With surprising associations, such as a lower body mass index, cannabis use continues to win throughout the 21st century. As a chemically nonaddictive substance, it’s one of the strongest tools alternative medicine has to offer in the battle for personalized medicine.
Providing treatment options for pain, COVID-19, and mental health, cannabis has a wide range of potential uses. One of the most famous uses, and thus most important to understand, is treating chronic pain with cannabis.
A 12-month questionnaire-based study selected 1,045 patients approved to use medical cannabis in Israel. After a year of checking in on the first, third, sixth, ninth, and twelfth month the study found that it “provides further evidence for the effects of MC on chronic pain and related symptoms, demonstrating an overall mild-to-modest long-term improvement of the tested measures and identifying possible predictors for treatment success.”
As the opiate crisis has been ongoing for decades now, the older demographic needs alternative options for pain management.
Overall, the average pain felt by participants decreased by 20% after one year. Predictors of successful treatment included normal sleeping habits, lower body weight, and a lower depression score. Neuropathic pain predicted difficulties with treatment.
Treating pain, sleep disturbance, anxiety and depression
A recently performed survey focused on older adults found that “most older adults in the sample initiated cannabis use after the age of 60 years and used it primarily for medical purposes to treat pain, sleep disturbance, anxiety, and/or depression.” 53% of the 568 65-year-old or older adults selected for the survey reported using cannabis daily or weekly. 78% of the adults reported only using cannabis for medical reasons, of which 73% reported pain or arthritis being their reason for using it.
As the opiate crisis has been ongoing for decades now, the older demographic needs alternative options for pain management. The growing acceptance of cannabis, which the adults reported using through lotions (35%), tinctures (35%), and smoking (30%), could be key in saving people, and especially older people with compromised health, from opiates’ clutches.
Helpful in higher doses
Another study was done on 61 people who used opiates. Through the suggestion that these people use medical cannabis to treat their condition, 50.8% of participants were able to stop opiate use altogether. It took a median of about 6.4 years for patients to stop opiate use.
Overall, the average pain felt by participants decreased by 20% after one year.
The researchers concluded, “there were no variables that predicted who stopped opioids, except that those who used higher doses of cannabis were more likely to stop, which suggests that some patients might be able to stop opioids by using cannabis, particularly those who are dosed at higher levels.”
Text: Karhlyle Fletcher
Cannabis Therapy – online magazine for cannabis patients and experts alike. Issue No.2 coming soon! In the meantime, check out the issue no. 1 HERE.