Weed Coast: A Strain to Treat the Pain

"I have learned that there are really two main routes to go in effectively treating pain: a high-CBD strain or a heavy indica."

February 23, 2018

By Piper Courtenay / Photo: Mitchell Hollander

Pain. It comes in so many forms. Sometimes it’s the dull ache in your back after work, or ceaseless cramps that visit once a month, or a tremor in your muscles after an arduous gym session. Then, sometimes, pain is more subtle—the headache that accompanies anxiety, the exhaustion that follows depression or the pit in your stomach after heartache.

At some point, each of these discomforts have found a home in my body, and probably yours too. And for each one of them, I have allowed in cannabis to assuage the pain. I have learned that there are really two main routes to go in effectively treating pain: a high-CBD strain or a heavy indica.

CBD is non-psychoactive, so you’re not going to get the classic “high” that you would achieve with a THC-dominant strain. It acts as an anti-inflammatory, pain reliever, and, in my experience, can ward off anxiety. A solid example of this type of strain is Wilbur—an Ontario-born hybrid that favours the sativa side. Its name is a nod to Charlotte’s Web—a notoriously high-CBD flower that gained fame after revealing effectiveness in seizure relief. The bud is a blend of yellow and emerald green with slight stone fruit aroma. Coated with CBD-rich trichomes, you’ll notice that it has a much looser structure than most. It has an extremely smooth pull accompanied by relatively little flavour making it an ideal start to your day. Considering the ease of smoking and the low-THC/high-CBD ratio, it’s suitable for a beginner’s medical strain or for anyone put off by “being stoned.” I’ve also found the more you build your experience with CBD-rich strains, the more you reap their benefits. It’s like making a new friend—at first, the effects may be subtle but over time you grow to value the positive energy their presence brings. Be prepared that it’s not the same measurable buzz that other weed provides, so you’ll have to judge its success in other ways.

The second method I have found useful in pain relief comes in the form of a knock-out indica. This would be more suited to experienced users who enjoy the undeniable fist-in-the-face of THC. Bubba, for example, is one I’ve recently developed a taste for. Be prepared for a nuclear tranquilizer. I only ever use this strain when I am looking for powerfully numbing effects and I have no intention of leaving the house. It is a call-in-sick type of weed. Though there is definitely an element of mood elevation, I never crave social stimulation and tend to tune out what’s happening around me. Throw on some music, sink into your bed and ride the wave. As far as enjoyability of consumption goes, it’s a very pretty weed (bulbous, deep green and violet undertones) with an earthy and pungent smoke. Prepare for a strong draw and start slow. Building up is always easier than coming down with these strains.

Be prepared that it’s not the same measurable buzz that other weed provides, so you’ll have to judge its success in other ways.

Keep in mind that this isn’t to say these are the only methods you should try. I learned these were my two most effective solutions through years of trial-and-error. On so many of these occasions, whether it was easing the ache of a bruised rib or dulling the physical manifestations of a breakup, I had to be my own advocate. I asked questions of myself, analyzed my body and sought out advice from others.

Pain will always come and go. It cloaks itself in persistent waves or sometimes appears sudden and sharp, but no matter its form it is always inconvenient. The one thing to remind ourselves is that we never have to bear the brunt of suffering without relief. Sometimes all you need to fight another full day are a few moments away from the hurt.

The breakdown: Wilbur, Hybrid. $10/gram. Bubba: Indica. $10/gram. Weeds. 1100 Richards St.

Find more of Piper’s cannabis reviews here!

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