What We Know About Medical Cannabis and Depression
Annually, one in ten adults in the USA are dealing with depression. This means that there are 18 million sufferers only in this country. And they are the ones documented because many others experience symptoms but never seek treatment. With numbers like this, we can define depression as an epidemic because, at this point, it’s so prevalent, if you haven’t experienced it, someone you know definitely has.
Depression is commonly treated with antidepressant medication, but some patients have started to refuse it because it can trigger unpleasant side effects like sexual issues, irritability, insomnia, and weight gain. Research has highlighted that patients could develop a physical dependence on antidepressant medicine, and in the long term, they’re more likely to engage in drug abuse. In the face of this, the medical world faces a question, “Is there any other better way to treat depression?” There are plenty of solutions, but the most popular and healthy ones are therapy and medical marijuana. And they are most effective when used together.
Can medical marijuana treat depression?
If you experience depression symptoms, don’t hide them because you’re living in a society where mental health is no longer a stigma. Now, all mental health issues are seen as what they truly are, medical conditions. Like patients with cancer, acne, heart issues, and AIDs, you are no longer ostracized because you have depression. Your community knows you need help, and they’ll do their best to assist.
The latest research shows that marijuana’s properties make it an effective treatment for mental health issues. But if you live under the weight of depression, don’t make a mistake by self-medicating only because the Internet promotes medical marijuana as a treatment solution. The state allows use only if you have a medical marijuana card, so you must contact a professional practitioner to prescribe it. Getting a card for medical marijuana in Ohio is simple; you can visit an online platform and schedule an online appointment with a medical professional who can assess your state and prescribe medication.
Why do physicians consider medical marijuana an effective medical treatment?
The treatment, including medical marijuana for depression, isn’t new. People are using it for centuries because it provides your body with energy and heightens your mood. In fact, medical marijuana is used even to treat chronic conditions like HIV and cancer because they often cause depression. Cannabis can help to fight depressing emotions.
To better understand its effect on people dealing with medical health issues, The University of Southern California conducted depression and marijuana research. The researchers compared one group of participants in the survey who used marijuana to a second group of participants who did not use marijuana to relieve their symptoms. The survey concluded with exciting results; out of the 4,400 subjects, those who used medical marijuana had less complex depression symptoms.
However, the evaluation of this natural treatment for medical health issues is still in its early stages, and researchers still experiment with strains and dosages to understand how they can restore the endocannabinoid function and stabilize the mood of patients dealing with depression.
The experts at the University of Buffalo have explored the possibility of medical marijuana being a possible treatment for depression triggered by chronic stress. The scientists tried to identify the connection between the use of medical marijuana and the brain chemicals known under the name of endocannabinoids. They are known to influence behavior, emotions, and cognition and have a chemical componence similar to the chemicals cannabis includes. Until now, scientists conducted studies on animals, but they discovered that the brain’s natural production of endocannabinoids could suppress chronic stress.
Another study called “The Effectiveness of Cannabis Flower for Immediate Relief from Symptoms of Depression”, conducted at the University of New Mexico’s Marijuana Research Fund, reviewed 5,876 subjects and their use of cannabis to treat depression. The research concluded that the patients experienced an improvement in their mental health state of 4 points on a scale from 0 to 10, after using cannabis products.
Traditional antidepressants and conventional medicine take weeks to alleviate depression symptoms and cause significant relief. Also, medical marijuana has fewer side effects when used in the long run than traditional treatment that can trigger suicidal ideation, demotivation, anorgasmia, agitation, and sedation.
How to select the right strain for your depression symptoms?
If you’re new to alternative depression treatments, it’s tricky to identify the right solution. Consult a specialist to recommend the right strain for your condition. The following information can also guide you to determine what strain works best for you.
You experience mood problems
As stated before, the cannabinoids in medical marijuana interact with your endocannabinoid system’s receptors and impact your mood. This means cannabis can alleviate the mood swings you experience due to depression and cause a more positive outlook. While the strain Jack Herer improves energy, focus, and creativity, the strain Harlequin can calm your mood because it has therapeutic effects.
You lost weight or lack appetite
Marijuana is widely accepted as a treatment for loss of appetite. When struggling with severe depression, you can lose your appetite and experience dangerous weight loss. Medical marijuana can help you eat more. Kill Bill is one of the strains that fights symptoms like appetite loss, and stress. Other strains can also help, so it’s best to consult an expert.
You experience fatigue
You probably know that cannabis can boost your energy levels. When you’re daily struggling to get out of bed and find the motivation to complete your chores, natural treatment may improve your state. Pineapple Express can be used during the day to increase your energy levels and help you find your enthusiasm.
You cannot sleep
Sometimes, depression can trigger insomnia because of the racing thoughts that cross your mind. Medical marijuana helps you relax and get a good night’s sleep. Once you ingest or smoke cannabis you feel a sense of peace and find it easier to fall asleep. Northern Lights is one of the calming strains that fights insomnia in depression.
But as stated before, not all states allow patients dealing with depression to use medical marijuana, so consult your therapist to find what your options are.