what are terpenes

We’ve surpassed the days when smoking weed was something you did behind your high school. Today, people are appreciating marijuana more and more for its medicinal and emotional effects.

To get the effects you want from your marijuana, it’s all about research. Each strain of marijuana has a different set of effects based on its unique makeup. You probably know about the balance between THC and CBD. There’s another crucial piece to the puzzle, though: terpenes.

What are terpenes and how do they affect your smoking experience? Here’s what you need to know.

What Are Terpenes?

Terpenes are a group of hydrocarbons that exist in a wide variety of plants. They’re part of the plant’s essential oils.

The most noticeable features of terpenes are their scents. They have distinct, different smells in a variety of plants, including various strains of marijuana. When someone is able to distinguish marijuana’s strain from the smell, that’s because of the terpenes.

What Do Terpenes Do for My Body?

Terpenes do more than give marijuana strains their signature scents. They also have their own effects on the body. In fact, terpenes are a large reason why different strains of marijuana make you feel varying effects.

Here are some of the most common benefits of terpenes in marijuana.

Calming Effect

The calming effect of some terpenes is the most noticeable and most common benefit for most users. It offers you a type of relaxation and sedation that many users associate with weed.

Myrcene is the most common terpene in marijuana, and it’s known for this calming effect. However, linalool also offers this benefit. As you shop for marijuana, you should be able to see the myrcene or linalool concentration for each option. The same is true for all other terpenes.

Anti-Inflammation

The medical community continues to find out more and more about the damaging impacts of inflammation in the body. There’s plenty of information floating around about anti-inflammatory diets and lifestyle habits. However, some forms of weed can do the trick as well.

There are four terpenes that appear to reduce inflammation: myrcene, caryophyllene, pinene, and humulene. How do you know which one you want in your marijuana?

As you read through the rest of this list, you’ll see the other benefits for each of those terpenes. The key is finding the one that has the best combination of effects for you.

Pain Reduction

Pain management is one of the most common reasons people use marijuana. Some strains are better for this purpose than others, and that’s because of the terpenes.

Caryophyllene, Linalool, and humulene are the terpenes most known for their pain-fighting benefits. You may need to experiment with a few different concentrations of these terpenes to find the strength that works for you.

Sleep Enhancement

People with insomnia are another common group who finds relief with marijuana. Beginners tend to assume that strains with a calming effect will help them sleep, and that may be true, but some terpenes have a more direct benefit for your sleep cycle.

In particular, linalool and caryophyllene tend to help people with insomnia get to sleep.

Mental Health Benefits

As important as it is to care for your physical health, your mental health is just as vital. If you’re suffering from stress, anxiety, or depression, marijuana might be able to help.

Some people with these issues hesitate to try marijuana because they’ve heard about it making people paranoid. That’s why it’s so important to find strains that will help your emotional health, not hurt it. In particular, limonene and linalool tend to help most.

Seizure Control

In a way, we can thank seizure control for the growing wave of marijuana legalization across the US. Stories in the news about kids with seizures who can only get relief from marijuana oils have tugged at heartstrings and helped some people realize what a gift the plant can be.

The key, of course, is to know which strains help seizures the most. Linalool is the terpene that is most known for seizure control.

Memory Enhancement

Memory loss is one of the most popular parts of anti-marijuana campaigns. High school students across the country hear about how marijuana will turn their brains to mush.

In reality, some strains of marijuana can do the opposite. The terpene pinene appears to help users retain memories better.

Appetite Suppression

This is another misleading stereotype about marijuana. Some people think that if you smoke weed, you’ll get “the munchies” and start devouring everything in sight. If you’re trying to lose weight, that’s enough to make you keep your distance.

While that may be true in some cases, there are other strains of marijuana that do the opposite. The terpene humulene tends to suppress a user’s appetite, making it easier to steer clear of junk food.

Alertness

While we’re on the topic of marijuana stereotypes, there’s another one we need to mention: productivity. The stereotype is that marijuana turns you into a zombie that stares into space and can’t focus.

In this case, as in so many others, it depends on the strain you smoke. Marijuana that’s high in the terpene pinene appears to help users be more alert and focused instead.

Antifungal

Fungal infections might be unpleasant to discuss, but we live in the real world and they happen. While it’s still a good idea to see your doctor, you might be able to give the medication some extra fighting power with the right weed.

Marijuana with higher amounts of limonene or myrcene appears to have antifungal powers. Of course, make sure it’s safe to smoke with any medication you’re taking first.

Maximizing Your Marijuana Experience With Terpenes

For many beginners, especially in states where marijuana is newly legal, weed shopping can be overwhelming. There’s so much information for each product and you don’t know how to make sense of it.

Now that you know the basics like what are terpenes and which popular terpenes have which benefits, your next shopping experience can be an easier one.

If you’re ready to learn more, browse our online marijuana menu for all the details you need.

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