The use of medical marijuana continues to become more widely accepted. A recent study conducted found that more people are using marijuana to help treat specific medical conditions, instead of using it for its psychoactive effects and to get “high”. The study surveyed over 165,000 cannabis consumers in the U.S. and the results showed that nearly half of the participants reported using cannabis for medical purposes instead of using it recreationally.
The survey participants that suffer from cancer, depression, and various respiratory complications were some of the most common conditions that patients used cannabis to help alleviate their symptoms. Chronic pain is also another medical condition that patients use marijuana to treat in the U.S.
An additional study reported that 85% of patients in the U.S. use their medical marijuana cards to help treat their symptoms, while others do it for fun. Of that 85%, 62% of them were suffering from chronic pain. As far as treating chronic pain, traditional treatment methods usually involve opioids, which can result in side effects including nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and constipation. Patients often deny prescription opioid treatment because they want an alternative treatment that has a lower risk of addiction.
Medical cannabis is a great alternative to prescription pain medication due to its medicinal properties and minimal side effects. Many medical marijuana patients claim their reasons for opting out of opioid treatment is because of the potential risk for addiction. According to the CDC, the rate of opioid-related deaths in the U.S. has shown a steady increase since the start of the millennium. This is a result of the increasing number of opioid prescriptions since the late 1990s.
As medical marijuana availability has increased in recent years, the number of opioid prescriptions has started to decline. Medical marijuana has been known to help minimize the side effects of withdrawal that long time opioid users experience when coming off of their prescriptions. Marijuana is reported to have the potential to reduce cravings for other drugs as well.
If you are a Missourian suffering from a qualifying condition, you may be eligible to treat your ailment with medical marijuana, which includes both THC and CBD products.