Medical marijuana is legal is several states – Montana, North Dakota, California, Colorado, and New York, to name a few. Marijuana first had its debut in the medical scene in 1996, as the National Conference of State Legislatures notes that California was the first in the union to pass Proposition 215, making medical use of marijuana legal. Researchers have been studying the medical benefits of marijuana use, and this is what they’ve found:
- Help with pain relief
- Help control nausea and vomiting
- Assist appetite stimulation
- Relieve some of the symptoms associated with HIV/AIDS, cancer, glaucoma, and multiple sclerosis.
A report conducted by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine found that cannabis can help treat muscle spasms found in multiple sclerosis and can assist with vomiting and nausea associated with chemotherapy. Researchers also found that the cannabinoids found in marijuana can help those who experience chronic pain – a common reason for why many people seek to use this as a medication. It does seem to be working, as 92% of participants in a 2013 survey published in the New England Journal of Medicine stated that marijuana has helped alleviate symptoms of chronic pain, arthritis, migraines, and cancer.
There are two main components of marijuana that have lent themselves to medical use: tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). THC works to decrease pain, inflammation, and muscle control problems, while CBD is useful for reducing pain and inflammation, controlling epileptic seizures, and potentially mental illnesses and addictions.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse states that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved marijuana for medical use because not enough studies have been conducted to outweigh the risks associated with the medical benefits. Researchers are also curious to uncover whether the legalization of marijuana, for both medical and/or recreational purposes, will cause a decrease in prescription opioid problems.
As more research is being conducted, we will see how the legalization of marijuana in these two contexts will interplay with other drug-related concerns and health issues. If you are currently struggling with addiction, make the decision to seek help today. There are many people who wish to help you, and it’s never too late.
New Vista Behavioral Health is home to several world-renowned, California state-licensed mental health and substance abuse recovery treatment programs. If are ready to develop life-long skills to help overcome your obstacles related to mental illness or addiction, call us today at 888-316-3665 for a consultation.