More and more studies are being conducted that demonstrate the incredible powers of the cannabis plant, while in the past this type of studies were quite limited because it was illegal in North America, as well as in most parts of the world.
Still, these limitations are at the moment being lowered to a great extent, and scientists have bigger freedom when it comes to examining the effects cannabis has in general, and on our health as well.
The cannabis phytochemistry has over 85 substances present known as cannabinoids. The human digestion and nervous systems have endocannabinoid receptors, therefore the body has the ability to produce its own cannabinoids that are in control of the movements, emotions, appetite, and sleep.
Terpenes is the name of another family of cannabis compounds that are likewise associated with pain treatment. Terpenes and cannabinoids possess potent analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties, and the body has the ability to metabolize these phytochemicals. The psychoactivity of cannabis is what made all of its types illegal, hemp included, which doesn’t have this characteristic.
The “high feeling” is due to the THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, which is only one cannabinoid. Nevertheless, the majority of the cannabinoids are not psychoactive but offer medicinal effects.
The second most commonly encountered cannabinoid in this plant is CBD, or cannabidiol, which can be obtained from cannabis strains that have a low THC content, such as Charlotte’s Web, for therapeutic uses.
Cannabis has particularly positive effects in the pain treatment. Immediately after the CBD enters the bloodstream, it gets attached to the cannabinoid receptors present in the peripheral nerves and obstructs the pain signals from getting to the brain.
In addition to obstructing pain, cannabinoids likewise have the ability to alleviate the inflammation that triggers it, as well as enhance the immune system stimulate the healing.
This process likewise incorporates beta-caryophyllene, which is another non-psychoactive cannabinoid that has a different molecular structure compared to the majority of the other cannabinoids. It has the ability to relieve inflammation, as well as block neural pain reception, and is likewise present in black pepper, cinnamon, oregano, and basil.
A study that was carried out at the University of Michigan discovered that the use of medical cannabis for managing chronic pains can reduce the need for opioid painkillers:
“Patients who use medical cannabis for managing chronic pains reported a 64% decrease in their usage of more conventional prescription drugs for treating pain… patients likewise reported a smaller number of side-effects from the usage of these drugs and a 45% improvement in their life quality since they have started using marijuana for managing pain …
We have found that the if the dosage of opioids is higher, the risk of death caused by overdose is likewise higher … patients who participated in this study rated cannabis as similar in effect to the opioids for persons with pains with different severity.”
With this the effect of the usage of cannabis as a substitute for opioids is confirmed, and with the legalization of medical marijuana in the States, the number of deaths caused by overdose was reduced by 25 percent, which is a discovery of great importance because 30 percent of Americans are struggling with chronic pains.
The beneficial effects of cannabis for treating pain have been backed by numerous scientific studies, testaments of patients, as well as institutions like Oregon Health and Science University School of Medicine. Opioids can be extremely addictive and there is a higher threat of overdose, therefore non-addictive treatments are a must. United Press International states:
“The use of opioids and addiction has in fact turned into an epidemic in the US as a result of the fact that medical professionals over-prescribe opioid medications for the treatment of chronic pains … ‘the new data demonstrate that medications that are targeted at the endocannabinoid system can trigger analgesia with less negative-effects in comparison to opioids.”
Still, all of them agree that medical marijuana is a much safer alternative for usage compared to ibuprofen. A study that was conducted at the Université de Montreal included 215 participants. It made an estimate of the safety of the usage of medical marijuana for treating chronic pains, and with the exception of one negative reaction, all the other participants were experiencing improvements.
In other words, “The usage of medical marijuana for a period longer than one year was associated with improvements in terms of functioning, pain, cognitive functions and life quality.”
Furthermore, fibromyalgia is a severe neurological condition, which is manifested by widespread musculoskeletal pains, accompanied by memory problems, mood swings, fatigue, and sleep issues. The usual treatment incorporates taking acetaminophen, antidepressants, anti-seizure medication, and prescription pain relievers. Still, a lot of patients treat themselves with the use of cannabis.
The results of a survey that was conducted in 2014 by the National Pain Foundations indicate that 62 percent of patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia say that cannabis aided them to treat the pains and other symptoms as well.
On the other hand, only 8 to 10 percent of them came to the conclusion that the conventional medications are reliable and 22 to 32 percent a little effective.
It was also scientifically proven that medical cannabis helps in cases of multiple sclerosis or diabetic neuropathy.
The Cannabis Patch
You don’t have to take cannabinoids solely by vaping or smoking marijuana, because this is a plant can likewise be ingested, used topically, or injected, which depends on the cause and the area of the pain.
Cannabis Science in California released their “pain patch” for transdermal delivery of medical cannabis in November of 2016.
It was said that this patch has the ability alleviate neuropathy pain and fibromyalgia, and it can likewise be used for treating some other conditions as well. You apply this to the aching area, and then the skin rapidly absorbs the cannabis, thus transferring it to the blood stream.
The news release stated:
“… the patch offers a controlled release of the medicine into the body of the patient, generally through a porous membrane that covers a reservoir of medication or through body heat which melts the thin layers of the medicine embedded in the adhesive which is going to be containing an extract from high strength cannabinoid, such as CBD, which gradually gets into the bloodstream, thus permeating the central nervous system.”
The company says that these pain patches are only the beginning, and are researching at the moment the other usages of this plant.
Transdermal pens, as well as transdermal medical cannabis patches are sold in Mary’s Medicinal, and they can likewise be bought in Colorado, Oregon, Arizona, Nevada, Michigan, and Washington.
You need to remember that pain is a symptom, not a cause, therefore you have to discover the cause if you want to relieve it. Try managing stress, changing your diet and lifestyle, as well as using the amazing properties that medical cannabis has!