Butane Honey Oil is a concentrated form of marijuana that is extracted from cannabis using butane gas as a solvent. Butane hash oil is made from trimmings and flowers where butane gas is used to extract higher concentrations of THC, the main psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.
The THC produced through this method can yield concentrations of up to 80% compared to about 15% for normal cannabis smoking. This gives a more intense high, which is sought after by cannabis users especially those who have developed tolerance due to regular use.
Even though experimenting with different ways of consuming marijuana is nothing new, the popularity of the Butane hash oil has grown in popularity in recent years. There have been concerns on the safety of “dabbing” due to potential health risks and reports of accidents from users trying to make their own BHO at home.
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The Process of “Blasting” and its Risks
Making BHO is a relatively simple process that requires simple tools and equipment. There have been tons of articles and videos online on how to make BHO at home, and this process is referred to as blasting.
The process involves passing butane gas through a container packed with trimmings and flowers. As the gas passes through the plant material it dissolves the THC. The process leaves behind crystals containing up to 80% of THC. There are several different forms of BHO crystals that are produced; this will depend on the humidity, pressure, and temperature applied during the process. Some of the forms produced are:
Shatter is one of the popular forms of BHO, which is a solid transparent substance that can break like glass. This form of Butane Hash Oil can have up to 80% THC.
One of the biggest problems with blasting is that it can cause fire hazards and burns. Butane is a volatile gas that is unpredictable. Even though the technique is easy to learn online and replicate it at home, authorities warn that most people do not have the skills to maintain the required standards of safety. The ATF warned about the dangers of dabbing at home after reports of houses catching fire and people being rushed to the hospital.
Tolerance, Dependency, and Addiction
BHO is sometimes referred to as “pot on steroids”. This is because it has 3 to four times the concentration of THC the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis. Most people who perform the process at home have no way of establishing the amount of THC that will be in the BHO.
Even though the dangers of taking higher concentrations of THC are yet to be studied conclusively, there may be risks associated with it. Some of the risks include loss of consciousness due to taking very high amounts of THC. Higher concentration of the psychoactive agent may impair the user’s cognitive ability and therefore cause falls and accidents.
Taking concentrated amounts of THC could also be a sign of tolerance. Tolerance is when a user needs more of the drug to get the same high they got the first time they tried it. Higher and higher doses are needed as more of the drug is consumed over time. This can lead to dependency and addiction. This may require the user to check into an inpatient luxury drug and alcohol addiction treatment center.
The higher concentrations of THC can also cause the user to experience the more severe side effects of marijuana consumption and which may, in turn, require detox at a drug rehab program.
Side Effects of Dabbing
The real effects of ingesting or inhaling BHO have not been established, but some studies show that it can have a negative effect on the central nervous system. Additionally, the process of blasting can leave chemicals and residues behind which can cause respiratory among other health problems causing butane poisoning from dabs symptoms and conditions.
Some of the side effects include:
- Short-term memory loss
- Nausea and dizziness
- Clouded thinking
- Impaired judgment and coordination
While it is generally accepted that it is impossible to overdose with marijuana as is the case with other drugs, BHO has such concentrated amounts of THC that one can experience severe headaches and loss of consciousness. If you experience any of these symptoms consider seeing a physician and checking into an outpatient, inpatient, or a luxury drug and alcohol addiction treatment center.