MMJ: IS IT WORTH IT?

By Valerie Rice | December 11, 2020

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Medical Marijuana, or Cannabis, has long been touted as the miracle cure. But what does this really do? Is it really a replacement for opioid medication, does it stop seizures, and help with mental illness? What’s with the hype? Or are we really looking at a bunch of stoners who just want an excuse to get high? Gee, I would like to see the research on that. Oh, you want to see it too? Excellent! 

SEIZURES

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If anyone has, or knows someone who has, seizures, you know how difficult they can be to deal with. In addition, the medication we traditionally use to deal with them has some hefty side effects, including anxiety and depression (Bermeo-Ovalle, 2018).  Anyone who has ever dealt with either of these conditions will tell you that they require medications themselves in order to handle. Hooray?

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Not only are you medicating the seizures, you now get to medicate the side effects of the treatment, and most people will tell you that the typical SSRI antidepressant has the black box label or children and young adults meaning it can cause suicidal ideation, something they probably never dealt with before. Yeah, no, that’s true. Antidepressants CAN make you suicidal. And screw up you sex life (1,2,3, 2020) But these side effects typically happen within the first few weeks. On to the alternative. Medical Marijuana significantly, by nearly 80% or more, reduced seizure activity in patients including children as young as 18 months (Hausman-Kedem et al, 2018). The side effects listed are : none. Great. Moving on. 

ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION

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This one is up in the air. We have a handful of studies saying people with anxiety become addicted to marijuana, and often say they are “self medicating,” and then we have a handful of studies showing that using marijuana eases the symptoms of anxiety. In my little mind, it sounds like the same thing from a different perspective. So I am going to leave this delightful rabbit hole to you. Feel free to scan a plethora of academic journal articles like I did and feel thoroughly confused. The naysayers tend to be from the U.S. while the others are from outside the borders of said country. I know we haven’t talked about bias in research, or anything else for that matter, but it exists everywhere, as it does in my writing. I totally have a position here. But find your stance. I mean, some pot smokers feel paranoid, so whatever.

SUBSTANCE ABUSE

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Well, now I’m just mad. I went to search for an article and was blocked. So I took the long way round, found the article synopsis published via a Canadian newspaper, and this is what it says. So I hope it is accurate, because I didn’t get to read the data myself. According to the article published in News of Science, using marijuana can reduce use or alcohol, relapse during alcohol treatment, and damage to internal organs caused by alcohol. Additionally, using MMJ can reduce use of other harmful and illegal substances. So. There’s THAT.  Oh, and just for fun, did you know that after Colorado legalized MMJ, opioid prescriptions dropped? So did overdose deaths. They dropped even MORE when it became recreational. Incidentally, so did the pot prices. I know, I live here, a gram is $5 and can take away joint pain for the day. Now, it isn’t covered by insurance, but if it were I can guarantee you those narcotic prescriptions would plummet.

SHOUTING TO THE VOID TIL THE END

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No, MMJ is not a miracle cure. It is not for everyone. But it absolutely IS a medication for certain people this has been justified via scientific evidence. In Colorado we know this. We take it and give it to our children. No, not all of them, they have to have certain conditions. Which ones? THESE ones: Autism, Cachexia, or wasting syndrome, Cancer, Glaucoma, HIV/AIDS, Persistent muscle spasms, Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), Seizures, Severe nausea, Severe pain. Why? Because we love our children and don’t want them to suffer and we are not afraid to follow science. We like science and our Governor Polis is the sh*t . For real.  And guess what else? If you join my Member’s Only, you will get access to my new UPCOMING series, MMJ: The Man, The Myth, The Legend  which shows how pot changed the life of a super awesome kid with autism. My kid, complete 180, it will start in January. Until then, Be Well!

References

1, 2, 3, & 2. (2020). Comparison of the Effects of Antidepressants with Different Mechanisms of Action on Efficacy, Cognitive Functions and Side Effects. Turk Psikiyatri Dergisi, 31(2), 90–98. https://doi.org/10.5080/u23704

Bermeo-Ovalle, A. (2018). Is It the Remedy or the Disease? Psychiatric Symptoms Related to Anti-Seizure Medications. Epilepsy Currents, 18(6), 369–371. https://doi.org/10.5698/1535-7597.18.6.369

Hausman-Kedem, M., Menascu, S., & Kramer, U. (2018). Efficacy of CBD-enriched medical cannabis for treatment of refractory epilepsy in children and adolescents – An observational, longitudinal study. Brain & Development, 40(7), 544–551. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.braindev.2018.03.013

Investigators from Center for Addiction and Mental Health Target Tetrahydrocannabinol (Effects of Cannabidiol On Alcohol-related Outcomes: a Review of Preclinical and Human Research). (2019, August 25). News of Science, 1645. https://link.gale.com/apps/doc/A596771798/AONE?u=uphoenix&sid=AONE&xid=5327e5df

1, 2, 3, & 2. (2020). Comparison of the Effects of Antidepressants with Different Mechanisms of Action on Efficacy, Cognitive Functions and Side Effects. Turk Psikiyatri Dergisi, 31(2), 90–98. https://doi.org/10.5080/u23704

Published by vrice2010

A mother, an author, a nerd. After many years working in the fields of mental health and developmental disabilities, graduating from the University of Phoenix, and pouring my talents into my local community, I decided to spread my wings and reach a wider audience.

7 thoughts on “MMJ: IS IT WORTH IT?

    1. That can be rough. It is important to get as much information as possible to see what this plant is capable of. I know that here we have certain conditions that are NOT allowed to use MMJ, which is why all patients are followed by trained physicians.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah….growers tend to do that. The problem is that it doesn’t cure everything. It helps is several areas, and it is useful to a large group of people. But not everyone. Growers forget that. Just like every medication has limits.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Thank you for this bold look into a controversial and sometimes taboo world. I fully support MMJ, but unfortunately, I live in stupid Idaho, where booze and guns are legal as hell, but a joint is cause for being put in the slammer. I hate this state.

    Liked by 1 person

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