What to Expect When You Smoke Cannabis the First Time

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My cousin introduced me to smoking cannabis. A few puffs into it, and I said that I didn’t feel high. He said, “You’re high, alright!” I asked how he could tell, and he said, “because you won’t shut the %&^# up!”

Whatever he gave me made for a giddy, chatty, friendly evening. I am not sure I knew what to expect if the high was what I wanted, or if my reaction was typical. That’s the problem with knowing what to expect when you get high the first time. The high depends on so many factors, including your physique and psychological predisposition, as well as the type of strain and the method of consumption.

Lotions and topicals

Cannabis lotions and topicals, especially CBD-infused products, will not produce a cerebral high. You should not expect a psychoactive trip. However, the human endocannabinoid system infiltrates the skin. Its design makes the skin a gateway for cannabis effects when applied and massaged.

While lotions and topicals may not produce a psychic experience, users report relief from muscle and joint pain from products rubbed into their pain points. Of course, the therapy may come from the massage itself, but the placebo effect may be all you are after.

Teas and beverages

The market is full of cannabis-infused teas, wines, olive oils, and other beverages. Few of them include high THC content. Their CBD content, however, promises calm relaxation. Consumers use them to start their day, bring focus to their work, and settle you for a good night’s sleep. In short, you should not expect an exciting experience worthy of the label “high.”

Nonetheless, if you are looking for a modest brain and body chill, these products can level your experience, balance your day. You may also notice some tolerable comfort for mild anxiety, muscle cramps and involuntary spasms, PMS, PTSD, and other medical issues related to tension.

Cannabis edibles

Edibles come in many forms: chocolate bars, brownies, cookies, gummies, lollipops, and more. Homemade or dispensary-sourced, cannabis edibles can be unbelievably delicious and sometimes potent. These characteristics present several problems. 

  • The liver metabolizes cannabis edibles. It takes more time (20 minutes or more) to trigger the effects of the cannabis contained, but the reaction lasts longer.

  • Edibles are tasty, indeed, and this tempts users to eat more than they should. New users are likely to eat a good-sized cookie or brownie at once when they should nibble on them. Chocolate bars are so rich that people are inclined to eat the whole bar.

  • Edibles may not be clearly labeled or dosed. This puts you at risk for adverse effects. However, when the contents are precise, you should follow them closely. For example, two 10mg pieces of chocolate will indeed have an impact.

  • Edibles are prepared with different strains. The recipes and cooking processes will alter those strains, and some strains do not lend themselves well to preparation. So, you want to read labels and look for third-party laboratory confirmation of THC and CBD content.

The most THC potent edibles will not produce the high associated with smoking because the cannabis power is compromised by the recipes, preparation, and other ingredients. Still, they can provide a modest-to-moderate psychoactivity or a moderate-to-high physical relaxation, especially for those who do not want to smoke or prefer a safe and discrete way to consume.

Smoking cannabis

Smoking cannabis remains the most constant and consistent consumption method. “Smoking” takes several forms, each of which produces different effects. 

  • Smoking cannabis in joints, spliffs, or blunts remains the prototypical way to use it. Just one or two tokes will produce a high. You enjoy that effect for what it is before relighting for more.

Smoking cannabis in this way reaches the bloodstream almost immediately. The chemistry absorbs through the oral membranes and the lung walls to the blood that carries it throughout the body, glands, and brain.

Your choice of strain will shape your experience, but that high also depends on gender, weight, height, Body Mass Index, and social situation. If that strain is THC- potent, you can expect a range of mild euphoria experiences to intense paranoia. If it is CBD-potent, you can expect gentle relaxation to heavy sedation. Bearing in mind that everyone reacts differently, you should start with something mild and work your way up to a strain reaching the target experience you have in mind.

  • Smoking cannabis also takes other forms. You might use a bong, water pipe, or dabbing device. Each of these methods requires you to inhale the cannabis fumes; however, they are free of the carbon effects of burning cannabis rolled in papers. This reduces the toxicity and improves the effects.

Inhaling the vapor from heated cannabis goes directly to the respiratory system to speed impact. Because these devices generally use cannabis extracts, the cannabis has been strengthened before use. The wax, butter, or shatter has been purified, thereby increasing its potency.

Because these methods are more complicated, they should be used with others to help with the mechanics and to observe adverse effects. You inhale fully down into the lungs and exhale after a brief hold. Cannabis customers tend to use these methods for a THC high. They are looking for an agitated psychoactive state as an escape or remedy for chronic depression.

New users should enter this door with some caution. You should not use alone, and you should titrate up from a mild strain.

What you can expect –

Cannabis presents as a complicated botany, and it is used by complicated people. No one should expect the same experience, most experiences are anecdotal, and consumption method has a lot to do with how things work out.

You must research strains and consumption methods and then start with low expectations. Cannabis is little risk to most people and a high risk to a few. When you ask what to expect from your high, you first should accept that it depends on what and how you use. But you also must ask what you are bringing to the experience in terms of emotional and physical states. The best experiences happen where the best of those two worlds merge.