Using cannabis for medical conditions can feel like a straight-up miracle. But after a while, it can also blend together – was it the Blue Dream that eased those monster symptoms, or was it the Blue Cheese? Did your symptoms decrease with the capsules or with the cartridge? Keeping a cannabis journal is a great way to remedy this dilemma because while cannabis may not have a great reputation for helping to sharpen one’s memory, this medical marvel is certainly worth remembering.
What is a Medical Cannabis Journal?
Because of its emphasis, your medical cannabis journal will be different from other cannabis journals — it needs to track your symptoms and other health factors as well as your cannabis regimen. It will act as a great reference for treating symptoms in the future, as well as providing a record for any caretakers involved.
It’s best to use your journal every day so that you can accurately track your condition and treatment, enabling you to look up “the last time this happened” when symptoms strike. You’ll want to reflect on your particular situation before setting a format for your journal, but here are a few ideas of helpful things to include in your entries:
- The Day’s Symptoms: At the end of the day, assess your symptoms using categories that make sense in regard to your condition. For example, fibromyalgia fighters might include pain levels, energy levels, and fibro fog.
- Your Cannabis Regimine: Write down the cannabis you’re treating with, including the precise dose, strain, and grower/brand. Including the cannabinoid profile is also very important, especially as more options (in addition to THC and CBD) hit the market – different cannabinoids have different superpowers, this will help you track what helps. Also, note how long the cannabis helped for.
- Other Factors: Recording other health factors is also important. Things like consuming trigger foods, how much sleep you got the night before, and exercise are crucial for understanding the full picture and can help you identify any other triggers.
Other Reasons to Keep a Cannabis Journal
But it doesn’t have to be ALL business. While it’s frustrating to have to treat medical symptoms at all, there is an element of fun when cannabis is your medicine. Even if you’re among those who say the euphoric “high” is no longer a regular side effect. it’s still a beautiful plant. It smells great, and there’s a whole evolving and exciting subculture around it.
And, like approaching cannabis herself, the ways you can start keeping a medical cannabis journal are endless. What else would you like your journal to do? Is your objective to solely to remember which strains and products work for symptoms, or would you like to look back on other aspects of the experience as well? Here’s a few more to add into the mix:
- Rate and Compare Strain Variety: Is that GSC only sometimes your fave of the cookie strains? Record what you think of different growers’ offerings using a scale of your own creation. Is that homegrown Bubba Kush only 6/10 on your estimate of Snoop Dogg approval? Get it down in your journal and next time, get it elsewhere.
- To Remember Stoney Adventures: Even medical users gotta live it up! Next time you and your buddy Herb take on the town, note it in your journal: Dear Diary: Today my fave edible and I went to the park and watched rollerbladers fall down. Record the gist of your adventure, partners-in-crime, favorite moments, how cannabis helped the experience be awesome…and perhaps a bit about if that pesky medical stuff hindered your play (and how).
- Canna-Tourism: When you need cannabis to treat a condition, legal restrictions can limit your travel options. Luckily, the list of options is getting longer with every vote. So next time you hit up another canna-state, you’ll be able to remember the details for friends who want scoops and tips. Note down things like all the different places that you visit, what you enjoyed, and what to recommend.
How to Start Keeping a Cannabis Journal
Now that you’ve sorted out all of your objectives in keeping a medical cannabis journal, we can get down to business. Before you get rolling, two more decisions are at hand:
- OG or Digital? Some people will always go analog, choosing a journal that they can physically touch the pages of. (If you’re a doodler or otherwise enjoy drawing, this may be something to factor in.) But others will find that a digital journal app is more discreet and easier to keep at hand.
- What Will You Include? In addition to the medical categories suggested in the first section, decide what you’d like to look back and remember from your cannabis experiences. Some additional examples of categories are: dispensary purchased at, look, taste, effect description, munchies, and things laughed at.
And, of course, your friendly Remedy budtenders would be happy to answer your questions and help you stock up on supplies.