Who Should Not Use Medical Cannabis?
Cannabis should not be used if you:
- Are under the age of 25
- Are allergic to any cannabinoid or to smoke
- Have serious liver, kidney, heart or lung disease
- Have a personal or family history of serious mental disorders such as schizophrenia, psychosis, depression, or bipolar disorder
- Are pregnant, are planning to get pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- Have a history of alcohol or drug abuse or substance dependence
Talk to your pharmacist and health care practitioner if you have any of these conditions. There may
be other conditions where this product should not be used, but which are unknown due to limited
scientific information. Cannabis may interact with several drugs. Make sure to tell your pharmacist
and health care practitioner which prescription drugs, non-prescription drugs or herbal products
you are currently taking.
What Are Potential Side Effects Of Medical Cannabis?
medical cannabis used and the concentration of cannabinoids in the cannabis product; the frequency of
cannabis use; the patient’s age; the medical conditions being treated; previous experience with cannabis or
cannabinoids; and the use of other prescription or non-prescription drugs. The information on side effects
associated with medical use of cannabis is limited. Some of known side effects of use of cannabis are
intoxication-like reactions including: dizziness, dry mouth, mood-alterations, insomnia, increased heartbeat
and fatigue. This is not a complete list of side effects. For more information, please read Health Canada
“Consumer Information - Cannabis (Marihuana, marijuana)” available online.
How Do I Take Medical Cannabis?
Cannabis can be smoked, vaporized, taken
orally, sublingually, topically or rectally. Different
routes of administration will result in different
pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic
properties of the drug.
The two most common forms of administering
medical cannabis are ingestion of cannabis oil
and vapourization of dried cannabis.
Vapourizing medical cannabis can provide:
- Rapid onset of action occurs at 1-5 minutes and lasts generally 2-4 hours (short-term relief)
- Smaller amounts of toxic by-products vs. smoking
- Greater bioavailability vs. ingesting
Oral ingestion of medical cannabis can provide:
- Slower onset and longer duration of action from 30 minutes to 3 hours and can last generally 8+ hours
- Greater precision and consistency of dosing
- Easy to administer in mouth droplet or capsule