Choosing a strain of cannabis to smoke is an intensely personal experience. It requires some knowledge of the cannabis plant to find what you enjoy about smoking. Take a look at these five tips to help you pick the right strain the next time you’re at the dispensary counter.
Indica vs. Sativa
Cannabis is divided into two main classifications ?— Indica or Sativa. Some strains are a hybrid of the two, but all cannabis strains fall somewhere on a spectrum between Indica and Sativa. Indica strains are known for their relaxing effects that can be felt in the body. They promote muscle relaxation and sleepiness, so they are usually preferred at night. Sativa strains have an uplifting and euphoric effect on mood and emotions. These are typically preferred for day-time use.
If you’ve never smoked cannabis before, you might not know which strain you like. Instead, focus on what you want from cannabis when you use it. Are you looking for something to help you relax after a tough game? An Indica strain might be well suited for your sore muscles. Likewise, are you anxious about a business trip involving a flight? A Sativa may help calm your nerves. Talking with your local budtenders can be a great way to help you decide which strain is right for you. Likewise, an app that details the efficacy of different strains can come in handy, too.
Medical vs. Non-Medical Cannabis
Cannabinoids found in cannabis are what give the plant its effects. THC, CBD, and CBN are just three of the known compounds derived from the cannabis plant. THC stands for tetrahydrocannabinol and is the psychoactive component found in cannabis. Most medical strains that help anxiety and seizures are low THC, high CBD strains.
CBD stands for cannabidiol and is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid. The effects of CBD on the human body are still being researched, but it may help with seizures. Anxiety, depression, and inflammation may also be impacted by CBD. Some medical strains that are high in THC are intended for addressing pain, nausea, and lack of appetite. These symptoms are all common in cancer patients recovering from their chemo treatments. High THC strains may be beneficial in these recovery cases.
Run the Numbers
Buying cannabis from a dispensary usually means picking a strain with a series of numbers next to it. These numbers tell the concentration of compounds like THC and CBD, but they only tell part of the story. Advertised percentages do not take into account terpenes and other compounds that we do not fully understand yet. The short answer here is that higher numbers do not always equate to a ‘better’ experience with cannabis. Listen to reviews that feature the same descriptions of what you want to achieve with your experience.
What About Hybrids?
Hybrid cannabis plants incorporate the best of both worlds with Indica and Sativa’s. For cannabis with terpene levels advertised, look for bud with myrcene listed. This terpene can cause the ‘couch lock’ feeling that many people don’t like about cannabis. Generally speaking, hybrids tend to be stronger than pure cannabis plants.