One of the most popular uses of medical cannabis is the treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). For the time being, public interest and political initiatives surrounding treatment exceed the number of scientific studies being conducted. There is political momentum, as both Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, the two progressive candidates of the 2020 U.S. presidential race, support decriminalization and legalization. The fact that Sanders has weathered his opponents’ blows to remain the Democratic party’s front-runner further suggests growing mainstream approval for medical programs.
Again and again, stories arise from military veterans who have developed PTSD while serving the country. While each of these stories is unique, the overarching similarities are apparent: Many pharmaceutical forms of therapy and pain management fail to ease both visible and invisible suffering. Opioids, as we explored in last week’s newsletter, invariably compromise health, while many veterans dislike how psychotropic drugs make them feel. Some have described it as a “zombie-like” or “empty” feeling. As a last resort, veterans turn to state medical programs.
So what does science say? Well, it hasn’t been permitted to say much. The relationship between trauma and cannabis has not gone unnoticed, but studies remain scant. One study establishes that veterans indeed use cannabis as a coping mechanism, but it stops short of this truism. In fact, it does not even appear to consider cannabis a form of medicine. For one thing, the government makes it difficult to obtain cannabis to do this kind of research.
One veteran, George Hodgkin, talks about the disparity between veteran interest and scientific evidence. If veterans are expressing interest in this form of treatment, then scientists should study it. To warrant exploration of its therapeutic value, he argues, cannabis must be perceived as medicine at the federal level. And what can lend cannabis the medicinal qualification that would help so many veterans? Research. But since research into this substance is largely blocked, this all seems to form a frustrating feedback loop.
There is hope, however. Hodgkin has started an organization to supply legally-sourced products to federally-approved researchers, although many of the products must be imported from places like the Netherlands. His group wishes to open cannabis to studies of all kinds, to treat it like any other medicine.
Sacred Garden released a new tincture in stores this week. This 10:1 tincture is our newest blend of CBD and THC. Made from New Mexican grown CBD extract, house-extracted THC oil, and organic fractionated coconut oil, it comes in natural and citrus flavors. Each 1 ounce bottle has a total of 400 mg; that’s 364 milligrams of CBD and 36 milligrams of THC.
It is a great daytime medication for patients new to the cannabis program. It is also appropriate for patients who are sensitive to THC but still want to reap the benefits that cannabis has to offer. The small amount of THC helps the CBD act more effectively in the body and therefore works better than CBD alone.
Patients with PTSD may benefit from high-CBD hybrid products to stabilize moods, relax, and maintain alertness.
As always, we’d love to hear about your positive experiences in the comments below.