Benefits of Medical Cannabis for Veterans Dealing with PTSD

Veterans Dealing with PTSD

Waking up with a cold sweat, ringing ears, horrifying flashbacks, and night terrors. This is what life is like for numerous veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD is common among veterans in the US. Studies confirm that over 20% of the soldiers who witnessed the war in Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from PTSD. Another study estimates that 200,000 plus veterans from the Vietnam War had to deal with the same disorder. It is important to uncover treatment options for veterans dealing with PTSD.

The Drawbacks of Conventional Treatments for Veterans Dealing with PTSD

Doctors typically deploy a combination of clinical therapy and medicines to combat the symptoms of PTSD. Most of the time, these options are not effective. Anti-depressants work but also come with well-known side effects and risks. Even though they are effective at dulling the pain of PTSD, they can bring along a series of issues that will require additional medical attention. Since veterans are in a never-ending search for something that works , many of them are now turning to medical cannabis. This natural plant is as effective in relieving pain as pills, but without the adverse effects.

According to a recent decision by the Drug Enforcement Administration, clinical trials are in progress that will help prove the effectiveness of medical cannabis as a treatment for veterans dealing with PTSD. At present, only six states in the US allow citizens dealing with this disorder to get a medical cannabis card, which means there is still room to grow.

How Medical Cannabis Benefits Veterans Dealing with PTSD

However, veterans who do have access to medical cannabis are actually benefiting from the drug in the following ways:

Medical cannabis is fast acting and versatile. Patients who rely on the drug have great flexibility in both the kind of medicine they use and the way they consume it. There are hundreds of strains of cannabis, where each possesses its own special medical benefit. Users also have complete control of their dose. They can choose to ingest, apply or smoke as little or much as they want. In addition, antidepressants take a long time to work and call for a long tapering time in case the user decides to switch medications or stop using them. On the other hand, medical marijuana has no such repercussions.

There is a low risk of addiction and withdrawal symptoms with cannabis. With traditional PTSD medication, there is a serious risk of addiction that can bring unbearable withdrawal symptoms once the user stops using them. With medical cannabis, however, veterans dealing with PTSD are at a far less risk of withdrawal and physical addiction, resulting in an enjoyable and safer experience. In fact, some doctors are prescribing medical cannabis to their patients for overcoming addiction with a 75% success rate.

Investing in The Marijuana Industry Promises Huge Returns

Investing in the marijuana industry has never looked more lucrative.

investing in the marijuana industry yields big returns

Earlier this year, Forbes astounded its audience by noting that 2016 marijuana sales in the US states where it’s legal outmatched the Dot-Com boom of the early 2000s.

They based this on a report by Arcview Market Research, which is the market leader in data research for legal marijuana market in the United States. According to Arcview, legal marijuana sales in North America grew to $6.7 billion in 2016.

As Forbes Magazine observed, by comparison the entire US GDP during the Dot-Com era grew at 22% versus the 30% growth we’ve seen in the marijuana market to achieve those kind of number sin 2016. And remember that at the time, the dot-com expansion was considered unparalleled in its scope and magnitude.

Arcview’s editor, Tom Adams wrote:

“The only consumer industry categories I’ve seen reach $5 billion in annual spending and then post anything like 25% compound annual growth in the next five years are cable television (19%) in the 1990’s and the broadband internet (29%) in the 2000’s.”

At the rate the marijuana industry is growing, we can reasonably project legal cannabis sales north of $20 billion by the year 2021 just five years from now.

Consumers clearly value marijuana for its psychoactive effects, the characteristic “high” caused by the THC in its leaves, rewarding consumers with relaxation, greater enjoyment of their company and surroundings, increased insight, and greater creativity.

Many consumers use marijuana the way American workers have used alcoholic beverages since this country was founded, as a way to unwind after a hard day’s work. The demand for legal marijuana is undoubtedly robust and hardly flinching at federal prohibition of cannabis and cannabis products.

Investing directly in marijuana dispensaries themselves or cannabis farms is just one way of investing in the marijuana industry. Another is to invest in the various auxiliary businesses the provide support and business infrastructure to this multi-billion dollar boom industry.

