As a medical marijuana doctor, I’m often asked what to expect upon that initial visit to a medical marijuana dispensary. In this article, I’ll try to demystify the experience to alleviate any possible anxieties or confusion.
Firstly, you’ll need to present your state-issued medical marijuana card and valid picture ID once you walk in the front door. Oftentimes, this receiving area is separate from the product viewing area. You must have a medical marijuana card to enter the viewing area. If you are a medical marijuana cardholder and you are under the age of 18, you will be denied entry unless you are accompanied by your designated caregiver, who must also have their own corresponding state-issued medical marijuana caregiver card. Medical marijuana cards for patients and caregivers can be obtained after being certified by a qualified medical provider who will determine whether you have a qualifying medical condition for the use of medical marijuana. Our staff at Rapid Referrals performs all of these services for patients and caregivers as well as facilitates the entire application process to obtain a medical marijuana card if qualified.
Upon entry, expect a welcoming atmosphere, akin to visiting your local craft market. If not familiar with it, your first impression will most certainly be molded by the strong smell of fresh marijuana buds. This wonderful aroma is a major part of the experience at any dispensary. Rest assured, dispensaries are professional environments prioritizing patient care, safety, and education. Budtenders, knowledgeable about their products and medical uses, will guide you throughout your visit.
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The variety of products available can seem overwhelming at first: oils, tinctures, edibles, flowers, and more. Each product has its own benefits, onset times, and durations of effect. Some products require extra supplies for their use, like water bongs, hand pipes, or vaporizer pens. This is where the expertise of budtenders shines. Based on your medical condition, experience, and personal preferences, they’ll suggest suitable strains and products. If you are a cardholder and under the age of 21, you will be limited to purchasing non-smokable products, like tinctures, oils, and edibles.
Always remember, there’s no ‘one size fits all’ with medical marijuana. It’s about finding the balance that best suits your body and medical condition. Using simple terms like ‘daytime’ or ‘nighttime’ use is recommended when describing your needs. Start low and go slow with dosages, especially with edibles and oils. Regardless, I strongly encourage patients to be open about it being their first time when shopping at a dispensary so the budtenders can safely guide them to the best products with that in mind.
Lastly, dispensaries prioritize privacy and patient rights. Your visit and the information shared remain confidential, respecting your personal space and dignity. For this reason, a dispensary is not a gathering place to socialize. Once purchased, for safety, your product will be placed in a discrete, child-safe bag before leaving the facility. It is then the responsibility of the patient to safeguard the product from getting into the wrong hands. I strongly encourage a discrete and locked storage location for your product once home.
Entering a dispensary for the first time can feel daunting, but rest assured you’re in good hands. The journey to improved health and quality of life starts with this one step. Take it with confidence, equipped with knowledge, and the reassurance of being part of a supportive community.
As a medical marijuana doctor at Rapid Referrals, I have seen firsthand the benefits of cannabis for my patients, family, and friends. Here at our clinic, we firmly believe that patient satisfaction is the most important factor in providing medical marijuana cards. That’s why we provide full technical support from start to finish and make it a priority to ensure each customer leaves satisfied! Additionally, because your time is valuable, if you’re experiencing any urgency with obtaining your card or accessing dispensaries just give us a call today -we’ve got you covered!
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