For so long, marijuana has gotten a bad rap for its dangerous effects on the body. However, it might come as a surprise to learn that Hawaii and 35 other states have approved medical marijuana use.
As confounding as it seems, medical marijuana is found to deliver plenty of benefits especially in the treatment of inflammation. It also offers pain relief and reduces anxiety a great deal. Even with its therapeutic benefits, medical marijuana continues to bring trepidation to a lot of people. The stigma on its use is not one that’s easily surmounted despite the aid it provides to the users.
Here are some of the common myths that surround medical marijuana:
Myth #1: All types of medical marijuana get you “high”
To most people’s knowledge, the use of cannabis results in experiencing psychoactive effects. But contrary to this, not all cannabis causes this effect. In medical cannabis where the core ingredients are THC and CBD, what provides the “high” reaction is due mainly from THC. CBD on the other hand does not stimulate this reaction. Thus, it counteracts the psychoactive effects that THC can induce.
Myth #2: Medical marijuana damages your brain cells
The University of Louisville conducted a study and refuted the old notion that frequent and intense use of medical marijuana destroys the brain cells. In fact, medical cannabis provides protection to the DNA from toxins. The marijuana plant generates powerful antioxidants that can stimulate the growth of brain cells and even prevents brain damage.
Myth #3: Using medical marijuana can become your gateway drug
This theory is baseless given that medical cannabis is approved as a safer alternative in contrast to other prescribed medicines. According to the Institute of Medicine’s research, there’s no proof showing that cannabis is connected to using illegal drugs. At present, medical marijuana is being reviewed to manage the opioid crisis in the country.
Myth #4: Medical marijuana use leads to cancer
Another propagated misinformation is that consuming medical cannabis causes cancer. On the contrary, it’s used to treat cancer symptoms given its pain-relieving effect. Even cancer itself is treated by physicians with medical marijuana. According to a study performed by the British Journal for Pharmacology, one of the main ingredients of marijuana, the CBD can even diminish the size of some tumors that are labelled as cancerous.
Myth #5: The effects of smoking medical marijuana is worse for the lungs than tobacco use
Another falsity spread around is that inhaling the cannabis smoke will do more harm to your lungs than cigars. But unlike commercial cigarettes that contain plenty of destructive chemicals, cannabis does not have the same effect. The University of California states that cannabis is less detrimental by a wide margin in comparison to smoking cigarettes.
Myth #6: Smoking cannabis is the only option to acquire its benefits
Several ways of consuming medical marijuana are available to its users. Even if smoking remains the most popular method to easily experience its effect, one isn’t limited to this alone. Other consumption options can be through oils, cannabis-infused food and vaporization in consideration of the type of ailment one is fighting.
Myth #7: There’s no difference between eating and smoking medical marijuana
Using medical marijuana, one can choose between eating or smoking it. Depending on which you take, you can experience its effects rapidly or in a slower fashion. For those who smoke cannabis, the effect can manifest in as little as 30 minutes. If you choose to eat food laced with cannabis, it can take a half hour to two hours for the effect to settle. The effect may even be felt for 8 hours to longer than that.
Myth #8: Eating raw cannabis offers medicinal benefits
To trigger the THC ingredient of medical cannabis, it needs to be heated. One can cook and pair it with butter. You can also smoke or vaporize it per the prescribed dose. Consuming it raw won’t have the same effects so it’s advisable not to consume it raw to experience its full benefits.
Myth #9: Lack of research to support the efficacy of medical marijuana
Even though the stigma for marijuana use is strong, there’s plenty of scientific research conducted that dispels the myths. Full studies have backed up the benefits and safety offered by medical cannabis to help treat those who suffer from cancer, chronic pain, multiple sclerosis, severe nausea, and HIV/AIDS.
Myth #10: Medical marijuana use can’t be legislated without an FDA approval
As mentioned above, Hawaii and 35 states have now implemented medical marijuana laws. Other states have some limited laws in place since the 49 states recognize the various benefits of medical cannabis. This carried on without the requirement of an FDA approval.
Myth #11: Legalizing marijuana contributes to a spike in marijuana use for teens
Given that Hawaii and 35 states have implemented medical marijuana laws, surveys have been performed to review teen usage of marijuana. The findings are comforting and see that there’s a downward trend in its use.
Myth #12: At present, marijuana has a stronger effect.
A stronger effect must not be construed as putting one in more danger. In fact, an increased potency means reduced dosage to experience the immediate effects. If one chooses to smoke marijuana, there will be less smoke needed pushing down the risk for developing lung troubles. More concentrated doses can even be beneficial for those patients battling critical illnesses.
Myth #13: More marijuana exposure equates to greater physical harm for its users
Other prescription drugs can have even more side effects in contrast to marijuana. Fatal overdose can accompany other drugs which are found to be impossible for cannabis. A good number of medical organizations have completed their studies and established medical marijuana to be safe and effective for some patients’ usage.
The Bottom Line
These are some of the common myths surrounding the use of medical marijuana. It pays to learn about facts to guard against the stigma without knowing the full benefits it can deliver to its users, especially for those who need it the most.
For more information, contact Malie Cannabis Clinic today to find out how you can get a Hawaii medical marijuana card.