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Tips How long do you hold it in for? - Inhalation techniques

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
I used to hold my hits.. but that was more when I used to smoke joints.

For some reason, once I started vaping the amount of time I held my breath shortened. And once I started dabbing? Forget about it. Since I often need to clear the nail with several hits, I exhale right away.
 

Vicki

Herbal Alchemist
Well, I'm using very expensive THC distillate. So, I take small hits, and hold them as long as I can. I don't want to be wasteful. :)

When I watch videos, and see people take those big rips, and exhale all that vapor, it makes me a little angry. Seems like such a waste to me.
 

CarolKing

Always in search of the perfect vaporizer
I usually take a long slow draw with most of my vaporizers. I don't have much lung capacity left after the draw so I usually only hold my breath for 3 or 4 seconds. I get plenty medicated doing that.

I've had arguments with folks online in conversation and they disagree with me, they say that you need to hold it in for like 30 seconds. I don't like to argue so they can believe what they want. They will get pissed when I say their extra high is oxygen deprivation.
 

herbivore21

Well-Known Member
I've had arguments with folks online in conversation and they disagree with me, they say that you need to hold it in for like 30 seconds. I don't like to argue so they can believe what they want. They will get pissed when I say their extra high is oxygen deprivation.
This is my view as well. If folks wanna get high-school high by choking themselves out, they are welcome to go ahead. I'm a grown-ass man and I've come to understand that I'd rather keep oxygen flowing into my lungs, thank you very much! :myday:

For some reason, once I started vaping the amount of time I held my breath shortened. And once I started dabbing? Forget about it. Since I often need to clear the nail with several hits, I exhale right away.
This as well! I tend to exhale quite quickly after inhaling. The other important thing to realize is that if you hold vapor in your lungs and do not fully exhale before going in for that second hit to finish the dab, you are guaranteed to cough. In other words, it is important to fully exhale all vapor before you take another hit. Also, the longer you hold the first hit in, the more overcooked and worse tasting the second hit will be by the time you have inhaled it off of your enail. I refuse to 'waste to taste' :horse:

When I watch videos, and see people take those big rips, and exhale all that vapor, it makes me a little angry. Seems like such a waste to me.
Not to mention the bigger waste in these videos: they usually don't inhale the vast majority of the vapor to begin with! I have seen so many 1g+ dab videos where the majority of the vapor just goes up into the air above the nail because they don't carb or keep inhaling the whole time. Such waste. :doh:
 

Amoreena

Grown up Flower Child
For me, each draw is a series of short, sippy hits. Long slow draws make me cough hard...probably because of all the cigarettes (until 2010). I try to allow space for the last short hit to be plain air, then exhale. Could handle more if one lung lobe wasn't removed. Sigh. Anyhow, it works. :biggrin:

Edit: I only vape flowers so far.
 

Kellya86

Herb Gardener.....
I believe agitation is the key here...

I think the movement of vapour inside your lungs helps to absorb more....

I hold it for about 3 seconds, then breath it out as slow as possible, savouring the taste and moment.....

Sometimes it just leaks out my nose due to how full of vapour I am....
 

Sixstringsmash

Where am I?
I believe agitation is the key here...

I think the movement of vapour inside your lungs helps to absorb more....

I hold it for about 3 seconds, then breath it out as slow as possible, savouring the taste and moment.....

Sometimes it just leaks out my nose due to how full of vapour I am....
I like this! I just read this, took a hit, and gargled the vapor around my mouth and lungs just like mouthwash. I'm pretty sure its guaranteed to kill 99.9% of bad vibes.
 

Baron23

Well-Known Member
There has been much discussion of what is the most effective breathing/holding technique and its still a bit of a raging debate.

There are those, who I think are scientifically correct, who say that your lungs only absorb when vapor (and air is also a vapor) is moving over the alveoli (little sacs in your lungs where gasses permeates to the blood stream).

There are also those who feel that holding in vapor just results in more reclaim collecting on the surface of your lungs without additional benefit because of the point above.

I tend to only hold for a few seconds but often I don't hold at all. I will pull the draw and then exhale/inhale small amounts. A bit of vapor out, a bit more air in, thus keeping the vapor moving over the alveoli. I have no proof that this does a damn thing.

