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Cannabis Sensory Experiences

Cannabis Sensory Experiences


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Cannabis has the ability to completely change you. You start to view life from a whole new perspective. Your thinking patterns and your beliefs about what is possible change…

Terpenes are the compounds responsible for the way most plants smell. They are abundant in cannabis and many other plants, fruits, and herbs.

Terpenes have the ability to take you away on a journey to another place, maybe back in time or a far-off land that invites fond memories.

People often underestimate the importance of smell for perception, because they ascribe many smell sensations to the sense of taste. But taste perception is limited to a handful of sensations that are perceived solely by the sensory receptors in the oral cavity. Many other sensations that are attributed to the sense of taste are actually perceived by the sense of smell (Rozin, 1982)

People may differ widely in their sensitivities to smells. Because people have many different smell receptors, there are also many different types of smells to which they may be more or less sensitive.

Photo credit: Tony Bowles

The actual choice is often a very personal thing, based on experience, the opportunity to try various cannabis products, and individual taste and preference.

Sensory experiences create meaning. Our senses are closely connected with memory, both recalling past ones and laying down new memories. For example, memories can be triggered by a smell even before our cognitive processes have recognized what the smell is.

We even have a saying in the cannabis world, the nose knows.

So dwell on the smell, or as the other saying goes, take time to smell the roses.

The olfactory epithelium is a specialized epithelial tissue inside the nasal cavity that is involved in smell.

By simply noticing and trying to describe it, name it and locate the source, it can expand your own vocabulary. It’s our olfactory abilities that allow us to discern the sheer variety of flavors that are offered up in a single toke, sip, bite, or whatever you choose. Meanwhile, the tongue is limited to sensing: salty, sweet, bitter, and sour.

It is estimated that humans can identify approximately 10,000 unique smells.

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When an outer molecule binds to a scent receptor, it sends an electrical signal from the sensory neurons to our brain’s olfactory vaults; the signal then continues to other areas of the brain
where it’s integrated when taste memory or emotional information which registers to us as a smell. FMRI research shows that the extra time spent focusing on sense changes the brain of experienced smellers.

For them imagining and perceiving odors becomes automatic. To get started you can take simple ingredients from your kitchen. Spices, vanilla, fruit but never anything toxic. Or if you like, I highly recommend you try it with your favorite cannabis.

Close your eyes and have someone bring them under your nose sniff and try to name the source. In time you will begin to appreciate nuances and familiar odors, and recognize characteristics of new and unusual smells. The perfumer has practiced these steps enough to become an artist of smell.

It will change how you sense and experience your world.

Follow Tony on social media: IG @tonybowlesconsulting & @terpeneflashcards

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