Cannabis has been shown time and time again to improve the lives of those who struggle with certain ailments. Here’s just a small sample.
Medical marijuana is now legal in 36 states and several U.S. territories. Its medical applications continue to broaden as cannabis becomes a mainstream treatment option in this country.
With this increased accessibility, marijuana is now being researched and used to treat more medical conditions, and some of these may surprise you.
Inflammatory Bowel Diseases
Those who suffer from inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs), such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, are turning to cannabis for relief. Studies have shown that cannabis can not cure these diseases or stop the symptoms. There have, however, been reports that using marijuana as treatment for the painful symptoms has proven successful.
According to TIME, “patients who used cannabinoids reported significant improvements in abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea, appetite and overall well-being.” Cannabis cannot prevent these painful diseases, but when used to relieve the symptoms it can be highly effective.
Cannabis has shown promise when used to treat some forms of epilepsy, in particular, more severe types of the disease. Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome are two rare epileptic disorders. Recently the FDA has approved a cannabis-based drug, Epidiolex, to help treat these rarer diseases.
According to the FDA website, Epidolex is “the first FDA-approved drug that contains a purified drug substance derived from marijuana. It is also the first FDA approval of a drug for the treatment of patients with Dravet syndrome.” This marijuana-based drug is used to treat seizures associated with these diseases and has shown marked success.
There is debate as to whether or not marijuana helps or hurts symptoms related to asthma. Smoking any substance is highly detrimental to those who suffer from asthma. Some say that cannabis should be avoided in general if you suffer from asthma. Others have noted some benefits from using cannabinoids to treat symptoms related to asthma.
“Taking other forms of the plant that don’t require smoking may potentially benefit people with asthma,” according to Healthline. The research on using cannabinoids to treat asthma is still very new and contested. Time and further research is needed before declaring whether cannabis helps or hurts asthma.
Alziehmer’s patients have found medical marijuana useful for several reasons. Not onlyt has marijuana has helped Alzeihmer’s patients put much needed weight on, it has also helped curbed the often-agitated moods and behavior that many who suffer from Alzeihmer’s experiences.
Additionally, there was a recent study that linked marijuana to slowing a process that may or may not cause the disease itself. “In one cell study, researchers found it slowed the progress of protein deposits in the brain,” wrote CNN. “Scientists think these proteins may be part of what causes Alzheimer’s, although no one knows what causes the disease,” the article continued.
Medical marijuana has proven to be particularly effective in treating symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis. “In particular, marijuana appears to ease the pain of multiple sclerosis (MS), and nerve pain in general,” according to Harvard Medical School’s website.
Marijuana is often helpful for symptoms like stiffness, pain and spasms. Other pain drugs for MS can be very strong and can come with equally strong side effects. Cannabis can help relieve pain while not causing severe brain fog or other harsh side effects.