7 Medical Conditions That Are Treatable With Marijuana
With half of the States in the U.S.A. now allowing doctors to prescribe medical marijuana, cannabis is now being used to treat a variety of medical conditions. Up until recent years, research on medical marijuana has been limited but the DEA has finally been approving test sites across the US, and the results highlight medical marijuana’s potential for treating many medical conditions. We compiled a list of 7 well known medical conditions that can be treated with medical marijuana:
1. Attention Deficit Disorders (ADHD/ADD)
ADHD stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder and is the cause a lack of concentration, causing cognitive processes to become more difficult. Symptoms that sufferers of ADHD face include anxiety and insomnia. Medical marijuana has been found to be effective in the treatment of both anxiety and insomnia.
The medication typically prescribed to ADHD patients is Adderall or Ritalin, and they stimulate dopamine which promotes concentration and makes cognitive processes easier. Marijuana has also been found to stimulate dopamine with less harmful side effects than those associated with Adderall and Ritalin.
CBD, the non-psychoactive chemical in cannabis also delays the receptors in our brain that create “fight or flight” reflexes. These receptors are part of what causes one to feel paranoid and may cause chronic anxiety or ADD.
2. Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s is a disease that causes mental confusion, difficulty thinking and understanding, mood swings, loss of appetite, and many symptoms that can be alleviated by marijuana. No cure exists for Alzheimer’s, but marijuana is one of the only medications that helps prevent and treat the disease.
Research shows that THC can protect the brain from degeneration. Alzheimer’s is said to be caused by a protein fragment called beta-amyloid that form plaque and lead to the death of nerve cells. A 2014 study on marijuana’s effect on Alzheimer’s showed that small doses of THC were found to reduce the production of beta-amyloid, which
No cure exists for Alzheimer’s, but marijuana is one of the only medications that helps prevent and treat the disease. Research shows that THC can protect the brain from degeneration. Alzheimer’s is said to be caused by a protein fragment called beta-amyloid that form plaque and lead to the death of nerve cells. A 2014 study on marijuana’s effect on Alzheimer’s showed that small doses of THC were found to reduce the production of beta-amyloid, which
Alzheimer’s is said to be caused by a protein fragment called beta-amyloid that form plaque and lead to the death of nerve cells. A 2014 study on marijuana’s effect on Alzheimer’s showed that small doses of THC were found to reduce the production of beta-amyloid, which may stop Alzheimer’s in its tracks. THC is a safer beta-amyloid inhibitor than some of the prescription medications on the market.
Arthritis is an ailment that affects 52.5million adults today, and that number is expected to reach 67 million within the next 15 years.
One sufferer of Arthritis began juicing raw cannabis, and after 11 months her condition went into remission.
A study published by Dr. Shen-Ming Dai of China’s Second Military Medical University found that CB2 receptors are highly prominent in the joint tissues of arthritis patients. The use of cannabis was found to fight the inflammation in joints by activating the pathways to CB2 receptors.
4. Crohn’s Disease
According to the Mayo Clinic Staff, “Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). It causes inflammation of the lining of your digestive tract, which can lead to abdominal pain, severe diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss and malnutrition.”
In one study, treatment with inhaled cannabis was found to improve the quality of life in patients “with long-standing CD.” Treatment was shown to cause a rise in patient weight after three months of treatment.
Weight loss is an issue many suffering from Crohn’s experience and marijuana has been one of the only safe medications with research illustrating potential benefits for patients suffering from CD.
Approximately 2 million Americans suffer from epilepsy. The cause of this disorder is unknown, but it is a seizure disorder that has begun to become prescribed for sufferers for epilepsy or seizures.
Many epileptics have seen a relief in their symptoms after medical marijuana treatment. Some who cannot tolerate other anti-seizure medications being prescribed have been able to use marijuana to control seizures without the many side effects found in other medicines traditionally used to treat epilepsy.
The side effects associated with marijuana are much more “low risk” and because of this most medical marijuana states allow patients to use medical marijuana for epilepsy and/or seizures.
6. Migraine Headaches
Only about a hundred years ago, doctors were prescribing marijuana to treat migraine headaches. British and American physicians wrote about using cannabis to treat migraines and other ailments. A Canadian physician of the time even agreed, saying “Cannabis indica is probably the most satisfactory remedy” for migraine headaches.
According to recent studies, 39.7% of migraine sufferers given medical marijuana reported positive effects. Some of these effects included relief of intensity and even a reduction in the frequency of migraines sufferers experienced.
7. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Martin Lee, MAPS affiliate, and director of Project CBD has studied PTSD and cannabinoids in depth. Research showed that people with PTSD had lower levels of anandamide, which is an “endogenous cannabinoid compound,” than people without PTSD.
This might mean that PTSD is an endocannabinoid deficiency. Researchers believe marijuana may replenish missing endocannabinoids and provide PTSD patients with relief from their memories. Scientists have even found that CB-1 receptor signaling ceases traumatic memories and allow one to forget. THC, in one open trial of 10 participants with THC was found to decrease the hyperarousal symptoms PTSD patients were suffering from. Research on PTSD continues with two new trials beginning this year.
Unlike many other prescription medications it is impossible to die from an overdose on marijuana, making it a safer alternative medicine for many medical conditions. Research on marijuana is steadily increasing but more will be required to understand fully the benefits and potential harms of using marijuana to treat certain medical conditions.