With the recent wave of legalization, more people of all ages are interested in cannabis than ever before. Younger adults are more likely to accept cannabis as medicine. At the same time, older citizens are now beginning to realize that cannabis really is useful medicine. In fact, for many, the benefits of medical marijuana are greater than side-effect laden pills, shots, and tinctures doctors may prescribe. But what is it about this special plant that makes it suited to fighting so many ailments? Here are some reasons why cannabis really is medicine, despite what certain industries or government officials might say.
Negative Impacts of Cannabis
There is a long list of benefits of medical marijuana. But first, it’s important to understand some of the common misconceptions around why marijuana isn’t medicine.
For starters, many believe that smoking marijuana damages lung health and leads to lung cancer. The common misconception is that smoking weed is just like smoking tobacco or consuming other carcinogens. In fact, while it's true that smoking tobacco causes lung cancer, cannabis actually increases lung capacity. Further, there actually isn't a correlation between cannabinoids and lung cancer.
Similarly, there are connections between cannabis, diminished brain activity, and a decrease in motivation and productivity. These claims are also bunk, as cannabis has been proven to have little impact on motivation. Plus, regular use can promote brain cell growth and assist in learning.
Benefits of Medical Marijuana for Mood Disorders
People use cannabis to treat a wide variety of mood disorders, including depression, anxiety, and borderline personality disorder. As a mood elevator, it releases dopamine into the brain, a chemical directly tied to our sensation of happiness. Furthermore, THC acts as a relaxant, calming the body and greatly diminishing negative sensations like jitteriness, nervousness, and nausea. That's a double-whammy; these symptoms often arise as symptoms of anxiety disorders.
Among patients who use cannabis as a treatment for depression, they experience fewer depressive episodes relative to those receiving standard medication. While marijuana is by no means a cure-all, the benefits of medical marijuana are clear.
Benefits of Medical Marijuana for Physical Disorders
In addition to marijuana’s stabilizing effect on mood, cannabis has also been employed in combating several extreme physical conditions, including certain genetic disorders and syndromes such as Parkinson’s and epilepsy and gastronomical issues such as Crohn’s.
While cannabis is widely known to be effective for pain relief, there are several well-documented examples of cannabis completely eliminating seizures in patients who previously suffered hundreds a day for years. While some in the medical field continue to be skeptical about the purported benefits of medical marijuana, marijuana contains a chemical called CBD which many are hailing as a miracle substance.
Concentrated CBD can be synthesized into many different forms with the ability to treat ailments from arthritis to near-constant seizures. There are even CBD lotions which can expel pain from specific areas of the body.
While many in the pharmaceutical industry do not want the public to be aware of the benefits of cannabis, there is a reason why medical marijuana is such a popular choice in the treatment of so many conditions. Luckily, the tide of legalization is turning quickly, and many more patients will soon have access to a growing revolution in medicine.