I did see some sort of study, and my impression is that it was far from comprehensive, where they did find more cannabinoids entering the blood stream (maybe just testing for THC? Dunno) when held to 10 seconds. But if I remember correctly, they didn't really plot this out closely over varying time and I don't believe it should be used for guidance necessarily.

Cheers
 

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
Are You Wasting Your Cannabis by Inhaling the Wrong Way?




Good cannabis is expensive. Naturally you want to get the most out of each and every puff. Most of us were taught to hold in each toke as long as we could. And a lot of people have been doing exactly that for years. Decades even. Now cannabis consumers are starting to discover they don’t have to hold it in for so long. This is true, but there’s more: A slightly different way of inhaling cannabis that will optimize your consumption of this medicine and preserve your stash. Read on to learn how to save medicine and money and enhance your smoking or vaping experience.

Human Lungs & THC Absorption
Before we talk inhalation technique, let’s look at what exactly is happening when we smoke cannabis. When smoke is inhaled, cannabinoids like THC pass through the mouth and toward the trachea before entering the lungs. Once in the lungs, gases and particles are absorbed by small air sacs called alveoli (there are 300 to 500 million of them in two human lungs). At this point, the magic occurs of transferring cannabinoids like THC into the bloodstream, where they almost immediately enter the heart to be pushed onward to the brain.



How long do you hold in your cannabis tokes?
THC absorption doesn’t begin to occur until cannabis smoke passes the first bronchial split from the trachea and has actually entered the lungs. Regardless of the rate of this process, it’s important to realize that there is no absorption occurring in the mouth or trachea (at least none of significant volume that reaches the brain via this delivery mechanism).1

Your Lungs Are like a Tennis Court
According to Dr. Sunil Aggarwal, a Seattle-based scientist, physician, and cannabinoid integrative medicine specialist, human lungs feature a complex topology. So complex, in fact, that they sport the combined surface area of a tennis court. That’s 540-810 square feet, or about 80 times the surface area of your skin.

The anatomy of the lungs is kind of mind-blowing when you get down to it.

(please go to article link for image of the anatomy of the lungs. It doesn't download correctly)
It’s easy for us to conceptually analogize our lungs to balloons, or hollow vessels in which we push mostly nitrogen and some oxygen on a continual basis in an effort to stay alive.

However, the lungs are actually extremely thick and meaty organs that are perfect for continual inflation and deflation. These amazing organic devices are full of densely folded, intricate tissue and 1,500 miles (2,400 kilometers) of air pathways serving a single purpose: The exchange of gases with our environment – most notably inhaled oxygen and exhaled carbon dioxide.

Following the brain and heart, the lungs are the body’s most important and prioritized organs.

THC Absorption Speed
According to Aggarwal, full THC absorption occurs “within milliseconds” (a few thousandths of a second). To human perceptual standards, absorption is virtually instantaneous during an inhale.

Virtually instantaneous. Hold that thought (but not your breath) and read on to learn more. From the moment of your inhalation, it can take the cannabinoids under a minute to reach the brain where they will permeate, or jump, the blood-brain barrier. This process is special because it’s something that endorphins and many other molecules simply cannot do. The cannabinoids from cannabis, however, are invited with open arms to enter this critical and highly protected organ.

In other words, the brain is extremely picky about the molecular mates it allows to come over for drinks and dinner. Many chemicals – nay, most – need not apply (they could damage this delicate organ). Once inside the cerebrum (which includes the frontal lobes, where all strategic and advanced thinking occurs), these medicinal molecules seek out the CB1 cannabinoid receptors. The THC molecule has what is called a high binding affinityfor CB1 receptors, meaning the two fit together perfectly, like a finely crafted lock and key. This is an essential aspect of cannabinoid signalling and the endocannabinoid system throughout the entire body.

Wasting Medicine
Most of us have wasted a considerable amount of cannabis over the years by executing the inhalation process incorrectly. My apologies for going all penny-pinching canna-nerd on you, but the cost of cannabis is no small concern for tens of millions of people. This is especially true for patients who are too sick to maintain a job and are continually pressured financially. Because THC and other cannabinoids aren’t absorbed above the first bronchial split, any smoke or vapor that exceeds the capacity of the lungs will naturally fill the trachea and possibly the mouth and nasal passages. It is all wasted. One hundred silly percent wasted.



