As per federal regulations, marijuana in any form is illegal. It’s listed among the Schedule I drugs. However, 33 US states have legalized medical use of marijuana, California is one of them. In a cannabis legalized state, you can legally access the herb for managing various conditions such as pain, anxiety, etc. with MMJ recs. In most states, a rec letter is valid for 12 months and then you need to apply for MMJ card renewal in Garden Grove.
Research says that pain is one of the top conditions for which patients use cannabis. Since marijuana use doesn’t cause any side-effects, more patients prefer it over other pain management techniques.
Some Statistics Related to Pain
Chronic pain can last for a few days to years. The CDC estimates that 1 in 5 people in the United States experience chronic pain. About 8 percent of adults suffer from high-intensity pain.
Chronic pain is the number one cause of disability across the world. (source)
Women are at a greater risk of chronic pain than men. (source)
About 65 percent of people age 65 and older have chronic pain. (source)
What is Medical Marijuana?
Medical marijuana is the use of the marijuana plant or its parts for managing a condition. It’s basically the same plant used recreationally but consumed for medical purposes.
In a marijuana plant, there are more than 100 cannabinoids, the two most popular ones are THC and CBD. Each cannabinoid works differently and delivers different effects on the body and mind. For instance, THC binds to cannabinoid receptors, thus changing various bodily functions.
Using Marijuana For Pain
In the past years, cannabis use has become popular as an effective treatment for various conditions. With studies showing that marijuana can help ease pain naturally, more patients are opting for the herb over other pain management techniques.
Recent research says that out of the 62 percent of individuals who used CBD for managing a condition, the majority of them used it for chronic pain, arthritis, and joint pain. CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that is popular for amazing pain management and anti-inflammatory effects.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a cell-signaling system, which is responsible for controlling many functions, such as sleep, mood, memory, pain, metabolism, etc. The system comprises three main parts—endocannabinoids, receptors, and enzymes.
Endocannabinoids are naturally produced compounds, which stimulate the receptors in different parts of the body, such as the brain, organs, connective tissues, etc. Research says that cannabinoids found in marijuana are similar to endocannabinoids, thus they can mimic the function of the latter.
Studies show that cannabinoids can help ease pain and inflammation by interacting with the endocannabinoid system.
Marijuana vs Pain Medications
Access to marijuana for managing pain is very important, especially for seniors who experience a lot of health issues by using medications. Since 1999, the use of opioid medications has increased, and also the death rate due to opioid overdose.
Although opioid medications can help ease pain, they aren’t safe. Some studies say that these medications don’t work when used for the long-term. Common side-effects associated with opioids are—constipation, nausea, drowsiness, sedation, and slowed breathing.
In the US states where medical marijuana is legal, they have shown a decline in opioid use. According to a study of 3000 medical marijuana patients including around ⅓ of those who used opioid medications in the past 6 months, the majority of the patients reported that cannabis delivered better effects. The herb didn’t cause any side-effects. Moreover, 97 percent of them reported a significant reduction in opioid medications with marijuana.
There’s anecdotal evidence that CBD can help ease pain associated with various conditions, such as fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, arthritis, etc. In 2017, the World Anti-Doping Agency removed CBD from the 2018 list of prohibited substances.
Marijuana Can Help Boost Mental Health
Marijuana can improve mental health. Science says that cannabinoids can help boost mood, memory, sleep, etc. by binding to the cannabinoid receptors in the endocannabinoid system.
According to a study published in the Journal of Affective Disorders in 2018, cannabis helped lower anxiety, stress, and depression levels effectively. However, long-term cannabis use may worsen the symptoms.,
Research says that anxiety can cause many physical symptoms. These include pain, nausea, headache, sleep problems, shortness of breath, sweating, and muscle tension. Thus, by managing anxiety, cannabis can help ease chronic pain, thus improving the quality of life.
Marijuana is effective for improving sleep by reducing REM sleep. According to a 2019 review, THC and CBD helped improve the sleep quality and also reduced the total time taken to fall asleep.
How to Use Marijuana For Managing Chronic Pain?
Before starting marijuana treatment for chronic pain, it’s important to understand that marijuana doesn’t work the same way for all consumers. The effects may vary depending on your condition, age, body weight, etc. Other factors impacting marijuana’s medicinal effects are dosage, strain type, and delivery method. To understand what works best for you, it’s necessary to do a lot of experiments. Start with a low dose of a low-THC strain and monitor the effects. If it doesn’t work, try a different strain.
Top Marijuana Strains For Pain
- Redwood Kush
- Blue Dream
- White Widow
- Northern Lights
- Cataract Kush
- Master Kush
- Sour Diesel
- Bubba Kush
4 Common Delivery Method for Cannabis
Different methods of cannabis consumption are :
It involves heating cannabis at a high temperature to generate the smoke. The smoke containing THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids is then inhaled through the mouth. Common ways of smoking marijuana are joints, blunts, and water pipes.
A vaporizer is a special device used to convert cannabis into vapors. One major difference between smoking and vaping is that vaping occurs at a low temperature, thus preserving chemical compounds that are heat sensitive.
Ingesting cannabis provides delayed effects. When you eat cannabis-infused foods, cannabinoids take time to reach the bloodstream because they are processed by the digestive system. The effects of edibles last longer as compared to smoking or vaping.
If you are looking for localized relief from pain or inflammation, topicals are perfect for you. These marijuana-infused creams and lotions can be applied directly to the skin. And, the cannabinoids work by binding to the receptors present in the skin.
Since the delivery method greatly influences the marijuana effects, make sure you select the right one based on your requirements. However, you can discuss your condition with a professional MMJ doctor and get medical advice regarding cannabis consumption.
Medical studies say that cannabis is a safer alternative to pain medications. Its chemical compounds have medicinal properties and can help ease pain, inflammation, anxiety, etc. by stimulating the cannabinoid receptors.
Before using cannabis for reducing pain or inflammation, learning how cannabinoids work in your body is very important. Try different strains with different levels of cannabinoids and see what works for you the best. Additionally, consider dosing and delivery methods since they also impact the effects your body and mind receive from marijuana use.
See a doctor online to apply for a new card or MMJ card renewal in Garden Grove. It’s very simple and takes less than 10 minutes. The process is :
- Sign up an account
- Talk to a licensed doctor through HIPAA-compliant software
- Receive MMJ recs in PDF via email