There is no denying of cannabis’s role as a necessity in the lives of many US citizens. It is the reason why most states deemed cannabis essential during the COVID-19 pandemic. This unpredictable decision allowed convenient access to cannabis, especially to the patient community. It also resulted in more people preferring cannabis deliveries and using telemedicine to get recommendations and apply for an MMJ card in San Jose.
But along with changing the environment in the cannabis industry, COVID-19 has also changed the ways of cannabis consumption. The safety protocols for medical as well as recreational users have varied significantly. These new sets of precautions come with a tag of ‘high priority’ during the present crisis.
Here’s a detailed introduction to the safety measures associated with cannabis use and handling during COVID-19. It is imperative to follow all measures that apply to you to ensure your safety as well as that of others.
The first piece of advice for smokers right now is to quit smoking. It is the best time ever to contemplate this decision. Here’s why.
You are at a much higher risk of developing complications with COVID-19 if you smoke or even vape. The explanation of this lies in the composition of smoke and vapors of marijuana. Just like tobacco, marijuana smoke contains harmful chemicals that are potentially dangerous for the respiratory system. In fact, according to the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute in Washington, the process of smoking marijuana releases five times more carbon monoxide and three times more tar in the lungs. As a result, your lungs suffer from stress and inflammation of the air passages. This condition increases with an increase in the frequency and intensity of an individual’s smoking sessions. This is why from an occasional to a chain smoker, everyone falls under the high-risk category of COVID-19. Also, as most of the smokers may already know, dry cough often follows regular smoking. However, it is also one of the many symptoms of COVID-19. So most doctors will not be able to give a correct diagnosis if in case you are suspected of the coronavirus.
In addition to ruining your health, you also put those around you in danger. Secondhand smoke can also put people at risk of health issues related to COVID-19 and otherwise. So shift to edibles or another delivery method for some time to stay safe. But, if you cannot give up smoking yet, make sure that you do not smoke around elders, children or any other already sick individual. And also follow all preventive measures laid out by your government and health organizations.
Be careful with doses of edibles
If it’s your first time with edibles, remember to consult a professional about the correct dosing. People can have a hard and confusing first time with edibles. This is because they are processed differently in the body which results in its long onset time and high potency (different from smoking and other methods). So dosing can be slightly difficult in case of edibles.
However, if you stick to microdosing, it will be a much easier process.
But if you lose patience, you will experience the effects of overdosing like lack of perspective, improper reflexive actions, and fatigue. If at this time you are to be checked by a medical professional, it may get out of hand. You will not be able to focus and cooperate with the medical staff. Overdosing will also cause a lack of attention to safety protocols thus putting you at a higher risk of contraction.
So at a time like this, make sure that you are as alert as you can be and avoid overindulgence with marijuana.
Sharing is not an option
Whether you prefer edibles, topicals, joints, or bongs, sharing with anyone is not an option. The socializing aspect of marijuana has to be left alone for a while.
In the case of joints, pipes, and vape pens, sharing exposes you to direct transmission of COVID-19 through the mouth. As for edibles or sharing of stash, it can act as a contaminated object carrying the virus from the touch of an infected person.
So practice social distancing and let everyone get their own supplies to avoid sharing. Or better yet, stay indoors until the risk lowers significantly.
Be regular with sanitization
Contraction of COVID-19 through cross-contamination is very much possible. So it is always best to stay a step ahead and sanitize everything rather than assuming the safety of objects. From doorknobs and kitchen counters to all of your cannabis gear especially ones that you use regularly should be sanitized religiously.
Clean up all your grinders, water pipes, bongs, and other washable accessories with EPA registered cleaning agents only. Do not rely on home remedies like lemon and vinegar for cleaning as they are not effective against SARS-CoV-2.
Personal hygiene is important
Along with keeping all your frequently touched objects disinfected, make sure to do the same with your hands. Remember to clean your hands properly before and after you start consuming marijuana. Irrespective of your location, company of people, and delivery method, hand wash with soap and water is necessary.
If not soap, use a sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol. All these measures are to be followed diligently to stay safe and protected against COVID-19.
Follow protocols with deliveries too
With deliveries getting safer and more convenient, people are preferring doorstep deliveries to maintain minimal contact. Almost every dispensary and online stores are offering safe ways of deliveries. But even though this method of buying keeps you from going outside, you must ensure that all safety protocols are followed.
Make sure that the delivery executive is wearing all the necessary protective gear and at least six feet away from you. Prefer cashless transactions as money can transfer the virus from an infected to a healthy person. You could also ask the delivery person to leave the order outside your door. In such a case, remember to stay in constant contact with the location of the executive to avoid confusion.
Most importantly, disinfect your cannabis package. SARS-CoV-2 can live on surfaces for anywhere between a few minutes to hours. So be safe by disinfecting with cleaning agents suggested by the EPA.
Cannabis consumption during COVID-19 has to be cautious under all conditions. This is why people who rely on cannabis for daily activities should follow all safety measures mentioned in this blog. It is all about being safe and protected from COVID-19. All these methods may seem over the top but looking at the infectious nature of COVID-19, it is best to avoid any sort of exposure. So stay alert and keep your cannabis sessions as safe as possible.