All about marijuana and harm reduction

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You have probably heard about harm reduction and marijuana. But do you really know what that term means and how to apply it to consumption? Regulated by a federal ordinance in 2005, harm reduction is a set of practices and public policies that aims to minimize the harmful effects caused by drug use. By definition, it focuses on preventing damage, rather than preventing drug use, since it deals with people who continue to use substances.

Harm Reduction and Marijuana

In the case of Cannabis, the concerns are concentrated on the frequency and, mainly, on the form of use. Although considered by many authors as a non-addictive substance, as Edward MacRae quotes in a text presented to Unifesp, in 2004, the herb can cause the so-called “amotivational syndrome”, characterized by apathy, seclusion and lack of motivation.

It is also known that cannabis should be avoided by certain groups. Individuals prone to mental illnesses such as schizophrenia may have symptoms exacerbated by the use of the herb. Pregnant women should also be aware: although the topic is still controversial, there is evidence that the use of the herb during pregnancy can affect the baby.

Reduction of physical, mental and social damage

As it is a prohibited substance, it is also necessary to pay attention to the reduction of social damage caused by the use of marijuana. Regulating oneself socially and having no problems with the police is essential to, consequently, maintaining good mental and physical health.

Therefore, always prefer to smoke marijuana at home and, if you go out, carry a small amount. Avoiding driving right after use is also essential. If you are a grower, have few plants at home, out of sight of neighbors, and keep the secret about your cultivation. The secret to success is the secret.

User, know your rights!

And, of course: know what your rights are and have the speech at the tip of the tongue. Since 2006, when Law 11,343 changed, marijuana users can no longer be arrested. As much as the law is not clear, it is up to you to know that you cannot be arrested as a user. Below, we give you some important harm reduction tips regarding how to use marijuana. Connect!

Plant your own pot

It is nothing new for anyone that the marijuana sold on the illegal market may be mixed with other substances harmful to health. Tree bark, pieces of insects and ammonia are among the best known. The harvests are made before the hour and the storage inappropriately, which contributes to the appearance of fungi. So, it is best to always plant your own herb. Not to mention that, by growing your marijuana, you can choose the genetics that best suits you, measuring THC and CBD levels, in addition to aroma and flavor.

If you cannot plant, wash the press

An alternative for those who need to use the press is to wash the smoke. It may sound silly, but the technique is a good help to minimize any health risks. Not that it solves the problem, but it helps to “get the bulk” of the dirt. It consists of washing the smoke with warm water (at about 80ºC), letting it strain through a sieve and waiting to dry completely, patiently, in a dry place. The color and disgusting aspect of the water show the importance of the process. There is a myth that marijuana loses potency, which is great nonsense, since cannabinoids are fat-soluble.

Prefer to use vaporizers for harm reduction

In the form of joints, combustion of the herb releases several toxic substances that can cause or worsen respiratory symptoms. In the act, the smoker inhales the hot smoke, which mixes the grass and the combustion material (the silk or cellulose used to wrap). “What is bad is the paper”, as Maria Alice Vergueiro would say, in “Tapa na Pantera”. Therefore, the healthiest way to consume marijuana is to use vaporizers. These magic gadgets heat the herb only at a temperature where cannabinoids and terpenes are vaporized. Thus, there is neither combustion nor smoke, and the wave is the same. After vapes, accessories that filter smoke in the water, such as bongs and water pipes, are interesting options.

Consume edibles, oils and extracts

Another healthy way to consume marijuana is by eating foods prepared with the herb, as well as oils, oils and extracts. The modality avoids the combustion of the herb and also allows a much greater absorption of its properties. When we ingest Cannabis, the body’s metabolism converts 100% of THC to 11-hydrocy-THC, which is what causes the wave. When smoked, the percentage drops to 20%. In other words, attention to the dosage : when cannabis is consumed in brigadeiros, cakes, sweets and other “laricas”, the effects can take between 30 and 60 minutes to manifest. For this reason, a lot of people usually think they “didn’t hit” and eat more. Take it easy!

Use good silks and store your herb right

Improvisations with napkins or bread paper are things from decades past. If you are going to consume marijuana in the form of cigarettes, it is important to wrap it in quality papers. Use fine silk, rice paper or hemp, preferably chlorine-free (as brown / unbleached). Raw and Elements silks do not leave much to be desired. Another important tip is to pack your herb well. There is no point in cultivating (or even washing the press) and then ending up letting the grass mold because it does not know how to store it. Go by the foolproof way: glass jar, spacious and with good sealing, that does not let light through.

Make long cigarette holders or use glass cigarette holders

In addition to an essential item to create a good joint, the cigarette holders ensure more hygiene to use, especially shared, and help create distance between the focus of combustion and the smoker’s mouth. Therefore, always prefer to make long cigarette holders. This way, you are moving the heat from the mouth of the mouth and decreasing possible damage to the throat, while preventing the tar resin from contacting your lips. A good alternative is to purchase glass cigarette holders, the material of which is even more hygienic and long-lasting.

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