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Marijuana For Chronic Pain – How it Works?

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According to a new study, about ⅓ of migraine patients confirmed that they tried marijuana for managing pain or other symptoms. About 82 percent of people who consumed cannabis reported a significant improvement in pain. The data of 10000 migraine patients in the United States and Canada was collected with Migraine Buddy, a migraine tracking app.

Chronic pain is one of the top conditions for which patients use medical marijuana for. With a rec signed by a medical marijuana doctor in Long Beach, you can legally use cannabis for medical purposes.

What Causes Chronic Pain?

Chronic pain usually lasts for weeks, months, and even years. As per the 2016 National Health Interview Survey by the CDC, 1 in 5 Americans (i.e. 50 million people countrywide) are suffering from chronic pain.

Chronic pain feels like sharp, dull sensations in the affected areas. Some common types of chronic pain are—headaches, arthritis pain, lower back pain, post-trauma pain, and neurogenic pain.

It’s often caused by an injury. Many medical experts believe that nerve damage results in chronic pain, which is more intense and long-lasting. Sometimes, pain is caused by an underlying condition, such as endometriosis, fibromyalgia, IBD, TMJ, and chronic fatigue syndrome. Major risks associated with chronic pain are obesity, surgery, and injury.

Science Behind Marijuana For Chronic Pain Management

Marijuana’s effectiveness in managing chronic pain is due to how it stimulates the endocannabinoid system (ECS). ECS is an electrochemical signaling system, which helps the body to regulate itself. It has receptors present throughout the body, i.e. in the brain, organs, glands, etc. The endocannabinoid system responds immediately if anything wrong happens with the system. For instance, when you are injured, the cannabinoid receptors work for calming the immune cells and preventing the release of pro-inflammatory substances. This reduces pain.

The receptors are activated by the endocannabinoids, which are produced by the body naturally. However, plant-based cannabinoids such as THC and CBD can also stimulate the cannabinoids, thus managing pain and inflammation.

Related- Difference Between Cannabis-Derived And Hemp-Derived CBD

The amazing pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties of cannabis make it an effective treatment option for patients with chronic pain conditions, such as neuropathy, arthritis, etc. 

What do Studies Have to Say?

According to a study from the European Academy of Neurology, various doses of cannabinoids reduced pain by 40 percent or more in patients with migraine. Moreover, cannabinoids also helped ease headaches in patients with a history of childhood migraine.

A recent study published in Advances in Therapy reported that marijuana is getting popular among patients suffering from chronic pain. Scientists found that cannabis compounds can help reduce the average pain intensity without causing risks to cognitive function.

A study published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine reported that CBD can help reduce pain and inflammation. CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid of marijuana plants.

The National Cancer Institute says that CBD can help in alleviating side-effects of cancer chemotherapy. These include vomiting, pain, loss of appetite, etc.

Medical Marijuana vs Opioid Medications

Opioid medications are commonly prescribed medications for chronic pain. However, they can cause side-effects, such as constipation, sedation, slowed breathing, etc. Moreover, pain medications and opioids are highly addictive. In 2014, more than 28000 people died from an opioid overdose.

Marijuana is effective in pain management. Unlike opioid medications, it doesn’t cause any unpleasant side-effects. In a 2018 study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, researchers focused on determining the effects of cannabis on cancer and rheumatological patients. 41 percent of patients reduced dependence on opioids. Additionally, 63 percent of the patients reduced opioid use by 25 percent.

According to a 2016 study by the University of Michigan, cannabis helped in reducing the side-effects associated with medications and improved the quality of life. Moreover, the herb reduced opioid use by 64 percent.

When using opiates, you require larger doses to get the relief. However, taking low doses can result in living with pain. If you take higher doses, there are risks of overdose associated with opioid medications. On the other hand, marijuana is a safer alternative for patients looking to avoid opioid addiction.

Some recent studies show that opiate overdose was reduced by 25 percent in those states where medical marijuana has become legal.

How to Use Marijuana For Chronic Pain

When using cannabis for pain management, it’s necessary to understand how cannabinoids work in your body. Remember, not everyone experiences the same effects by consuming THC and CBD. Major factors affecting the cannabis effects are body weight, tolerance, dosage, etc. Start with a low dose to determine the effects of cannabinoids on the body and avoid an overdose. Talk to a medical marijuana doctor in Long Beach to seek professional help.

Top Cannabis Strains For Chronic Pain


This Sativa-dominant strain is effective in managing chronic pain, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, and anxiety. Additionally, you can use it for alleviating cancer chemotherapy side-effects. The moment you consume ACDC, you will feel happiness and pleasure. ACDC provides no-little euphoria effects because of low-THC content. So, many medical professionals recommend it for beginners. 

Northern Lights

It contains 16.5 percent THC and is known for a spicy, sweet aroma. Northern Lights can help relax the body and alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression effectively. If you are a beginner, start with a low dose otherwise high THC content may make you uncomfortable. Northern Lights usually start flowering in just 6-8 weeks.

Blue Dream

Blue Dream has 17-25 percent of THC and can be used for managing nausea, anxiety along with pain. Many users report that the strain can help in boosting creativity and energy. Blue Dream is available in three flavors, berry, blueberry, and sweet.

When using this strain, the dosage is important. Consume too much can cause negative effects, such as anxiety and paranoia. So, know your limits and take what’s required for your symptoms.

Choose The Right Way to Consume Cannabinoids

Smoking and vaping can help deliver cannabinoids directly into the bloodstream. These consumption methods can help you reduce pain and inflammation quickly. They work by heating cannabis and extracting the cannabinoids. You can also vape concentrates, which contain higher levels of THC than flowers.

Marijuana-infused edibles are considered safe as compared to smoking. When you eat ice-creams, brownies, gummies, etc., cannabinoids get absorbed through the digestive system. So, edibles take longer to deliver their medicinal effects, which last about 8-10 hours depending on the type of edible.

For localized relief, you can use cannabis topicals. Consumers have a wide range of options available in marijuana-infused creams, lotions, and balms.

Get a Medical Marijuana Card Online

With telemedicine, you can apply for MMJ recs online. When you fill an online form, a licensed medical marijuana doctor in Long Beach will connect to you through the HIPAA-compliant software. Once approved, you will receive your rec letter in PDF via email. So, it’s a three-step process-


  • Sign up an account
  • See a doctor online
  • Receive MMJ recs via email


Related- Benefits of 420 Evaluations in Long beach During Pandemic

Key Takeaways

Marijuana for pain is getting popular among patients. Research says that cannabis compounds such as THC and CBD can help ease pain, anxiety, and sleep by stimulating the body’s endocannabinoid system. To receive the desired effects, make sure you select the right strain, dosage, and consumption methods.

See a medical marijuana doctor in Long Beach to apply for 420 evaluations today.