You've probably heard the term "microdosing" associated with psychedelic drugs, but microdosing can be done with other substances as well—like cannabis.
Microdosing is just what it sounds like: ingesting a small dose of a drug throughout a certain time frame to produce milder, more manageable effects.
Recently, microdosing has been gaining traction in the cannabis community for users who still want to consume the drug without decreasing their productivity in their everyday lives.
For those new to the world of microdosing, let's get into the how, why, and when of microdosing with cannabis.
How Does One Start Microdosing?
Starting off is the hardest part, because you don't quite know yet where your tolerance levels lie.
A great rule to follow is always to start with the smallest dose possible and work your way up from there. Basically, go "low and slow."
Beginning doses for microdosing start at around 1/10 to 1/20 of a normal dose, which is about 1 to 2.5 milligrams of THC.
Determining the proper dosage for ingesting cannabis can be tricky, particularly with vaping since there isn't really a way to measure the THC released.
Additionally, each puff differs in potency, as the amount of time taken per puff isn't typically consistent, nor is there a chart or dosage calculator that can tell someone how much THC they ingested. For beginners, take one to two small puffs and wait ten minutes to see how you feel.
Remember, you're trying to ingest the smallest dose possible, so be cautious!
When microdosing with dispensary-bought edibles, stick with the same rule and only take around 1 to 2.5 milligrams of THC.
The packaging should show how much THC is in each serving, so use that as a guide. For instance, the listed serving size can tell you how many milligrams of THC are in each infused gummy or chocolate square.
However, with homemade edibles, THC levels may be harder to determine.
If you plan to make your own edibles to microdose with, follow an online recipe that tells you how much THC is in each serving size, and again, try to portion out about 1 to 2.5 milligrams of THC.
For smoking cannabis itself, first read the label to figure out how much THC is in each serving size.
If it doesn't tell you how much, find out from the package the THC percentage in the flower, then use this to calculate how many milligrams of THC is contained in each serving size. You can do this by first converting the weight to milligrams (1 gram is equal to 1,000 milligrams) and then multiplying that amount by the THC percentage.
So, if you have an eighth of bud (3.5 grams), you multiply that by 1,000 to get 3,500. Then, multiply that by the THC percentage to determine how many milligrams of THC it has in total.
For example, let's say you have an eighth of bud with a THC percentage of 15%. The entire eighth would have 525 milligrams of THC, or .525 grams.
Then, you'd divide 525 by 3.5 to determine how many milligrams of THC is in each gram—which in this case would be 150 milligrams—and divide that by 150 to get a singular milligram of THC for your initial microdose.
Alternatively, you can just use a dosage calculator to determine how many grams of your strain you should smoke to get 1 to 2.5 milligrams of THC.
Just remember, you should only feel a slight buzz! If you feel like you are unable to think or work properly, you've taken too much. If you don't feel the desired effects after more than 20 to 30 minutes, take another milligram of THC and see what happens.
It is all about trial and error at first. Try to journal your first few experiences with different doses to find patterns and discover which amount works best for you.
Why Do People Microdose?
There are plenty of reasons why people choose to microdose with other drugs, let alone cannabis. The effects can range from boosted creativity to anxiety relief, better sleep, and chronic pain relief.
Since microdosing with cannabis is a newer concept, it is still being studied to try to determine other possible effects. Some studies suggest that it can even help relieve symptoms of multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, and more.
The wide variety of positive effects one can experience from microdosing cannabis is precisely why it is starting to become more popular.
When Should One Microdose?
Microdosing can be done at any time. To determine when you should microdose, figure out which effect (or effects) you are looking for.
Some people take low doses of cannabis to have better quality sleep or to help them fall asleep quicker. One should microdose at least ten minutes to half an hour before going to bed for the best results in seeking these effects.
For other desired effects, such as boosted creativity, anxiety management, or chronic pain relief, one should microdose as needed, whether that be a few times throughout the day or just once.
Like mentioned previously, it's best to microdose around 10 to 30 minutes beforehand and to stick to 1 milligram for any additional doses as needed when the effects start wearing off.
What's stopping you from giving microdosing a try?