Medical Marijuana For Chronic Pain
In 2018, Statistics Canada reported about six million Canadians suffer from chronic pain. That’s the equivalent of 20% of the population. Though there are over-the-counter and prescribed medications that can be taken to help ease symptoms, medical marijuana is a natural pain reliever with few side effects and can drastically improve your quality of life.
Research into the management of chronic pain has yielded the largest body of evidence in support of the use of medical marijuana to date. Chronic pain can be the result of numerous conditions including mechanical back/neck pain, trauma, diabetes, cancer, multiple sclerosis, inflammatory bowel disease, arthritis, menstrual pain, and HIV/AIDS.
Cannabis is effective on its own, and also affords the option of combination therapy with opioids because cannabis interacts with a completely independent set of receptors in the endocannabinoid system. Additionally, there is evidence to suggest that cannabis is an effective alternative in opioid dose/use reduction strategies.
What Is Chronic Pain?
Everyone has experienced some sort of pain in their lifetime, but if your pain has lasted more than 12 weeks, you likely have chronic pain. Sometimes it can even last years and negatively affect your day-to-day routine, life, and activities.
Say you have injured yourself and have pain in that specific area. Your pain sensors send a message from your nerves to you brain and in turn, your brain will know you’re hurt. It’s the same as when you heal – your pain sensors will let your brain know you’re healed. When you suffer from chronic pain, those sensors don’t stop, even if you’ve healed. This could be because of nerve damage.
But, chronic pain doesn’t always have to occur from an injury. It could be a result from other health conditions like fibromyalgia, endometriosis, and other health issues associated with pain.
What Are Common Chronic Pain Symptoms?
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What Medical Marijuana Can Do For Chronic Pain Sufferers
Medical marijuana’s reputation among chronic pain sufferers has drastically increased. It’s a natural relaxant and can not only relieve your pain, but it can boost your energy, productivity, and improve your overall health.
If you have a tissue or nerve damage, the receptors on the nerves are sending a signal to your brain letting it know “I’m hurt!”, but when medical marijuana comes into play, it can tell these receptors to calm down and not only relieve pain, but also reduce inflammation to the injured area.
If you’re suffering from pain caused by cancer or arthritis for example, you have low or imbalanced serotonin levels. This is what causes things like pain, depression, fatigue, nausea, etc. and play a huge role in our well-being. Cannabis can increase your serotonin levels naturally and improve these symptoms and regulate your body functions.
Effects of Medical Marijuana Use
Multiple randomized control trials have evaluated the efficacy of Cannabis as an analgesic, and have determined that it significantly reduces pain for patients. Cannabis also offers the benefit of having no risk of overdose. A 2008 University of California at Davis double-blind, randomized clinical trial reported both high and low doses of inhaled cannabis reduced neuropathic pain of diverse causes in subjects unresponsive to standard pain therapies.
A 2010 McGill University study reported that smoked cannabis significantly improved measures of pain, sleep quality and anxiety in participants with refractory neuropathic pain for which conventional therapies had failed. The efficacy of cannabis in the management of pain, coupled with no risk of overdose, has led to strong interest from the patient community in exploring the use of medical marijuana.
How Can I Take Medical Marijuana?
Don’t worry, if you’re not into smoking marijuana, you don’t have too! Medical marijuana can come in multiple forms and our professionally trained staff can answer any of your questions regarding what may be the best option for you. Say goodbye to opioid medications and hello to your natural cannabis solution.