USA Today Discovers People Consume More Marijuana After It’s Legalized

skeptical about anti-marijuana arguments

In a newspaper headline that should go down in history as a momentous “Thank you, Captain Obvious!” moment, USA Today really, actually published this real life headline:

“Pot use, abuse more likely in states with medical marijuana laws, study shows”

Are you serious? People actually consume more marijuana in states where it’s been legalized? How shocking!

Sarcasm aside, before anyone comments that the article is referring to illegal use by people who don’t hold medical marijuana cards or have a doctor’s prescription: That is still an obvious result of these policies. We didn’t need a study to know that would happen.

Even when marijuana was completely illegal in every state but California for medical purposes, there was still a robust demand for the plant and products derived from it on the black market because it’s something that millions of people value.

Some like the feelings of relaxation, insight, or creativity that it gives them. Others like how it improves the taste of food or the feeling of sex.

Still others rely on it desperately for pain relief, to be able to get a good night’s sleep, or to find their appetite for food while on cancer treatments that cause severe nausea.

Many families are finding a miracle in CBD oil, which isolates a chemical from marijuana that doesn’t get you high, but is saving their babies— their toddlers and small children from a severe form of treatment-resistant epilepsy that causes extreme seizures.

With or without an official card or prescription, millions of Americans’ lives are improved in some way by marijuana, and when it becomes more readily available, as it has in states that have legalized it for medicinal purposes, the demand is there to meet it.

A note about the increases in marijuana “abuse” mentioned in the USA Today article— the paper quotes a health professor at Columbia University making another “Captain Obvious” statement similar to the article’s headline:

“If you increase the prevalence of users, you are going to increase the prevalence of people who have adverse consequences.”

As you could say about driving a car. As you could say about riding in planes. As you could say about falling in love. As you could say about starting a business. As you could say about… As you could say about…

If these kind of arguments are the very best that a major publication like USA Today can muster against legalizing medical marijuana, then marijuana consumers and businesses are looking great!

West Virginia Medical Marijuana Legalization Is The Tipping Point

Medical Marijuana Store
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The legalization of medical marijuana in the state of West Virginia last week is a tipping point for the cannabis movement nationwide, an Ohio newspaper argued Thursday.

The Marietta Times of Marietta, Ohio, which is literally a stone’s throw from the West Virginia border, says now it’s time for the federal government to take a position on medical marijuana.

The Attorney General, Jeff Sessions wants a crack down, while the Secretary of Homeland security supports medical marijuana and says recreational marijuana is not a priority. Meanwhile, the FDA has not taken an official position about medical marijuana.

The Times says with so many states legalizing marijuana for medicinal or recreational purposes, the policy vagueness of the current administration is unacceptable.

The bill to legalize medical marijuana in West Virginia was signed last week by Governor Jim Justice after passing through the state’s House of Delegates 76 – 24 and sweeping through the state Senate 28 – 6.

As Reason Magazine notes, the new marijuana policy makes West Virginia the 29th state to legalize medical marijuana, and the sixth state to approve cannabis for patients in the last year.

Saving Lives with Medical Marijuana

In August 2016, the West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy published a study with findings about West Virginia marijuana policy that make last week’s reform great news for the state’s deadly opioid addiction epidemic:

“Marijuana may potentially have a positive impact on West Virginia’s opioid-based painkiller and heroin epidemic by offering another, less-addictive alternative to individuals who are suffering from debilitating medical conditions.”

Cannabis is not only less addictive than opioid-based prescription painkillers and street narcotics. While consumers of marijuana may develop a “tolerance” (they may need more to achieve the same effect over time), the plant and its products do not cause “dependence” (minor to severe withdrawal symptoms after ceasing use).

That’s why in 2010 former US Surgeon General Jocelyn Elders (who supports marijuana legalization) had this to say: “Marijuana is not addictive, not physically addictive anyway.”

Not only is cannabis less addictive than opiates, it’s less dangerous. Far less dangerous. West Virginia leads the nation in the rate of fatal drug overdoses. Last year 818 people in the state died of a drug overdose, 86% of them due to opiates.

That was a West Virginian dying every 12 hours around the clock for the entire year. Last year not a single American died of an overdose of marijuana, because it’s impossible to overdose on marijuana.

The new laws in West Virginia will help make hurting people more comfortable and it will save lives. And 29 states into legalizing the plant, it certainly looks like a tipping point.