When it comes to weed, what is the safest way to consume it? Edibles vs. smoking marijuana is a debate that often arises. Teenagers using marijuana is a growing concern, especially since marijuana use can lead to addiction. If your teenage son is struggling with marijuana abuse, call Foothills at Red Oak Recovery at 866.300.5275 to learn more about our teen marijuana abuse treatment services to help your child recover.
Understanding Marijuana Edibles
Marijuana edibles are marijuana products that are eaten instead of smoked or vaporized. They come in many different shapes and forms, including:
- Baked goods, such as brownies or cookies
- Gummies and chews
- Hard candies, such as lollipops or mints
- Savory foods such as pretzels, peanut butter, or biscuits
- Marijuana-infused cooking oils
Each of these food products is infused with THC, the psychoactive ingredient found in marijuana. They come in a variety of dosages, from very small amounts of THC to exceptionally high concentrations.
What’s Safer? Marijuana Edibles vs. Smoking Marijuana
Those who use edibles vs. smoking marijuana might experience different physical side effects, psychological effects, or problematic use patterns.
Physical Side Effects
In terms of physical side effects, marijuana edibles may indeed be safer than smoking marijuana. When a person smokes marijuana, they inhale combusted material, which can cause substantial lung irritation.
Smoke from marijuana has many of the same negative effects as tobacco smoke. It contains several carcinogens, toxins, and irritants, which can lead to blood vessel damage and scarring of the lungs.
In contrast, marijuana edibles have a minimal set of physical side effects, except those produced by THC. The most commonly reported side effect is a sensation of nausea or stomach discomfort, which occurs in people who smoke marijuana.
Comparing the risk of adverse psychological effects is much less clear. The most significant danger for any marijuana use is the risk of the user developing an addiction, which can occur with both edibles and smoked marijuana.
Two factors play key roles in whether someone will develop an addiction: how much of the drug is taken and how long it takes to feel the effects of the drug.
The THC content in marijuana edibles can be much higher than in smoked marijuana. Furthermore, the effects might not kick in for up to two hours, leading many teenagers to take more marijuana edibles and receive a much higher dose than expected. High doses are a significant risk factor for developing an addiction.
In contrast, smoking marijuana kicks in almost instantly, which is another risk factor for substance use disorders. Yet people who smoke marijuana often have better control of their dose since they feel the effects straight away.
Neither type of marijuana use is without risks.
How Marijuana Addiction Treatment Can Help
Whether a teenager smokes marijuana or chooses to eat edibles, they are at high risk of addiction. The likelihood of a person developing a substance use disorder is much higher when they use marijuana during adolescence, but teen weed abuse services can help them stop addiction in its tracks.
Using several evidence-based therapies and treatments, a team of professional addiction experts can teach teenagers to resist substance use, prevent relapse, and learn to live stronger and healthier lives in recovery.
Teen Weed Abuse Services with Foothills at Red Oak Recovery
If your teenage boy is struggling with marijuana abuse, reach out to the team at Foothills at Red Oak Recovery by calling 866.300.5275 or using our online form. Our marijuana addiction treatment program is designed specifically for adolescents and can provide the targeted mental health services they need to recover.
Breaking free from addiction is hard work, but it is possible—and teenage boys can thrive in their new lives in recovery.