What Conditions Is Medical Marijuana Being Used To Treat?

Medical marijuana has been available in some parts of the US for quite some time. However, there has been a sea-change in recent years, and marijuana is now much more widely available. 

There are many claims made about the medicinal qualities of marijuana. Science supports some of these, but not all.

Reducing Anxiety

There are two primary compounds in marijuana that are responsible for its effects. They are CBD and THC. THC is responsible for most of the recreational effects of cannabis. CBD, on the other hand, mediates most of the medicinal effects.

CBD also acts as a brake on the effects of THC. CBD alone is not psychoactive. But strains of cannabis that contain a high CBD: THC ratio are more calming and less anxiety-inducing. By contrast, strains that are high in THC but low in CBD cause a more intense high.

High CBD strains of marijuana are effective at treating anxiety in some people. CBD alone can treat anxiety without inducing any kind of high.

Reducing Inflammation

There is a substantial body of evidence to suggest that cannabis and substances derived from it might be effective at reducing inflammation. Topical preparations made from the cannabis plant seem to perform as well as pharmaceutical alternatives.

Treating Chronic and Neuropathic Pain

Chronic and neuropathic pain are both notoriously difficult to treat. Putting people on strong painkillers isn’t feasible in the long term. Anecdotal evidence has long suggested that cannabis is useful for managing both chronic and neuropathic pain. Formal studies now back up this anecdotal evidence.

Treat Nausea and Vomiting

Marijuana is a very potent anti-emetic. Regardless of the underlying cause, marijuana is very effective at eliminating nausea and preventing vomiting. 

Be careful about using marijuana as an anti-emetic if your nausea might be down to morning sickness from pregnancy. Marijuana can be harmful to developing fetuses.

Can Cannabis Treat Cancer?

The short answer is no. Some studies suggest compounds within cannabis might be able to shrink tumors. But we’re talking about extracted substances being injected directly into tumors in Petri dishes. It would be wrong to infer that taking cannabis or cannabis-derived substances is a confirmed cancer cure.

What’s the Law Where You Are?

The tide has turned on cannabis since the turn of the century. Under federal law, marijuana remains illegal. What’s more, it is a schedule 1 substance, meaning it has “no recognized medical value.” However, not only has medical marijuana become much more widely available, but numerous states have now legalized it for recreational use.

In Arizona, for example, marijuana is legal for medical purposes but with strict restrictions. Marijuana for recreational use is still illegal in the state; a first-time drug possession charge for a small amount of marijuana is a felony charge. In this sense, a person could face serious criminal charges for marijuana crimes and be in the need of an experienced Phoenix, AZ drug crimes lawyer

In California, on the other hand, marijuana is legal for both medical and recreational purposes. People age 21 and over can use and give away no more than one ounce of cannabis and can cultivate a maximum of six plants for personal use at their residence. 

This unique arrangement creates numerous issues, not least of all confusion. It is essential to know what the laws are where you are. There are some cases of police arresting people for possession of CBD oil, a non-psychoactive cannabis-derived substance. If anyone arrests you for marijuana possession, make sure to say nothing until you have spoken to an attorney.

For some people, medical marijuana can provide a vital lifeline. Marijuana-derived oils have also been effective at treating epilepsy that doesn’t respond to conventional treatments. Just make sure that you understand the limitations and you know the laws where you are.