Know the Benefits of Cannabis | Anxiety and Depression

What do the current medical laws sweeping the country mean? How do they work? Contrary to the opinion of many, not just anyone can get medicinal cannabis.

According to these new state laws, you must have at least one illness on a specific list of conditions and this must be diagnosed by a real doctor who recommends cannabis as an appropriate medication.

The doctor provides the patients with a written recommendation that it will alleviate the symptoms of their condition. Patients then have several options open to them depending on which state’s laws they live under.

The first option in many states is to simply take the letter of recommendation from your doctor to a medical marijuana dispensary. They will most likely keep a copy of your letter on file and then you can purchase your prescription pot from this dispensary from that point on. If you need to move or buy them from another location, you need only have the doctor’s note with you.

The next option is for you to take the letter from your doctor and send it in with certain health department forms to your state government. Your state’s health department will then send you a medical card. This card can then be used at various dispensaries within your state. This option is required in some states and not in others, but either way you must have a condition for which your doctor can write a letter of recommendation to ingest cannabis.

Most states also provide a third option for patients. You can acquire your doctor’s letter of recommendation and then send it in to the state’s health department with the necessary forms. This third option, however, requires you to request a medical card in order for you to grow your own medicinal cannabis. The laws in this area not only vary by state, but also by county in some cases.

A qualified patient can be in possession of anywhere from eight ounces of them to several pounds and they can grow and maintain from six to fifty plants of varying maturity depending on which county of the state they live in.

It may seem like the new laws allowing prescription cannabis for certain patients are legalizing pot, but this is not the case. The new laws such as proposition 215 in California are being instituted to allow people who suffer from certain illness to access the medicine they need to feel better.

Cannabis in Anxiety and Depression

Medical use of marijuana can be very beneficial in chronic pain management, cancer, AIDS, glaucoma and multiple sclerosis, but smoking weed? Not a good idea, especially if you suffer from anxiety and depression.

There are numerous studies into effect that marijuana has on us, but the results are contradictive. Some of them say that weed can have an antidepressant effect, some that it may cause your anxiety and depression, panic attacks or even paranoia, psychosis and schizophrenia. The opinions also vary between claiming that cannabis can have a sedative effect or be a stimulant.

The information is so confusing because cannabis is very individual drug with individual side-effects. Here are just some of them:

– It affects short-term memory, concentration and motor function;
– Impacts limbic area of the brain which is responsible for your emotions and behaviour;
– Distorts perception;
– Cause difficulties in problem solving;
– Makes you more susceptible to infections, affects your heart and respiratory system;
– Lowers the frequency of your alpha brain waves which usually allows you to go into state of light relaxation.

Although it’s unclear if marijuana causes mental problems, worsens them or helps with them, there are some facts that we know and can draw conclusions from:

– at least 10% of young smokers of weed develop psychosis;
– marijuana increases your risk of psychiatric disorder by 30%;
– cannabis predispose you to schizophrenia and can cause a relapse in those who are already schizophrenic;
– cannabis are linked to anxiety and panic attacks, paranoia and depression.

OK, now we know some of the side-effects and some of the studies results, and it looks like marijuana use is definitely not good if you have anxiety problem or experience panic attacks. Paranoia? Psychosis? Predisposition to schizophrenia? Distorted perception and difficulties in problem solving? Definitely not a good combination for your anxiety. Reduced frequency of alpha waves responsible for your ability to relax also doesn’t help. So if I were you I wouldn’t touch cannabis if you think you are suffering from this particular mental health disorder.

What about its effect on depression?

Well, in depression your brain chemistry is already messed up so as your emotions and motor functions according to the list of common depression symptoms. Although there is no prove that marijuana causes or worsens your depression, it looks like it doesn’t help too. You basically add up to the problems you already experience so you have to work twice as hard to fight your depression.

Elena Stefan

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