Managing chronic pain continues to be a major concern for many Americans today. While chronic pain often accompanies arthritis and other health issues that commonly afflict the human body as it ages, it is also frequently attributed to past injuries or specific health issues, such as those associated with the spine or joints.
No matter the source of the pain, many Americans struggle to find a reliable way to manage it without relying on addictive opioids or other potentially harmful pharmaceutical options. If you are currently dealing with this type of pain, the following information will help you understand the possible benefits you might experience with the usage of medical cannabis.
Understand the potential differences in plant strains
Cannabis plants can vary widely in their effectiveness for the management of pain or other medical conditions, often due to their particular plant strain. For example, plants that are identified as being "indica strains" are often chosen specifically for their ability to relieve many types of pain, including nerve pain, joint pain, and headaches that are not diagnosed as migraines.
Other strains may be less effective against pain but offer equally important benefits, such as mood stabilization or the ability to improve appetite or sleep quality.
Understand the differences between tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) are two terms often used in conversations about the use of medical cannabis. It is important to note that medical cannabis products that contain THC are considered psychoactive because they produce a high when ingested or inhaled. Products that contain CBD, with little or no THC, can still provide pain relief and other benefits but will not produce a high for the user.
Understand the different products available
In the past, marijuana was most often utilized through smoking in the form of tobacco derived from a marijuana plant, using a pipe, or rolled into a cigarette-like joint. Through modern extraction methods, however, it is now possible to purchase medical cannabis in forms that can be eaten or ingested, smoked, vaped, applied to the skin, or inserted into the rectum.
While growing in popularity medical cannabis is still considered to be an experimental therapy by much of the medical community. If you are interested in using it for chronic pain management, it is important that you discuss doing so with your medical care provider. To get additional information or answers to specific questions, you should also plan to speak with a reputable provider of medical cannabis in your area.