A Quinnipiac University National poll has found that 87% of Americans think that military veterans should be allowed medical cannabis PTSD treatment. A report from Seattle PI says that veterans are reporting temporary relief, and even complete cures after using medical cannabis. The poll is timely, since the issue is currently attracting a great deal of attention from the public and the media.
Documentary highlights the plight of returning veterans
In a moving full-movie-length documentary, award-winning film maker Michael King investigates PTSD in military veterans. His film “When War Comes Home” features real-life stories of veterans who have seen horrifying scenes of death and suffering in warzones and who now struggle to adapt to normal life. One of the soldiers featured, a man named Spencer, tells his interviewer that at one time he was using up to 20 different prescription drugs every day in order to treat his PTSD.
The Seattle PI article speculates on just how much damage such a drug cocktail would do – especially given the fact that many psychiatric drugs have unpleasant side effects. But, says the article, despite medical evidence (which it admits is somewhat limited) and the overwhelming public support for medical cannabis for war veterans, Federal Government does not allow medical cannabis prescriptions for PTSD.
Even in states where medical marijuana programs are administered, PTSD is not among the ailments for which it may be prescribed. Doctors have specifically been prohibited from giving any opinions on cannabis as a PTSD treatment.
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The US Department of Veteran Affairs’ opinion
The Department of Veteran Affairs notes that although the human endocannabinoid system seems to play a role in PTSD, the use of cannabis as a treatment presents several problems. The psychoactive cannabinoid THC may be addictive – and although there are non-psychoactive cannabinoids such as CBD – it’s impossible to tell what an individual plant’s cannabinoid composition consists of.
The website observes that PTSD is a risk factor that makes veterans more likely to use and potentially become addicted to marijuana. It encourages veterans to avoid the risks inherent in using marijuana based on the side-effects of THC. It says that the notion of marijuana being a cure for PTSD is based solely on individual reports and not from randomized clinical trials.
Could CBD oil be the solution?
The Department says that non-psychoactive CBD has proved effective in treating those suffering from clinical anxiety, but that no studies relating to its effects on PTSD have been published to date. Given this information, many readers will be interested to learn the results of studies on CBD as a potential treatment, since this would eliminate the concerns regarding THC addiction, overdose and psychosis while providing a scientific basis for treatment.
More than half of Americans think Marijuana should be legalized
The Quinnipiac University poll found that 54 percent of Americans think that marijuana should be legalized with younger people and men exhibiting higher percentages of support for the concept. Is the whole cannabis prohibition a storm in a teacup? Should cannabis PTSD treatment receive priority research? Have your say!