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Cannabis Inhalers: Are They Effective?

Saturday December 21, 2019

F ollowing on the heels of more widespread cannabis legalization has come a multitude of ways to consume the versatile plant, like edibles, concentrates, dry herb vaporizers, and many more. One such innovation is the advent of the cannabis inhaler. Similar to inhalers used for asthma, they deliver a discrete and precise dose of cannabis compounds CBD or THC. Cannabis inhalers offer a combustion-less consumption experience that could be perceived as safer than other methods, like vape pens (especially given the recent vape cartridge crisis) and smoking joints, which comes with many unpleasant side effects, like the inhalation of smoke – known to contain hazardous chemicals like carbon dioxide and particulates. And don’t forget, every time you light up you’re inhaling some of the chemicals from your lighter, like butane. But are cannabis inhalers effective?

Information on Inhaled Cannabis and Marijuana Inhaler Features

CBD and THC dosed precisely in inhalers is believed to help those with lung conditions like asthma or COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). Some studies have shown that THC delivered via inhaler can act as an effective bronchodilator that works as well as known asthma inhalers Albuterol or Ipratropium for one-to-two hours.

Bronchodilators are very important for the treatment of asthma, a serious and potentially dangerous lung disease that inflames and narrows lung airways, causing shortness of breath, tightness in the chest, wheezing, and difficulty breathing. Bronchodilators can relieve these symptoms by relaxing the muscle bands that tighten around the airways, and clear mucus from the lungs.

A New England Journal of Medicine study found as far back as 1973 that inhaled cannabis caused bronchodilation (though particulate matter from smoke can be a lung irritant), saying, “Marihuana smoke, unlike cigarette smoke, causes bronchodilation rather than broncho-constriction [narrowing of the air passages], and, unlike opiates, does not cause central respiratory depression [i.e. a decrease in breathing>.”

It is believed that cannabis activates the CB1 receptor, present in the peripheral and central nervous systems, and inhibits the contraction of airways.

It is also thought that the activation of the CB1 receptor reduces pain, hyperalgesia (heightened sensitivity to pain), rheumatoid arthritis, and chronic pain. Some medical patients prefer using cannabis inhalers because they are discrete, smokeless, virtually odorless, and won’t call any undue attention to your marijuana medicine of choice because cannabis inhalers closely resemble regular inhalers. One benefit of cannabis inhalers is that they are thought to have a higher bioavailability, which refers to the degree and rate that medicine is absorbed and its effects felt.

Cannabis Inhalers on the Market

Currently, two companies, Panaxia Pharmaceuticals, and Rafa Pharmaceuticals are working on cannabis inhaler clinical trials targeting cancer and asthma patients. They believe that cannabis inhalers will gain easier market acceptance because inhalers are already a familiar mode of administering medication. They are also betting that cannabis inhalers will help cannabis on the whole be more accepted by doctors, because inhalers can be precisely dosed.

Though cannabis inhalers have yet to make a big impact in cannabis markets, there are a couple of THC inhalers available at dispensaries in Colorado, including the AeroInhaler and the Santana Smooth (yes, that Santana, the inhaler is named after the song “Smooth,” the 1999 hit collaboration of Santana and Matchbox Twenty singer Rob Thomas). Designed to dose precise hits of THC and terpenes, these inhalers are not necessarily for those looking for a euphoric high due to their precise dose delivery. However, THC, despite its party-boy reputation, is thought to have many healing properties, like pain and inflammation reduction, appetite stimulation, and the reduction of nausea and vomiting.

Other inhalers on the market are the CBD-only Maven Hemp, the Vapen Clear, which offers THC, THC/CBD hybrids, as well as CBD hybrids, and the CBD Luxe. Right now, cannabis inhalers are not the cheapest option on the market, retailing from an average of $50-100 for 100 puffs. By contrast, even more expensive vape pens top out at $40-60.

