Is Marijuana Effective for Pain Treatment?

It is an interesting fact that marijuana is legal on a state level, but is forbidden from the government’s perspective. According to a recent study, approximately 85% of American citizens support the legalization of medical marijuana. It is also estimated that several millions of American citizens currently use medical marijuana.

As studies show, marijuana’s role in health care has increased significantly, and more and more states are considering its legalization for medical purposes. Nonetheless, some studies depict that there was a decrease in the use of medical marijuana by young people in states where it was legalized. Medical marijuana doctors say it can be because of a diminished forbidden fruit effect and increased access to the previously forbidden components.

What is medical marijuana?

The extract from the hemp plant, which is known as CBD is the least controversial. Its abbreviation stands for cannabidiol. This extract has little to zero intoxicating components. At the same time, marijuana itself includes more than one hundred active components.

A chemical that goes along with marijuana consumption and which makes people high is called THC. It stands for tetrahydrocannabinol. CBD itself has little to zero THC chemicals, thus, patients almost do not report any changes in consciousness.

On the other side, cannabidiol has several benefits, which include nerve pain treatment, anxiety, and spasticity relief, and treatment of other life-threatening conditions such as epilepsy. To make it more clear, let’s take an example of a childhood form of epilepsy called Dravet syndrome. This form of the disease is almost impossible to control without the use of the CBD-dominant strain of marijuana.

Medical marijuana pain treatment

Medical marijuana is normally used for pain treatment. Medical marijuana specialists claim that is not helpful for serious pain such as post-surgical pain or broken bone. However, they also state that it is highly effective for chronic pain such as nerve, back, shoulder, and knee pain. Another advantage of medical marijuana is that it is far less addictive than painkillers.

Marijuana is considered to be highly effective in reducing the pain of sclerosis and nerve pain in general. People taking medical marijuana say that it allows them to return to their daily activities without a feeling of being disengaged.

Medical marijuana doctors add that marijuana is the most effective muscle relaxant, which helps patients with Parkinson’s disease to lessen tremors. The use of marijuana is also considered to apply to interstitial cystitis, endometriosis, and fibromyalgia where the final condition is chronic pain.

Effect of marijuana on other diseases

Marijuana has also found its use in the treatment of weight loss, nausea, and glaucoma treatment. People suffering from wasting syndrome associated with HIV as well as irritable bowel syndrome have also reported significant improvements after making use of medical marijuana. It is also considered to be effective for people with alcoholic and/or drug addictions.

However, medical marijuana doctors say that the problem with this type of solution is that there is a risk of abusing and becoming dependent on other substances. People who began using drugs at an early age are at a higher risk of developing a problem with marijuana dependence.

There is also research showing evidence that the use of marijuana helps relieve depression and post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms. However, it should be also said that marijuana does not apply to treating some mental conditions such as psychoses and bipolar disorder.

On the other side of the coin, there are some negative outcomes of the use of marijuana. It is considered that the use of marijuana daily will encourage existing symptoms of bipolar disorder among people who have the disease.

Even though, the National Academies of Sciences and Medicine claim that there is limited evidence between developing bipolar disorder and marijuana usage. It is also a well-known fact that marijuana can stimulate suicidal thoughts and there is a very limited increased risk of depression among people who use marijuana.

It is also believed that marijuana usage is closely linked to the increased risk of chronic cough. However, it is still unclear whether marijuana increases the risk of chronic asthma or worsens lung function. Marijuana usage will not affect your lung function if used for medical purposes. The proper dosage has to be defined by the medical marijuana doctor.

Marijuana also has several side effects associated with it. Marijuana can affect the coordination and judgment processes, which in turn, could lead to injuries. It should be also said that this drug has a deep effect on the brains of young people, affecting their IQ and mental function. Other side effects of marijuana are fast heartbeats, low blood pressure, depression, dizziness, bloodshot eyes, and hallucinations.

As can be seen from all the aforementioned, there is a lot of evidence that shows both the advantages and disadvantages of the use of marijuana. Despite that, it also becomes clear that more research has to be done to have a clear understanding of the public health implications of increased marijuana usage. Many scientists support the idea of further scientific research on marijuana usage for the treatment of medical conditions.

Difficulties with researching marijuana

Because marijuana is considered a Schedule 1 drug by the Drug Enforcement Administration (the same as heroin, ecstasy, and LSD), it becomes much harder to conduct proper scientific research. To conduct a scientific study, researchers need to obtain a special license. According to specialists, this is not going to change anytime soon. Honestly saying, the DEA has already considered reclassifying marijuana as a Schedule 2 drug such as oxycodone or Ritalin but eventually decided to keep it the way it is.

If you live in a state where marijuana is legal, you should have a detailed consultation with your medical marijuana doctor. It will help to determine the degree to which this substance can assist in treating your illness depending on your health history. Even though there is evidence supporting the use of marijuana for pain relief, you should avoid its usage if you have had any mental health problems.

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