- Vaporizing marijuana, or heating it to a temperature just under the combustion point, can create a more potent effect than smoking, potentially leading to increased intoxication levels and impaired cognitive and motor abilities.
- Vaporizing pot has been found to deliver higher levels of THC into the user’s system, possibly because the lack of combustion may prevent a loss of the psychoactive compound that occurs when marijuana is smoked.
- The growing popularity of marijuana vaporizers comes with a safety concern, particularly for novice users, as it may heighten some negative effects such as paranoia, dry mouth, and increased heart rate.
- Even though vaporizing pot might be perceived as safer due to the absence of combustion-related toxins, users need to proceed with caution considering its potent effects.
- Experts advise using a lesser quantity of cannabis when vaporizing, to manage and regulate its stronger impact.
Vaporizing pot, a method of heating marijuana without the production of smoke, presents a notably more powerful effect than just smoking it, according to recent research. This could potentially have safety implications for users – one example being the impairment of driving.
The Vaporizing Process and Intoxication Impact
Marijuana vaporizers heat the substance to a temperature that’s just under the combustion point. This allows users to inhale the psychotropic chemical THC from the plant without inhaling any smoke.
This method was found to cause significantly more intoxication in a small test group than they experienced while smoking the same amount of weed through a regular pot pipe. This was concluded in a report published in an online health journal.
The participants in the study also experienced more negative effects related to their marijuana use when using vaporizers. They showed a pronounced impairment in cognitive and motor abilities, reported the study.
“The line between achieving the desired drug effect and experiencing an overly strong, possibly discomforting effect, such as paranoia, is often very thin. This could potentially occur more frequently with vaporizers,” warned the principal researcher of the study. He added this is an important consideration as vaporizers should not be confused with “vaping,” which is used to describe electronic cigarettes.
Rising Popularity of Vaporizers
Reports suggest that vaporizing is becoming an increasingly popular method of consuming pot, especially in regions where the recreational use of the substance has been legalized.
“Vaporizing devices heat the substance to a temperature that doesn’t lead to combustion. Post vaporization, the cannabis doesn’t turn into black ash as it does when smoked. It retains its original appearance,” explained an expert involved in the study.
A Higher High with Vaporizers
To determine whether vaporizers offer a different experience compared to smoking pot, the researchers engaged 17 healthy adults, who weren’t marijuana users, to smoke pot from a pipe and inhale the vapor produced by a vaporizer.
Interestingly, the same 25-milligram dosage of pot delivered a noticeably stronger high when vaporized, as opposed to when smoked. According to the study, consumption of vaporized pot also resulted in greater impairment based on cognitive and motor proficiency tests.
Vaporized pot was also associated with increased side effects including increased heart rate, paranoia, dry mouth, and red eyes amongst others.
Increased Levels of THC
Upon testing, subjects displayed significantly higher levels of THC in their blood circulation after using a vaporizer – around 14.4 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL) compared to the 10.2 ng/mL after smoking pot.
According to the research, the effects of both vaporized and smoked pot usually subsided within six to eight hours.
Experts theorise that by heating marijuana and avoiding combustion, users absorb more of the mind-altering chemicals, making vaporizers a more effective delivery method. “We believe that the combustion of cannabis leads to the loss of more THC,” explained an expert.
Cautions for Novice Users
According to a prominent Australian professor, “Novice marijuana users need to approach vaporizers with caution.” While vaporizing pot is perceived as a safer method since it minimizes the burning of plant matter and the subsequent creation of toxins, these fresh findings reveal concerns.
“This could be a concern for inexperienced users, which could include recreational users or those trying cannabis for medical reasons” she explained, finishing with the advice, “It might be prudent to use a smaller quantity of cannabis in a vaporizer to achieve the desired result.”
For more information regarding the health effects of marijuana, you can seek information from relevant sources such as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.