IntroductionMedical marijuana which is also known as medical cannabis has been used since thousands of years as cannabis plant and is considered to be of great medicinal value. Medical cannabis is collective collection of many different varieties of cannabis strains. Due to restriction on its production as well as other rules and regulations pertaining to governments of different countries, using medical marijuana for treatment purposes is controversial as well as enough tests pertaining to treatment are not done.
Medical MarijuanaMedical marijuana is the unprocessed plant or extracts obtained from marijuana plants. It is used to treat symptoms and cure illnesses. Chemicals present in marijuana are called as cannabinoids. Marijuana plant contains chemicals to help in the treatment of various illnesses and thus it is becoming legal in many countries for use in medical field. Medical marijuana can be administered through various methods. Some of them are smoking dried buds, capsules ingestion, skin patches, oral or skin sprays, cannabis edibles intake, use of lozenges etc.
Medicinal Values of Medical Marijuana
Treatment of Nausea and VomitingOne of the side-effects of extensive chemotherapy treatment done in the treatment of cancer is nausea and vomiting. Since the year 1980's THC-based medication i.e., medicine containing ingredients of marijuana was approved by FDA to treat nausea and vomiting and this was great relief to those patients undergoing chemotherapy.
Cannabis and sleepMarijuana is a sleep inducer and thus greatly helps to induce sleep and some relaxation especially in individuals suffering from insomnia and restlessness. It greatly and efficiently improves night time breathing. In patients suffering from sleep apnea it induces sleep as well as decreases sleep interruptions.
Treatment of GlaucomaGlaucoma increases pressure withing the eyeball. An individual suffering from glaucoma may loss vision and his optic nerve may get damaged. Marijuana decreases intro-ocular pressure. This decreased intro-ocular pressure slows down disease as well as risk of blindness. Marijuana improves vision.
Betterment in Lung HealthConsumption of tobacco as well as smoking tobacco in any form deteriorates lung health but pot users show a remarkable improvement in lung health. It also reverses carcinogenic effect created in lungs by tobacco. Marijuana improves lung function.
Stops Cancer SpreadingMarijuana stops cancer from growing as well as prevents it spreading to different areas of body. It promotes death of cancer cells whereas do not interfere with healthy cells. It cuts off vascular supply of a tumor. Marijuana is proved to be effective against various types of cancers like brain tumor, cancers in thyroid, lung, breast, leukemia, melanoma etc.
Controls EpilepsyMarijuana controls seizures. Its active ingredients bind to the cells of brain. As a result, it promotes relaxation and controls excitability. It is known to bring relief in patients suffering from severe seizure disorders known by the name of Dravet's syndrome. Cannabidiol present in marijuana binds with brain cells and greatly helps in seizures as it decreases excessive activity responsible for causing it. Dravet syndrome is also known by the name Severe Myoclonic Epilepsy of Infancy (SMEI). In this condition, a child may suffer from epileptic seizures where number may exceed 100 times in a day. Within few days of use of marijuana itself, decrease in the number of seizures have been noted.
Decreases Pain and AnxietyMarijuana is known to decrease pain especially nerve related pain. In CNS, marijuana activates pathways. These pathways prevent signals of pain from different areas of body to reach brain. It is also known to reduce anxiety because of its sedative action. It improves mood.
Increases AppetiteMarijuana is an appetite stimulant helping all those individuals who are thin and weak to gain weight. Individuals suffering from anorexia can also benefit from it as it also stimulates weight gain in them. Individuals who have lost their appetite due to long term sickness like cancer, HIV or else due to side-effects of certain drugs can improve their appetite and gain their healthy weight back.
Helps in AsthmaMarijuana improves breathing in individuals suffering from asthma as well as improves lung capacity thereby helping to calm asthma attacks. Inhalers were tried to develop for the same purpose but scientists have failed. However, vaporizers may be used to seek the same benefits.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)Patients suffering from PTSD show improvement in symptoms like agitation, irritation, flashbacks, nightmares, stress etc when oral doses of marijuana is given to them. Marijuana is associated with impaired memory. This quality of it is useful in those PTSD patients who daily struggle to get rid of their painful memories.
Helpful in Alzheimer's DiseaseMarijuana blocks enzyme present in brain which is responsible for production of amyloid plaques. These amyloid plaques are responsible for causing Alzheimer's disease as they kill vital cells present in brain. Active components present in marijuana blocks the enzyme and thereby deteriorates destruction of brain cells.
Treatment of LupusSystemic Lupus Erythematosus is an autoimmune disease and cause of this disease is idiopathic. In this condition, body attacks itself. Marijuana relieves symptoms like pain, nausea and also calms down immune system. This calming effect itself is helpful to deal with the autoimmune diseases.
Protects Brain After Trauma, Concussions and StrokeMarijuana causes healing after an injury or concussion. It is a a very powerful neuroprotective entity and helps in quick healing of brain. It also protects brain from stroke and helps it healing after stroke. It reduces the size of brain area which was affected by stroke.
Helps in Alcohol AddictionsMarijuana helps alcoholics and is rather safe when compared to alcohol intake as it is less addictive and also has medicinal values if taken in right quantity. If dose is increased, it definitely causes physical damage but relatively less than alcohol. Individuals looking out to substitute their addictions of alcohol, illegal drugs or other sorts of prescription drugs will find marijuana as better option as it hardly causes withdrawal problems.
Treatment of Various DiseasesMarijuana is helpful in the treatment of various diseases. It decreases the pain caused in multiple sclerosis and muscle spasms. It decreases side-effects which are caused in the treatment of hepatitis C as well as helps the condition to get treated effectively. It is of great help in arthritis as it decreases pain, inflammation and induces sleep. It is used to treat inflammatory bowel syndrome like Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. Inflammatory bowel disorder i.e., Crohn's disease can be totally corrected by it. It brings relief in tremors caused in Parkinson's disease.
ConclusionCannabis plant is popularly known as marijuana and is been used since ages for medicinal purposes. Today more and more countries are supporting use of marijuana for its medicinal values. Using it for recreational purposes is however banned. Main reason for prescribing it is because it relieves pain and pain is the main symptom of illnesses and diseases. Body itself is able to produce marijuana like chemicals and these chemicals are known to have an effect on pain and inflammation in our body. Marijuana when taken will help these naturally occurring chemicals in body to work better.