Medical marijuana seems to have been accepted by most, but few understand the underlying science. Virtually everyone agrees that more research needs to be done on the medical uses of marijuana – which would imply that marijuana hasn’t been studied or that we don’t understand how it interacts with the human body. In fact, marijuana has been extensively studied, and a remarkable amount of information exists about how it interacts with the human body.
“Studies in mice and rats have shown that cannabinoids may inhibit tumor growth by causing cell death, blocking cell growth, and blocking the development of blood vessels needed by tumors to grow. Laboratory and animal studies have shown that cannabinoids may be able to kill cancer cells while protecting normal cells.” (NIH)
This and other studies prove the health advantages for cancer patients, and of course, legalization has already come into effect in many states in the United States. As of April 2015, 23 states and Washington D.C. have legalized cannabis for medical use, 21 of those states specifically for cancer patients.
But suddenly, everyone seems to be in a hurry to find reasons not why everyone needs it – why it’s okay for general use, and whether it’s really considered a drug or not. It becomes the argument in all our conversations, with others, and inside our own heads. For an addict, who questions every day whether or not he really has no control over himself, there is a sudden need to have a piece of this newly “acceptable” substance. He wonders if it’s okay, hopes it is, and latches on to every convincing argument he hears. When the cravings strike, since his old drug of choice is “bad” for him, how long will it take until he tries out this “acceptable” substance for himself?
All these arguments and intellectual reasonings for medical marijuana use being safe – they don’t apply to anyone with a history of addiction. As my Professor, Dr. Blumenfeld, PhD, CASAC, puts it, any addictive substance in question, i.e. marijuana, is not an option for an addict to use as a stress reliever.
“Hold on,” you might say, “smoking cigarettes is so much worse! If I smoke one I can definitely smoke the other…” Well, actually, marijuana smoke deposits four times more tar in the lungs and contains 50 to 70% more cancer-causing substances than tobacco smoke. But that’s beside the point. No matter what the science behind it is, any substance an addict uses will lead to physical addiction.
In 2006 nearly 290,000 people entered drug treatment programs in the US to kick their marijuana habits. They were patients without previous history of addiction. Imagine the impact it can have on addicts! Many addicts need to keep track of how much coffee they drink daily so as not to become physically dependent on it!
This is not to say that a doctor should not prescribe medication. He can, but only provided he knows your history. Your entire history. That way he can use the proper caution before writing out a prescription for addictive drugs.
by Isaac Cooper, CASAPPlease share this post!