What is Cannabis Oil?
Something of an enigma, cannabis oil is a term that is tossed around loosely, and often misunderstood. Likely because an understanding of cannabis oil is contingent on both the process and product, confusion seems to follow the conversation. For this reason, it’s important that consumers and patients gain a basic knowledge of both before deciding if medicating with oils is an appropriate treatment option.
Like every other cannabis concentrate, oil is made using one of several extraction methods. Cannabis oil can be extracted using a number of solvents. The most popular means of extracting cannabinoids for oil is supercritical fluid extraction, which produces supercritical CO2 oil. Butane hash oil (BHO) is made using butane, while Rick Simpson oil is produced with isopropyl as its choice solvent.1
Cannabis oil is both diverse and versatile. While the end product of BHO is consumed by inhalation, using a dab and rig, Rick Simpson oil is consumed orally, or applied to the skin. On the other side of the spectrum, supercritical oil is usually placed in a vaporizer or pre-loaded cartridge, and consumed by inhalation. The means of employing cannabis oil are even more diverse than the variety of oils available.
From the standpoint of medicating with cannabis, oils present patients with a plethora of options. In addition to being one of the most efficient means of medicating, cannabis oil can also be one of the most effective. The onset of consuming oil orally is slower, but due to its prolonged impact, oil is often prescribed to help treat chronic conditions.2
Dabs, on the other hand, are most often being used by patients to treat acute symptoms. Because these are consumed, like whole flowers, by inhalation, effects can be felt immediately. Also, BHO is typically very high in THC, and sometimes CBD, and can thus be used to treat more serious conditions. Supercritical oil is often used to microdose by inhalation throughout the day, and offers patients a sleek and discreet way to medicate.
One thing that can’t be debated is the increasing demand for cannabis oil. In jurisdictions where adult-use cannabis is legal for recreational purposes, so too is oil becoming ubiquitous. In the context of treatment, oil continues to offer up one of the most robust line of products available to cannabis patients.
- What is cannabis oil and how does it work? https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/jun/19/what-is-cannabis-oil-and-how-does-it-work
- Understanding the different types of cannabis oil and how they’re made. http://thechillbud.com/understanding-the-different-types-of-cannabis-oil-and-how-theyre-made/