Breaking Stereotypes: Cannabis Science is More than Just ‘Getting High’
When we think of cannabis, the first thing that comes to mind is often getting high. However, the science behind marijuana is much more than just its psychoactive effects. Marijuana has a complex chemical makeup that has been studied for its potential medicinal benefits in treating various health conditions.
The Chemical Components of Cannabis
There are hundreds of chemical compounds found in cannabis, but the two most well-known are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). THC is the psychoactive compound that gets users high, while CBD has no psychoactive effects.
Research has shown that these compounds, along with other cannabinoids found in cannabis, have the potential to treat a range of conditions such as chronic pain, inflammation, seizures, anxiety, and depression.
Medical Uses of Cannabis
Currently, medical marijuana is legal in 33 states and Washington D.C. for various health conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, and PTSD. In addition, the FDA has approved a marijuana-based drug called Epidiolex for the treatment of seizures associated with two rare forms of epilepsy.
Studies have also shown that cannabis can help reduce opioid use in chronic pain patients, potentially reducing addiction and overdose rates. In states where medical marijuana is legal, opioid overdose rates have decreased by up to 25 percent.
Despite the potential benefits of cannabis, it continues to face negative stereotypes and stigmas. Many people still view marijuana as a dangerous drug with no medical value. This attitude has slowed down the legalization of marijuana and limited research into its medicinal properties.
Breaking these stereotypes is crucial to advancing cannabis science and unlocking its potential benefits. By educating the public on the science behind cannabis and its potential benefits, we can change the negative perception of the drug and help alleviate the suffering of those with various health conditions.
If you are interested in learning more about the science of cannabis, check out these resources:
- The Health Effects of Cannabis and Cannabinoids: The Current State of Evidence and Recommendations for Research
- Leafly Science & Tech
- Project CBD
It’s time to break the stereotypes surrounding cannabis and embrace its potential as a medicine.