Potential Medical Uses of Cannabis.
Cannabis has been shown to help individuals suffering from various ailments, including but not limited to: Nausea and vomiting, lack of appetite, muscle spasms, migraines, pain, ADHD, sleep disorders, anxiety and much more! There’s so many ways this plant medicine can help people, let’s break it down to understand it better.
Severe chronic pain is commonly treated with opioids (eg, morphine, oxycodone, methadone). Unfortunately, as many patients have experienced, these pain killers don’t work as well over time, requiring them to take more to manage their pain, and potentially leading to dependence/addiction. These type of painkillers can make patients feel dizzy, drowsy, and nauseated (feeling“drugged”), and can cause constipation. This may require the patient to take additional medicines to counteract these side effects. Pain is the most common condition for which medical cannabis is recommended. Moderate doses have been shown to help relieve pain and inflammation. The use of cannabis for pain relief may allow patients to reduce how many pain killers they have to take. This can help lessen the side effects experienced from these medicines. In addition, cannabis is not constipating, prevents nausea, and may help with depression that comes with many suffering from chronic pain.
Second only to pain management, anxiety and stress are among the most common reasons for which many people say they use medical cannabis. Anxiety can impact an individual’s daily function and sleep, and negatively impact one’s overall quality of life. Many medications are prescribed to aid with anxiety and the sleeps issues that come along with it. As with pain killers, this can potentially lead to dependence on these medications, and addiction. With the proper guidance towards the appropriate strains, dosing, and dosage form (e.g., smoking vs. edible vs.tincture), cannabis may help with reducing anxiety and the resulting negative impacts that come from poor sleep and long-term prescription medication use.
Helping with sleep-related disorders represent another very common use for cannabis. Due to its mild sedative effects, cannabis has been successfully used to treat a range of sleep disorders. This includes insomnia (trouble falling asleep), sleep disruption (waking up from sleep), and sleep apnea (problems with breathing during sleep).
Nausea & Vomiting
Cannabis has been shown to help people suffering from nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy (for example, treatments for cancer andHIV/AIDS patients). It may also be helpful with nausea/vomiting due to anesthesia and medicines used in surgeries. Folks suffering from motion sickness, morning sickness, and severe nausea due to pregnancy (hyperemesis gravidarum) may also benefit from guided cannabis use.
Cannabis can be used to increase the appetite for cancer orHIV/AIDS patients who suffer from wasting syndrome (loss of muscle and fat).There have been cases of hospitalized patients on feeding tubes using cannabis to start eating again. Sometimes people who are depressed do not eat as well as they should. Cannabis may be able to help stimulate the appetite of these individuals, and help them get to a healthier weight.
People have used cannabis as a muscle relaxant to help decrease the spasms experienced in chronic pain, inflammation due to injury, and other circumstances. Cannabis has also been used to ease the spasticity (muscle stiffness) in patients with multiple sclerosis or spinal cord injuries. It may also help with easing the pain and cramping associated with menstruation.
Due to unwanted side effects experienced by many patients taking current migraine medications, medical cannabis has been used as an alternative therapy. Cannabis may help reduce the nausea and vomiting experienced by many migraine sufferers. Additionally, cannabis may help reduce how long the migraines last and how frequently they occur, while also reducing how strong the migraines are when they occur.
ADHD treatment with cannabis has only recently been recognized as an alternative/addition to treatment with certain prescription medications. Small doses of certain cannabis, oral or inhaled, may improve focus and help with the ease of being distracted that is associated with this disorder. A trained professional who can better understand how age and other underlying factors may play a part in cannabis treatment is very important.
Epilepsy (Seizure Disorder)
Anti-epileptic drugs are the primary treatment option for seizure disorders. Research has shown that about 30% of seizure disorders do not respond to currently available drug treatments, and over 20 million people worldwide have drug-resistant epilepsies. Some people living with uncontrolled seizures have reported beneficial effects and reduced seizure activity when using medical cannabis, especially strains rich in CBD.
Cannabis has been shown to help with nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy, and help with those using pain killers to treat pain associated with cancer. Cannabis may also help stimulate appetite, encourage sleep, reduce anxiety and depression, and improve the spirits of patients undergoing cancer treatment. All of this may contribute significantly to a patient’s overall quality of life.
These are just some of the many issues that can be helped with cannabis. Visit our Care Consultants at SweetGrass to see what works best for your unique situation.