Marijuana has been used for thousands of years as food, fiber, and medicine. Today, it’s in the limelight for medicinal purposes. Medical marijuana usage is growing all over the world, with the U.S. being center stage for the organic medicinal revolution.
What Is CBD?
Cannabis sativa and indica are two different species that may be used as medical marijuana. Hybrid forms of these plants exist as well. THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is the compound in marijuana that’s made it famous as an illegal drug around the world.
This compound produces an altered state characterized by feelings of euphoria, increased sensory perception, and feelings of pleasure.
CBD is short for cannabidiol, a compound found in the hemp plant that comes from the resin glands of the plant. Confusingly, hemp isn’t taxonomically different from marijuana. The main difference between hemp and marijuana is that hemp is low in THC (less than 0.3%) while marijuana is high in THC (more than 0.3%).
CBD is typically derived from “hemp” plants as they contain more CBD and minimal amounts of THC. Hemp is legal in all 50 states of America.
However, CBD isn’t just a “dietary supplement” as some companies claim. It has medicinal uses in its own right. In recent years, CBD has become a popular topic of interest. Many people are trying to learn more about this natural cannabinoid and its benefits.
CBD won’t produce a high like THC when consumed. As a result, it’s often claimed that CBD is not psychoactive, though it does have an effect on the central nervous system. Since CBD doesn’t have a significant impact on the brain, it’s the compound typically used for medical reasons.
The vast majority of people won’t get high from CBD, but it is possible for users to react differently to this complex compound with some reported “high-like” effects. In brief, CBD oil is not psychoactive in the same way as THC is and it will not get you high.
10 Medical Marijuana Stats You Need to Know
Medical marijuana is available in a variety of forms. You can eat it, drink it, smoke it, and apply it as a topical treatment. To shed some light on how medical marijuana is growing and why it could be beneficial for you, here are some medical marijuana stats for 2022.
1. 3.6 million state-legal patients use medical marijuana in the U.S. (Karger, 2020)
Led by California, Oregon, Alaska, and Washington in the 1990s, the majority of U.S. states have now legalized medical marijuana. Those first four states, plus others like New Mexico, Michigan, Colorado, and New York, have legalized cannabis for recreational use. However, there are still many states, like Texas and Georgia, where cannabis remains illegal.
To complicate matters, each state has its own laws governing the possession, sale, and use of marijuana.
Nonetheless, cannabis is still illegal under federal law. As more states begin to legalize medical marijuana, people are turning to it for its medical benefits.
To date, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved marketing medical marijuana as a treatment for any disease or condition. However, the cannabidiol Epidiolex was approved for use in treating seizures resulting from severe forms of epilepsy.
As well, two other man-made cannabinoid medicines, dronabinol and nabilone, were approved to alleviate nausea resulting from chemotherapy.
2. 85% of U.S. adults approve of medical cannabis use. (Talbott Recovery, 2019)
Attitudes are changing toward medical cannabis use. The majority of Americans are interested in the medical benefits of marijuana. There are many reasons why public perception is shifting and medical cannabis is becoming more popular.
It’s clear that the growing population is becoming more aware of the benefits of CBD. There are a variety of medical conditions that can be treated with medical marijuana.
CBD in particular is known to be effective in the treatment of epilepsy, insomnia, muscle spasms, and chronic pain. It’s been shown to help with multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease. It’s also effective for those experiencing anxiety and PTSD.
There are many companies selling CBD-infused products, and there are a variety of CBD oils on the market and you can choose from. These include the oil itself, a tincture, gel, or a pill. They are all available online and at health stores, and most have the same basic ingredients: hemp oil, carrier oil, and CBD. Some of the oils have other ingredients like coconut oil or aloe vera.
The key to finding the right CBD oil is to find one that is high in CBD and low in THC.
3. 93% of adults support medical marijuana legalization. (Quinnipiac University, 2021)
Hemp has been used for centuries for its fiber, seeds, and leaves. It wasn’t until the early 20th century when the first hemp-based products were sold in the United States that the U.S. government made it illegal.
Medical marijuana isn’t the same as recreational marijuana as it has a lower THC content. The primary purpose of medical marijuana is to alleviate symptoms, not to cause significant highs.
4. 97% of those surveyed use medical cannabis for chronic pain. (NCBI, PMC)
Chronic pain can be a side effect of many conditions, including arthritis, fibromyalgia, and spinal injuries. Chronic pain is diagnosed when pain continues for longer than three months and is typically caused by injury or a medical condition.
It’s estimated that around 20% of American adults suffer from chronic pain, and this is only expected to rise as the baby boomer generation ages.
When a person is diagnosed with chronic pain, there are many ways to treat it. The first line of defense is often prescription opioids. Unfortunately, this is a temporary solution. Other treatment options include a combination of physical therapy and alternative therapies.
These can be effective for some people, but for others, they aren’t enough. Some who are experiencing chronic pain turn to medical cannabis due to the negative effects of other medications.
5. 65% of patients reported discontinuing at least one OTC or prescription drug after using medical marijuana. (Karger, 2020)
Medical marijuana may be able to completely replace at least one OTC or prescription drug for the majority of users. This shows that it is effective in the treatment of certain conditions.
