- Hammond Lewis
Using Medical Marijuana for PTSD in Louisiana
PTSD is a mental health condition on the list of approved conditions for medical marijuana in Louisiana.
PTSD, or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, can cause a person to experience heightened levels of frequent stress and can lead to complications like depression, addiction, or even death.
The rate of PTSD in America is increasing, and it can be a tough condition to manage.
There are medications that can help patients with some of the symptoms of PTSD, but they aren’t effective for everyone. Often, there are unfortunate side effects from the medications that are prescribed for PTSD, and in some cases, they may even make symptoms worse.
PTSD is an approved condition for medical marijuana in Louisiana, because many patients who use cannabis as an alternative treatment option have found success. In this article, we’ll talk about how PTSD patients use cannabis, and how it may work for you.
What Is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Why Is It So Hard to Treat?
Diagnosing & Treating PTSD Is Difficult
One of the most complicated problems with treating PTSD is that at the very least, patients must be aware that they have the condition. This is often more difficult than you might think.
It’s fanciful to think that the symptoms of PTSD are exactly the same for everyone or that everyone will react to symptoms in a similar way, but this isn’t always the case.
PTSD encompasses a broad range of symptoms and experiences among patients, and treatment can often work similarly. Not all patients will respond to the same treatments in the same way.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is a neurological condition that can happen after exposure to one or multiple traumatic events. What qualifies as a traumatic event is often highly individualized.
Why PTSD Is Tough to Handle
In many cases, patients may not experience symptoms of PTSD immediately after being exposed to a traumatic event. Although symptoms of PTSD often show up within a few months, they can show up years later for some patients.
After exposure to a single or multiple traumatic experiences, patients diagnosed with PTSD may experience any range of symptoms such as severe anxiety, panic attacks, irritability, and difficulty sleeping or concentrating.
The complications of PTSD can be hard on the body as well as the mind, because along with the symptoms of PTSD, patients can develop further complications. These can range from homicidal ideation or suicidal thoughts to a higher likelihood of developing a substance abuse disorder.
Long-term exposure to severe stress can have extremely negative impacts on one’s health and can lead to things like cardiovascular disease, loss of occupation, eating disorders, and reduce a person’s ability to maintain healthy relationships.
How Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Is Treated
Regular Therapy & Pharmaceutical Medications
Psychotherapy and prescription medications are usually the first line defenses for PTSD, and regular therapy sessions are usually among the most beneficial treatment options for patients with PTSD.
Unfortunately, there’s not a one-size-fits-all option for treating PTSD. That’s partly why Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is one of the best ways for patients to work through their trauma.
CBT offers a personalized way for people to understand and work with their own unique experiences with the help of a therapist. It can offer extraordinary value for many people.
Therapy is a must for PTSD patients, as it’s critical for working through experienced trauma. Unfortunately, many patients living with PTSD may find that therapy is often the second treatment option offered after pharmaceutical medications.
PTSD Medications – Complications and Side Effects
Some patients find relief through traditional pharmaceuticals, and SSRI medications are frequently a part of the PTSD treatment regimen prescribed by physicians.
SSRIs, like Zoloft or Paxil, and sometimes Benzodiazepines, such as Xanax, are prescribed to help with things like depression, anxiety, or mood swings. SSRIs work by introducing serotonin to areas in your brain when your system is not producing enough of its own.
Benzodiazepines are powerful (and dangerous) sedatives that can help some people with anxiety disorders.
Both SSRIs and benzodiazepines come with an extremely long list of possible side effects, and in some cases they may even make symptoms worse. Some harmful side effects include suicidal or intrusive thoughts.
Alongside the high potential for abuse, many PTSD patients can be averse to experimenting with drugs. Not only can they cause a large range of complications, but the success rate for treating PTSD with pharmaceutical medications varies between patients.
How PTSD Patients Use Medical Marijuana
Stress Relief, Better Sleep, & Awareness for PTSD Patients
There are more than a handful of studies on the effectiveness of medical marijuana for PTSD symptoms.
Patients with PTSD who use cannabis may see improvements in their fight or flight system, stress response, sleep quality, and quality of life.
Cannabis can impact receptors in the brain that are responsible for things like stress management, cognition, memory, motivation, and your fight or flight response, so patients with PTSD can use cannabis to help with these and many more areas of life.
Using cannabis for PTSD can offer new perspectives on life, memory, and experiences. Many patients find that it can help introduce more compassion into thought processes and help improve relationships that may be suffering due to unattended symptoms of PTSD.
Studies support using cannabis for PTSD, with data that shows patients who used cannabis over the course of a year experienced a substantial decrease in PTSD symptoms and their severity.
The research also shows that patients were two-and-a-half times more likely to not even meet the DSM-5 requirements for a PTSD diagnosis after using cannabis.
How PTSD Patients Use Medical Cannabis for Their Symptoms
Cannabis as an alternative treatment option for PTSD typically works best when combined with traditional therapy; cannabis is not a replacement for psychotherapy.
There are many benefits for patients with PTSD when utilizing medical marijuana in thejr treatment plan. These benefits include no terminal effects from using too much cannabis, the ability to dose-on-demand, and a variety of available products with different medicinal and therapeutic properties.
Cannabis may also be used to counter immediate PTSD symptoms, such as flashbacks, panic attacks, or heightened irritability. Cannabis can be taken safely before bed or upon waking up, improving your quality of sleep and allowing you to get the day started on a softer, more approachable note.
Patients with PTSD report using cannabis flower, concentrates, and edibles more than most other products, as they offer the most significant and perceivable mental effects.
Get Your Louisiana Medical Marijuana Certification
Louisiana has approved PTSD as a qualifying condition for a medical marijuana certification. Patients who have received a diagnosis can legally purchase medical marijuana from any of the approved pharmacies in Louisiana. As an important alternative medicine, medical cannabis may help PTSD patients with symptoms like anxiety, heightened stress, and irritability.
Being a medical marijuana patient offers you legal protections to possess medical cannabis, and having a cannabis certification is the only way to ensure you are following the law in Louisiana.
Beat the lines and get your medical marijuana certification in Louisiana today, and you can even get certified for medical marijuana online for ease of use and convenience.
For questions about Louisiana’s medical marijuana program or how to become a medical marijuana patient in Louisiana, consult with one of our trusted doctors and book an online medical marijuana appointment today!
Doctors Who Care.
Relief You Can Trust.
At Louisiana Marijuana Card, our mission is helping everyone achieve wellness safely and conveniently through increased access to medical marijuana. Our focus on education, inclusion, and acceptance will reduce the stigma for our patients by providing equal access to timely information and compassionate care.
Call us at (833) 253-2943, or simply book a medical marijuana evaluation to start getting relief you can trust today!
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