What Medical Marijuana Products are Available in Florida?

So, you have gone to your Florida Medical Marijuana Doctor and have been approved for a Florida Medical Marijuana Card.  Now what? Following approval from the Florida Department of Health, Office of Medical Marijuana Use, it’s time to go to a dispensary!

Let’s take a look at some of the products Florida dispensaries sell:

 

Florida dispensaries currently sell oral solutions such as oral syringes, capsules, and sublingual (under the tongue) tinctures. Also available are vape pens with cartridges, table top vaporizers, topicals, suppositories, and most recently, smokable whole flower. [1] Edibles are not yet available, but Trulieve is eager to begin selling edibles as soon as the Department of Health finalizes regulations. [2]

 

 

  • Oral syringes can be added to a liquid such as water or tea.  The droppers allow for easy titration and flexibility, which can aid in finding a consistent dose.  Capsules also allow for consistent dosage and offer discrete usage.  Sublingual products or tinctures allow for the product to be absorbed into the bloodstream from the oral cavity, thereby bypassing the liver first pass. [3]
  • Vape pens with cartridges. With a higher THC tolerance, you may use a concentrate pen, which heats it up and dispenses vapor.

 

    • Vape oils, when inhaled, pass directly into the bloodstream.

 

  • Vaporizer machines allow a person to inhale medical marijuana without the concern of the carcinogens associated with smoking.
  • Topicals are creams applied to the skin for relieving pain. Arthritis is a typical application.  Transdermal patches allow for longer term relief.  Depending on dosage, possibly 8-12 hours.   
  • Suppositories are placed rectally. The accuracy of the dosage will be determined by it being absorbed completely.

 

  • NEW: Smokable whole flower. [3]

New products:

  1. The newest medical cannabis product available to Florida MMJ patients is smokable flower. Just recently, Governor DeSantis signed Senate Bill 182 into law.  Medical marijuana has now been approved for full flower smokable products.

 

There are a few restraints:  

    • Patients will need to get a NEW recommendation from a doctor that smoking is the best option for them.  

 

  • Patients are limited in the amount of ounces per 35 days, as well as how much on hand they can have at any one time.

 

  • Flower approved for smoking is currently sold in 3.5 grams. Each package is individually labeled to show the amount of active ingredient which ranges based on flower potency. In order to comply with Florida law, whole flower must be carried and stored in its original opaque packaging at all times. [4]   

 

Please note that every patient is different.  Smoking may or may not be the best choice for you.  Your Florida MMJ Doctor will evaluate this.  If you have been seen in the last 7 months, for a small $25 fee, you are eligible to be seen by a physician to determine if you qualify for a smoking recommendation. Click on: https://docmj.com/2019/03/25/getting-full-flower-smokable-marijuana-in-florida/

  1.  Coming soon:  Edibles are permitted under state law Amendment 2.  Trulieve has an exclusive deal with Binske edibles to sell edibles. However, the Florida’s Office of Medical Marijuana Use must still approve Binske’s products. It is now a waiting game with the Florida Office of Medical Marijuana Use. [2]

 

Why are there so many different medical marijuana products?  

In 2014, Florida passed its “Compassionate Medical Cannabis act of 2014.”  For the first time in about 80 years, Floridians with certain diagnoses could access medical marijuana. [5] Then, in the elections of November, 2016, a constitutional amendment was passed in Florida to permit the use of medical marijuana by patients suffering from a list of serious medical conditions. [6] Now, a number of patients with chronic diseases could obtain help.  There are currently 197,000+ medical marijuana patients in Florida.

With these thousands of patients, there are a number of diseases involved.  Many times, a person will have several chronic diseases. There are also individual differences, as to how a person responds when working with the endocannabinoid system. There is not one dosage that will work for all. Also, the various routes of intake and different products are paramount in meeting the needs of each individual patient.

 

 

  • First of all, there are differences in the actual marijuana product. There are indica Cannabis strains, sativa Cannabis strains, as well as hybrid Cannabis strains.   Each of these strains can have different effects. Indica strains tend to have relaxing and sedative effect on patients.  Indica is said to help alleviate symptoms such as chronic pain, insomnia, muscle spasms and tremors. [3]
  • The hybrid strain combines both indica and sativa.  This alleviates some of the unwanted effects of either.  For instance, adding sativa to an indica strain may help increase mental clarity of the patient while potentially reducing the sedative effects that indica strains may carry with them. [3]

 

    • The sativa strains are said to help with things like appetite stimulation, depression, migraines, chronic pain and nausea. [3]

 

  • Then, there are different strains having different compounds called cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids.  These compounds can change the effects within your body.  An example is CBN (cannabinol). CBN is found in plants that have THC. The THC in the plant has been exposed to oxygen and has oxidized. Although sedation is an effect of CBN, research has indicated that it may also help with bone cell growth, bacterial infections, inflammation, and convulsions. [3]  

 

    • Dispensaries are making products from these different strains, that are specific to assisting certain symptoms and conditions, such as pain, nausea, depression, appetite, insomnia.

 

  • There are different percentages and ratios of THC and CBD.  The large range of percentages and ratios gives a number of options that are needed for different circumstances.      

 

  • There are different forms of intake, such as oral, topical,  and inhalation. Inhalation takes effect quickly, but does not last as long as oral.   Keep in mind that taking oral medical marijuana products with a full stomach could slow down its speed of effectiveness.  This could occur also with edible cannabis products.  Allow 15-90 minutes for most oral cannabis products to take effect.  Don’t ever take more of the product, thinking that it was not enough! You could experience negative effects. The duration of effect for edible cannabis products can last for up to 5+ hours. [7]       

 

No matter which Medical Marijuana Qualifying Condition you have, the Medical Marijuana Doctors at DocMJ can help you with all of your medical marijuana needs.

References:

  1.    https://www.sun-sentinel.com/business/fl-bz-south-florida-pot-products-20181012-story.html
  2.    https://www.orlandoweekly.com/Blogs/archives/2019/01/03/floridas-largest-medical-cannabis-provider-will-soon-carry-edibles
  3.    https://www.libertyhealthsciences.com/
  4.    https://www.trulieve.com/shop/truflower-indica-9lb-hammer
  5.    http://laws.flrules.org/node/6686     
  6.    https://fldispensaries.com/florida/
  7.    http://www.knoxmedical.com/titration-oral-vs-inhalation/

 

 

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