Is Medical Cannabis Right For Me?

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Posted on July 16, 2018

Wondering if medical cannabis could be the right treatment for you?

Reading Time: 2 minutes

If you’re suffering from a condition like chronic pain and you’re tired of dealing with the harsh side effects of pharmaceuticals, medical cannabis is a fantastic alternative therapy to consider.

Many patients are turning to cannabis because conventional treatments and therapies have failed to effectively treat their condition. And while some stigma still exists around medical cannabis, public perceptions and attitudes are shifting.

If you’re interested in exploring medical cannabis, you should speak with a medical professional to determine whether it might be a suitable treatment option.

However, before you book a consultation with your physician, it’s important to get a clear understanding of why cannabis might be a good fit for you.

This article outlines conditions that may qualify you for medical cannabis treatment, along with its risks and benefits, and tips for talking to your doctor about cannabis.

Consider Your Condition and Symptoms

If you’d like to explore cannabis treatment, you should first consider your specific condition and the symptoms you’re experiencing.

Cannabis is a remarkable plant with a robust and wide-ranging therapeutic profile. Research has shown it can be beneficial for a vast number of symptoms and conditions, from arthritis to fibromyalgia and certain mental health conditions.

Patients suffering from chronic pain or terminal illnesses such as cancer and AIDS are also often good candidates for medical cannabis in Canada.

Here are a some of the most common conditions that may qualify you for medical cannabis treatment under the Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulation (ACMPR):

  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Sleep disorders
  • ADD
  • Anxiety
  • Epilepsy
  • Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Crohn’s/Colitis
  • Migraines
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Glaucoma

Cannabis is quickly becoming the preferred treatment for people suffering from chronic pain. One of the most comprehensive and up-to-date reports on cannabis research shows there’s substantial evidence that cannabis can be a safe and effective treatment for chronic pain.

Furthermore, cannabis is becoming more widely accepted as a safe alternative to heavy-duty painkillers like opioids. A number of studies suggest cannabis can help alleviate symptoms of chronic pain without the risk of overdose.

According to a 2016 study published in the Journal of Pain, participants who substituted medical cannabis for opioids experienced the following benefits:

  • Improved quality of life
  • A decreased number of side effects
  • A 64% decrease in opioid use

Learn About the Risks and Benefits of Cannabis

As with any new medication, you should consider the risks and benefits associated with medical cannabis.

An in-depth conversation with a medical professional is recommended to help you better understand how cannabis works and what you can expect while taking it.

For the most part, cannabis’ side effects are known to be minor. According to a two-year study conducted by Pesach Shvartzman, MD, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel, some of the most common side effects medical cannabis users experienced were hunger, dry mouth, elevated mood, fatigue, and sleepiness.

Unlike potentially addictive and dangerous prescription drugs like opioids, it’s essentially impossible to overdose on cannabis, and cannabis has a much lower rate of dependency.

Cannabis is addictive to approximately 9% of users. However, the likelihood of becoming addicted to cannabis is far lower in comparison to hard drugs and legal substances such as alcohol and tobacco.

Know Your Options

One of the biggest barriers patients face when exploring cannabis treatment? Accessibility.

Cannabis is becoming more widely accepted and acknowledged within the medical community. However, a large number of physicians are still ignorant to the benefits of medical cannabis.

If your doctor refuses your request to access medical cannabis, don’t lose hope! There are other options.

If you’d like any additional guidance or advice about cannabis-friendly doctors or obtaining a medical cannabis prescription, contact us or call 1-888-980-9066.

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