Misconceptions and Facts about Medical Cannabis for the Treatment of Chronic Pain and Other Disorders
Cannabis may be legal in Canada nowadays, but changing how society views it is still an uphill battle. There are many common misconceptions of medical cannabis that needs to be corrected. But through these medical cannabis facts, we can help people understand cannabis more.
Medical Cannabis Positive Facts – How are cannabinoids useful as a medicine?
Many people shy away from medical cannabis simply because they don’t understand how the cannabinoids work. When they think of cannabis, they automatically think of it as a dangerous drug that causes psychoactive effects, addiction, and overdose. But one of the medical cannabis positive facts that people should know is that numerous research studies have already been done on the medicinal effects of cannabis. These studies show how beneficial this plant can be to our health.
To better understand the positive facts on how medical cannabis is beneficial to our health, let’s take a look at its two major cannabinoids.
Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC is the most abundant cannabinoid found in cannabis. It is also the primary psychoactive cannabinoid that produces a high. THC may be the most psychoactive cannabinoid, but it also has numerous medicinal effects.
The THC level of the marijuana different strain and types vary. Some have very low THC levels of about 1% like Charlotte’s Web, while others have very high THC levels that almost reach 30% like Afgoo.
Low THC strains are oftentimes used for medicinal purposes since they don’t produce potent psychoactive effects. High THC strains, on the other hand, are mostly used for recreational purposes. However, high THC strains can also be used therapeutically.
Cannabidiol or CBD is the second most common cannabinoid found in cannabis Unlike THC though, CBD does not cause a high. It also does not produce psychoactive effects, increase paranoia, or trigger anxiety. According to several studies, CBD can even control or decrease the psychoactive potency of THC.
Because of these properties, CBD has become the most popular cannabinoid when it comes to using cannabis medically. It has many therapeutic and medicinal effects, and it is non psychoactive compared to THC.
Because of its popularity, you can now easily buy medical marijuana online that contains pure CBD or full spectrum CBD.
What are some of the diseases that cannabis can treat?
When it comes to medical cannabis the facts gathered by research studies don’t lie. These studies show that medical cannabis can control a wide range of symptoms and treat an equally wide range of diseases and illnesses.
Cannabis can not only control pain, but also reduce inflammation that typically comes with it. It has the ability to relieve nausea and vomiting, and it also acts as a powerful anti-anxiety, anti-depression, anti-cancer, and anti-seizure agent.
Some of the diseases and illnesses that doctors could treat with medical cannabis include chronic pain, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety disorders, autism, cancer, Parkinson’s disease, arthritis, fibromyalgia, migraine headaches, diabetes, among others.
Common Misconceptions of Medical Cannabis
Despite the facts on how medical cannabis is good for our health and wellbeing, there are still misconceptions about it. These misconceptions prevent many patients from benefiting from medical cannabis. They also prevent society from understanding the therapeutic and medicinal benefits of cannabis.
It’s important to know what these misconceptions are, so we can educate more people about cannabis. It’s also just as important to know the pros and cons of medical cannabis. This will help us reach an informed decision on using cannabis for our health and wellness.
- Cannabis is the gateway drug
Cannabis has always been seen as the gateway drug. Using it increases the likelihood of using stronger and more addictive drugs.
But one survey study has already debunked this though. The researchers found that the gateway drug is actually alcohol. Their study showed that those who drink alcohol are 13 times more likely to try smoking cigarettes and cannabis. They are also 13 times more likely to try other stronger illicit drugs like cocaine.
The study also went on to show that majority (72.2%) of their respondents have tried alcohol while only 45%have tried tobacco and 43.3% have tried cannabis.
Their findings clearly show that those who have tried alcohol or are drinking alcohol are more likely to try other drugs.
- Cannabis remains to be an illegal street drug
Many people assume that cannabis is still an illegal street drug, that buying it from dispensaries and online weed shops is similar to buying it from a drug dealer.
This misconception about the legalization of medical cannabis facts needs to be changed. It is only putting more stigma on the people that needs this medicine.
It is legal to buy medical and recreational cannabis in Canada. It is also legal to use cannabis in public places. Depending on your region, it is also legal to plant cannabis in your own backyard.
