Even though so many countries have widely prohibited it use, Cannabis remains one of the self-medicated coping drugs for people suffering from anxiety and any form of the disorder; this statement is backed with the fact that there has been overwhelming evidence that shows the relationship between cannabis and PTSD.
WHAT IS PTSD?
PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder is a form of the disorder that stems from trauma. It is an anxiety condition that is caused by serious episodes such as military combat, accidents, hurricanes or sexual assault.
When a person suffers from PTSD, what happens is that the portion of the brain which controls fear is triggered by little things causing the person to relive the event repeatedly especially when similar incidences occur around them.
Most PTSD patients suffer from severe fear especially when something triggers their activities such as fireworks or a speeding car. Most times, the reaction can be so overwhelming making them unable to function well in their daily activities, and also have bad effects on the personal health which may lead to suicidal thoughts.
Some PTSD reactions include exaggerated startle, detachment from people, recurring nightmares, inability to sleep, substance abuse, emotionally numb, inability to control emotions, sadness or anger and hyper-vigilance.
One thing to note about PTSD is that it does not discriminate, it can happen to anybody despite your age, sex, gender or race after a person experiences or witnesses some traumatic events such as violence, crime, bad accidents, hurricanes or death of a close family member.
PTSD AMONG VETERANS AND FIRST RESPONDERS
Research has shown that so many veterans or military personnel who returned to the United States after the war in Iraq or Afghanistan suffer from some mental health challenges and PTSD is quite prevalent amongst them.
The worst remains that most of their psychological health remain undiagnosed and untreated for an extended period of time. Even for a veteran, PTSD remains one chronic condition that has no simple cure.
TREATING PTSD WITH CANNABIS
In the past, a lot of treatment for PTSD have been used ranging from psychological, pharmacological, and alternative healing modalities which have not worked well. Even at present, there are still no effective treatment or medications for PTSD patients.
However, there is an ongoing research aimed at discovering better ways of understanding and treating PTSD. Before making use of any medical cannabis in treating PTSD symptoms, PTSD patients, veterans and first responders are often advised to consult a medical professional this is because veterans who are unaccustomed to cannabis may find it out THC found in cannabis increases anxiety symptoms instead of reducing it.
Generally speaking, the use of cannabis appears to be higher in trauma survivors than other people. Studies have shown that those living with PTSD and have the lower capability to withstand emotional distress are more likely to make use of Cannabis in order to alleviate all kinds of negative moods.
According to Martin Lee, the director of Project CBD, the damage caused by PTSD cannot be fully unraveled by any medication, but for some patients, cannabis provides respite when nothing else can. People living with PTSD have a lower level of anandamide, which is an endogenous cannabinoid compound when compared to those who do not show a sign of PTSD.
In other words, one thing that leads to PTSD is the deficiency of endocannabinoid that is when the body stops producing endocannabinoids that are sufficient enough to fill receptor sites. The cannabinoids found in marijuana now play a therapeutic role here and helps to fill the receptor sites, by replacing the missing endocannabinoids in the body with those found in cannabis, researchers think that cannabis might be of great relief to PTSD patients.
Also, Cannabidiol also known as CBD which is a cannabis cannabinoid that counteracts the effects of THC such as paranoia and anxiety could be of help to veterans because research has also shown that the relationship between THC and CBD could lead to a more tolerable variants cannabis for high anxiety individuals.
Another treatment that has been making headway in the fight against PTSD is the use of Cannabis oil. Some veterans feel that Cannabis oil goes a long way in reducing painful symptoms.
Studies have also shown that military personnel claim relief with the use of cannabis oil after other treatments have failed them. Other medical issues that cannabis oil can treat includes but not limited to the following: Cancer, Arthritis, Multiple Sclerosis, Epilepsy, HIV, Alzheimer’s, Chronic Pain and Glaucoma.
In the recent time, evidence of the use of cannabis oil as a treatment for PTSD has become overwhelming to the point that even the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has approved a study to be conducted on the use of cannabis as medicine.
Finally, this development is very promising, as it will open more doors for research into the use of Cannabis in the treatment of PTSD, thereby resulting in a way to provide relief to many patients who have PTSD with the use of cannabis oil.