The last decade has seen a revolution in the way cannabis is consumed. There is now a wide variety of different methods to suit each individual’s purpose, situation or preference.
The main area of growth, especially among younger users, has been in the use of vaporizers. Not only does vaping offer a discreet, convenient way to consume cannabis for recreational users, but it also has positive implications for medicinal use.
Cannabis users view vaping as a more positive experience than smoking. A 2016 survey found 61% of those who used vaporizers believed they were healthier, produced better results and were more satisfying. This confirmed a 2014 survey, ‘Experiences of marijuana-vaporizer users,’ which found four perceived benefits compared to smoking: health, better taste, no smoke smell, and more effect from the same amount of marijuana.
As the legal landscape surrounding medical and recreational cannabis is radically changed and the cannabis industry expands, it is likely that vaping will follow the lead of e-cigarettes in remaking consumers’ habits.
What are vape pens?
Although numerous types of vaporizer are available, it is vape pens that are most users are choosing. In 2018 it was estimated that pre-filled vape cartridges made up 58% of concentrate spending.
Also known as hash oil pens, vape pens consist of three basic components: a pen-shaped battery (usually a 510-threaded battery), a heating element (often called an atomizer) and a cylinder containing cannabis oils or distillates. To operate the vape pen, contact is made between the battery and heating element. When activated, the vape pen’s heating element heats the oil until the active compounds – cannabinoids and terpenes – become a vapor, which the pen releases as a fine mist. It is this fine mist the user ingests.
This combination of convenience and simplicity mean vape pens are only likely to continue their domination of the vapourizer market.
What are the different types of vape pen?
Two main types of vape pen are available: reusable and disposable.
Disposable pens avoid the trouble of recharging batteries and refilling cartridges. Instead, once they are done, the whole pen is simply tossed out. While disposable pens are undoubtedly the hassle-free option, they may not make sense for everyone.
For those looking to make a more cost-effective investment, reusable pens offer two options. Much like a normal pen, cartridge vape pens allow the user to attach and remove cartridges, without changing the battery or heating element. Refillable pens require no parts to be removed, instead the cylinder is simply topped-up with more cannabis oil.
Vape pens clearly offer a number of practical advantages over traditional methods of consuming cannabis.
Not only are they Vape pens are light and small enough to be carried anywhere enough. to take anywhere and don’t require a plethora of associated paraphernalia. Moreover, vape pens are also clean, creating no mess or waste. Not only does this make them convenient but they are also sleek and some are so discreet they could be mistaken for an actual pen.
Another big advantage is that vape pens , Moreover, vape pens s they are also clean, creating no mess or waste. They require no special skills or knowledge and can be operated by anyone regardless of dexterity. As well as ease of use,
By removing the issues of selecting the right herb or flower, ddistilling cannabis into oils clarifies the process of choosing the right medicine and simplifies the process of selecting the right blend of oil for each user. It is unsurprising that new users interested in consuming cannabis find vape pens the easiest option. are choosing which variety of cannabis is right.
Cannabis users concerned about the health risks of smoking can significantly reduce their risk of exposure to harmful byproducts by switching to vape pens.
Smoking cannabis releases a number of harmful byproducts. Tar includes carcinogens, such as benzopyrene and benzanthracene, while phenols and ammonia may also be ingested by the user. Smoking cannabis has, therefore, many of the health risks associated with smoking tobacco.
When cannabis is vaporized, no combustion is involved and no smoke is inhaled, and these risks are effectively reduced Moreover, vaporization occurs at temperatures lower than those required for combustion and is, therefore, “cool enough to avoid the smoke and toxins associated with combustion.”
Another recent study confirms that vaping offers a safer alternative, concluding that “users of joints, blunts, pipes, and water pipes might decrease respiratory symptoms by switching to a vaporizer.”
Efficient and flexible consumption
Many users claim they find vaping a more effective method of consuming cannabis. Indeed, laboratory studies evaluating the contents of smoke and vapour confirm vaporization enables a higher concentration of cannabis to be released.
Moreover, tThe distillation of cannabis oil for recreational purposes can remove terpenes and CBDs leaving no profile other than the essential THC. This level of purity results in a very clean high. On the other handAt the same time, as cannabis oils may be distilled to contain CBDs without THC, vape pens also offer clear potential benefits for medical marijuana users.
Laboratory studies evaluating the contents of smoke and vapour confirm vaporization enables a higher concentration of cannabis to be released. The boiling point of the different elements contained in the oil varies. During smoking, combustion occurs at around 450℉. Many of the active ingredients in cannabis are destroyed at these temperatures. In contrast, vaping can be performed at much lower temperatures (around 284℉). As a result, a much larger proportion of the active cannabinoids (THC, CBD, CBG, CBN,) can be ingested into the system. The upshot is that vaping offers a more purer, more selective and more efficient way of consuming cannabis.
