7 Prescription Drugs Medical Marijuana Could Replace
Nearly 30 states have legalized medical marijuana, which has been shown to effectively treat a handful of disease symptoms so far. For those who don’t want to become dependent on prescription medications, or these treatments aren’t working as well as their doctors had hoped, this might be a life-changing solution.
While there are people living with certain health conditions that should stay away from marijuana at all costs, others might benefit significantly from its medical use. Here are the drugs marijuana could replace, from what research has suggested so far.
1. Insomnia drugs
If you’re dependent on a prescription sleep aid, cannabis might be a viable substitute — for a little while, at least. Studies still suggest that long-term use of marijuana to treat sleep disorders can be harmful, the same way more traditional sleep aids can cause harm if you use them consistently for too long.
Next: It might also relieve that constant ache in your side.
2. Pain pills
Using cannabis to treat chronic pain might be the opioid replacement many Americans need. It’s estimated that up to a third of the U.S. population lives with chronic pain of some kind, and if there’s an alternative that works — even if doctors don’t fully understand how — it’s an option worth considering.
Next: It could also treat a completely different type of pain.
Can you really use marijuana to treat depression, instead of a more conventional prescription drug? Some people can, if other treatments aren’t working. Early research suggests it has the potential to stabilize mood and relieve some symptoms.
Next: If meditation doesn’t work, you might still be able to ditch your prescription for this.
4. Anti-anxiety medications
Preliminary research suggests people who use medical marijuana to treat anxiety symptoms experience lower levels of stress than those who do not. Cannabis seems to mimic some of the effects of common prescriptions used to treat anxiety disorders.
Next: Treating this condition with marijuana could prevent blindness.
5. Glaucoma drugs
While medical marijuana can’t completely replace the drugs that help control glaucoma, occasional use might act as a sort of supplement to stabilize pressure in the eye. Unfortunately, its effects only last a few hours, and using too much of it might actually cancel out its benefits.
Next: Some people with this health condition don’t find relief with normal drug treatments.
6. Seizure drugs
Someone who experiences epileptic seizures might be resistant to the normal drugs used to control their condition. In these cases, a doctor might consider prescribing medical marijuana to reduce the number of potentially deadly seizures a person has in a day.
Next: People with this deadly disease might feel a lot better with a medical marijuana prescription.
7. Nausea medications
People undergoing chemotherapy to treat a variety of cancers often experience symptoms like nausea and vomiting. Some research suggests they might benefit from medical marijuana instead of a prescription nausea drug to relieve these symptoms.
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