Is Medical Marijuana the Answer to Your Chronic Pain?

The controversy surrounding the medical use of marijuana is fast becoming a thing of the past. Cannabis continues to show promising results in treating everything from chronic pain to mental health issues.

At No Mercy Sports Medicine in Miami, Florida, Dr. Moisés Irizarry-Román and our team understand the value of medical marijuana, which is why we offer medical cannabis evaluations. Here, we aim to help you better understand how medical cannabis may hold the key to resolving chronic pain.

Working with your body

One of the first things to understand about medical cannabis is that it works with an existing system in your body called the endocannabinoid system. This complex cell-signaling system influences everything from your appetite to your moods and, more importantly, can also have an impact on nerve signaling.

Diving a little deeper, your peripheral nerves are equipped with a large number of cannabinoid receptors, which, when activated, can block pain signaling. This not only occurs in your peripheral nerves, but also in your brain, which contains ample cannabinoid receptors. 

While cannabis (marijuana) contains hundreds of ingredients, the two most relevant when it comes to pain suppression are:

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)

THC is similar to the cannabinoid chemicals in your body and is the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis. THC binds to the cannabinoid receptors in your brain, which stimulate your reward centers and reduce pain and inflammation in your body.

Cannabidiol (CBD)

This ingredient does not have a psychoactive effect, but it does work in the same way as THC to reduce pain and inflammation in your body by working with your body’s endocannabinoid system.

Undergoing a medical cannabis evaluation

In accordance with the regulations of the State of Florida, we offer evaluations for low-THC cannabis products, which contain less than 0.8% of THC. These low levels mean that you don’t get the euphoric effects of THC with medical marijuana, but it provides enough to tackle your pain and inflammation.

Many of our patients turn to low-THC products to avoid taking opiates, which come with significant risks, namely addiction. With THC, we can relieve your pain in a way that’s effective and carries less risk.

As for the pain that THC can address, THC products are effective in treating most nonmalignant conditions, from old musculoskeletal injuries that didn’t heal properly to degenerative arthritis.

If we find that you’re a good candidate for medical marijuana, we complete the necessary paperwork and registration and order your low-THC products. These products come in many different forms, from inhalers to topical ointments, so you have a wide range of options.

The effects of THC are often fairly immediate, which means your road to pain relief is, thankfully, a short one.

If you’d like to explore whether medical cannabis may hold the key to resolving your chronic pain, please contact our Miami office to learn more.

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