No one talked about cannabis dosage back in the day since it was in relatively short supply, and few dealers knew the THC content or genetics of what they sold. Now, with the legal cannabis business booming, access to cannabis products is at an all-time high, and consumers can enjoy the benefits of knowing what is in their weed. Understanding how to dose your cannabis correctly can help you to feel your best while getting the maximum effects and benefits from the weed you consume.
Common Problems with Cannabis Dosing
Even now, with commercial cannabis products marked with nutritional and chemical composition, few people know how much cannabis they should be using – or how to even figure that out in the first place. There are several common problems people face when they begin trying to research cannabis dosing. Knowing how many flowers you can smoke versus how many milligrams of edibles gets confusing. Since brands have little consistency between their products, keeping track of everything can be overwhelming.
Further, tolerance comes into play since some cannabis users find that they need far more than others to feel the effects. Differences in THC tolerance may be, in part, due to incorrect dosage, considering over-using cannabis can affect how an individual experiences THC in the future. Finding the proper dosage for you can help regulate tolerance and even save money by giving you more control over how much you consume.
What Is a Proper Cannabis Dose?
If you want to know your dose and start managing how much cannabis you use, you can follow some basic guidelines. In general, with all cannabis products, the key is starting low and going slow. Start with a low dose of whatever you are taking, whether it be smoking a single hit from a one-hitter or enjoying a low dose of 2 mg. edible. By starting low, you’ll be able to tell how those low doses affect you and can increase your dose accordingly to satisfy your body’s needs.
Edibles are one of the most popular ways to consume cannabis, but knowing how much to take can intimidate novice stoners. THC edibles are among the easiest types of cannabis products to dose since commercial edibles list their exact THC content right on the packaging. For example, THC Malt Balls from Punch Edibles are carefully formulated to have 10 mg per piece, allowing you to take the same dose every time reliably.
To find your dose, start by taking 1-2.5 mg edibles, then waiting a few hours to see how you feel. The waiting period is critical – most edible overdoses happen because people don’t wait and think they need more. Here is a standard THC edible dosing guide:
- 1 – 2.5 mg. edibles: Microdose, great for beginners
- 5 – 10 mg. edibles: Mild pain relief, mild relaxation
- 15 – 20 mg. edibles: Recreational dose, moderate pain relief, mild euphoria, mild impairment, good for sleep
- 25 – 50 mg. edibles: Strong euphoric effects, impaired coordination, strong pain relief, best for experienced users and individuals with issues absorbing cannabis edibles
- 60 – 100+ mg. edibles: Best for individuals with high tolerance, or individuals living with chronic pain or inflammation
The OG method of getting high, smoking flower remains the most popular method of consuming cannabis, partly due to how quickly smoking flower gives the body access to THC. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how many THC milligrams you consume per gram of dry buds is difficult since each strain (and each crop) varies slightly in content. A significant amount of the cannabinoid is burned off in the process of smoking or vaping. In general, follow these guidelines for dosing flower:
- 1/16 g. flower: Standard one-hitter capacity, great for beginners, low dose
- 1/4 g. flower: Standard bowl, good for moderate or occasional smokers, mild pain relief, mild relaxation
- 1/2 g. flower: Standard joint, good for experienced and regular smokers, mild euphoria, moderate pain relief
- 1 g. flower: Strong euphoric effects, impaired coordination, strong pain relief, best for experienced users
- 2+ g. flower: Best for individuals with a high tolerance, or individuals living with chronic pain or inflammation
Cannabis extracts are vaporized, delivering the strong effects of pure suspended THC as quickly as smoking the bud. Cannabis extracts come in different potencies, so be sure to check how strong yours is before you begin testing to find your dose. Most commercial extracts sell in .5g and 1g cartridges. The products will list their THC content so you can determine how many milligrams you’ll get with each puff.
Because extracts have a higher THC content than cannabis flower, fewer puffs will deliver more THC. An individual with low tolerance to THC may be able to take a single hit from a vape and enjoy the full effects of the product. Others with higher tolerance could smoke up to .5g a day, with some individuals experiencing chronic pain smoking up to 1g, though this is on the extreme high end.
Can You Overdose on Cannabis?
It’s impossible to ‘overdose’ on cannabis in the way we think of overdosing – meaning consuming too much cannabis alone is not enough to kill a human. While an overdose of cannabis won’t end in death, it can alter mood, cause adverse emotional reactions, trigger paranoia, cause heart palpitations, or even induce vomiting. For people with low THC tolerance, overdosing on cannabis can be stressful and unpleasant and should be avoided.
Someone experiencing a cannabis overdose may feel sweaty, cold, clammy, nauseous, anxious, paranoid, or confused. In these cases, the symptoms often disappear on their own as the high diminishes, but it can take several hours to come down from the experience’s peak. To avoid overdosing, experiment to find out how much cannabis your body enjoys. Start slow, then gradually increase how much you take until you feel like you have reached your desired effects.
Should you accidentally overdose on cannabis, be sure to find a comfortable environment in which to wait for the effects to wear off. If you are experiencing paranoia or anxiety, talk to a friend, family member, or loved one to help orientate yourself. Try enjoying a relaxing hobby like watching TV, doing some artwork, or playing a game. Remember to stay hydrated and to ask for help if your symptoms become worse.
While there are few risks involved in consuming cannabis, knowing how much to take is still essential if you want to get the most out of the experience. Everyone is different, and our unique tolerance levels reflect that. But, once you know your dose, having a great time with cannabis is easy. Whether you prefer bud, edibles, extracts, or anything else, you can find your perfect cannabis dose with a bit of experimentation and patience. Once you find that sweet spot, you’ll feel confident knowing that you have complete control of your cannabis experience.