Ask a Cannabis Nurse

What are tinctures and how do they work?

Ask a Cannabis Nurse - PigfishDimeMag.comTinctures are a method of delivery of cannabis medicine that employs the oral transmucosal pathway to enable drug uptake directly into the blood, thereby eliminating first-pass liver metabolism.

By-passing the first-pass liver metabolism allows the product to enter the bloodstream more quickly, and for the patient to experience relief of symptoms almost as quickly as vaping or smoking.

Tinctures are generally made using high-proof alcohol, such as 190-proof Everclear or 100-proof or higher vodka. Others are created using oils. They are stored in amber or blue glass bottles and dispensed using a glass dropper.

Tinctures are portable and discreet, as well as easy and convenient, making them an ideal delivery system. You can purchase tinctures at a dispensary, or you can make them yourself from your favorite cannabis strain.

Tinctures allow the patient to administer reliable doses and create controllable effects. Because each cannabis variety is different and because even the same variety will have a slightly different cannabinoid profile from crop to crop, each time you make or purchase a new batch of a medical cannabis tincture, you will need to start at small doses to see how it affects you.

Note that it is always recommended to start at the smallest dose of tincture, slowly working up to an effective dose.

It is recommended that patients begin with a single drop sublingually, wait 30 minutes to an hour to see the effects, and add one drop at a time until the desired effects are achieved.

If you want to create your own tinctures, you can do so by using raw cannabis or decarboxylated* (decarbed) cannabis. Tinctures made with raw cannabis are more uplifting, not intoxicating, and are good for daytime use.

Those made with decarbed cannabis are relaxing and are good for nighttime use as they are indeed intoxicating.

Click to get both of our favorite Tincture Recipes!

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Ask Cannabis Nurse Cathleen -

Cathleen S. Graham is the CEO/Founder of Cannabis Nurse. She is an experienced Certified Hospice and Palliative Care Registered Nurse with more than twenty five years’ experience. Cathleen is also an internationally-respected speaker and the first nurse to receive the Americans for Safe Access (ASA) Medical Professional of the Year award for 2019. In addition, she partners with Karen in Leaf Medic. Be sure to check out for your scientific cannabis education.

Ask Cannabis Nurse Karen -

Karen Korn, PhD is a highly experienced, well-seasoned college educator who is also a medical cannabis patient. Her state licensed school, Leaf Medic, provides online education for all levels and training for the steadily growing cannabis industry in Michigan and Ohio. For training in the cannabis industry go to and learn from the incredible staff at Leaf Medic.

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