Just imagine how much cannabis we’ve wasted from inhaling it the wrong way! I hesitate to think of the amount of cannabis that I have wasted over the years with my sloppy, ignorant toking style. It’s sadly ironic that holding in a toke was a purposeful strategy designed to maximize the value obtained from one’s medicine when, in fact, it does just the opposite. In reality, it was simply a misinformed approach resulting from 80 years of prohibition and misinformation.

Another reason to stop holding tokes
You may easily encounter people who swear that holding their breath when toking improves their resulting psychoactive effect or euphoria. Aside from the effects of oxygen deprivation, we must recognize that this smoke – like any smoke – is filled with toxins and a few carcinogens. Do we really want to hold it in our lungs? Are you ready to learn the best way to inhale cannabis?


When vaping cannabis, one doesn’t have to worry about all those nefarious molecules found in smoke. But if tens of millions of Americans are smoking pot the wrong way, how should they do it? In the end, this really is a personal decision. As usual, however, I have a few suggestions.

Here is the suggested technique!
There are many approaches to ensuring that all of the cannabinoids in smoke or vapor produced by your pipe, joint, or vaporizer will reach your brain. What must be ensured is that a column of smoke-free air, akin to an invisible plunger, pushes all of the good medicine far enough within the lungs for full absorption – below the trachea. Personally, I slowly and smoothly inhale, pulling in smoke or vapor for the first two-thirds of the toke. For the last one-third of the inhale, I take in a breath of clean air. I inhale as deeply as possible1. A nice, deep breath also helps ensure that the remote recesses of the lungs are exposed to smoke or vapor, which actually improves lung function (ask any asthmatic who embraces cannabis). This is because THC and other cannabinoids function as bronchodilators, meaning they widen passages within the lungs and improve respiration. The other way to avoid wasting cannabis is to be mindful about when, where, and why you consume.


Most patients and cannabis consumers take more than a single toke when titrating (dosing) their medicine. After that first puff, consider taking a couple of minutes while awaiting the onset of pyschoactivity to mentally prepare yourself by entering a proverbial staging area during which you visualize yourself best enjoying and appreciating the effects of this special medicine. This is part of what it means to use cannabis mindfully. Why are you using the medicine? How do you want it to help you? What is your intent?

Spread the Word
Experiment with this new method and see for yourself the difference: Greater overall efficiency. The next time you’re enjoying a smoke or vape session and notice someone toking the wrong way, drop some science on them in an effort to spread your knowledge and help them preserve their precious herb. As more research is conducted and humans gain additional insight into the complexities and nuances of the cannabis plant, we’ll obviously gain further knowledge into the best methods for consuming and absorbing cannabinoids and terpenes for medical efficacy and cognitive stimulation.
 

Fat Freddy

Well-Known Member
And if those canna-luddites won't correct their method of respiratory-based consumption then have them exhale the excess vapor into your rectum...telling them it's the latest "thing" out in SoCal. And if they ask you to return the favor just tell them you only catch, never pitch! :aaaaa:


.
 

ataxian

In a BLACK HOLE!
There has been much discussion of what is the most effective breathing/holding technique and its still a bit of a raging debate.

There are those, who I think are scientifically correct, who say that your lungs only absorb when vapor (and air is also a vapor) is moving over the alveoli (little sacs in your lungs where gasses permeates to the blood stream).

There are also those who feel that holding in vapor just results in more reclaim collecting on the surface of your lungs without additional benefit because of the point above.

I tend to only hold for a few seconds but often I don't hold at all. I will pull the draw and then exhale/inhale small amounts. A bit of vapor out, a bit more air in, thus keeping the vapor moving over the alveoli. I have no proof that this does a damn thing.

I did see some sort of study, and my impression is that it was far from comprehensive, where they did find more cannabinoids entering the blood stream (maybe just testing for THC? Dunno) when held to 10 seconds. But if I remember correctly, they didn't really plot this out closely over varying time and I don't believe it should be used for guidance necessarily.

Cheers

Holding a HIT in (like Cheech & CHONG film's) is harmful and ridicules!

