Medical marijuana is now legal in 33 states, and only more patients are choosing to achieve healing by using cannabis. Different states approve medical marijuana use for different conditions, and many states approve Parkinson’s Disease as a qualifying condition.
Parkinson’s Disease is a nervous system disorder that affects movement. While the disease has no cure, there are ways to decrease the symptoms.
While there’s still more research needed, many claim that medical marijuana is effective at decreasing Parkinson’s side effects and helping patients live a more comfortable life.
Here’s everything to know about medical cannabis for Parkinson’s Disease, including the benefits and why patients should choose marijuana.
A Look Into Cannabis and Its Medical Properties
With all of the recent research emerging, more people understand that marijuana has medical benefits.
What exactly are these medical properties? First, let’s take a look at cannabinoids. The marijuana plant contains over 100 of them and they impact the body in various ways. Our endocannabinoid system (ECS) makes this possible.
Our bodies have two types of cannabinoid receptors: CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are located in the brain. When we consume marijuana strains with high levels of THC (the psychoactive cannabinoid), we feel “high” as a result.
However, not all marijuana strains are psychoactive. This is thanks to our CB2 receptors. CB2 receptors are located in various areas of the body, such as the immune system. When we consume CBD (the non-psychoactive cannabinoid), it interacts with our CB2 receptors to achieve various forms of healing.
While we know that cannabinoids interact with our ECS indirectly, exactly how cannabinoids interact with our ECS is largely still unknown.
Benefits of Medical Cannabis for Parkinson’s Disease
Since there are cannabinoid receptors found throughout the body, those with Parkinson’s Disease may benefit from medical cannabis in different ways. Some of the reported benefits include:
- Improved pain management
- Reduced anxiety
- More sleep
- Less nausea
Keep in mind, the benefits you experience depend on the strain you take. As with everything, medical marijuana affects all patients differently. You may also experience side effects, which brings us to our next point.
Are There Any Risks?
Harvard Health reports that medical marijuana is non-toxic and safe for daily use. However, experiencing side effects is common. Some reported side effects include:
- Impaired cognition
- Behavioral and mood changes
- Blurred vision
- Balance loss
While these side effects are normal, it’s recommended you call your doctor if your side effects are frequent and/or become bothersome. You should definitely inform your doctor if you have an existing mood condition or problems breathing/with your lungs.
If you think the strain you’re using is causing the side effects, you can address this concern to your budtender, who can recommend another strain.
What the Science Says
Medical cannabis is still a very new thing. However, the research that has been done is largely positive.
One study confirms that medical marijuana improves motor and non-motor symptoms. However, the individuals in the study used their normal pharmaceuticals while taking medical marijuana.
What about the non-psychoactive cannabinoid CBD? Another study states that CBD improved the quality of life for its participants, but didn’t improve the motor symptoms.
Are medical marijuana strains containing THC more effective? These seem to have more success. A study in Germany found that patients using medical marijuana strains containing THC reported less stiffness than consuming CBD-only products, although they didn’t tolerate the effects as well as the CBD products.
Where Can Parkinson’s Patients Buy Medical Marijuana?
Are you interested in trying medical marijuana for your Parkinson’s Disease? As stated previously, 33 states now allow patients to buy medical marijuana with approval from their doctor.
But where exactly can you buy medical marijuana? You can get medical marijuana if you live in these states:
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
- Washington D.C.
Keep in mind, some states only allow you to buy medical marijuana if you have a qualifying condition. Check and see if Parkinson’s Disease is a qualifying condition in your state.
How to Use Medical Marijuana for Parkinson’s Disease
With the prevalence of medical marijuana and advancements in growing technology, there are many ways to consume medical cannabis — smoking isn’t your only option. You can take the best edibles for Parkinson’s and more. Here are other ways to take medical marijuana:
- Food products
- Oils and tinctures
- Concentrates and waxes
Make sure you speak to your doctor and budtender to find out which consumption method is right for you.
Which Strain Should You Buy?
The marijuana strain you buy depends on the symptoms you’re experiencing.
In addition, there are three types of marijuana strains: Sativa (for energy), Indica (for relaxation), and Hybrid (properties of both Indicas and Sativas). Most cannabis strains are hybrid, though you can find Indica- and Sativa-dominant strains.
Some good strain recommendations include:
- Alien Apparition (Hybrid)
- Tesla Tower (Sativa)
- Loyalty (Hybrid)
- Prevention (Indica)
- White Lemon (Hybrid)
- Washing Machine (Indica)
- Strawberry Milkshake (Hybrid)
- Sputnik (Sativa)
- Alien Abduction (Hybrid)
- 999 (Indica)
- Alpine Blue (Hybrid)
- Ortega (Indica)
- Bert’s Cookie Dough (Hybrid)
- Grape Drink (Indica)
- Cypress OG (Hybrid)
Keep in mind, every dispensary has different options. Always ask for your doctor’s and budtender’s recommendations before choosing a strain.
Try Medical Cannabis for Parkinson’s Disease
Parkinson’s Disease is a nervous disorder that impacts movement and daily functions. More Parkinson’s patients are choosing alternative healing to control their symptoms and live a comfortable life. This is why medical cannabis for Parkinson’s Disease is becoming a popular healing option.
The cannabinoids in medical marijuana can help patients feel better. Parkinson’s patients can choose a variety of strains, each with its own potency and cannabinoid content. Because medical marijuana may affect everyone differently, it’s important to talk to your doctor before trying cannabis.
Do you have more questions about medical marijuana? Be sure to contact us.