Article by Ljubica Kostovic, GrowWise Health
The medical cannabis industry has created a unique space where women can explore their health needs in a whole new way. In addition to revolutionizing the way in which many patients and physicians choose to mange chronic and debilitating conditions, medical cannabis is also providing novel therapeutic options for female specific health goals. Women who suffer from premenstrual symptoms, menstrual cramps, headaches, migraines, pain, nausea, vomiting and symptoms of endometriosis can use cannabis to manage these symptoms and improve their quality of life.
Cannabis, Menstrual Pain and Endometriosis
Menstrual pain, cramping, and endometriosis are conditions commonly experienced by women of all ages. Endometriosis is a condition marked by abnormal extrauterine growth and severe pelvic and lower back pain. Hormonal therapy and surgery are traditionally recommended treatments to manage endometriosis, but these are often accompanied by severe side effects and are often ineffective. Even if you are a female who does not suffer from endometriosis, chances are that you experience pain and cramping related to your menstrual cycle.
When it comes to pain, cannabis has a proven track record to help relieve the experience of pain. Cannabis has a unique ability to provide patients with pain relief by acting on our own body’s endocannabinoid system and mimicking naturally occurring cannabinoids that are typically responsible for pain relief. Research shows that our body’s endocannabinoid system is involved in endometriosis and associated uterine pain. This means that cannabis has a high potential to help alleviate pain associated with endometriosis and to manage the condition more holistically.
The cannabis plant is made up of over 100 cannabinoids, many of which can help decrease the experience of painful stimuli. The two most well-researched cannabinoids, Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD) are believed to be primarily responsible for providing analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects. CBD rich cannabis strains provide female patients with an added option of managing their pain without the the psychoactive effects typically attributed to THC. This means either relying solely on CBD rich strains, or combining CBD rich products alongside THC high strains for added benefits.
A combination of oral, edible and topical forms of cannabis products can help manage pain and inflammation on a variety of levels. Vaporized cannabis can be helpful for managing severe pain, as pain relieving effects will be felt very quickly. In addition, CBD oil and edible cannabis products can provide long-acting pain relief with effects lasting approximately 4-6 hours. Topical cannabis preparations can be applied directly to the painful area, providing an added sense of relief. In addition to providing pain relief, in the traditional sense, the anti-inflammatory effects and anti convulsant effects of cannabis may also be useful for decreasing menstrual cramps.