Using medical marijuana for depression?
It is a common analysis where if you have been feeling no interest in the activities you once enjoyed or feeling sadness then you may be a victim of depression. However, you are not alone in this issue. Depression is a now a worldwide epidemic which affects approximately 350 million people and more. Moreover, this mood disorder is one of the major reasons for disability on a global scale. But, there are people who are victims and still do not have access to the support they really need.
Currently, there are a lot of treatments worldwide which are available especially oral medications and multiple different therapies. Experts in the field, as well as researchers, have started to discover medicinal marijuana as an extra treatment. As you read below, we present to you more on the usage of medical marijuana for depression along with its benefits as well as its side effects.
A Guide for Medicinal Marijuana
Benefits of medical marijuana
- Medicinal marijuana can comfort anxiety symptoms.
- Medicinal marijuana has been discovered as a treatment which has potential in curing nausea and vomiting which is linked with chemotherapy.
- Marijuana is also used as a pain management tool.
There was a 2014 study which was released by the Hawaii Journal of Medicine & Public Health which emphasized pain management as a possible perk of medical marijuana. The participants who were involved in the research study have mentioned an estimate of 64 percent decline in pain when they have used marijuana. A majority also have experienced low anxiety levels and even ideal sleep cycles as they began using the drug.
Moreover, there was a 2012 research study which discovered marijuana as a method of modulating spasticity found in patients with several sclerosis. As patients used medicinal marijuana, around 30 percent of them had low levels of spasticity.
There are other amazing advantages which involve relief from:
- Sleep disorders
- Weight loss related to HIV
- Involuntary movements which are linked with movement disorders
- Nausea which is caused by chemotherapy
Currently, there is still research being pursued in these different sections in order to examine the short as well as the long-term effects of usage.
Research conducted on depression and marijuana
The assessments of medical marijuana for curing depression are still being developed and it is in its early stages. Currently, many experts do share many benefits which do include mood stabilization and the restoring back “normal” endocannabinoid functions.
Experts at the University of Buffalo have started to look into medicinal marijuana as a probable treatment for depression which is often caused by chronic stress. In fact, the school’s Research Institute on Addictions (RIA) has been focusing on – also known as brain chemicals.
Endocannabinoids are chemical compounds which are naturally produced. They also do play an important role in emotions, motor control, behaviour and cognition. Even so, they do have similar chemical makeup compared to that of cannabis.
Experts have conducted their studies on only animals but not humans. However, they have noticed that chronic stress can restrict the brain’s construction of endocannabinoids. Also, they discovered that this can even lead to the formation of a depression-like behaviour.
Introducing marijuana into the body system can support in restoring back normal levels and operations as well. And, this can even ease out different symptoms of depression.
Overall, there are still more and more studies which are required to evaluate the potential and authentic benefits along with the disadvantages of using marijuana as an ideal therapy for people who are victims of depression.
Risks as well as warnings
- There are multiple opinions which are concerned about if marijuana can either direct towards depression or can it treat depression.
- The side effects caused by marijuana can depend on the way how it is being consumed.
- Marijuana can activate psychosis or schizophrenia in people thus it proposes a huge risk however research isn’t strong to support this.
Marijuana usage was tested in a group for evaluating chronic pain wherein around 71 percent did not proclaim any major side effects. But around 6 percent of the patients have mentioned that they have had a throat or cough irritation.
Moreover, there is not much evidence to report that marijuana leads to depression. But, there may be a connection between these two. There are few research studies which mention that heavy and frequent users of marijuana are being identified with depression more compared to those who do not smoke marijuana.
Furthermore, marijuana seems to be connected with other conditions related to mental health. If you are suffering from the high dangers of psychosis, it’s is essential to be aware that marijuana can lead to psychosis or schizophrenia. Psychosis seems to be a major mental disorder which is being identified by illusions which remove you from reality. In terms of symptoms, those who try this drug can be involved in delusions and hallucinations.
We feel that the probable side effects of marijuana can vary according to the way on how it is taken. Even so, medical marijuana can be consumed as a pill, in patches or even using sprays. There is still research currently going on using ancient recreational methods, like vaporizing or smoking.
The expert researchers at the University of Buffalo are even trying to understand if cannabidiol- a peculiar extract could enhance mood-boosting perks without having the need to depend on marijuana.
Ancient treatments for curing depression
The depression treatment is unique to both you and the extremity of your condition. And now, it is entirely possible to treat and manage both moderate and extreme depression.
Mild depression can even react well with psychosocial treatments, such as talk therapy or also known as psychotherapy. However, marijuana and other drugs are not usually suggested as an ideal treatment for moderate cases of depression.
Interpersonal or behavioural psychotherapy also known as (psychological treatments) are great first steps for those who have been victims of both mild and severe depression.
Another tool which few doctors tend to use is antidepressants for depression cases which are extreme. There are few specimens such as tricyclic antidepressants and serotonin reuptake inhibitors.
But, it is known that drugs have possible side effects and should only be used if you are under the consultation of a doctor. Even so, antidepressants should only be used with extreme caution especially with kids and teenagers who go through depression.
Coping tools for depression
As you and your doctor sit down and construct a treatment plan, you are now able to take additional steps in order to manage depression such as:
- Explore fun and new methods to release stress as well as negative emotions. It could be really simple such as performing yoga poses, going for daily walks or even trying out meditation.
- Write down your feelings. This can be a healthy exercise where you can express yourself honestly and openly as you immerse yourself in sadness, fear or anger.
- Take off additional stressors and responsibilities which occur in your life. Always give yourself some space to breathe when you are feeling negative and low.
- Always try not to exclude yourself. This can be easier said than done however having a supportive and motivating network of caring people has multiple benefits.
Include more and more structure to your days. You can even place reminders around you when you have cool events or other type’s responsibilities which cannot be missed out.
- Reach out to groups which guide you with your mental health.
Even though research in this field is motivating, more studies should be conducted to test and see if medical marijuana can be a potential treatment for depression.
Finally, your doctor can direct you through other treatment methods. Together, along with those who support you unconditionally, can construct the ideal strategy which works well with you.