Women have been using cannabis for centuries to treat a variety of medical conditions. However, the stigma surrounding cannabis has prevented many women from seeking out this natural remedy.
Men and women generally use medical cannabis at equal rates, varying between states. While some qualifying conditions are more likely to affect men, others are more likely to affect women.
Current State of Women’s Health
Women’s health is a complex and sensitive issue, and it’s one that deserves our full attention. Unfortunately, the current state of affairs leaves much to be desired. Thankfully, though, there is hope on the horizon in the form of medical cannabis.
Studies have shown that cannabis can be effective in treating a wide variety of qualifying medical conditions that primarily impact women. These include conditions like endometriosis, PMS, PCOS, menopause, and more. Not only does cannabis offer relief from the symptoms of these conditions, but it also helps to address the underlying causes.
Cannabis is a safe and natural option that can help women to take control of their health and their lives. If you’re suffering from a qualifying medical condition, don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor about whether cannabis could be right for you.
A History of Cannabis
Cannabis has been used medicinally for centuries, with records indicating its use dating back to 4000 BC in China. In the United States, medical cannabis is now legal in 33 states, with 10 states allowing recreational use. Cannabis has been shown to be effective in treating a number of qualifying medical conditions that primarily impact women. These conditions include:
- PMS and menstrual cramps
- Menopause symptoms
- Chronic pain
- Anxiety and depression
Cannabis can help to alleviate the symptoms of these conditions by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system. This system is responsible for regulating a number of functions in the body, including mood, appetite, pain, and fertility. By interacting with the endocannabinoid system, cannabis can help to reduce inflammation, ease pain, and improve mood. This makes it an effective treatment option for a variety of qualifying medical conditions that primarily impact women.
Cannabis Benefits to Women’s Health
Cannabis has been used to treat a variety of medical conditions, and it is no surprise that women’s health issues can be managed with the use of medical cannabis. Studies have found positive effects on women’s health in areas such as pain relief, endometriosis, menstrual cramps, anxiety, depression, and more.
Pain Relief: Cannabis has been found to have analgesic effects, which makes it a viable option for those suffering from chronic pain. This includes conditions such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, and even cancer-related pain. CBD specifically has been shown to reduce inflammation, which helps reduce the pain associated with these conditions.
Endometriosis is an often painful condition in which tissue similar to the lining of the uterus (endometrium) grows outside the uterus. Cannabis is rich in anti-inflammatory cannabinoids and terpenes that help manage chronic pain associated with endometriosis and by providing mild analgesic effects.
Menstrual cramps are a common problem for many women. Cannabis has been found to help alleviate some of the pain associated with menstrual cramps due to its anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to relax muscles. It can also be used as a substitute for medications such as ibuprofen that treat other symptoms such as headaches and nausea. Additionally, some believe it can be used for the treatment of pain in the back and neck, as well as some other conditions. Because there aren’t many pharmaceutical options available for treating so many symptoms simultaneously, cannabis may be useful for treating PMS.
Anxiety and depression are common mental health issues that can have a big impact on a woman’s life. Cannabis has been found to be an effective treatment for these conditions due to its calming effect on the brain and its ability to reduce stress levels. Additionally, CBD specifically may be beneficial in treating both anxiety and depression due to its neuroprotective properties.
Fibromyalgia is another condition that primarily impacts women. This chronic disorder causes chronic pain throughout the body, as well as fatigue and mood disturbances. Cannabis has been found to be effective in reducing pain associated with fibromyalgia and helping patients achieve better sleep.
Osteopenia and osteoporosis are medical conditions that reduce bone mass. Osteopenia is a condition similar to osteoporosis; it occurs in older adults and causes them to lose bone mass. This process causes bones to become less resilient and more breakable. In fact, approximately 50% of women age 50 or older have been diagnosed with osteoporosis. Additionally, some research on animal models indicates that cannabis could decrease bone loss. Extensive lab studies suggest that cannabidiol— also known as CBD— has the potential to help treat bone loss by regulating noradrenaline production. However, more clinical trials are needed in humans to see if this can help osteoporosis sufferers.
Finally, menopause is a natural process that all women will experience at some point in their lives. Symptoms can include hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, irritability, weight gain or loss and vaginal dryness. Studies have found that medical cannabis can help alleviate some of these symptoms by providing relief from hot flashes, improving sleep quality and reducing anxiety levels.
These are just some of the issues that medical cannabis can help address in women’s health. As research continues into this area, we may find even more benefits from using cannabis as a treatment option for various medical conditions primarily impacting women. If you are considering using medical cannabis for any of the above issues or if you would like additional information about how cannabis can help manage your symptoms, please speak with your healthcare provider today!
What Are the Risk Associated with Cannabis?
Cannabis does affect women differently than men. Here are some primary ways that women’s response to cannabis tends to differ from men’s:
- Women are more sensitive to the effects of THC due to differences in muscle mass and fat tissue distribution between males and females – women have more fat tissue and so retain THC in their system for longer. Due to this sensitivity to THC, women may get greater analgesic (painkiller) effects from cannabis and will likely need to use less THC to treat anxiety and depression.
- Women may be more likely to use cannabis as a substitute for prescription drugs concerning the above point. Cannabis use may increase women’s sex drive, and Interestingly, it’s the opposite for men.
- Women’s endocannabinoid receptors are more sensitive to cannabis compared to men’s. This means that the interactions between the endocannabinoid system and the brain level of dopamine – the neurotransmitter of “pleasure” and “reward” – are sex-dependent, with cannabis use releasing more dopamine in women.
- Female eggs exposed to THC have an impaired ability to produce viable embryos, possibly reducing fertility. However, this is an animal study, so the findings do not necessarily translate to humans.
It is important to remember that these are generalities, and cannabis can affect one individual very differently from another, regardless of their gender. Everyone has a unique endocannabinoid system (ECS), and more research is needed into how hormonal differences between people influence and interact with it. Other factors, like ingestion method, activity levels, age, and body-mass index (BMI), may also impact how the body metabolizes cannabis and its compounds.
In conclusion, there are numerous medical conditions that primarily affect women for which medical cannabis may be a useful treatment option. From endometriosis and fibromyalgia to PMS and menopause – medical marijuana can offer relief from physical discomfort, as well as mood disturbances, associated with these conditions. In addition to traditional treatments such as medications or therapy – cannabis may be an effective way to help manage various female-specific maladies without having to rely solely on potentially dangerous prescription drugs or invasive procedures
Curious to learn more about medical cannabis or to start your medical marijuana treatment? Give the qualified team at Affordable Marijuana Clinic a call at (904) 586-0041 or submit a short application today!