Breast cancer is one of the most prevalent types of cancer in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, breast cancer is the second most common form of cancer among US women. While there is no known cure for this devastating disease, many patients have turned to various remedies to help alleviate some of their symptoms.
In recent years, an increasing number of consumers have been using cannabis for breast cancer and a number of other conditions. From mental health disorders such as depression to physical conditions like chronic pain, medical marijuana has been used by millions of patients as a source of relief for various ailments. Some breast cancer patients have even sought out high-quality medical cannabis to use in response to their disease. For those who are wondering what role cannabis can play in their own lives, here are all the key details on the plant and its various uses.
What Is Medical Cannabis?
Medical cannabis is a form of marijuana that is used as a natural herbal remedy. Cannabinoids, which are biologically active compounds found inside medical marijuana, offer a variety of benefits to users. There are numerous types of cannabinoids that serve a wide range of purposes. The benefits that patients receive from marijuana depends largely on the types of cannabinoids found inside the plant.
The two most common types of cannabinoids are THC and CBD. These are both natural compounds that are found inside the cannabis plant. Each of these two compounds interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, a molecular system that helps regulate a number of vital processes in the body, including appetite, metabolism, memory, immunity, cell communication and more.
The main difference between THC and CBD lies in the types of conditions they are used for.
Generally speaking, patients turn to CBD for pain, inflammation, mental disorders, seizures and similar conditions. THC is used for many of the same conditions as well as others. Some of the main uses for THC include the following:
- Low appetite
- Muscle spasticity
To determine which type of cannabis is best for their needs, patients should be sure to speak to their doctors about their specific conditions. A medical professional can help shed light on the most appropriate course of action for each type of condition.
How Does Medical Marijuana Work?
For patients who have treated a mental health condition with traditional medication, such as SSRIs, it’s worth noting that medical cannabis functions in the brain in a way that’s very similar to conventional drugs.
The main goal of CBD and THC is to activate the serotonin receptor that’s found in different parts of the brain. Serotonin, a key neurotransmitter, is responsible for many important functions in the human body, including mood regulation, digestion and appetite, memory, sleep, social behavior and sexual function.
By targeting the brain’s serotonin receptor, medical marijuana plays a significant role in reducing pain, alleviating depression or anxiety and stimulating appetite. The way cannabinoids behave in the human brain is similar to that of antidepressants. However, unlike SSRIs and other conventional forms of medication, cannabis typically doesn’t lead to any unpleasant side effects. While CBD or THC may lead to fatigue, changes in appetite, dizziness or diarrhea, these effects tend to be mild and uncommon.
There are many other purposes of marijuana that allow it to have a positive effect on the brain and body. The other main function of cannabinoids has to do with the endocannabinoid system. More specifically, CBD target the body’s CB1 and CB2 receptors, which are essential to controlling emotions and behavior.
This entire process is vital to the success of cannabis in the human body. Once CBD manages to target the receptors in the endocannabinoid system, it helps to boost mood, memory, decision making skills and more. As a result, CBD or THC can lead to many promising results for those suffering from certain physical or psychological conditions.
What to Know Before Using Medical Cannabis
For patients who are considering taking cannabis for breast cancer or other physical and mental health condition, this is an important step towards enjoying a more fulfilling life and enhancing overall well-being. With such a wide selection of products to choose from, it’s now become easier than ever to find the right type of marijuana.
First, it’s worth noting that cannabis comes in a vast array of forms. Choosing the right form for each patient’s needs is what ultimately allows them to find the relief they need from their medical condition. The most common ways to use marijuana include smoking it out of a pipe or bubbler, rolling joints, taking CBD oil and consuming edibles.
As far as CBD products go, there are many different types of items to choose from. One of the most common forms of cannabidoil is capsules. Many consumers prefer to use CBD in capsule form because they’re easy to take and highly convenient.
However, the list doesn’t end there. Consumers may also choose between tinctures, topicals, gummies, salves, body oils, concentrates and a slew of other products. Patients should be sure to carefully think about their lifestyles as well as their daily routines to decide which product caters to their goals. Many CBD products, such as oils and sprays, even come with tasty flavors to make each daily dosage more enjoyable.
For patients who aren’t sure which type of CBD or THC product is most appropriate for them, it may be best for them to speak to a medical professional. A doctor can discuss each option with their patients and help them decide which product is most suitable for their symptoms. No matter which form of medical cannabis a consumer ultimately chooses, this natural remedy can help them make great strides towards living a fuller, happier life.
Key Questions to Ask Before Trying Medical Marijuana
Making the decision to try medical cannabis is an important step toward improving overall health and well-being. Whether a patient is suffering from breast cancer or chronic anxiety, it’s crucial for them to ensure that they’re using the best product for their needs. This will allow them to get the results they want from the marijuana.
First, each customer should take the time to do thorough research on their cannabis product of choice. Here are some of the most important questions that everyone should ask before deciding to take cannabis for medical reasons.
Does the dispensary have any experience in recommending medical cannabis?
First and foremost, every marijuana dispensary should have proven experience and training in recommending medical cannabis to patients. Inquiring about the staff’s credentials before making a purchase is vital to ensuring that the product can be trusted.
In addition, taking this step can help each customer understand which type of cannabis is best for their medical condition. Not every CBD or THC product is the same, and using the right cannabis for breast cancer or another condition can help boost its effectiveness.
Does the cannabis product contain pesticides?
Unfortunately, some cannabis is grown with the use of pesticides. Pesticides are associated with a host of serious health effects, including an increased risk of cancer and Alzheimer’s disease, damage to the nervous system and reproductive dangers such as birth defects. It’s well worth each patient’s time and effort to ensure that the medical marijuana they choose is free of pesticides and completely safe to consume.
Is the cannabis product stored properly?
No one wants to discover that their marijuana has been contaminated or spoiled after they take it home with them. To prevent this from happening, customers should always take the initiative to check if their cannabis is stored properly. If there are any signs of spoilage or contamination inside a facility, that’s a sure sign to move onto another source.
What is the recommended dosage?
Because every marijuana product is different, it’s important for consumers to verify that they’re taking the appropriate dosage. While most dispensaries offer recommendations for the ideal dosage, it’s important for each patient to be cognizant of their individual situation. Those who are uncertain of the proper dosage may choose to speak with a doctor before using medical marijuana for the first time.
Using Medical Cannabis for Breast Cancer and Other Conditions
To patients who are suffering from breast cancer, a mental disorder or another medical condition, it may be difficult to achieve a sense of hope in life. However, while cannabis shouldn’t be solely relied on to treat breast cancer, it may provide some relief from the pain and mental anguish associated with this disease. Not only are cannabis products generally safe to use, but they also have a high level of effectiveness that countless customers have come to rely on. Anyone can enjoy the peace of mind they need with help from the right medical cannabis.