Do you suffer from chronic pain and wonder if marijuana could help your symptoms? Are you currently taking an opioid?
Did you know that a Forbes article highlighted two new reports that have found that states with legal marijuana access are now reporting lower reliance on opioids such as fentanyl? And another showed that some individuals are forgoing initiation of opiates altogether. This is very good news.
Another reported that states allowing medical cannabis have 25% fewer opioid overdoses. This is significant since the National Institute of Drug Abuse states that, as of January 2019, more than 130 people in the U.S. die from an opioid overdose every day.
Oklahoma medical marijuana has been available since the passage of State Question 788.
Read on to hear who it is helping and what conditions can be treated.
Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Cards
Oklahoma medical marijuana cards can be issued to anyone over 18 who get their doctor’s approval. Unlike some other states who have approved marijuana for medical uses, Oklahoma doesn’t restrict its use to only certain qualifying conditions.
Oklahoma doctors treat marijuana just like any other prescription medication. If they believe it can help you with your condition, they can prescribe it to you.
While the list of conditions that marijuana is prescribed, it is most often prescribed to treat chronic pain.
Common Reasons for Chronic Pain
A 2018 Center for Disease Control report estimated that 20.4% of all American adults suffer from chronic pain and 8.0% suffer from high-impact chronic pain. It is also said chronic pain is one of the most common reasons adults go see a doctor.
Chronic pain manifests itself due to a large array of reasons. Such as Fibromyalgia, cancer, and Parkinson’s disease, to name a few.
However, it can also be caused by more conditions that occur to many over their lifetime. For example, back pain, arthritis/joint pain, headaches, Endometriosis, muscle pain, inflammatory bowel disease, and irritable bowel syndrome.
Why Chronic Pain is So Devastating
Living with pain day after day can really take a lot out of a person. The pain itself is difficult if not sometimes unbearable. But it can also wreak havoc on our emotional and mental wellbeing.
Many people with chronic pain end up needing additional prescriptions for issues like anxiety, depression, and sleep inducers. Often these prescriptions can be addicting and/or have their own negative side effects.
Chronic pain can interfere with familial relations, job performance, and sex life. This can cause people to be irritable, have feelings of guilt, and worse – suicidal thoughts.
How Does Marijuana Treat Chronic Pain
Like many plants, marijuana is made up of various chemical compounds. The two that are discussed most in regards to treating people for medical conditions are:
Cannabinoids exist naturally in our bodies, but each of these compounds affects the body differently. In simple terms, THC is a stimulant and CDB is not. But both help people feel less pain.
Most people know that marijuana can make people feel “high” due to it being psychoactive. It is the THC in marijuana that contributes to this effect. THC binds to and stimulates our cannabinoid receptors and blocks peripheral nerve pain.
By stimulating the cannabinoid receptors, THC can help reduce pain levels by interfering with neurotransmitters.
CBD is non-intoxicating and is generally described for its pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory effects.
Marijuana Comes In Different Strains
In Oklahoma medical marijuana dispensaries you will find three categories of marijuana: sativa, indica, and hybrids. The conventional assumptions are that sativa will provide the user with a more energizing effect and indica a more relaxing one. Hybrids, as the name implies, can combine these effects to different degrees.
While these categories are often used to figure out what type of strain a person needs, it’s important to keep in mind that people react differently to marijuana. A strain that makes one person relaxed can make another person irritable or anxiety-ridden.
This is where your doctor and the people who work at the dispensaries can really help you figure out which is best for you.
When you go the dispensary to obtain your medical marijuana, you will find strains with a whole host of names that producers are using to differentiate their product from other producer’s products.
You Don’t Have to Smoke to Get Relief
THC and CBD products are readily available as an oil, edibles, and topical treatments. These can be used alone or in conjunction with each other, per your doctor’s recommendations.
People with a lung disorder or other respiratory conditions may prefer not to smoke. These other alternatives allow them to benefit from the positive effects of marijuana without having to smoke it.
People with arthritis and other pain that is localized may find topical treatments to be effective.
See a Doctor With Experience Prescribing Marijuana
Since Oklahoma marijuana laws were only recently passed, there may be limited information available to doctors about marijuana and how to prescribe it effectively.
As discussed, marijuana strains are known to contain more or less THC or CBD. So talking to a doctor who is familiar with marijuana strains can lead you to the right strain to address all your individual symptoms.
As with all medications, there are risks and side effects to consider. Your doctor will help you weigh these side effects against the use of marijuana to alleviate your pain.
Take Steps Today to Get Your Medical Marijuana
There is no reason to suffer any longer than you have. Knowledgeable Oklahoma medical marijuana doctors are available to help you determine the best marijuana strain to treat and help manage your condition.
So contact us today so we can get you on the road to feeling better. We’ll be happy to answer any additional questions you may have.