What is Cannabis Shatter & How is it Used?

Man outside dabbing cannabis shatter.
Man outside dabbing cannabis shatter.

What is Cannabis Shatter & How is it Used? 

cannabis concentrates are any cannabis products produced through an extraction processSolvents are used to strip compounds from the cannabis plant, which leaves behind consumable product filled with beneficial cannabinoids. One of these cannabis concentrates is called shatter. shatter can also be referred to using different names such as shatter wax, shatter weed, cannabis shatter, or marijuana shatter

Shatter 

shatter is a type of concentrate that is derived from and also considered a subcategory of hash oil. There are primary differences between shatter, hash oil, and waxshatter is a term used to describe the specific texture of this type of marijuana concentrate, which breaks and shatter like real glass.  

These differences include the consistency of the end cannabis product following the extraction process and the concentration of THC. shatter as well as wax, can both have a much greater THC content that hash oil. shatter can test as high as 90 to 95 percent or more THC (which three to four times higher than the strongest sativa strains of flower). 

shatter has a beautiful amber transparency, which resembles glass. Moisture, high terpene content, and heat however, can affect the texture and consistency of hash oil (shatter) before it has been purged. Purging is the process in which residual solvents are removed from the product. Runny, loose oils resembling sap have more Moisture and tend to form waxes that are gooey (often called budder). Harder oils are likely to have a soft, brittle texture (known as honeycomb or crumble). wax is a term used when oils are softer or have a more solid texture. Oil that has a consistency between glassy shatter and a viscous sap are often referred to as ‘pull-and-snap’

Where does the Marijuana Extracts Used in Shatter Come From? 

shatter became popular in the year 2010 because it was a new way to vape a very potent type of marijuana extract. Essential oils are found within the cannabis plant and these Essential oils contain cannabinoids, terpenes, and other chemical compounds. The Essential oils used in shatter are extracted from the cannabis plant. 

Why is Shatter Translucent? 

Cannabis shatter, amber colored, glassy, transparent broken pieces. Vector Illustration
cannabis shatter, amber colored, glassy, transparent broken pieces. Vector Illustration

The reason that shatter is somewhat translucent is pretty interesting. The transparency of shatter is due to how the molecules are positioned in shatter. shatter molecules are stacked in a neat, orderly fashion in straight rows. This straight forward, neat molecular alignment allows light to easily pass through the extraction, therefore giving shatter its beautiful, glassy appearance. 

What Benefits Does Shatter Offer? 

A dab refers to a concentrated dose which is heated on a hot surface, using a nail, and is then inhaled using the process of dabbing. Since shatter can be dabbed, the effects of shatter are felt almost immediately (relieving pain or getting really high). Dabbing offers a very fast and effective way for cannabinoids to enter the blood stream. A user only needs to use a very small amount of shatter to benefit from its effectsshatter as well as wax are the only cannabis extracts that offer the highest THC content. Dabbing can be very beneficial to users with acute severe pain, chronic pain flare-ups, extreme nausea, and even migraines.

One of the greatest benefits that shatter provides is its very powerful dose of medicine to users who truly need it (for example: pain and cancer-in conjunction with conventional medical treatment).

Important Note: Always use cannabis shatter with extreme caution. high-THC marijuana products can be damaging to developing brains. It’s important to understand that more research still needs to be done on cannabis concentrates. On a positive note, shatter and wax provide great potential in treating severe pain in the future.

When a user dabs shatter, it completely eliminates the need for inhaling large amounts of smoke (burning cannabis) to achieve its beneficial effects. With inhaling smoke into the lungs no longer being a factor, instead, vapor is the only thing being inhaled. Dabbing just a couple times is more preferable, rather than smoking an entire joint

Shatter Shelf-Life 

Due to its stable molecular structure-shatter has a longer shelf-life (meaning it takes a longer time before shatter starts to degrade) than other marijuana concentrates such as wax

Is There a Downside to Shatter? 

The Endocannabinoid System.Vector illustration
The Endocannabinoid System.Vector illustration

There are unfortunately some downsides to shatter. Since shatter relieves pain very efficiently-users may become tempted to use shatter on a daily basis, therefore dependence becomes an issue. The user develops a tolerance and therapeutic effects are significantly reduced. Worst case scenario-using shatter daily can cause “burnout” or a destruction of the endocannabinoid receptors, making them inoperable. When this occurs, no matter the type of administration of marijuana-it will no longer have any effect. 

Though information is limited at this time-it’s possible that users who dab, may have more intense withdrawal symptoms.

Can the Endocannabinoid Receptors be Restored?

Fortunately, the human body is capable of restoring endocannabinoids receptors. In order to rejuvenate the endocannabinoid receptor cells however, complete abstinence (not using marijuana at all) from marijuana for several months may be necessary.

Using too much shatter (dabbing too often) can cause very uncomfortable highs and in some cases, it can cause the user to pass out. Dabbing too often can cause an unfunctional high.  

Shatter Dosing 

The ability to break apart and measure pieces of shatter for individual use can be quite difficult to say the least. shatter is hard to break, due to its very hard consistency. 

To ease some of the difficulty of breaking up shatter into individual doses, simply apply some light heat to your dabber prior to breaking off the dab from your shatter

Hungry for More Cannabis Knowledge? 

You can learn more about cannabis extracts, the cannabis extraction process, why cannabis extraction is so important, and cannabis delivery methods and dosing by reading the following articles: 

Don’t forget to checkout our Cannabis Wiki and Cannabis Strains Knowledge Centers!

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