EFFECT is all that count's! (CIVILIZED)
 

Baron23

Well-Known Member
Little bit more on this subject. I also think that in addition to keeping vapor moving over the aveoli in your lungs to promote absorbtion ( which doesn't happen just holding your breath) there is the fact that there is no absorbtion at all in your trachea and main bronchi passageways. So, if looking to maximize cannbinoid uptake, it makes sense to stop drawing with enough room left in your lungs to clear your rig, your throat, and main passageways into your lungs.


https://www.massroots.com/news/holding-hits-and-the-effect-of-cannabis-on-your-lungs

A study in June of 1989 found that being high is not effected by the amount of time that you hold the smoke in. Participants were given three different conditions to hold their breath under, ranging from 0 to 20 seconds. The procedure for smoking was standardized by number of puffs, puff volume, and the post-puff inhalation volume. Smoke intake was monitored by looking at the level of carbon monoxide in the air before and after smoking. Although everyone that participated felt the effects from cannabis, they did not see any different between those that held their hits and those that didn’t.

And

http://neurobonkers.com/2012/05/26/...s-policies-interception-and-total-absorbtion/

The evidence regarding THC absorption and duration of breath holding is surprisingly limited, the consensus appears to be that the majority of active components in cannabis are absorbed relatively instantly and any negligible effects from extended breath holding are simply a result of excessive carbon monoxide exposure. This is good news, there is no reason to hold cannabis smoke down for much longer than a couple of seconds, in fact doing so actually results in wholly unnecessary additional exposure to smoke and tar. There is more good news, it seems clear that heavy cannabis smoking is not particularly good for lung function but surprisingly perhaps, it seems occasional use may actually have beneficial effects. A twenty year study found that users who smoked up to one joint a day actually had increased lung function and this effect stood the test of time even for long term occasional smokers:

“With up to 7 joint-years of lifetime exposure (eg, 1 joint/d for 7 years or 1 joint/wk for 49 years), we found no evidence that increasing exposure to marijuana adversely affects pulmonary function”

The moral of the story? If you choose to smoke, you don’t need to do a Clinton and not inhale at all, but you certainly don’t need to do an Obama either – failing to exhale will do you more harm than good. More importantly, keep your smoke an occasional habit and you may just end up with stronger lungs than you started with.
 

CarolKing

Always in search of the perfect vaporizer
It's funny how different people have different techniques when drawing. My brother thinks you have to take the biggest draw imaginable then hold it in for 30 seconds or longer. He spends a lot of time just coughing. He doesn't leave enough room in his lungs at the end.
 

herbivore21

Well-Known Member
It's funny how different people have different techniques when drawing. My brother thinks you have to take the biggest draw imaginable then hold it in for 30 seconds or longer. He spends a lot of time just coughing. He doesn't leave enough room in his lungs at the end.
This is the worst way to consume vapor, especially dabbing. The inevitable coughing greatly limits your opportunity to taste your meds, I find most of the flavor is tastes on the exhale and if you cough and splutter you don't notice it so much.
 

Kellya86

Herb Gardener.....
This is the worst way to consume vapor, especially dabbing. The inevitable coughing greatly limits your opportunity to taste your meds, I find most of the flavor is tastes on the exhale and if you cough and splutter you don't notice it so much.

This is the nail on the head here...
Why have I not seen this mentioned before...

Nearly all of the taste, be it flower or concentrates, is on the exhale...
That's the most enjoyable part for me, and has to be done right...
It needs to be a slow and controlled exhale, sometime rebreathing a bit... fighting the tickle...
This is how I enjoy the taste of my vapour...

When I get it wrong and do cough for some reason, (like my first hit after 3 weeks away in usa), then it's almosted wasted for me...
Don't feel satisfied...
Still get high though...
 
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Prolusio

Member
I've pretty much always held my hits in for 7 seconds. Back in the day buddy was 100% adamant that was the best way to do it, said he read it in some weed magazine. It seemed to work just as good as "ghost hits", which was the hot thing to do at the time and always gave me the worst headaches; so I just started doing it. Ghost hits here are where you hold the hit in so long when you exhale there's almost no visible smoke/vapour. My buddies would try to take the biggest hits they could and ghost them. Great way to kill brain cells!

Anytime anyone would ask how we smoked or if we could ghost we'd just say "You're supposed to hold it in for 7 seconds then you're good". Now that I've been doing it that way for so long even if it's not the "best" way to take hits it's the most comfortable/best way for me.

I've kind of changed it up now though.. First off no more smoking :smoke:, switched entirely to vapour. I take a medium sized hit leaving a decent amount of room in my lungs, hold for 7 (can really taste the flavour from the inhale here), draw in some fresh air then exhale slowly. Seems like a decent compromise for me! I don't feel like I'm "wasting" vapour, full flavour, and I never get headaches or feel any strain.
 

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