How does Medical Cannabis help with various mental illnesses?
The brain is composed of various structures, all with certain functions. Each region of the brain contains certain receptors. Activating these receptors results in various psychological and physiological responses. THC and CBD work on receptors (mainly CB1) in areas of the brain that modulate emotional control, as well as altering certain neurotransmitter activity. The receptors that THC and CBD work on have been found to be dense in regions of the brain that modulate emotions, pain, and appetite! These mechanisms allow the brain to better regulate emotions and emotional responses!
Insomnia: a sleep disorder impairing your ability to fall asleep, stay asleep, waking up too early, or otherwise achieving normal and healthy sleep that may make you feel tired throughout the entire day.
Medical cannabis can help with sleep primarily via the THC component, as it can help to not only induce sleep, but also regulate the sleep cycle.
If you feel that the cause of your insomnia is related to pain or otherwise organic causes, a high-THC strain could be beneficial. However, if the cause of your insomnia is anxiety, the pharmacist may consider a higher CBD strain. It is imperative that you discuss your insomnia with the pharmacist.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
PTSD: a disorder characterized by flashbacks, hyper-arousal, nightmares, severe anxiety, and more after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event.
The amygdala is a part of the brain responsible for eliciting fear responses. Emerging research shows that cannabis is effective in decreasing such responses in this area of the brain, thus diminishing the debilitating fear and trauma responses associated with PTSD. Additionally, it has been shown that cannabis may even have the ability to alter memory recall of traumatic events causing PTSD. Even more! Cannabis might even help with decreasing the severity and frequency of nightmares, while also modulating sleep. As discussed earlier, cannabis (particularly the CBD component) can be effective at decreasing anxiety, which is frequently associated with PTSD.
As you can see, there can be multiple benefits of utilizing medical cannabis for PTSD. I mention the word “might” a lot, don’t I?! Reason being: research is still emerging, but there are more and more studies supporting the aforementioned benefits. I had a discussion with a veteran the other day regarding his use of medical cannabis in treating his PTSD, and he had so many positive results. It made me even more encouraged to continue to promote this business!
I want to make it clear that while this treatment might be effective, there are still risks and it is not beneficial for everyone - this is why I believe in a true assessment when we meet. It is also important to continue different therapies, such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, for your treatment.
Anxiety: A feeling of worry, uneasiness, and/or impending doom that can be manifested by increased heart rate, sweating, restlessness, and difficulties in concentrating and sleeping that can impair daily life.
Anxiety can be a normal part of life (if you saw a bear chasing you and you weren't a little anxious, that could be a problem). But, when it becomes unmanageable and results in disruption of normal functioning, something's gotta give!
CBD is the part of medical cannabis that is largely influential in controlling anxiety. THC, at low doses, can help anxiety as well; at high doses, it can exacerbate anxiety. I recommend speaking with the pharmacist about a low-THC, high-CBD product. They are the experts in specific products, and will guide you in the right direction to help manage your anxiety!
Why do I prefer seeing clients aged 25+?
THC can negatively impact the developing brain, especially in regards to cognitive abilities. Therefore, I prefer to meet with people 25 years and older, once the brain is developed!
Additionally, those that are prone to severe mental illness, such as schizophrenia, are at a higher risk of developing a psychotic disorder due to THC. The risk is higher before the brain is fully developed. (Side note - the CBD component can, in a sense, positively “counteract” the THC.)
Long-story short…it’s always important to keep in mind your personal needs (and age!), and which product you choose!
What else would you like to know?
Let me know!