What are cannabis transdermal patches and how do they work?
With non-intoxicating cannabinoids and a multitude of ways to consume, many consumers are becoming aware that there are more options that may better suit their needs. Written by Anna Barberena.
With technological innovations in cannabis products happening left and right, there is an accompanying increase in consumer education and awareness. People are catching on to the new paradigm within the cannabis industry: you don’t have to get high to experience the potential treasure trove of benefits cannabis offers and there are more ways to consume cannabis than there ever have been before. With non-intoxicating cannabinoids and a multitude of ways to consume, many consumers are waking up to the reality that there are more options that may better suit their needs than their regular go-to toke.
How do transdermal patches work?
If we break down the word transdermal, it translates to ‘cross the skin.’ Transdermal products offer a way to absorb cannabis through the skin rather than other consumption methods such as inhaling smoke or eating an edible. When using transdermals the cannabinoids in the product will penetrate all the layers of skin and enter the bloodstream directly. This means that compounds in transdermal products will be distributed throughout the body where they can take effect. Unlike topicals, which are designed to affect the localized area they are applied to, transdermals can offer full-body effects.
At first glance, this process may not seem special or out of the ordinary. However, our skin is the largest organ in the body and one of its jobs is to maintain a barrier between us and the outside world. That barrier does an incredible job at protecting us and will not allow just any chemical to pass through it. It takes a special compound or formulation within a product to allow for the active compounds in cannabis to penetrate the skin.
Transdermal products are different from topical products in that they contain a permeation agent that carries the compounds in the product through the skin and into the bloodstream. The agents used in cannabis-infused products are usually oil-based compounds such as oleic acid, emu oil, plant essential oils, and terpenes which allow substances such as cannabinoids to permeate the cells of our skin.
What are the benefits of transdermal patches?
Patches generally need to be applied to a thin, veinous area of skin to allow the compounds to be best absorbed. Areas such as behind the ears, on top of the foot, on the inside of the ankle, or wrist are great placement options. Patches offer a time-released amount of cannabinoids so they can usually be worn for 8-24 hours, offering long periods of relief. With a product that can offer all day or night relief, many see it as a viable option to the need to smoke every few hours. Since the patch can be placed on multiple areas of the body, there is an aspect of discretion that allows the patch to be used anywhere at any time.
The correct use of a particular transdermal patch will depend on the individual product and its unique formulation, so always make sure to check what the manufacturer recommends before using it. Remember to keep things such as your daily activity, lifestyle, and clothing choices in mind as you choose the best location to place your patch.
Transdermal patches are often found with singular cannabinoids such as THC, THCa, CBD, CBG and CBN along with ratios like 1:1 CBD:THC. With a wide range of cannabinoids available, there are a variety of desired effects that can be focused upon depending on the needs of the person. If someone is hoping to reduce overall inflammation in their body, we might recommend trying a CBD dominant patch. Someone who is having trouble sleeping may want to try the Mary’s Medicinals Formula Patch, which has a 3:2:1 ratio of THC:CBD:CBN.
One of the major benefits of using patches is that the cannabinoids go directly into your bloodstream as opposed to needing to be broken down, absorbed, and then metabolized by the body like when you take edibles. When you ingest THC, it is metabolized by your liver which produces a secondary metabolite known as 11-hydroxy-THC.
This is more potent than THC and it is one of the main reasons why people experience such an intense high when they take edibles.
A Pleasant, Moderate Experience
Since the cannabinoids are going directly into the bloodstream when using a patch, there are no metabolites being produced. The cannabinoids remain in the same state that they originated as they circulate through the body. Most people akin the experience of using patches that contain THC to a long, slow, and gentle experience like they smoked one small joint throughout the whole day without ever getting too high. With that in mind, using a patch offers a pleasant and moderate experience for those seeking a non-traditional way to try cannabis.
Mary’s Medicinals takes great pride in their scientific approach to how they formulate their cannabis-infused products. They believe that transdermal delivery is the most effective way to consume cannabis and have formulated their products with dose delivery, convenience, and systemic effects in mind. They test each batch of patches to make sure the compounds are evenly distributed throughout the patch in the correct dosage. Their patches can be cut into smaller pieces if a smaller dose is desired without degrading the effects.
Mary’s Medicinals CBD patches are incredible for potentially reducing inflammation, balancing the endocannabinoid system, relieving anxiety, and overall wellness.
Mary’s Medicinals THCa patches are a great way to target pain, stiffness, and discomfort without any intoxicating feelings.
Mary’s The Formula Patch offers a novel cannabinoid ratio of 3:2:1 THC:CBD:CBN which may help those who have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep. This patch may also be great for those targeting muscle aches and pains.
Papa & Barkley
Papa and Barkley began as one son's mission to help ease his father’s back pain. Every product by Papa & Barkley is made with sun-grown flowers that are extracted using a solventless whole plant infusion which means there are never any harsh chemicals used. Their unique approach allows the natural therapeutic qualities of the plant to shine through. Their patches utilize oleic acid as a permeation agent which allows for up to 12 hours of relief.
Papa and Barkley 1:1 Releaf Patch offers little to no intoxicating effects and is great for headaches, stiff and achy joints, menstrual cramps, and muscle soreness.
Papa and Barkley CBD Releaf Patch offers relief from everyday aches, pains, and soreness. A great way to get your daily dose of CBD without thinking too much about it.
Papa and Barkley 3:1 Releaf Patches are a great way to target inflammation to help reduce stiff joints and mild pain.
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