27 Sep First Time Smoking? What to Expect
Now that cannabis is legal in Canada, many people are taking a second look at weed. You can’t turn down a joint because you’re afraid of the law anymore. As long as you don’t drive or sell your pot to the person next to you, having small amounts of marijuana is perfectly legal.
So you want to smoke weed for the first time. Awesome! There’s a few things you need to know first. Whether you want to puff-puff-pass with friends or just enjoy a quiet evening at home, there are “right ways” and “wrong ways” to smoke weed.
Get Ready to Roll
First, you’ll need to know what you’re smoking and how you’re going to smoke it. When you order some bud from Speed Greens or buy bud from a local dispensary, it’s not ready to smoke just yet. You’ll need to grind it before you smoke it. There are DIY ways to grind up weed and roll a joint, but buying a grinder is your best bet.
Just want to give marijuana a one-time go? Buy a pre-rolled joint. No grinding, no rolling, no prep. Take your joint out of the package and spark up!
How to Inhale Properly
If you’ve smoked cigars or cigarettes before, you may know that there is an etiquette to smoking. Cigar users often caution against bringing the smoke into your lungs. So what’s the deal with pot?
When you take a puff of marijuana, you should inhale, but not immediately. Let the smoke linger in the mouth and taste the terpene flavour. Legalized cannabis has given Canadians access to more high-quality strains that have unique and lovely flavours. Treat your Ghost Train Haze or your Northern Lights like a Chardonnay or a Malbec. Indulge in the flavour first.
But you can (and should) inhale the cannabis into your lungs.
Hold it there for a quick count of two and then exhale out of the mouth.
How Will You Know You’re High?
Many newbie stoners hear this before they inhale: “you might not get high the first time.” This is actually quite common, but no one’s exactly sure why.
For some people, they just didn’t inhale properly into the lungs and the cannabis never entered their bloodstream. For others, they might have been high and didn’t realize it. Some cannabis enthusiasts believe that your brain has to get used to smoking weed and increase cannabinoid receptors before you start to get the giggles.
Scientists haven’t exactly prioritized this phenomenon, but know that you might not get high the first time. Or maybe you will, but it won’t live up to expectations.
What Does Getting High Feel Like?
For many people, you know you’re high when you know you’re high. There’s not one behaviour or thought that necessarily means that you’re high. You just know.
You might think something really silly or catch yourself being really focused on your shoelaces. Your buddy’s joke may be way funnier to you than the rest of the group. Or you might just look at the bottom of a family-sized bag of chips and realize that it’s been empty for the past five minutes that you’ve been digging around for a snack. Your body might feel like it’s 500 pounds or that every step you take feels like you’re melting into the ground. It’s different for everyone.
Some people like being high, others don’t. You might even get too high. (We’ll talk about what that feels like in a second.) If this doesn’t sound fun, you don’t have to get high at all.
Cannabis Without THC
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the active ingredient in cannabis that gets you high. Cannabis is considered marijuana when it has .3% THC present in the plant. Back in the day, most marijuana strains contained less than 10% THC. Now, strains may reach up to 20-25% THC.
THC has non-intoxicating benefits for the body and mind – the fact that it gets you high is just a nice bonus. But you don’t have to smoke cannabis that contains THC. High CBD strains of weed, or strains that only contain CBD, can help you feel better without feeling high.
CBD is another active ingredient in cannabis. It’s present in both hemp and marijuana. It’s also a key ingredient in the strains of weed that doctors prescribe their patients. Since CBD can offer pain relief, anxiety relief, and a long list of other benefits, it’s prescribed from everyone to people with PTSD to people with MS. Strains that only contain CBD also won’t get you high – meaning you can drive home after smoking.
Talk to a doctor about getting high-CBD strains of cannabis for your symptoms and how they might affect your body and mind.
Give it a Few Minutes
Really want to get high? Be patient. The effects of marijuana may not hit you instantly. It may take a few minutes for the marijuana to hit the lungs, move through the bloodstream, and then eventually reach the brain. During this time, you might feel impatient. When are you going to start giggling? When will you get the munchies?
Don’t eat up the time by smoking more weed. A few puffs should be able to produce an effect, however small. You can always smoke more weed, but you can’t go back once you’ve reached your limit.
Avoid the “bad” side effects of smoking weed by taking it easy.
What It Feels Like to Be “Too High”
If you’re just smoking one joint, you shouldn’t experience any of these symptoms. But if you’re hanging out with friends and they keep passing you a blunt or a bong, you might get too high. Trust us – you don’t want to get too high.
Things might start to feel like they’re totally out of your control. You might feel really heavy, or like your body is shaking. Moving, eating, or doing any sort of task might feel impossible. Some people hallucinate, but that’s pretty rare. Also, you might cough like crazy and get dry eyes or dry mouth.
This is a bummer, but it doesn’t last long. Just breathe through it, grab some water, and put on some music. Take a little nap or separate yourself from the party. After a few hours, it’ll go away.
Don’t Worry – You’ll Be Fine
Prevent this experience by taking it easy! A four-foot bong rip is not a great way to get high for the first time. Avoid gravity bongs or eating edibles while you smoke. You’ll have a great experience smoking if you just be patient, listen to your body, and enjoy the ride.