If you are experiencing chronic pain, you may be looking for solutions other than opioids medications to help you with pain relief. Relieving pain is no easy task, and millions of people experience chronic pain from mild to severe ranges. In this article, we are going to talk more about how marijuana helps to alleviate chronic pain.
If we were to poll users of dispensaries in San Francisco, it is likely that many of the frequent visitors are coming for refills to help with their chronic pain.
What Is Chronic Pain & Who Experiences It?
If you’ve made it to your adult life, you know someone with chronic pain or are someone who experiences chronic pain. Chronic pain plagues over 100 million Americans according to the Institute of Medicine of The National Academies. More people suffer from chronic pain than diabetes to give you an idea of how widespread the issue truly is.
Acute pain is a normal sensation that is triggered in your nervous system to let you know the possible injury is at hand and that you need to take care of yourself. Acute pain is different from chronic pain. Chronic pain is persistent, and pain signals continue to fire in the nervous systems for weeks, months, and some people even experience pain for years.
Some chronic pain is caused by an initial mishap such as an infection, cancer, a serious fall or something similar. On the other hand, some people experience chronic pain without any injury or evidence of damage to the body. Older adults are often the ones that suffer from chronic pain the most.
Many people complain of chronic pains such as low back pain, headaches, pain from cancer, arthritis and more. With so many people experiencing chronic pain, there has been continuous research on how to alleviate this pain and one of those solutions is marijuana.
How Marijuana Helps With Pain
Marijuana has been known to relieve pain, but for different reasons people experience pain, there can be different products or strains that work best for your condition.
The three different categories of pain are:
- Nociceptive pain
- Neuropathic pain
- Central pain
Nociceptive pain is inflammatory pain that results from tissue damage. This type of pain is described as sharp, aching, or throbbing pain and happens after physical damage. This type of pain can be weakened by the reduction of pain signals at the site of the injury by blocking the inflammatory process itself or the signals they put out. Dampening their effects as they make their way up the spinal cord to the brain is another strategy to reduce pain. Cannabis can target both of these processes which is why it can reduce pain in these instances.
Neuropathic pain result from forceful injury, pinching or stabbing that causes nerve damage. Disease can also cause this type of pain. This type of pain is difficult to treat since it doesn’t result from inflammation that can be targeted by non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Whether this neuropathic pain is due to injury or not, cannabis has proven to be a viable means of treatment. Cannabis is rich in CBD and protects against the development of chemo-induced pain because it activates serotonin receptors. Cannabis can do this without impairing the effectiveness of the chemotherapy drug that is destroying cancer, and this makes this a promising strategy for patients with different diseases including cancer.
Is Marijuana Right For You?
If you are dealing with chronic pain, you may be wondering if this is going to be a good treatment for you. Marijuana reacts differently with different people as well as with different conditions. The best next step that you can take if you want to pursue medical marijuana is to speak with your doctor about using it as an option for treating your chronic pain.
Some people do well when using marijuana while other people become paranoid and anxious. The only way to be sure how you are going to react is to use it and see.
How Can You Use Medical Marijuana?
Some people do not want to smoke marijuana to get pain relief and want to know if other methods will allow them to get relief without a joint. The answer is yes; there are other ways that you can intake marijuana to get the results that you want. You should know that smoking marijuana is one of the fastest ways to get pain relief results and it is easy to make sure you are getting proper dosage. The downside is that smoking anything could be bad for your lungs.
The other ways you can use marijuana for relieving your pain is by vapor machine, sprays, and transdermal patches. Each of these also has their pros and cons and it the best way to treat your pain symptoms is greatly up to how your body reacts and which method you feel is most effective.
Marijuana is giving more people suffering from chronic pain, not only hope, but also results that are allowing them to experience a better quality of life. Doctors are adopting the use of marijuana to treat their patients, but many of them will not look into this method until all other methods have been proven to be ineffective for the patient. If you want to try the use of marijuana, make sure to ask your doctor and see if they are willing to experiment.
If you are a medical marijuana patient who has found relief from chronic pain through the use of medical cannabis, leave a comment and share your experience in the section below.