Canadian cannabis clinic Grow Wise Health published an article on managing Fibromyalgia with cannabis.
It is not easy to treat fibromyalgia, but Cannabis for fibromyalgia manages pain and other symptoms well.
The primary complaint of Fibromyalgia patients is pain. Patients with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder are often also diagnosed with comorbid Fibromyalgia. The illness has a long history, and stigma attached as doctors once believed it was all ‘in patient’s heads’. Lately, more and more doctors and patients can affirm it is a very real condition, and quite complex.
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Apart from constant pain, patients experience other symptoms such as muscle cramps, fatigue, morning stiffness, headaches, migraines, cognitive dysfunction, also called ‘fibro-fog’, non-restorative sleep, IBS, anxiety, depression, sexual dysfunction, and myofascial pain.
Most patients use THC (Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (Cannabidiol) dominant marijuana strains to manage Fibromyalgia symptoms.
By breaking the chronic pain cycle, many of the symptoms of Fibromyalgia can be successfully managed. Chronic pain can easily turn into muscle pain and fatigue, or pain and non-restorative sleep. When patients experience chronic pain, all symptoms become worse as they impact on each other.
An improvement in one symptom can often affect other symptoms positively. Exercise, a healthy diet, psychotherapy along with pharmacological treatment included in a holistic plan will help manage symptoms the best.
Breaking chronic pain cycles
Because many pharmacological options result in unwanted side-effects, alternative treatments such as cannabis are becoming a popular option. Cannabis will not only provide pain relief, but will improve quality of sleep. When restorative sleep is increased, it can result in significant reduction of pain, which influence moods positively. The decreasing of inflammation prevents muscle stiffness, myofascial pain and tension headaches. By reducing anxiety, and difficult emotions, IBS can improve. By just alleviating pain, many of the symptoms of Fibromyalgia become more manageable.
How cannabis breaks the pain cycle
Many of the hundreds of cannabinoids found in cannabis are responsible for the decrease of painful stimuli. The best-researched cannabinoids, THC and CBD, are believed to have powerful analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects.
Cannabis products can be used in a combination of oral, edible and topical applications to manage pain and inflammation on different levels. Using a vape can help to break through the pain as the effect is quickly felt. CBD oil and edible cannabis products can be used for long-lasting effects of up to 4-6 hours. Topical preparations can be applied directly to painful areas to provide greater relief.
The anti-inflammatory effect of cannabis will also help increase flexibility, and make exercise more effective. Many patients find relief in cannabis alone, but others use it in conjunction with opioids for enhanced relief.
Manage Difficult Emotions
Mental health is better for patients with pain, and cannabis helps the body cope with stress and tension caused by pain says the clinic. Cannabis has anxiolytic properties, and could help manage symptoms of depression. Many Fibromyalgia patients suffer from PTSD, and cannabis can help integrate flashbacks, negative emotions such as fear and anxiety and night terrors.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Fibromyalgia patients often suffer from IBS, and frequently experience abdominal pain, and irregular bowel movement, including constipation or nausea. Treatment options are limited, but studies show cannabis can be helpful in managing IBS. The anti-inflammatory effects of CBD decrease abdominal pain. Cannabis also improves movement of secretions and regulates bowel movement.
Combat fatigue and assist restful sleep
Not being able to sleep can increase pain tremendously, and if pain increases there is no sleep. This is a vicious cycle, which leads to cognitive dysfunction or “fibro-fog” and moodiness or irritability. Sleep also restores the body, and is crucial to our health. Lack of sleep can put us at risk of many diseases such as high blood pressure, heart and kidney disease, and strokes.
Cannabis is often used to get patients to sleep and stay asleep, THC is highly sedative, and CBD also promotes sleep. Edible products are highly effective because of their long-lasting effects.
Cannabis for fibromyalgia
Cannabis for fibromyalgia provides many patients with a natural alternative to manage pain, and alleviates other symptoms such as anxiety, headaches, and sleeplessness says the clinic.