Web MD Slideshow: Medical Marijuana

Photo Credit: Web MD

Photo Credit: Web MD

Medical marijuana is considered any part of the marijuana plant that can be used as a therapy to treat varying health problems. The plant is able to do so because of its chemical components called cannabinoids, like the most commonly known THC and CBD. When ingested, these chemical components interact with the endocannabinoid system to provide relief. Methods of ingestion affect the different levels of relief, and those who inhale marijuana will experience its effects quicker than those who eat the medication. This is because when inhaled,  THC goes from your lungs directly to the bloodstream, which causes brain cells to release dopamine. While less is known about how CBD works, it sometimes works along with THC and sometimes works on its own to create a reaction with the brain.

While there is still a need for significant research regarding the therapeutic benefits of medical marijuana, what does exist suggests it could ease pain, nausea, and loss of appetite in those who suffer from cancer and HIV. It could also cut down on seizures in those who suffer from epilepsy, and it has the potential to ease ms symptoms like muscle stiffness and spasms, pain, and frequent urination. Patients who choose to use medical marijuana have access to a variety of consumption methods like smoking, vaporizing, incorporating it into a beverage or food, topicals, or even newly developed pill forms. 

Find more information about medical marijuana in this slideshow on Web MD. This post has been approved by our Chief Medical Officer.