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5 Questions to Ask Your Doctor about Medical Marijuana

While medical marijuana is now available to those who need it, there are still measures in place to ensure that it is used in the most beneficial way. Some states, such as California, require the patient to have a medical marijuana card before being granted legal access to weed.

To qualify for the card, the patient is typically asked to present IDs and medical records that show the diagnosis of the patient’s primary physician. Then, a licensed doctor will give out documentation that recommends the use of cannabis to help treat or manage the symptoms of the patient’s disorder. This paper will be presented to the medical marijuana dispensary prior to purchasing marijuana products.

Consume Cannabis As Part Of A Healthy Lifestyle

Getting a Medical Marijuana Recommendation

It’s possible to ask your primary physician for a recommendation to use medical marijuana. At the same time, consulting a ‘’medical marijuana doctor’ shouldn’t feel any different from visiting a regular physician. It’s important to be as honest and as forthright as possible with your doctors regardless of why you’re consulting them. Just the same, you should also make the effort to ask the right questions so that you can find out how to maximize the health benefits brought about by using cannabis. Some of the questions you can ask your doctor include:

  1. What conditions can cannabis help treat?
    Medical marijuana is known for treating various disorders. It is commonly used to manage muscle spasticity and chronic -- and often debilitating -- pain, especially among people who don’t want to risk getting addicted to traditional pain prescriptions. Patients who deal with anxiety and mood disorders also look to marijuana to lift their spirit and ease the causes and symptoms of their condition. Those who undergo chemotherapy can use cannabis to relieve the side effects of the treatment. Then, there are studies that highlight marijuana as a promising source of relief for people who suffer from illnesses that do not respond well to traditional medication
    Marijuana is often used to treat the following disorders, among others: anxiety and depression, arthritis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), anorexia and other eating disorders, Crohn’s disease, fibromyalgia, glaucoma, HIV-AIDS, insomnia, migraine, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, and medication-resistant seizures.
  2. What health risks are associated with marijuana use?
    Marijuana use has no long-term negative effects on health, and ‘overdosing’ on the substance has never produced a lethal reaction. However, studies show that regularly using marijuana at an early age, particularly at a time when the user’s brain is still developing, can negatively impact one’s attention span and impulse control. The way marijuana is consumed can also have an effect on one’s health. Smoking, in general, exposes the user to pollutants that can trigger allergy attacks or worsen respiratory ailments.
  3. What’s the best way to consume marijuana?
    There are various ways of consuming marijuana, but the healthiest by far is by eating it. This method does not produce irritants or pollutants. Also, by cooking edibles at home, you can control the dose used in the dish to maximize its effects. Marijuana oil, for one, is an extremely versatile ingredient that can be added to tea, desserts, and even full recipes. Other smokeless methods of consuming marijuana include the use of vaporizers, tinctures and sprays, topical creams and lotions, and dermal patches.
  4. What effects should be expected after using marijuana?
    The way marijuana affects the body is dependent on the cannabinoids found in the product. Cannabis oils high in cannabidiol (CBD), for example, are known for reducing stress, relieving body pain, and inducing sleep, while oils high in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) may produce a psychoactive high. Overdosing on marijuana, as said before, does not lead to death, but it can produce temporary unpleasant effects such as paranoia and anxiety. Following your doctor’s recommendation on dose and usage should help you avoid such an experience.
  5. Does my insurance cover medical marijuana? No, under federal law, marijuana is still a Schedule I drug. This means that it cannot be covered by Medicare or private health insurance companies.

Some doctors may have reservations about recommending the use of medical marijuana, but don’t be discouraged by this. If you think your doctor cannot adequately answer your questions about how marijuana can impact your health, you can always look around and ask for a physician who is familiar with the medicinal benefits of the plant.

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