For assistance on registering for your marijuana card, call 501-263-8852

How To Medicate Safely During The COVID-19 Crisis

Leslie kahn


The global pandemic has changed life as we know it, probably for some time to come. Every single industry in our global economy has been affected by COVID-19, including the cannabis industry. We must change our behavior to help “flatten the curve” of new cases. We are all in this together. In this article I will discuss how the pandemic has changed how medical patients should medicate in order to stay healthy. I will also share a simple cannabis-infused recipe for you to try.

According to the data analytics company, New Frontier Data, somewhere around 3.7 million Americans use medical cannabis to relieve the symptoms of dozens of medical conditions. 

This New Reality Is Not Easy

Since cannabis consumption has always been associated with sharing with friends and family in our communities, we need to accept our new reality. The recommendation is not to allow anyone in your home except the family members with whom you live. While sharing is no longer an option, technology has still made it possible to partake in groups by doing so virtually.

Social Gathering Platforms Now Available

  1. Zoom
  2. WhatsApp
  3. FaceTime
  4. Google Duo
  5. Google Hangouts
  6. Skype

These platforms are also extremely important for folks who live by themselves and especially for those who are housebound/quarantined and can no longer be visited by family, friends, neighbors and health care professionals. The social isolation for many people is causing a huge increase in anxiety, stress and depression.

Both smoking and vaping are being highly discouraged as delivery methods during the pandemic. There is a myriad of evidence suggesting that smoking does the following:

  • Suppresses the immune system function in the lungs
  • Triggers inflammation
  • Increases the incidence of influenza and respiratory infections
  • May cause more severe symptoms of COVID-19 to occur if you become infected with it

The likelihood is that vaping may have similar effects and would increase your risk for developing a serious infection should you contract COVID-19.

Erik Altieri, Executive Director of National Organization For Marijuana Reform Laws (NORML), wants to remind patients that smoking or vaping can be an irritant to the respiratory system, even if you aren’t sick. It adds unnecessary stress to everyone’s respiratory system. As we know, all medical patients have at least one underlying condition, and are medically fragile. 

Possible Shortages of Supply Chain

Due to the pandemic, many people are stockpiling products in the event of dispensary closings or because certain products that they depend on may not be available. Altieri is concerned that some medical cannabis patients will resort to using the black market. He is warning patients to use only lab-tested products from dispensaries which screen for toxins, molds and pesticides. Using untested products could have a deleterious affect on the immune system.

Please be aware that cannabis does not treat COVID-19 

Recommended Delivery Methods During The Pandemic

  1. Tinctures and Ingestible Oils
  2. Topicals
  3. Edibles
  4. Transdermal Patches
  5. Suppositories

Sterilize Your Paraphernalia

If you are going to smoke or vape, make sure you use high percentage isopropyl alcohol to frequently clean your paraphernalia which include:

  • Pipes
  • Bowls
  • Bongs
  • Dab Rigs

According to the The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), COVID-19 cannot be transmitted through food. However, if someone sick with the virus sneezes or coughs on any material from flower to paraphernalia,  it can be transmitted that way. Remember, social distancing of at least 6 feet is the best way to stay healthy. And wash your hands. A lot. I have lost count of the number of times I wash my hands in a day.

US Government Guidelines on Survival Rate of COVID-19 on Surfaces

The virus can survive on the following materials:

  • Up to 24 hours on cardboard
  • Up to 4 hours on copper surfaces
  • Up to 2-3 days on plastic and stainless steel

Make Your Own Edibles

You know you have been meaning to try making edibles at home. Well, now you have lots of time to try your hand at it. Here is a simple recipe to share via technology. You could host a virtual cannabis-infused meal with friends.

Microwave Marijuana Omelette in a Mug Recipe

I chose this recipe for a few reasons: 

  • It uses readily available ingredients. We had grown accustomed to having our grocery stores completely stocked all the time. At the moment, it is not uncommon to find empty shelves, so you may have to improvise.
  • This recipe only requires 5 minutes for Preparation Time and 1 minute of Cooking Time!

Equipment: Microwave Oven

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon cannabis-infused butter 
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons milk, half and half or cream
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped assorted omelette fillings of your choice
  • Hot sauce to taste (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon cannabis-infused oil
  • 1/4 cup grated cheese, cheddar, Swiss, provolone, mozzarella, etc.
  • 1/4 cup fresh bread cubes

Instructions

1. Place cannabis-infused butter in the bottom of a large coffee mug. Microwave for about 20 seconds, or until butter is melted.
2. Crack eggs into mug and add milk or cream, omelette fillings, hot sauce, salt and pepper and cannabis-infused oil. Use a fork to beat until all the ingredients are well combined and the eggs are scrambled.
3. Stir in cheese followed by bread cubes
4. Place in microwave and cook on high for one minute. Depending on your oven you may need another 10 to 30 seconds. Continue with small increments after one minute until done to your liking. Eggs will continue to cook after removing from microwave.

Recipe courtesy of Cheri Sicard

Stay safe, everybody!

Source:
rollingstone.com, How To Get High Safely During the Coronavirus Pandemic, Allie Volpe, March 19, 2020
cannabischeri.com