If you’re a patient who lives in an area where medicinal cannabis is legalized for purchase and consumption, the options that are laid out before you can seem overwhelming at first. You want to know which strains of the cannabis plant will be most effective for you, as well as what you can expect when you use it. In this brief guide, we will explain the three different strain types (indica, sativa and hybrid) so that you can make a more informed choice.

Indica Strains

Indica plants, aka cannabis indica, are shorter plants with wider leaves than sativa plants. Their buds also tend to be significantly denser, and within those buds exists compounds that facilitate relaxation. You might have heard the term “body high,” which refers to the physical sensations accompanying the use of the plant rather than the mental ones.

Indica strains are often best enjoyed at nighttime due to their relaxing properties, similar to CBD oil. They are often recommended to sufferers of anxiety, insomnia, seizures, chronic pain and nausea. Those who can legally grow their own cannabis plants but need to do so indoors tend to prefer growing indica strains due to their shorter stature.

Sativa Strains

Cannabis sativa is generally higher in THC, the psychoactive component of cannabis that gets you high, than cannabis indica. These plants are taller, with thinner and brighter green leaves. Strains made from a sativa plant are widely reviewed as being more energizing with a stronger “head high” than a “body high.” The effects of cannabis sativa is widely debated, but this seems to be one thing that the court of public opinion can agree on.

For those who wish to grow their cannabis indoors, cannabis sativa might not be a great choice. The plants, when fully matured and ready for harvest, can grow to be twenty feet tall! That’s quite a strong demand for space.

Hybrid Strains

A combination of the benefits of both sativa and indica strains are present, in varying degrees, in hybrid strains. There are many different hybrid strains available to medicinal cannabis patients, with some containing more elements of an indica and some baring a stronger resemblance to a sativa strain. There are many strains that are more of a 50/50 split between the two other strain types.

While this is a very brief overlook on the subject, this guide should give you the information that you need to ask the right questions when you visit the dispensary next.