FAQs

What is "dabbing"?

Dabs are concentrated doses of cannabis that are made by extracting the psychoactive components (ex: THC) using a solvent. This produces a sticky oil (sometimes called wax, shatter, budder, and butane hash oil). This substance is then heated on a hot surface, usually a nail, and then inhaled through a “dab rig.” Cannabis extracts often test between 60-90% THC, which means it doesn’t take much to overdose. Because this is a relatively new practice, long-term effects of dabbing are not well-known. Until research thoroughly examines the long-term risks of dabbed extracts it’s not possible to know what dangers are associated with prolonged use.

What are the different ways to consume cannabis?

Cannabis is most commonly smoked like a cigarette or inhaled through a vaporizer, but it can also be made into “edibles” like brownies or candies, or brewed like a tea. Edibles can have very high levels of THC and take up to 90 minutes before the effects are felt, making it difficult to judge how much to consume and increasing the chance of overdose.

How does weed make you feel high?

THC, one of the main compounds in cannabis, acts on cannabinoid receptors, which are found throughout the body but mostly in the brain. These brain areas are involved in memory, concentration, perception, and movement. THC interferes with the normal functioning of these brain areas.

Have most teens used cannabis in their life?

In 2016, most California high school students reported that they were not using cannabis.

Is cannabis a gateway drug?

Some studies suggest that cannabis use is likely to come before the use of other drugs, and the development of addiction to other substances. However, the majority of people who use cannabis do not go on to use harder drugs. Starting to use cannabis at a younger age increases the risk of problem drug use; those who begin using cannabis before age 18 are 4-7 times more likely than adults to develop problem use.

What is cannabis?

Cannabis (often called weed, marijuana, pot, etc.) comes from the cannabis plant. It contains tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which affects brain function, perception, and mood when consumed.

Is weed good for you or bad for you?

Just like with prescription drugs, some active compounds in medical marijuana are used to treat specific symptoms. While CBD (a compound found in cannabis that doesn’t get you high) might be used to treat anxiety, smoking a joint may have the opposite effect because it contains THC.

Can you overdose on cannabis?

To overdose and die from cannabis is very unlikely. However, you can experience extreme levels of anxiety, panic attacks, hallucinations, and paranoia. People can injure themselves because of cannabis’ effects on judgment, coordination, and perception. For example, driving under the influence of cannabis is dangerous because it affects the skills you need to drive safely.

I'm pregnant. Can I use cannabis to relieve nausea?

It is not safe to use cannabis while pregnant, even to control morning sickness or other symptoms. Using cannabis while pregnant can cause your baby to be born with a lower birth weight, which means your baby is more likely to have health issues, especially within the first year of their life.

Can I have weed in the car with me? What if I'm not driving?

No one can have an open container of cannabis in a vehicle, regardless of whether you’re driving or a passenger. To carry cannabis in a vehicle it must be in a sealed package or be kept in the trunk. No one may consume or smoke cannabis in a vehicle.

Can I carry marijuana with me if I'm over 21?

You can carry up to one ounce of cannabis and up to eight grams of concentrated cannabis.

How much cannabis can I have for medical use?

According to the California Department of Public Health’s “Let’s Talk Cannabis” website:
“If you are 18 or older and have either have current qualifying physician’s recommendation, a valid county-issued medical marijuana identification card, or are a Primary Caregiver as defined in Health and Safety Code Section 11362.7(d), you can possess up to eight ounces of dried cannabis and up to six mature or 12 immature cannabis plants, unless the physician’s recommendation specifies a higher amount.”

How much cannabis can I have for recreational use?

If you are 21 or older you can legally have up to one ounce of cannabis (or eight grams of concentrated cannabis) in California. You can also grow up to six cannabis plants in or on your private residence.

I'm undocumented. Can I get in trouble for smoking weed?

If you are undocumented and are caught in possession of cannabis, you risk being deported or facing other serious consequences. Since cannabis is illegal on the federal level, you can get in trouble for using or possessing cannabis even if you are over 21 and using legally in California.

I’m 21 and can buy cannabis legally. What happens if I share my weed with underage friends?

Even if you buy cannabis legally and share it with people who are underage, they can get in trouble. Anyone under 21 who is caught in possession of cannabis can receive a Minor in Possession, which requires them to complete drug counseling and community service and can have other serious consequences.

Is there any proof that smoking weed when you're younger messes up your future?

No one can predict what your future will be. However research shows that if you start using cannabis before you are 18, or use cannabis regularly, you may be at higher risk for things like skipping classes, getting lower grades, and dropping out of school, all of which can contribute to unemployment or not getting the job you’d like to have.

What happens if I get caught with cannabis when I'm underage?

At a minimum, if you are under 21 and caught in possession of cannabis you will be required to complete drug education or counseling and community service. Depending on where you are, if you have other prior offenses, or other factors, you may also face fines and/or jail time. The only exception to this is if you are at least 18 years old and have a current qualifying physician’s recommendation or a valid county-issued medical marijuana identification card.

I'm undocumented. Can I get in trouble for smoking weed?

If you are undocumented and are caught in possession of cannabis, you risk being deported or facing other serious consequences. Since cannabis is illegal on the federal level, you can get in trouble for using or possessing cannabis even if you are over 21 and using legally in California.

Can I be kicked off my sports team for smoking weed?

If you are caught in possession of cannabis when you’re under 21 years old, you can receive a Minor in Possession (MIP) and be required to do community service and drug counseling. An MIP can affect your education plans; it can make you lose your federal financial aid, and can also get you suspended or removed from sports teams and other school activities.