Since 2900 B.C., medical marijuana has been used to treat a variety of ailments and medical conditions. Whether it was sore eyes, inflammation, or many other types of illnesses, marijuana was the go-to medicine of choice for hundreds and hundreds of years. Even US founding father George Washington grew his own hemp for decades. It wasn’t until 1915 that marijuana of any kind was legally prohibited in the United States, and since then, it has been an uphill battle trying to get it back on the legal market. Finally, we have come to the point of some acceptance, and we can begin making further strides into a more complete understanding of marijuana and what it can do for people. So what exactly is medical marijuana, and how does it differ from recreational marijuana?
Generally speaking, medical marijuana has a different ratio of certain cannabinoids than recreational marijuana. This is true no matter what form you are consuming it in. If you don’t already know, cannabinoids are the chemical that leads to the physical and psychological effects you receive when consuming marijuana.
In recreational marijuana, the typically desired cannabinoid is THC or tetrahydrocannabinol. In medical marijuana, on the other hand, the more commonly desired cannabinoid is CBD or cannabidiol. THC gives users the psychoactive effects or the high. CBD can counterbalance THC in a way that gives the user all the benefits, without any of the negatives (i.e. paranoia). They also provide the additional effects that are prized in medicines that increase the quality of life for many who need it.
Types of Medical Marijuana
Medical marijuana can come in a variety of different forms. This includes oils, tinctures, and so on. Perhaps the most common form preferred by many patients receiving medical marijuana treatment is a concentrated oil form. Of course, not all cannabis oils are the same. Even more confusing, many of the different terms are used interchangeably or in an unclear way, making it rather difficult for consumers to understand exactly what they should be using. Let’s look at some of the differences here.
Pure CBD Oil
This type of oil is extracted from a hemp plant that is specifically bred to have high levels of CBD. After extraction, the oil goes through a purification process so that it ends up having lots of CBD and a level of THC under the legal limit of 0.3%.
Anything just called “cannabis oil” is likely simply a marijuana extract that will contain a variety of different chemicals such as cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and perhaps even contaminants if it is not extracted using CO2. Cannabis oil is a basic, general term.
What medical marijuana can treat
Although there is a desperate need for more medical studies to be done, there is a general understanding that medical marijuana can help with the treatment of the following ailments: Pain, Nausea, Seizures, Psychosis Disorders, Inflammation, Neurodegenerative Disorders, Cancers, Depression, Anxiety, Insomnia, and much, much more.
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