Medical marijuana can also be used with other medications, as long as they don’t interact with each other. Some interactions may be dangerous and a healthcare provider should be contacted to advise if medical marijuana is right for you.
6. Most common symptoms that patients treated with medical cannabis were chronic pain, muscle spasms, depression, anxiety, and insomnia. (Karger, 2020)
Medical cannabis has been used to treat a wide range of symptoms. While medical cannabis isn’t a cure-all treatment, it can provide much-needed relief for those with chronic health conditions.
Medical marijuana is also great for people who are allergic to pharmaceuticals, and it can perform similar functions as many OTC drugs. While using medical marijuana can alleviate symptoms, it’s important for patients to undergo treatment for their conditions when advised by a healthcare professional.
7. Of the Americans who use CBD, the most common uses are for pain relief (64%), anxiety (49%), and insomnia (42%). (SingleCare, 2020)
CBD is a powerful pain reliever that can help relieve inflammation, which is a major factor in pain. The way CBD works is by interacting with your endocannabinoid system.
Your endocannabinoid system is a complex system of receptors and neurotransmitters in your body that helps you feel comfortable and helps you sleep. This system is naturally activated by the consumption of THC, which imitates anandamide (a neurotransmitter produced by the human body; it is a cannabinoid).
The receptors in your body that respond to THC and CBD are called CB1 and CB2 receptors. Unlike THC, CBD isn’t believed to bind to these receptors, but instead activates them in another way. CBD may reduce cortisol levels, meaning it behaves like a sedative, which is why it could help people with insomnia, anxiety, and chronic pain.
8. 20% of surveyed people of ages 18-29 regularly use CBD. (Gallup, 2019)
CBD is a non-psychoactive compound that has a myriad of health benefits. It is derived from hemp, which is legal in all 50 states, so it’s widely available. CBD can be used to treat many health conditions and can also be used as a natural remedy for chronic illnesses.
CBD is considered a natural, safe alternative to medical marijuana. It’s also becoming a popular choice for those looking for a non-psychoactive alternative to weed.
The first study on CBD in the 1940s was conducted on animals. In the years that followed, a number of studies were conducted on CBD and its effects on the body. Many studies show that CBD is effective for treating a variety of ailments. The most recent research has shown that CBD is an effective anti-inflammatory and pain reliever.
CBD is a popular product, and many companies are popping up to provide the medicinal benefits of the hemp plant. You can buy CBD products at any store that sells CBD products, including online. CBD products are also available in health food stores and some pharmacies.
9. 40% of surveyed people of ages 18-29 have tried CBD products. (Gallup, 2019)
With the current CBD craze, it is expected that more people will be consuming CBD products. The biggest selling point of CBD is that it’s non-psychoactive, so it doesn’t get you high. That’s a huge relief for people who are looking to avoid getting high while still getting the medicinal benefits of CBD.
The reason CBD is becoming more popular is because it’s becoming easier to obtain and it’s more affordable than THC products. CBD is also available in a variety of forms including gummies, capsules, oils, topical creams, and liquids. It can be consumed orally, by vaping, and by applying to the skin.
10. Over 50% prefer oils, tinctures, and gummies as their preferred method of CBD use. (SingleCare, 2021)
CBD oils are great for making edibles because they can be taken in such small amounts and are easy to store. It’s difficult to overdose with CBD, though high doses can cause extreme drowsiness, nausea, and other disorienting side effects. Though it won’t cause death unless there is some underlying condition or drug-mixing.
Gummy bears are a very popular candy, and they’re not just for kids! CBD gummies are an adult-use product that combines two different things – cannabidiol (CBD) and thickening agents.
CBD gummies are usually made from a mixture of sugar and other ingredients such as gelatin or fruit pectin. Most gummies do not contain actual fruit, but rather they are a type of candy that’s meant to be chewed and swallowed whole. More natural gummies are available to suit dietary preferences.
CBD gummies are made by adding CBD-infused extract to other gelling ingredients. After the cooking process, the gel is poured into molds where it cools and firms.
CBD tinctures are cannabis extracts that are alcohol-based. Alcohol is used to extract CBD from the plant. However, tinctures are not as common as CBD oils, partly because of the bitter taste. Many products that are labeled as CBD tinctures are actually oils.
CBD oils are often easier to swallow and don’t have as much of a bad taste as a tincture. Masking the bitterness in tinctures can be tricky, though many products do this by mixing in sweeteners. Other products may even use additives that can cause a different type of reaction in your tongue that makes it less likely to notice the bitterness.
CBD oil is typically CBD extract suspended in an inert oil, such as MCT oil derived from medium-chain triglycerides. The CBD content in a CBD oil can vary depending on the source of the CBD. Full-extract cannabis oil will have higher amounts of CBD per weight than isolate oils.
Medical marijuana can help many people suffering from long-term illnesses. Perspectives on the use of medical marijuana have shifted and cannabis legalization is growing more widespread, and Americans are becoming more open to the benefits this alternative medicine can offer.