To be on the safe side though, make sure that you buy cannabis only from licensed producers and retailers. Familiarize yourself, too, with your region’s cannabis laws.
- Cannabis can cause an overdose
Many patients are apprehensive about trying medical cannabis because they’re afraid of overdosing on it.
But here’s the thing though; there’s no way cannabis can cause a fatal overdose simply because there are only a few (maybe none at all) cannabinoid receptors in the brainstem. The brainstem is the control center for our respiration and heart rate. With no cannabinoid receptors in the brainstem to bind to, cannabis, even at high doses, won’t be able to significantly alter our respiratory and heart rates.
Moreover, you will need a large dose (think 1,500 pounds in 15 minutes) for cannabis to be lethal.
- Cannabis can cure all diseases
Cannabis has the ability to control numerous symptoms and treat several chronic diseases. This makes cannabis a panacea then, a plant that can cure all.
But to think this way is wrong, actually. Cannabis may be able to control symptoms and treat diseases, but we still have a long way to go in understanding cannabis and how it interacts with the human body.
We need more research studies on its medicinal and therapeutic benefits. We also need more clinical trials to understand cannabis’ long term effects if used medicinally.
Research on cannabis is still in its infancy. With more countries legalizing cannabis, we can expect more studies to show both negative and positive facts on medical cannabis.
Medical Cannabis Facts
In addition to debunking the common myths surrounding medical cannabis, it’s also just as important to accept its truths or facts.
Understanding them can help you reach an informed decision. This is especially important if you’re going to use cannabis for medical purposes.
Below are some medical cannabis facts, including the cons about medical cannabis:
- Medical cannabis should not be used by pregnant and lactating women
Cannabis has strong antiemetic effects, and it can effectively control nausea and vomiting. In fact, this is one of the reasons why there are some women who use cannabis during their pregnancy.
But using cannabis during pregnancy may be detrimental to the fetus. Studies have shown that the cannabinoids can cross the placental barrier. They can cause changes in the developing brain that can result in long term negative consequences.
CBD, even though it is non psychoactive, has been shown to decrease the protective functions of the placenta. This puts the fetus at risk and vulnerable to the irritants that can also cross the placental barrier.
- Medical marijuana can also cause tolerance
Both recreational and medical cannabis can also cause tolerance. This is because our body adjusts to the presence of the cannabinoids. In time, you will need to adjust your dosage to be able to feel the same benefits again. This is commonly seen in THC rich medical cannabis though and is rarely seen in CBD rich cannabis.
People who use recreational cannabis can recover from cannabis tolerance by simply abstaining from using cannabis for a week to two weeks. But abstaining from cannabis can be problematic for medical cannabis users. Going without their medicine can significantly affect their quality of life.
The effects of medical cannabis tolerance can be limited by starting at the lowest dose possible that still gives him the desired effects.
- THC rich medical cannabis products can cause you to test positive on a drug test
If you are using pure CBD oil with zero THC, then you are in the clear. Your drug test will not show up positive. However, if your medical cannabis oil has THC in it, then you will probably test positive on a drug test.
Conventional drug tests look for and are sensitive to THC, not CBD. It can catch even low levels of THC, depending on the product’s cutoff threshold.
So if you are using medical cannabis with THC and you are worried about your job, then it’s best that you have your physician’s recommendations and cannabis prescriptions with you to show your employer.
- There are different ways of consuming medical cannabis, not just smoking it
Smoking cannabis isn’t the only way of consuming cannabis. There are actually several methods.
You can vape cannabis. Similar to smoking cannabis, this also delivers fast onset of relief. You can also place the oil or tincture under your tongue or eat cannabis edibles. You can even add a few drops of cannabis oil to your food.
Cannabis topicals, on the other hand, are best used for skin and muscle conditions, while cannabis suppositories are commonly used for menstrual and gastrointestinal problems.
You can choose the method you’re most comfortable using and still benefit from the therapeutic effects of medical cannabis.
Cannabis is a great addition to your daily health regimen. It can control chronic pain and several other symptoms as well. Unfortunately, myths and misconceptions about the pros and cons of medical cannabis confuse many people, especially patients. Debunking these myths and understanding the facts can help you understand medical cannabis better.