Determining the right dose when using a whole plant medicine like medical cannabis is important. Each plant grows uniquely, influenced by its own genetics and the environment to produce a slightly different result with each grow cycle. A person can even go to the same dispensary and purchase the same form of medical cannabis and still find the effect in his or her body to have changed somewhat. Every plant is unique so, unless using the same plant that made the previous recipe, the dosing must be determined anew.
Start with that. That’s the reason why. The “how-to” is actually straightforward and methodical. Start low and go slow when increasing. If you are using any type of medical cannabis that is ingested orally (infused foods or oils,) wait an hour to gauge effect before taking more. Tinctures–15 minutes.
Continue to increase the dose in small increments every hour until whatever result you are reaching for begins to show up. Side note: The best way to track results is to identify the specific result–pain relief in knees for example or relief from anxiety induced distress–and assess that specific result every hour before taking more. At the point where there is a noticeable improvement (not perfect, but improved,) Add up the total milligrams you took to get a result, divide it in half, and take that much again in four hours….
This brings us to the concept of micro dosing. In the ideal usage of medical cannabis for health and healing purposes, the goal is to get the health result without the altered experience of psychoactive THC. Sometimes (for me, for example,) the amount of cannabinoids I need in order to get the desired health result is high enough that–if I take one or two doses in a twenty-four hour period–I get whacky doodle high… don’t even ask me to focus on anything so complicated as watching TV :P) But, if I break it into four smaller doses, I get the benefits sans the goofy internal world. The key is to take smallest amount possible multiple times throughout the day to maintain the desired result. See how that is?
Let’s get specific. Suppose you have an oil infusion that says it has a total of 500mg of cannabinoids (CBD, CBDa, THC, THCa, CBG, CBGa…. remember whole plant medical cannabis works in a synergy) in a 1 oz bottle. That means that 30 drops of oil has 25mg of cannabinoids. I promise you that, even though you might end up wanting to take 25mg or more at a time, you really don’t want to start there. Start with 5mg… or 6 drops. People who are sensitive may want to start at 2.5mg… or 3 drops. Then, plug the number of milligrams it takes to begin feeling the result into the above equation, and adjust in small amounts–up or down–until you have four or five doses over a 24 hour period that provides the desired result free from psycho-activity.
Just as the medical cannabis plant is unique, so is every human using it, right? The amount needed will vary, depending upon what is happening within the body’s endocannabinoid system of each person. Some have more areas to tend where homeostasis is out of balance. Some feel the dose very strongly for the first few days until getting used to how the medicine interacts with the body. Some take as much as gram a day (people with cancer or a seizure disorder or MS, etc) Some get a great result on 5mg per day. It’s very unique. It’s very individual. Expect it to take a couple of weeks to a month before you are settled into the perfect micro dose for you.
Hope this helps, and let me know in the comments section if you have any specific questions about dosing medical cannabis, OK?