Since marijuana was legalized in Canada on Oct. 17, 2018, many seniors’ thoughts have drifted to medical marijuana. At this stage in life, they’re not looking for a ‘high’, as life has presented them with enough highs and lows. What seniors primarily want is to just stop that chronic pain and are willing to explore other options.
In the past, marijuana has been described as illegal, addictive, shameful, and even disgusting but we continually hear about the medical benefits, so let’s have a closer look at this.
There has been much talk about medical marijuana eliminating pain, relieving depression and reducing anxiety. After researching the positive effects further there have been reports of medical marijuana decreasing side affects from cancer treatments, Parkinson’s Disease, also battling sleep disorders, arthritis, diabetic neuropathy, muscle spasms, seizures, inflammation and migraines.
First, let’s try to understand this product better.
Cannabis is best known for its psychoactive properties like feeling high. The intoxicating effects are produced by the compound THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which is only one of over 60 cannabinoids found in a marijuana plant.
Research on cannabis discovered another compound, CBD (cannabidiol) which is non-psychoactive.
Both THC and CBD are believed to have medical benefits. The appeal of CBD products, such as capsules, creams, salves, bath bombs, oils and edibles, is that CBD has very little to no mind-altering effects.
On the cautious side, there has been minor focus on the long-term effects of medical marijuana, so medical research is still very limited on this subject.
Stats show that side effects from long-term use of prescriptions or over-the-counter medications can become problematic and even addictive.
Marijuana is not lacking in side effects, however MMJ patients claim these are minimal compared to risks of other treatment options.
Marijuana can interact with other medications and dosing is not an exact science. Most people use a trial and error approach because everyone reacts a little differently. It would be wise to discuss this with your physician.
Private retailers have started to open their doors, once all permitting and licensing is in place. To purchase online go to bccannabisstores.com. Customers will pay a $10 shipping fee and age will need to be verified (B.C. minimum 19 years old).
Medical marijuana remains an out-of-pocket expense and is not covered by insurance companies.
Remember DO NOT take any medical marijuana with you if you are travelling outside of Canada.
For more information go to www.Canada.ca/Cannabis or call 1 800 O-Canada.
To get informed on where you can buy or use cannabis in B.C. go to GetCannabisClarity.ca
Karla Reinhard lives in Qualicum Beach, where she explores seniors’ issues and personalities in the area. For story tips or questions, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org