Medical marijuana in Canada has been successful largely due to the feelings and medical conditions the plant can treat and alter. Here are the four most common conditions treated with cannabis. This list is not exhaustive but provides a snapshot of the diverse beneficial effects that various strains and methods can have.
Mental health disorders like anxiety have been on the rise now for years. This is the case for both young and older generations.
Whatever the causes or triggers people experience, medical research has found that cannabis can play a large part in reducing feelings of anxiety. Treatments may include cannabis flower or cannabis products, which isolate certain extracted cannabinoids like cannabidiol (CBD).
Indica strains often give users a calming effect, which makes them a common choice if opting for cannabis flower. Sativa strains are known to have more cerebral effects, which can also be beneficial. However, sativas can also create increased mental activity, making anxiety worse or bringing on an attack.
Research suggests that plants make us happy. This isn’t even research about consuming cannabis. But why should cannabis be any different?
Growing marijuana at home or consuming it also improves our moods. THC and CBD were found to have antidepressant effects in a 2017 study. These two cannabinoids are the most extracted and talked about chemical properties in cannabis for good reason.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) in the human body is responsible for how we feel. The ECS is a signalling network that is part of the central nervous system, which is made up of a network of receptors. Our body naturally produces endocannabinoids (ECBs) that bind to the receptors.
However, sometimes when our bodies are out of whack they lack the ECBs. Cannabis can provide ECBs, which brings a balance to this system, making us happy and effecting our mood.
3. Pain Management
Besides anxiety, one of the most common reasons people are prescribed medical marijuana in Canada is for pain. Sufferers of both short-term and chronic pain can look to cannabis for relief. Some conditions like multiple sclerosis are notoriously difficult to treat. But studies have found that cannabis can help.
While addiction to pharmaceutical pain medications like opioids has become a real problem, cannabis is both non-addictive and natural, making it a great alternative to more harmful medications.
Like different prescription medications, cannabis has a wide variety of strains with different effects. Indicas, sativas, and hybrids can all relieve pain depending on where in the body it is felt.
The antiemetic properties of marijuana are a huge reason why cancer patients are prescribed cannabis. When cancer patients undergo chemotherapy, a common side effect is nausea and lack of appetite. Cannabis is good at both stimulating appetites (also known as “the munchies”) and alleviating feelings of nausea.
It would seem counterproductive to have a lung cancer patient smoke or vape cannabis if there is already significant damage to the lungs or they are undergoing treatment. In this instance, the patient might opt for alternative means of consumption such as edibles, topicals, or sublingual administration.
The Future of Medical Marijuana in Canada
These four conditions may be common, but they are not exhaustive. Unfortunately, our world is full of various maladies and ailments that people suffer from. The good news is that cannabis research is increasingly being conducted and sho