“What we don’t understand, we fear.
What we fear, we judge as evil.
What we judge as evil, we attempt to control.
And what we cannot control, we attack.”
– Unknown Author
This is very appropriate when it comes to medical marijuana’s therapeutic benefits. Some praise marijuana’s therapeutic benefits to the skies; while some see this plant as nothing but something to be abhorred.
Although research studies about marijuana’s therapeutic effects are very promising, there are still so many people who would never think to buy marijuana as therapeutic. They oppose the idea that marijuana is a medicine. That it is something evil that must be controlled.
But is it, really?
Let’s try to understand how medical marijuana works.
Marijuana as a medical drug, fake or not?
Marijuana has the ability to relieve symptoms of several medical conditions, including intractable and treatment-resistant ones.
Numerous research studies have already been done on marijuana’s cannabinoids. Researchers have studied the effects of phytocannabinoids on our endocannabinoid system, and their results are very promising. Marijuana has, indeed, the ability to control diseases and illnesses.
Unfortunately, research is still limited since marijuana is considered a Class I controlled substance. In addition to studying individual cannabinoids, we also lack large-scale clinical trials to prove that marijuana is a medical drug.
Hopefully, when we finally have these clinical trials, research will show that marijuana’s benefits far outweigh its risks.
What happens to your body when you use medical marijuana?
One of the most important biological systems in the body is the endocannabinoid system. It plays an important part in regulating physiological responses including pain, inflammation, appetite, mood, sleep, memory, etc. One of its primary functions is to promote homeostasis or balance in the body. It also functions as a modulator of physiological responses by maintaining normal chemical levels.
Studies have found that people with chronic medical conditions have dysfunctional endocannabinoid systems. So this important system isn’t able to properly regulate the physiological responses, resulting in symptoms. Additionally, a dysfunctional endocannabinoid system also contributes to the progression of the medical problem.
When cannabinoids are introduced to the body though and activate the endocannabinoid systems, they “lend a helping hand,” so to speak. The endocannabinoid systems are given enough cannabinoids so they can function properly and regulate our physiological responses. With more cannabinoids in the body, symptoms are controlled.
Some of the health benefits associated with medical marijuana include pain reduction and inflammation control. It also promotes better sleep, improves appetite, and uplifts mood. Medical marijuana can also help control seizures and cancer growth as well as metastasis. It’s also known to control nausea, vomiting, and muscles spasms. Medical marijuana also helps relieve mental health problems like depression, anxiety, PTSD, autism, among others.
How does medical marijuana work?
How our body works is fascinating.
Groups of cells form tissues. From these tissues, organs are formed. Finally, groups of organs form an organ system. You have the central nervous system, for example, which is composed of the brain and spinal cord.
Now, each cell has countless receptors. These receptors react to chemicals or compounds that are specific to them. You have the cell’s pain receptors called nociceptors, for example.
Pain is a stimulus and activates the pain receptors. Once activated, your cells release chemicals such as substance P and bradykinin. These chemicals will carry the pain signal from one cell to another cell until they reach the brain region responsible for perceiving and processing pain. Once there, the brain will tell your body part to move away from the painful stimulus.
To control pain, your cells will also release other types of chemicals that prevent or reduce the transmission of the pain signal. Once these inhibitory chemicals are released, you will feel less pain.
Now, here is what happens when medical marijuana is introduced.
It can “tell” your cells to stop transmitting pain signals when it activates the endocannabinoid system. When this happens, pain is reduced.
High levels of excitatory or inhibitory chemicals contribute to the development of symptoms. The cannabinoids help promote balance between the chemicals that excite and those that moderate, weaken, and prevent response. With cannabinoids helping to maintain chemical balance, the symptoms can be controlled.
Here’s another fascinating thing about cannabinoids:
Our cells do produce its own cannabinoids called endocannabinoids. Our cells also release them when there’s a stimulus. Unfortunately though, our endocannabinoids are short-lived. As soon as they’re released, our body’s enzymes break them down so their effects don’t last that long.
When cannabinoids are administered, it can also boost the endocannabinoid levels by preventing their degradation. With more endocannabinoids in the body, the endocannabinoid systems are able to regulate physiological responses and control symptoms.
In what cases is it possible to use medical marijuana?
Inflammation is a good thing. After all, it’s our body’s way of protecting itself from infections and injuries.
Unfortunately, uncontrolled inflammation can be detrimental to us, too. In fact, it can worsen diseases. Inflammation has been implicated in the progression of many medical conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, and Crohn’s Disease. It also plays a big role in brain conditions like autism, Alzheimer’s Disease, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, and Parkinson’s Disease. It even plays a part in cancer and HIV/AIDS.
The cannabinoids can control inflammation by telling the cells to stop producing chemicals that promote and worsen inflammation. In addition to this, it can also prompt the death of pro-inflammatory cells. With these controlled, inflammation is reduced and the healthier cells are given enough time to heal. In time and with continuous use of medical marijuana, symptoms can be improved.
Several studies have been done on medical marijuana and various chronic medical conditions. Some of the diseases and illnesses that medical marijuana can help treat include:
- Multiple sclerosis. It can control intractable and treatment-resistant pain caused by nerve injury.
- Anxiety disorder. It can calm and relax patients with generalized anxiety disorder. It can even relieve severe anxiety in patients with post-traumatic stress disorder.
- Depression. It can relieve depression associated with chronic and debilitating medical conditions.
- Cancer. It can prevent growth, metastasis, and invasion of cancer cells. Medical marijuana may also be used together with chemotherapy drugs since it can control nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy.
- Seizures. It can control seizures that are intractable and hard to treat.
- Alzheimer’s Disease. It can relieve symptoms and slow down the progression of Alzheimer’s Disease.
- Pain and inflammation. It can control severe pain and chronic inflammation associated with arthritis.
- Crohn’s Disease. It can relieve pain and improve symptoms of gastrointestinal problems.
- Parkinson’s Disease. It can improve motor and sleep problems associated with Parkinson’s Disease. It is also able to control psychosis seen in some Parkinson’s Disease patients.
- Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. It can improve cognitive as well as behavioral problems.
- Diabetes. It can control blood sugar levels and improve overall health.
- Addiction. It can help control addiction, even marijuana addiction.
- Schizophrenia. It can improve schizophrenia symptoms.
- Glaucoma. It can improve intraocular pressure in glaucoma.
- HIV/AIDS. It can help improve symptoms associated with HIV/AIDS such as depression, anxiety, sleep problems, muscle pain, and pain caused by nerve damage.
Medical marijuana, especially CBD, has a good safety profile. CBD, a nonpsychoactive cannabinoid, has the ability to control symptoms without affecting blood pressure as well as heart rate. Its side effects are also well-tolerated.
Studies have been done on #medical #marijuana and various medical conditions. Illnesses that it can help treat include Multiple Sclerosis, Depression, Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, #Pain and Inflammation, #Cancer, and more.Click To Tweet
We need more studies on medical marijuana as well as clinical trials. However, the results of the current studies we have are promising. Medical marijuana may be a good add-on or an alternative treatment to conventional drugs.
Have you or a loved one used medical marijuana?
Share your thoughts and comments with us.
“PIN & SHARE”