The three most common methods of ingesting marijuana are through smoking, eating, and vaporizing, with smoking by far the most preferred. Unfortunately, smoking also carries with it the greatest health risks overall. Fortunately, vaporizing is just as effective as smoking, yet comes with a fraction of the health risks.
During the smoking process, multiple harmful gases are released into the air such as carbon monoxide and dioxide, tar, ash, and more. The inhalation of this potent cocktail has an extreme derogatory effect on the lungs and increases the chances of developing cancer later in life. Not only is this bad for the lungs, but it can wound and damage the throat as well. Not only does smoking induce these damaging effects, but it also decreases the efficiency of the bud, losing 25-50% of the marijuana over the whole smoking process.
In contrast to the dangerous effects of smoking, vaporization has been proven multiple times to be a much healthier process, slowly heating the marijuana to a precise temperature that can be fine-tuned to the specific strain. This causes an almost nonexistent loss in material and ensures the patient is able to maximize their medication process. Patients or smokers who have particularly sensitive throats are able to use vaporizers much more comfortably due to the lower operating temperature that causes almost no throat or lung irritation. Other benefits to vaporization are a higher level of discretion, leaving a greatly reduced residual odor, and fully exposing the flavors and effects of the strain without the harsh carbon taste.
Recent research has also proven that vaporization is the most effective medicinal delivery system, even over edibles or tinctures. Without the carbons or gases of smoking, the chemicals in cannabis (namely THC and CBD) are able to enter the bloodstream immediately, providing a much faster relief from symptoms that will also last longer than smoking. While the decision still lies with the patient, the facts have been laid out and it is up to them to decide what medication method is right for them.