What is a Dab? Understanding its Effects & Paraphernalia

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Marijuana is consumed in various ways, and these methods are gaining popularity, especially as the substance is being legalized in many states across the country. One of the most common ways of consuming cannabis is called dabbing.

What is marijuana dabbing, and what should you know about it? Here are the essential things to note, especially if you are wary about you or a loved one getting marijuana addiction.

What Is a Marijuana Dab?

Dabbing is a form of consuming marijuana. It is a process of inhaling a small amount of cannabis extract. This is achieved by using a handheld vaporizer or a water pipe, also known as a bong.

When cannabis is extracted, it is turned into hash oil, and it can be used in various ways. This hash oil is called a cannabis concentrate, and a marijuana dab is the most concentrated form of this extracted cannabis. It is not a liquid, but it also is not solid.

How are Dabs Consumed?

  1. Smoking

Smoking is the most common method of dabbing, and it is a process of heating the nail that is located on the surface of a water pipe or a handheld vaporizer. The cannabis concentrate is placed on this heated surface, and the heat allows the chemical to evaporate and produce the vapor.

  1. Vaping

Vaping involves inhaling vapor that may be concentrated or not. Although there is no solid or liquid in the vapor, it is still considered smoke. This is referred to as the vaporization process. It is growing in popularity because of having less risks, especially for people who are concerned about the consequences of smoking a regular joint.

  1. Ingesting

Ingesting is the process of food or drink being infused with cannabis. Dabbing concentrates can also be added to food and drinks, especially those that are made by a company that specializes in marijuana infusions.

What Are the Paraphernalia Used in Dabbing?

The specific paraphernalia used for dabbing depends on the chosen method of consuming. Some of the common paraphernalia include:

  1. Dab Rig

These are special water pipes and are used in vaping or smoking concentrates. The bongs are made of glass, and the nail is made of quartz or titanium. The rig is designed to produce larger, cleaner hits.

  1. Dab Pen

A dab pen is a battery-powered vaporizer that works like a regular e-cigarette. It is designed to vaporize substances in the same way. It can also be used for vaping concentrates. Dab pens are new to the paraphernalia market, and many believe they are a better option for consuming cannabis.

  1. Cannabis Oils

These oils are produced by extracting cannabinoids from the marijuana plant and turning it into a liquid form. It is then used for dabbing or vaping. The oil is very concentrated, so it can be consumed with a small amount and still produce the desired effect.

  1. Shatter

Shatter is one of the most popular marijuana concentrates, especially for dabbing. It looks like a waxy, clear, and hard material and can easy be broken into pieces. It can be consumed in various ways, including dabbing, vaping, and even edibles.

Is Marijuana Dabbing Stronger Than Smoking?

Marijuana dabbing is considered more potent, but you cannot say it is stronger than smoking. This is because, for the same amount, a smoker may consume more marijuana than someone who is dabbing. The amount of THC and other active chemicals are dependent on the amount of concentrate consumed.

The highest potency and concentration of THC from smoking has about 15 percent to 25 percent THC, while a marijuana concentrate for dabbing can contain about 65 percent THC. Furthermore, some of the new marijuana concentrates reach 80 percent and even 90 percent.

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what is a dab pen

Is Marijuana Dabbing Stronger Than Vaping?

Generally, vaping is the healthier way of consuming cannabis. This is due to the way that the vapor is produced. Dabbing, on the other hand, is considered to be more potent. This is because of the large amounts of THC that are absorbed in your lungs when you are dabbing. This is different from smoking weed, where the THC is absorbed through your lungs and into your bloodstream.

Vaping still has negative effects on your lungs, such as cough and phlegm production. This is not a problem when it comes to dabbing.

Is Marijuana Dabbing Addictive?

Yes. Just like smoking, dabbing can be addictive. This is because it is the most powerful form, and it can produce a very high THC content. You must only consume it in small amounts.

There are those who use marijuana for medical purposes, but dabbing is not recommended for these people, especially if it is the first time that they are using it. When you use a lot of THC, it may cause unwanted effects.

What Are the Risks Involved With Dabbing?

Dabbing can be highly dangerous, and these are the risks involved with dabbing:

  1. More Intense Physical and Psychological Effects

The main risk of dabbing is that it is more intense compared to smoking and vaping. It is difficult to consume the amount of cannabis that will produce the desired effect. This can be an issue when you want to stop.

Moreover, it may cause a rapid heartbeat, higher blood pressure, and an increased likelihood of panic attacks. It can also cause you to experience paranoia, which can make you panic and end up injuring yourself.

  1. Increased Risk of Drug Addiction

There are some who believe dabbing is a better choice for those who want to steer away from smoking. While this is true in some ways, others say that dabbing can be more addictive. This is because of its high concentration of THC that a person may be too reliant on.

  1. Chances of Starting a Fire or an Explosion

This is another risk involved with dabbing, especially if you are not using the proper equipment. The process of dabbing has to be done properly in order for it to be safe and for you not to experience an explosion or fire. Dabbing requires a lot of heat, and this can result in an explosion if you do not use the right equipment.

What Are the Consequences of Dabbing Addiction?

The problems with dabbing are similar to that of any other addiction. This can include:

  1. Financial Damage

In order to buy the supplies you need for dabbing, you need to have money. Due to the high risk and the higher chances of addiction, you may use up a lot of your savings. It could also cause you to lose your job because of your addiction to marijuana.

  1. Brain Damage

Studies show that those who smoke marijuana in any way may experience brain damage. The effect is more severe the younger you are. The same can be true for those who abuse marijuana, including by dabbing.

  1. Emotional and Physical Health Damage

Dabbing can cause a lot of health problems. The problems are the same as those you experience if you are a smoker of marijuana, except that it is more severe. Dabbing can cause more paranoia, extreme anxiety, and panic attacks, as well as increased nausea and vomiting.

You also risk experiencing a psychotic breakdown, which can cause physical damage to your body.

Should You Seek Help?

The best way to deal with an addiction is to seek help. There are rehab centers that specialize in all kinds of addiction, including marijuana and, specifically, dabbing.


Dabbing is a relatively new form of consuming cannabis. It is a popular method for those who want to experience the full effects of the substance. It is also an easy way to consume your marijuana extracts. This can be done through the use of proper equipment.

However, the dangers involved with dabbing are greater, especially because it is more potent. This makes it more difficult to stop. It can also cause unwanted effects in your body that can be fatal in the long run.