So, is it worth it to pony up the extra cash for a cannabis inhaler? That depends. If you, as a consumer have been concerned by the illnesses and deaths related to vaping, finding a consumption method that feels safe is important. Or if you are a medical patient with asthma, COPD, or other lung illness, using an inhaler can provide quick and discrete access to medicine that won’t upset your lungs.

Have you tried cannabis or CBD inhalers? Share your experiences with other readers in the comments below.

Cannabis inhalers are a new way of marijuana consumption. Learn more about their effectiveness and information relating to the dosing of CBD and THC, as well as what's available on the market.

New Puffit 2 Vaporizer Looks Like Asthma Rescue Inhaler

Specifications

  • Released: November 2014
  • Manufactured By: Discreet Vape
  • Manufactured In: China
  • Designed In: Hong Kong
  • Designed For:
    • Dry Herb
    • Extract
    • Liquid (sold sep.)

See all specifications

Most vaporizers on the market today have somewhat similar designs. Vape pens are by far the dominant form of mobile vaporizing. Breaking from this trend, the Puffit 2 is an ultra-discreet device that looks almost exactly like an inhaler. The portable vaporizer retails for just $99.99, and is the latest development in the Puffit series.

Discretion of the Puffit 2 Portable Vaporizer

Patients often seek to medicate discreetly without attracting attention. Unfortunately, an unjust stigma still partially exists around cannabis consumption, even for medicinal purposes. Anyone should be free to relieve their pain whenever necessary. The Puffit 2 is inarguably one of the most discreet vaporizers ever created.

The first time that I saw this vaporizer, I thought it was an asthma inhaler. Ironically, medicinal cannabis has indeed proven effective against asthma and related symptoms. I did not suspect the device was a vaporizer until I was specifically told so.

It is unlikely anyone on the street would recognize what you were doing if you used it. Of course, if you visibly exhale a large amount of vapor, that’s definitely a hard giveaway. Odors are also indicators of consumption, so it’s important to be aware of these factors when in public.

One issue that prevents optimal discretion is the time it takes to heat up the Puffit 2. However, this problem can be circumvented by heating the vaporizer out of sight until it is ready to be used. As long as you inhale from it relatively quickly, there is little risk of attracting attention. If anything, someone would just think you were using an actual inhaler.

How to Use the Puffit 2 Vape

Using the Puffit 2 is an enjoyable experience. There is a large depressor-like button/container where the herbal material is deposited. The container is inserted into the Puffit 2, which is then activated by pressing down on the container with your hand.

I’ve always had trouble knowing when to inhale from a vapor pen. In my heart, I always wanted a vaporizer to just tell me what to do. The Puffit 2 satisfies this need. To use the device, you hold down the large metal button/container on top. An audible vibrator buzzes twice in quick succession, repeating until the device is heated and ready for action. Readiness is indicated by two longer buzzes.

Since the mouthpiece of the Puffit 2 is much larger than most vaporizers, the amount of vapor delivered is quite large. Despite the vapor’s high density, it was smooth and relaxing. I did not feel the need to inhale again after the first time.

Who is the Puffit 2 Good For?

I definitely liked using the Puffit 2, but would probably not travel with it. One disadvantage is its size, which renders it difficult to store in most pants pockets. However, it would easily fit in many jacket pockets or backpacks.

I would not recommend this vaporizer for social situations or long sessions. The loading chamber is fairly small, which contributes to the device’s suitability for short period use. Patients who need to take a moderate amount of cannabinoids at once will find this to be a great choice. Both dry blends and concentrates are usable in this vaporizer.

Advantages of the Puffit 2 Vaporizer

One of the primary advantages of the Puffit 2 over other models is its size. It is the smallest model yet, coming in at 3.7 inches high and 1.9 inches wide. The battery life is also longer than some predecessors.

Perhaps most importantly, the heat chamber has been redesigned to utilize an advanced thermal alloy that results in enhanced vapor production. Ultimately, patients want products that can deliver satisfactory amounts of vapor, and the Puffit 2 meets that requirement.

Most vaporizers on the market today have somewhat similar designs. Vape pens are by far the dominant form of mobile vaporizing. Breaking from this trend, the Puffit …