Is cannabis helpful for people with PTSD?
The Arkansas medical marijuana program has a list of qualifying conditions that are approved for medical marijuana certifications.
Among cancer, glaucoma, seizures, and intractable pain, Arkansas is one of several MMJ states that approve PTSD as a qualifying condition.
PTSD can be a debilitating condition causing heightened stress and depression and can lead to complications such as addiction or even death.
In this article, we’ll cover why medical marijuana is used for PTSD, and how it can help those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.
What Is PTSD?
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is a mental health condition that can occur after a person is exposed to one or multiple traumatic experiences.
A car accident, natural disaster, or abandonment as a child are all examples of traumatic events that can sometimes leave lasting impacts on a person’s mind and body.
People who suffer from PTSD frequently experience symptoms such as the inability to sleep, irritability, difficulty concentrating, blackouts, or in some severe cases, homicidal or suicidal ideation.
PTSD can also cause a host of complications due to the potential for the condition to become chronic or long-term.
Prolonged or long-term exposure to unnatural stress, anxiety, or irritability from PTSD can cause complications such as cardiovascular disease, eating disorders, loss of occupation, increased risk for addiction, and even the inability to maintain healthy relationships.
How Common is PTSD?
Nearly anyone can get PTSD, in fact Arkansans may be at an increased risk for PTSD.
Arkansas ranks highest in the nation for childhood trauma, with over 50% of children experiencing at least one Adverse Childhood Experience, and the national average being 45%
Arkansas also ranks #47/50 for mental health, where close to 5% of our population is living with a serious mental health condition, and half of those diagnosed with a mental health condition receive no treatment.
PTSD stats across the nation are also disturbing:
· 1 in 13 people will develop PTSD at some point in their life.
· 20% of people who have had a traumatic event will develop PTSD.
· 70% of adults experience at least one traumatic event in their lifetime.
· Around 8 million people have PTSD each year.
· PTSD is more commonly diagnosed in women than men.
· PTSD is not exclusive to war, any traumatic event can cause PTSD, however Veterans are especially affected.
How Can Medical Marijuana Help with PTSD?
One 2020 study followed 150 participants diagnosed with PTSD who tried cannabis over the course of a year and found that there was a significant decrease in PTSD symptoms as well as their severity.
Participants were also over 2.5x more likely to no longer meet the DSM-5 requirements for being diagnosed with PTSD after using cannabis as an alternative medicine.
Receptors in areas of the brain that deal with stressors, memory cognition, inhibition, and your fight or flight response can be heavily affected by the cannabinoids in cannabis.
Symptoms such as chronic pain, sleeping issues, irritability and stress are all related to both PTSD and cannabis consumption, at least anecdotally.
Whereas PTSD can make a person irritable, lose sleep, and perceive stress inappropriately, cannabis can make a person calmer, sleepier, and less stressed.
Improvement in these areas can make a world of difference for someone suffering from debilitating symptoms that PTSD can cause, often without warning or retreat.
And as an alternative to opiates and opioids, cannabis may be looked at as a healthier alternative to treat certain symptoms.
Arkansas has approved PTSD as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana certifications, if you’d like to know more please call us at 844-249-8714 and we can answer any questions you may have about qualifying for medical marijuana certifications with a PTSD diagnosis.
Become an Arkansas Marijuana Patient
We’re dedicated to helping patients every step of the way, feel free to give us a call at 844-249-8714, and we can answer your questions about getting medical marijuana in Arkansas.
Doctors Who Care. Relief You Can Trust.
Helping everyone achieve wellness safely and conveniently through increased access to medical marijuana. Our focus on education, inclusion, and acceptance will reduce stigma for our patients by providing equal access to timely information and compassionate care.
If you have any questions, call us at 844-249-8714, or simply book a medical marijuana evaluation to start getting relief you can trust today!
Check out Arkansas Marijuana Card’s Blog to keep up to date on the latest medical marijuana news, tips, and information. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to join the medical marijuana conversation in Arkansas.