The Most Common Medical Uses of Marijuana
Arthritis. It is estimated that over 45 million Americans suffer from arthritis.
Arthritis is a auto-immune disease meaning a persons immune system will start fighting against the joints. Arthritis can cause severe joint and muscle pain in the hands and less commonly in other areas throughout the body.
Medical marijuana contains natural analgesics as well as anti-inflammatory compounds, providing tremendous pain relief from joint, muscle, and bone pain as well as working to lessen inflammation. Marijuana can be eaten or smoked to relieve the general pain and discomfort from arthritis and when eaten the effects last longer.
Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are the two most common forms of this disease and may be treated with the help of cannabinoids which naturally occur in marijuana. The cannabinoids work to fight arthritis pain by suppressing the immune system response times in hopes to lessen the severity of the pain.
For arthritis pain, an indica strain of marijuana is your best bet. Indicas tend to effect the body more, soothing the muscles and joints and providing pain relief to the entire body.
Glaucoma. It is estimated that over 4 million Americans suffer from glaucoma.
Glaucoma is a disease that can cause damage to the optic nerve, the cable that sends visual information from the eye to the brain. Optic nerve damage as a result of glaucoma can cause slight vision loss or even blindness.
Medical marijuana helps to fight glaucoma by lowering eye pressure which helps to relieve pressure surrounding the optic nerve cable. The less pressure surrounding the optic nerve, the lower the chance of damage resulting in vision loss.
There are currently little to no effective treatment options for glaucoma, although eye drop medication and laser surgery are accepted treatment choices. For some individuals, however, the treatment either doesn’t sufficiently lower eye pressure or causes undesirable side effects.
These side effects can include depression, decreased heart rate, exacerbate asthma, and heart failure. In situations like this, alternative therapies are sought out, the most controversial choice of course being medical marijuana.
Smoking marijuana has been proven to reduce intra ocular pressure and prevent or treat glaucoma (optic nerve damage) however the effects of marijuana only last 4-5 hours. This means a medical marijuana patient would have to smoke multiple times a day to have consistent results which concerns some medical doctors and adds to the drama of medical marijuana.
Appetite Loss, Nausea and Vomiting are common symptoms for cancer patients which affects an estimated 8 million people worldwide.
Plenty of cancer patients undergo chemotherapy which causes a lot of nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite that can last for weeks after a single treatment. Some cancer patients (around 40%) undergoing chemotherapy find the standard treatment for vomiting prevention to be entirely insufficient.
The human brain actually has tons of natural cannabinoid receptors in all different areas of the brain, including the area that controls and stimulates appetite called the hypothalamus. When marijuana is smoked and entered through the lounges, cannabinoids attach to various cannabinoid receptors in the brain including the hypothalamus, thus stimulating appetite.
Because of this medical marijuana proves to be a sufficient treatment option for all medical illnesses resulting in nausea, appetite loss and vomiting. These illnesses can include of course the side effects of chemotherapy but include kidney failure, anorexia, gastritis, depression and many more.
‘Marinol’ a component from the cannabis plant containing THC was approved after much resistance in the USA in 1986. Marinol comes in a pill form, and is commonly used to reduce nausea and vomiting.
Multiple Sclerosis. Over 350,000 Americans are estimated to be diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.
Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable disabling disease that attacks the central nervous system which includes the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves. Symptoms of MS are completely random varying from person to person and may include severe shaking, stuttering, spasticity, loss of vision, inability to communicate and sudden twitches and jerks.
A growing amount of recent data suggests that cannabis marijuana can alleviate and reduce symptoms like muscle spasticity and general pain in patients with MS. In 2009 the National Multiple Sclerosis Society released the following statement on marijuana as a treatment for MS, stating, “Although it is clear that cannabinoids have a potential for both management of MS symptoms such as pain and spasticity, as well as for neuroprotection.”
The following video is an excerpt from “The Union: The Business Behind Getting High. Greg Cooper is a medical marijuana patient with Multiple Sclerosis and Ataxia who shows that marijuana has very obvious medical uses.