What Are Edibles?

Learn More About These Cannabis Products That Are Increasing in Popularity

 

Edibles: What Are They?

Edibles are cannabis-based foods and beverages that include either THC, CBD, or both ingredients. These products are used for medicinal and recreational purposes. They come in many different forms including gummies, brownies, lozenges, gum, milkshakes, smoothies, chocolates, cookies, lollipops, and more. Individuals can either purchase these products or create them themselves by making substances like cannabis butter or oil. Considering the legalization of marijuana in some states, edibles are becoming more popular throughout the United States.

Why People Use Edibles

When used medicinally, edibles can relieve pain and control muscle spasms. Those who use edibles recreationally usually eat or drink these products to achieve a more intense high than traditional cannabis. Additionally, edibles are known to increase relaxation and induce sleep. Edibles don’t pose as high of a risk to the respiratory system as smoking marijuana does. They are also more accessible than other forms of marijuana and are very discreet in comparison.

Side Effects of Using Edibles

Edibles take longer than other forms of marijuana to kick in. Most edibles take about 30-60 minutes to kick in, but some may take longer. The effects of chewable edibles like cookies and brownies, for example, may not kick in until a few hours after consumption.

When someone eats or drinks an edible marijuana product, the active ingredients enter the bloodstream and travel to the liver. The ingredients are then metabolized in the bloodstream. From there, they enter the brain and begin to cause side effects. The effects of edibles last much longer than the effects of other marijuana forms and don’t subside until about 6-8 hours after consuming the edible.

Here are some common side effects of eating cannabis edibles:

  • Cognitive impairment
  • Extreme sedation
  • Motor impairment
  • Agitation & irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Heart stress
  • Nausea & vomiting
  • Delusions
  • Hallucinations
  • Psychosis

While these effects may be uncomfortable, they are not life threatening and typically do not require medical attention. However, edible use may come with some added risks.

Dangers and Risks of Edible Use

As with all other substances, individuals should always use edibles with caution. Some manufacturers are not reputable and may add more or less THC than stated on the label. Each edible also has varied marijuana content. Therefore, you never completely know how much cannabis you are using when you consume an edible.

Edibles may also come with a risk of overdose. This condition, otherwise known as “greening out,” may cause an individual to feel extreme effects for several days.

Using Edibles Responsibly

Even though edibles come with their own set of risks, they are usually not dangerous if used responsibly. Here are some tips regarding safe edible consumption:

  1. Always read the label to determine THC or CBD content before using
  2. Start with a low dose and exercise caution
  3. Talk to your doctor if you’re considering using edibles
  4. Do not combine edibles with alcohol or any other substances
  5. Do not consume more than one full edible product in a 24-hour span
  6. Keep edibles away from children and pets

The state of edibles is continuously changing as marijuana becomes legal in more states. To learn more about the effects of edibles and other cannabis products, contact our team of addiction specialists call 866-345-2147.

Sources

https://www.healthline.com/health/how-long-do-edibles-take-to-kick-in#onset-time

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/effects-of-edibles#health-benefits