Over the last couple of years, we have witnessed the rapid growth of cannabis options available to consumers in Illinois. While this is something we should all celebrate, it does force some beneficial products to slide under the radar. We all have our go-to products, but plenty of underappreciated options exist that may become your new favorite.
Herbal tinctures have been used medicinally throughout history and can be one of the most convenient and effective ways to consume cannabis. Tinctures are found as a liquid in a small glass bottle with a dropper for dosing attached inside. A cannabis tincture is generally created by soaking cannabis material in a solvent like alcohol or MCT oil, resulting in a concentrated form of liquid cannabis extract. You can find tinctures with THC and CBD and lesser-known cannabinoids such as CBG and CBN.
Each cannabis tincture will tell you how many mL are in a full dropper and dosage markers on the side of the dropper. If you need help determining what dose is right for you, please don’t hesitate to ask a technician! To use the tincture, you simply fill the dropper with the desired amount of liquid, place it under your tongue, and let it absorb. It is straightforward to dose, but it’s also quick and discreet, making it an awesome option to use throughout the day. Tinctures will come in handy, whether you are trying to find an easy way to add more CBD into your routine or just needing an effortless way to consume throughout the day. In addition, you’re avoiding any carcinogens consumed when smoking flower or any extra sugar when eating edibles.
The real star of the show is that tinctures are sublingually activated. While tinctures sometimes get grouped into edibles, this aspect truly makes them stand out. While most edibles are absorbed through the digestive system, resulting in an onset time of up to 2 hours, tinctures are absorbed by the mucosal membrane in our mouths, skipping the digestive system entirely. This process results in a quicker onset of effects that can be felt within 15-20 minutes and can last up to 6 hours. Aside from inhalation, this makes tinctures one of the best options for quick relief!
Tablets and capsules are among the most familiar ways to consume oral medications. While most of us can say that we’ve taken Advil or Tylenol, how many can say we’ve reaped the benefits of cannabis tablets or capsules?
Maybe you are entirely new to the legal cannabis world and weren’t informed that you could consume cannabis in the discreet form of a tiny pill. Perhaps this is the first time you’re venturing into trying cannabis, and it all seems a bit daunting. Tablets are often found in microdosed amounts, perfect for anyone trying cannabis for the first time. It will feel like a safe and comfortable option, ensuring that consumers are in control and can’t easily overdo it. Effects can take up to 2 hours to peak and last up to 6 hours.
Perhaps you are already familiar with cannabis and what works for you but are looking to build a better daytime or nighttime routine. The extended-release of tablets or capsules makes them an excellent option for long-lasting anti-anxiety and pain relief throughout the day without feeling too medicated. There are even capsules explicitly designed for sleep and relaxation, which would be an excellent addition for someone looking for more restful nights.
Herbal-infused topicals, made for centuries, are found in the form of a lotion, balm, oil, or something similar. While a cannabis lotion or body oil may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of cannabis, it is probably one of my most recommended products to anyone looking for pain relief. Most topicals you will find at a dispensary will have a combination of THC and CBD, which is the perfect duo for tackling pain and inflammation.
Topicals are unique compared to other methods in how the cannabinoids, such as THC and CBD, are activated in your body. Most of the time, when smoking or eating cannabis, the THC or CBD will eventually enter your bloodstream, causing you to feel psychoactive or mind-altering effects. Cannabis-infused topicals work their magic by absorbing into the top layers of your skin and activating receptors within the skin to decrease inflammation and pain in the area. They never penetrate deep enough to access your bloodstream, meaning you will never feel mind-altering effects. It becomes a unique way to benefit from the medicinal features of THC without any worry of feeling high.
Lastly, topicals work best when applied directly to the area where you feel discomfort. Simply rub a small amount of product into the affected area and let it absorb. Relief should be felt within about 20 minutes and can last for hours. Uses can range from the most painful conditions like migraines, rheumatoid arthritis, menstrual cramps, spinal injuries, and fibromyalgia to anything as simple as a sore muscle or achy joint. I recommend trying a topical for more minor irritants like bug bites or acne. On top of all that, you only need a small amount at a time, so a single jar of lotion can last you months! Cannabis-infused topicals are genuinely one of the products that I believe everyone should have in their medicine cabinet.
Now that you all know more about our awesome but underappreciated products, maybe they’ll get their turn to shine! Please don’t hesitate to ask your local budtender about these products and what might work best for you.
Written by Cecily, Herbal Remedies Dispensaries budtender