The interest in medical marijuana as an effective treatment for specific medical conditions is growing among healthcare professionals and patients. It is most commonly used for pain relief associated with chronic conditions. Research shows that medical marijuana is so effective in pain relief that it is sometimes used as an alternative for opioids in specific populations. However, some still argue that there is not enough evidence to support its efficacy, but many in Florida are using marijuana as a substitute for pain-relieving medications. Patients seeking to use medicinal marijuana in Florida must acquire a Medical Marijuana Card first.
Over 2 million Americans use medical marijuana.
Medical marijuana is a notorious topic in the healthcare industry. Whether it’s doctors, researchers, scientists, or patients – everyone has an opinion about it. The debate around the use of medical marijuana for medicinal purposes remains strong. Statistics show that approximately 2.1 million individuals use medical marijuana in the United States1.
The majority of states, including Florida, have legalized medical marijuana. Healthcare providers and pharmacists have had to adjust care delivery to accommodate medical marijuana cardholders across the nation, including Florida. Medical marijuana dispensaries have opened up in different locations to make medicinal marijuana more accessible to those approved by law and have received their medical marijuana card to buy medical cannabis legally
What is Chronic Illness:
A chronic illness is generally defined as an illness that has lasted for a year or more, requires ongoing medical attention, has limited daily life activities, or both. According to the CDC, the leading cause of death in the United States are chronic conditions such as cancer, cardiovascular heart disease, and diabetes, while chronic pain is the most common symptom for which American adults seek medical care.
According to another report published in 2018, around 50 million adults suffered from chronic pain, and 8% had high-impact chronic pain. High impact pain restricts or prevents an individual from carrying out one or more major life activities.
Which chronic conditions are treated with medical marijuana?
An increasing number of studies are being carried out to determine the efficacy of medical marijuana in treating chronic medical conditions. People who have a medical marijuana card and are residents of a state (like Florida) where approved legislation for medical cannabis are in place may use it for the following chronic conditions once recommended by a medical marijuana doctor:
- Back pain
- Crohn’s disease
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Lyme disease
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Parkinson’s disease
- Severe chronic pain
- Loss of appetite
- Muscular dystrophy
- Hepatitis C
By law, medical conditions of the same kind or class as or comparable to those mentioned above, or a terminal illness, can legally use medical marijuana. The condition has to be diagnosed by a physician other than the physician issuing the physician certification’ for the person to qualify for a medical marijuana card.
Talk to a medical marijuana doctor.
Individuals looking to use medical marijuana are often confused and don’t know where to find it or who to turn to for advice. Sometimes they feel uncomfortable bringing up the subject to their family doctor because of the healthcare community’s divided opinions on medical marijuana. Some are either dismissive or uninformed. However, now more and more healthcare providers are catching up to speed on the topic and are trying to be more inclusive and unbiased when providing care for their patients and valuing their choices and preferences.
The best way to ask about getting a medical marijuana card would be to look up a medical marijuana expert or a platform specialized in medicinal marijuana. Medical marijuana doctors in legalized states like Florida are well informed and can help you make the right decision. Whether you want to apply for a medical marijuana card in Florida, need information on the application process, or learn about the qualifying conditions, a medical marijuana expert can lead you in the right direction.
Empower The Patient:
The healthcare community is coming to terms with the rampant use of medical marijuana as an alternative treatment for chronic conditions. The personal views of the physicians are insignificant; as professional care providers, they are obliged to put the patient’s needs first.
Studies show promising results, and healthcare professionals see the shift in patient response to medical marijuana for chronic illnesses. Marijuana consists of several Phyto-cannabinoid components, of which THC and CBD are being studied the most. These two components, along with other cannabinoids, result in a synergistic effect that promotes pain relief.
Patient empowerment is not only limited to keeping the patient well informed and providing the right tools, but it includes giving them the right to choose a treatment they’re comfortable and happy with. If they believe in the treatment, it makes them emotionally and mentally strong too. It gives them the willpower to fight the disease, as the power of the mind is limitless.
How To Use Medical Marijuana?
Once your medical marijuana card application is approved by a licensed physician and you make the list of qualifying conditions, you are on your way to getting a medical marijuana card- your license to purchase and use medical marijuana legally.
Patients use medicinal cannabis in the following ways:
- Smoke or inhale it
- Inhale through a vaporizer, a device that turns it into a mist
- Mix it with food and eat it (brownies, candy)
- Topical application (lotion, cream ointment)
- Liquid drops under the tongue for rapid absorption
It is important not to self-medicate. Always consult a healthcare professional or a medical marijuana doctor before taking marijuana. It is essential to take the prescribed dose only and schedule regular follow-ups. Our doctors are empowering many in Florida today to manage their chronic pain effectively.
Common side effects of medical marijuana consumption include dizziness, increased heart rate, and low blood pressure, among others. If you experience these side effects, it is best to contact your medical marijuana doctor right away.