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New To Marijuana? You Need To Know About Weed’s ‘Sensitization Period’

If you’re just starting to experiment with marijuana, it’s important that you understand why you may not be getting high right off the bat.

The first time people smoke weed is usually a weird experience. While some might get paranoid, giggly, or instantly stoned, there’s a large group of people who smoke weed and feel… nothing. Despite what we know of marijuana tolerance (basically, the more you’re exposed to cannabis, the less it affects you), this phenomenon of not feeling anything the first few times you toke affects more people than you might imagine.

Experts have different theories as to why this happens. But one of the most prominent theories states that in order for people to experience weed properly, they must first learn how to do it correctly. People need to be exposed to the drug repeatedly until their body understands what it’s supposed to feel. Experts call this a “sensitization period,” when THC interacts with the cannabinoids in your system a few times in order to activate them and to produce that high feeling.

It may take a couple of sessions before you smoke and know that you are actually high versus feeling what you think you should be experiencing.

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Photo by Matheus Ferrero via Unsplash

First-timers could also have an issue with the smoking part of things, maybe inhaling cannabis but keeping the smoke in their mouths, which prevents the THC from making its way to your bloodstream.

RELATED: 5 Common Problems That Plague Marijuana Users And How To Fix Them

Another important factor is how you view cannabis. Over the years we’ve all taken an approach to weed that functions in binaries, between the states of being not high and being very high. With the vast amount of strains and cannabis consumption methods that are available, this is limiting to what cannabis can do and disregards a variety of cannabis compounds that aren’t exclusively related to THC. A lot of people prefer CBD options, which these don’t make you feel traditionally high. It’s okay for there to be a gray area when consuming weed, for you to not know if you’re high or not.

There’s no definitive answer when it comes to cannabis and its effect on our bodies, but it’s almost always challenging to successfully accomplish a goal the first time you take a stab at it. Your expectations, the people you’re with, and your biology will have a hand in your first couple of experiences with weed, which is why it’s important to be patient and open-minded.

 RELATED: What If You’re Not Feeling The Effects Of CBD?

When first using marijuana, start off slow, surrounded by people you trust. Put your phone on silent to minimize extra sources of stress. Once you start smoking, pause between puffs for 20 to 30 minutes and monitor your feelings closely, that way you can make sure you get high but not too high. Because that sucks, too. If one method fails, try another one; there’s never been a better time to choose from a wide variety of cannabis products.

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