Give an overview of the major medicinal benefits of cannabis, and highlight some of the most talked about evidence.
Cannabis is an incredible plant, with a seemingly endless variety of uses. One of the most talked about uses of cannabis is as a medicine. There is significant historical evidence of cannabis being used as a medicine for thousands of years. With such a rich historical past as a medicine, the current medical legalization of cannabis in 36 states of the U.S., and so much discussion about cannabis as medicine in the news, what exactly are the medical benefits of cannabis?
Well, given there have been hundreds of cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and other phytonutrients discovered in cannabis, and all of those have been found to have their own medicinal properties, the answer can get complicated. We can get into all of the details later. Today, we’re going to keep it simple, and narrow it down to some of the top medical benefits of cannabis.
To start, let’s look at what the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has to say about the medicinal effects of cannabis. In their practically famous patent, #6630507, they clearly state cannabinoids work as antioxidants and neuroprotectants. They go on to confirm, “cannabinoids useful in the treatment” and prevention of a “wide variety of oxidation associated diseases, such as ischemic, age-related, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases”. Reducing inflammation, improving blood flow, and boosting our immune system are three major health benefits of cannabis.
Cannabis is known to work as a neuroprotectant, protecting our brain and nerve cells from damage, malfunction, and degeneration. The patent also discusses the successful use of cannabinoids in the treatment of neurological issues. They suggest cannabis is useful “in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and HIV dementia”. These neuroprotective properties of cannabis are another reason why cannabis is such a versatile medicine.
Cannabis has also been proven to be effective in the treatment of certain types of epilepsy, a common neurological disorder. In 2018, the FDA approved the very first pharmaceutical medication derived from cannabis, called Epidiolex. It was approved to be prescribed in the treatment of two types of epilepsy, Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.
It addition to what the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services have confirmed about the medical benefits of cannabis, there is a growing amount of scientific evidence, quickly piling up, for the use of cannabis in reducing pain, helping with sleep, assisting with addiction recovery, depression, anxiety, PTSD, improving quality of life in terminally ill patients, and more. Having the ability to help in the treatment of so many different conditions and disorders really does categorize cannabis as an extremely versatile medicine, but how do you know if cannabis is right for you?
Another tricky question, with a somewhat complicated answer. However, the answer can be reduced to a few simple tips in deciding whether or not you should try cannabis as a medicine. First, before making any medical decisions, always discuss them with your doctor first. If your doctor doesn’t recommend medical cannabis, find out why, and consider getting a second opinion if needed.
Talk to your friends, family, or someone you might know who is already a medical cannabis patient. Once you’ve had time to think it over, if you decide to get registered as a medical patient, your next step is to visit a dispensary. Then, when you come to Terrabis, our patient care specialists will be ready to walk you through the steps for taking home the right cannabis product for you.