bongs
The most popular way to take weed is via joints and bongs. Buy the flower of your choice, break it down, roll it into a joint, put it in a bong, and blaze it up.
Many weed dispensaries are selling pre-rolls – which are your regular joints, except the rolling has already been done for you. They are convenient and excellent for newcomers who do not know how to roll joints. The effects are noticeable immediately, and the high can last for a couple of hours, depending on the strain you’ve smoked.
While smoking weed is the easiest way to consume it, it is certainly not the healthiest. Smoking weed means inhaling harmful toxins and carcinogens from burning buds, paper, and tobacco (if you add it to your joints). Chronic pot smoking can irritate your throat and lungs, causing complications in the future.
Vaporizers are a fantastic alternative to smoking. They are elegant, easy to carry, and do not stink like joints.
Vaporisers heat the cannabis buds to the point where the active chemicals are released as vapours; they do not burn the flowers as joints do. As a result, you are inhaling pure cannabis vapours and none of the harmful substances you would take in when smoking a joint.
From vape pens to Volcano Vaporizers, there are plenty of devices you can try for vaping.
Note: Vaping products are currently illegal in Thailand. However, many shops continue to sell them. Weed Review advises you to exercise caution and buy them at your own discretion only.
Eating weed means not dealing with any smoke or vaping gadgets. However, it also means being careful about the doses and buying the right products.
They take time to kick in as they first have to be digested by your stomach. The effects, however, are much more intense and long-lasting than other methods.
That’s why start with a small dose and wait for it to kick in. If you eat a lot of edibles in one go hoping to get high, all of them will kick in together and cause unwanted, unpleasant experiences.
You can buy weed edibles like brownies, gummies, beverages, vegan delicacies, and popcorn.
Drops come into the picture when dealing with cannabis oils and extracts. They must be taken as per the recommended dose when starting as a beginner. With time, you can increase the dosage to find the spot that works best for you. If you are taking THC oil for medicinal reasons, follow the instructions given by your doctor.
You can take oils using a vaporizer, add them to food or a joint, or orally (putting a few drops under the tongue).
Cannabis tinctures are a good replacement for calorie-heavy edibles and smoke-based joints.
Taking weed for the first time: a handy checklist
It takes time to build a healthy, responsible relationship with cannabis. You must be mindful of the good side and the bad side of weed.
You can keep the following in mind as you start your journey into the exciting world of marijuana.
- Follow the local cannabis laws. Cannabis is no longer a narcotic substance; however, the government is introducing new measures to regulate its use. With time, you can expect more rules in this booming industry.
- Know the difference between CBD and THC. They work differently – one causes the high while the other is non-intoxicating. Look for the products that mention the concentration of the two for desired effects.
- Consume weed in a familiar setting with people you know. If you are new to cannabis and end up trying it in a new, strange environment, you may have a bad trip.
- Do not mix weed with medicines. If you are on prescription medicines and want to add weed into the mix on a regular basis, speak to your doctor. Drug interactions occur between weed and medications, leading to undesirable effects.
- Try different products. Weed affects people differently; just because one strain worked for your friend does not mean it will do the same for you. Experiment with different doses, forms of consumption, and strains.
- As a beginner, you should start low and go slow. Your body will build tolerance with time, but you need to get used to weed initially. If you take too much in the beginning, you may not have a good time and may not be inclined to try it again.
- With products like edibles and concentrates, the dosage is of utmost importance.
- Cannabis has dependency tendencies; it can cause addiction and substance use disorder. If you get too dependent on weed, do not be afraid to ask for help.