Research found that the temperature of the vaporizer determined, the quantity of dangerous carcinogenic byproducts released. Between 200 degrees C and 230 degrees C (392 to 446 degrees Fahrenheit) was found to produce the most healthy results.
TFurthermore, the ability of vape pens to control temperature also has benefits for recreational users. The boiling point of the different elements contained in the oil varies. Therefore, aAs terpenes also boil at different temperatures, adjusting the vaporizer can make crucial alterations to taste.
From small doses to powerful concentrates
Vape pens enable users to fine-tune the content of the vapor they ingest this has a number of significant consequences.
Firstly, they are an attractive option for anyone wanting to consume cannabis in very small doses. Micro-dosing has become increasingly popular among users who would like the medicinal benefits of cannabis without exposing themselves to any of the downsides associated with the consumption of larger quantities.
Cannabis has been shown to be beneficial in treating a wide-range of conditions, from pain relief to depression, stress and anxiety. Research suggests treatment of these conditions is best achieved through very small doses.
For example, research into pain relief for cancer patients showed that those who were given the lowest dosage of nabiximols – a THC/CBD compound – experienced a more significant reduction in pain. In comparison, those patients who received higher doses experienced more pronounced pain.
From one extreme to the other, vape pens also open up the possibility of super-concentrated oils. The most potent of these, shatter, is created through an extra filtration stage. This not only removes the naturally occurring fats and waxes, but also the terpenes which give marijuana’s characteristic taste and scent. The result is an oil packed with active ingredients in crazy high amounts. In an increasingly mature marketplace, in which users are looking for unique, untried experiences, these high-concentrates have a particular attraction.
What is in your vape cartridge?
Disposable and refillable vape pens use a wide-range of different oils. The particular specification of oil used plays a significant role in determining the experience of vaping.
When cannabis is distilled into a liquid, the natural aroma and flavors associated with smoking weed can be lost. In ‘raw cartridges’, producers use this cannabis oil unadulterated. However, to create an appealing aroma, producers may re-introduce terpenes or the artificial flavors used in e-cigarettes. In order to enhance the production of the ‘vape cloud’ and the ‘mouthfeel’ of the vape, many producers also add cutting-agents to their solutions.
The most widely-used of these cutting-agents are polyethylene glycol (PEG), propylene glycol (PG) and vegetable glycerin (VG).
Doubts over cutting agents
PG and PEG are mainly used to blend with solvents and have commercial applications in the food and hygiene sector. VG is often used as a preservative in the food and pharmaceutical industries.
They are used as cutting-agents in e-cigarettes for their propensity to form an even solution. PG is generally thought to help carry flavor while mimicking the feel of taking a drag on a real cigarette. VG is used to increase vapor production and create large clouds of vapor. Most e-cigarettes use a combination of PG and VG.
The quantity of PG, PEG and VG in e-liquids is regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Union. However, as they are not prohibited, their presence in vape pens cannot be prevented. As frequency and type of use varies from one vape pen user to another, it is impossible to determine the precise exposure of an individual user to these potentially harmful chemicals. Indeed, a 2018 study conducted into the formation of formaldehyde by six different vapors found formaldehyde in all six, with the level of concentration varying widely.
There are two main concerns related to these chemicals. The first is that inhalation can have potentially negative effects on those who suffer from allergies of asthma. For example, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) found PG can cause mild ocular and upper airway irritation.
A further concern is that when cannabis solutions are heated to high temperatures cutting agents may there is a possibility that both PEG and PG will break down form harmful substances. Research in this area found that “in vaped e-cigarettes, more than 2% of the total solvent molecules have converted to formaldehyde-releasing agents, reaching concentrations higher than concentrations of nicotine.” into formaldehyde and acetaldehyde., which are carcinogens. This is particularly worrying because, as the saem research notes, how “formaldehyde-releasing agents behave in the respiratory tract is unknown, but formaldehyde is an International Agency for Research on Cancer group 1 carcinogen.”
All-natural cannabis plant oil
At present the issue of cutting-agents is not an area that is regulated and cannabis producers are occasionally known to be less than scrupulous about what they add to their solutions.
The answer is to look for a product that is additive-free. and Although most vape pens on the market are cut with polypropylene glycol (PG), polyethylene glycol (PEG), or vegetable glycerin (VG). There are some trusted brands that only use contains full spectrum cannabis plant oil with no additives included and to choose a trusted brand, Look for producers that ensure each batch of oil has the correct cannabinoid and terpene content to ensure an effective and flavorful experience. Lastly, choose a product tested by a Health Canada approved lab, to ensure you are consuming a safe product.