Terpenes in Cannabis

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Why is it that cannabis can sometimes smell like a garden of flowers and other times it smells like a skunk or diesel fuel? The answer is terpenes. Terpenes are naturally occurring aromatic compounds produced by plants that are responsible for the plants’ aroma.

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Alpha-Bisabolol

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Alpha-bisabolol, also known as bisabolol, is a terpene that you will find in some strains of cannabis flower. Besides cannabis, it is found in German chamomile. Chamomile tea smells strongly of alpha-bisabolol because the flowers have high concentrations of it. Alpha-bisabolol has a floral and sweet aroma that makes it a great fragrance and flavoring agent. This terpene is used commercially in many skin care products for its wound healing and skin absorption properties. In cannabis, alpha-bisabolol adds a subtle floral note to some strains. It is common to find it present in concentrates and vape cartridges even if it isn’t detected in the cannabis flower because of its large molecular size and high vaporization point. To see what products we have available that contain this terpene, check out our menu.

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Alpha-Humulene

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Alpha-humulene is a terpene produced by the cannabis plant that is found in some of our flower strains. This terpene is also commonly referred to as just humulene. Another scientific name for this terpene is alpha-caryophyllene because its molecular structure is closely related to beta-caryophyllene. When humulene and caryophyllene are used together, it is believed to be an effective remedy for inflammation. Humulene on its own has been found to help with cancer, inflammation, irritable bowel syndrome, and pain. The aroma of humulene is earthy, woody, and herbal, and it is known for giving beer its “hoppy” smell. Alpha-humulene is found in a variety of plants and is an important part of their aroma and therapeutic benefits.

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Beta-Caryophyllene

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Beta-caryophyllene, also known as caryophyllene or BCP, is a common terpene found in many strains of cannabis. It is associated with the pungent spicy aroma of freshly cracked black pepper. This terpene is unique because its large size and molecular structure allows it to act like a cannabinoid and bind to the CB2 cannabinoid receptors. When beta-caryophyllene binds to the receptors in your endocannabinoid system, it affects the inflammatory response which contributes to the anti-inflammatory properties of cannabis. Scientific studies done on beta-caryophyllene find that it may also help with pain, alcohol dependency, cancer, anxiety, depression, and aging. When CBD and caryophyllene are used together, it may enhance the therapeutic effects. Beta-caryophyllene is an important component of therapeutic cannabis and other plants with medicinal uses.

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Beta-Myrcene

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Beta-myrcene, known as β-myrcene or myrcene, is the most common terpene found in cannabis. The aroma of this terpene is musky and herbal. Cannabis strains with high concentrations of beta-myrcene are typically better for nighttime use due to its sedating properties. For patients with chronic pain, this terpene can be a great option for pain relief because it has muscle relaxing and anti-inflammatory properties. Beta-myrcene is commonly associated with mangoes, and there’s a theory that eating a mango before consuming cannabis will increase the effects. You can find this terpene in many different plants, and it has a variety of uses commercially and therapeutically.

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D-Limonene

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D-Limonene, also known as limonene or delta-limonene, is the terpene that is well known for giving citrus fruit its aroma. If you like drinking orange juice in the morning, you have already experienced the benefits of limonene. It is believed to have mood uplifting and energizing properties that can help with depression and fatigue. Limonene is used commercially in products for its fragrance and its anti-microbial and insecticidal properties. In cannabis, limonene can be found in some strains that smell like lemons, but not always. The combination of terpenes contributes to the smell, and some terpene combinations can have a citrus like aroma even if limonene isn’t detected. High concentrations of limonene are common in strains that have uplifting, stimulating, and energizing effects.

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Linalool

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Linalool is a terpene with a floral and spicy aroma. It is found in large concentrations in lavender and is the main component of lavender essential oils. Lavender has traditionally been used therapeutically to aid sleep and to help calm anxiety. Studies have found that linalool is responsible for these therapeutic benefits. If you have an allergy to lavender, we recommend avoiding strains with linalool. Linalool is commonly used for its floral fragrance in different commercial products. The presence of this terpene in cannabis may contribute to the calming and sedating effects of certain strains. 

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Patient Handbook

Patient Handbook

This Guide to Therapeutic Cannabis has been put together for your reference to help you with any questions or concerns. We always recommend you call us directly for more personal questions, but this guide provides general information as a starting point.

For more information on how to apply for the therapeutic cannabis program in New Hampshire, visit these pages:

N.H. Therapeutic Cannabis Program Website

N.H. Therapeutic Cannabis Program Applications and Forms

Strain Guide

Strain Guide

This strain guide is a great tool to help with selecting products from our menu! We have listed the most common strain effects reported by patients and we included a list of the common terpenes found in cannabis with their aromas and effects. The strains listed can be found on our menu and may be available as cannabis flower, pre-rolls, concentrates, or vape cartridges. Please visit our menu to see our current offerings.

Find Your CBD:THC Ratio

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Find Your CBD:THC Ratio

Therapeutic cannabis is personalized, meaning not every product best suits all patients. The right treatment regimen depends on the person and condition being treated. For instance, CBD (Cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) share an interdependent relationship, working together to increase one another’s therapeutic benefits. THC is psychoactive, and depending on dosage, can produce euphoric or dysphoric effects. CBD is a non-psychoactive compound, and may reduce or neutralize the psychoactivity of THC.

A patient’s sensitivity to THC and its psychoactive effects is a key factor in determining the appropriate dosages and ratios of CBD and / or THC. So an increased ratio of CBD-to-THC often means fewer mental effects. Prime ATC offers many options for finding a CBD:THC ratio that helps you to control the dosing and potency you need.

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