Hot new trend: Vaping and dabbing cannabis

As the world of medical and recreational marijuana continues to gain acceptance, both politically and socially, the methods of consuming the previously controversial cannabis are also changing.  Joints, bongs, and pipes are still quite popular, but many Millennials are turning to vaping and dabbing as an alternative form of consumption.  In an age where weed enthusiasts are also far more health conscious than in generations past, the marijuana community is become increasingly more aware of the vast health benefits of vaping and dabbing.

Both methods have proven to filter out large percentages of the unwanted carcinogenic toxins and chemicals that are normally ingested through smoked weed.  But, and this is a huge but, the “high” achieved from the cannabis remains either unchanged or, in a great many cases, greatly improved.  It’s a cleaner, purer high that hits you faster and harder.

Vaping and dabbing are even becoming popular among medical marijuana users who don’t usually engage in the activity recreationally.  Instead of pills or edibles, many of these more conservative users are opting for vaping and dabbing, as well.  Both methods get the much-desired THC into the bloodstream much faster than conventional smoking, and the consumer gets to avoid the nasty cough and other negative side effects, too.

Everyone knows what vaping is, but what in the heck is dabbing?

While vaping uses convection heating systems to indirectly vaporize the cannabis, dabbing uses conductive heating to temperatures up to 1000 degrees.  The process of dabbing can appear rather strange to the inexperienced, but much like vaping, “smoking dabs” is nothing new.  It’s been around for at least the last ten years.  However, the recent surge in more advanced extraction methods has led to a marketplace that is overflowing with cannabis concentrates, simultaneously boosting the popularity of dabbing.

Dabs are generally made by extracting the THC and other cannabinoids from the marijuana plant, typically using some sort of solvent such as carbon dioxide or butane during the conductive heating process.  The result is a highly concentrated dose of sticky oil commonly referred to as wax, budder, shatter, or butane hash oil (BTO).

But dabbing is not for everyone.  In fact, because of the excessive temperatures involved, dabbing can be extremely dangerous.  A rough comparison might be to say: Dabbing is to marijuana smoking as sub-ohming is to vaping. Both dabbing and sub ohm vaping should be conducted with a great deal of care and patience.  For example, it is not uncommon for dabbers to use blow torches to heat their weed.  And like it or not, lighting anything with a blow torch is always a scary notion.

Article Credit: Matt Rowland

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