What Can Marijuana Do for Patients With PTSD?
Updated: Nov 1
Post traumatic Stress Disorder is a psychiatric disorder that can show up in people who have experienced a very traumatic event. Any type of traumatic event could cause PTSD to come about in a person, but some of the most common examples might include war, a rape or robbery, or a natural disaster of some sort.
PTSD doesn’t only affect the person involved in the distressing event; it can affect a person who is witnessing the event as well.
You may have heard people refer to PTSD as “shell shock” or “combat fatigue” when speaking on the traumatic events that occurred during World War I and II. Many PTSD patients in the United States consist of war veterans.
Studies show that about 3.5% of US adults are known to suffer from PTSD, and about 1 in 11 people will be diagnosed with the disorder at some point in their life. Anyone can develop PTSD, but women are typically more prone to it.
People with PTSD are known to exhibit many different symptoms, and the severity can vary quite a bit depending on the person and situation. According to psychiatry.org, here are the four main categories of symptoms for PTSD:
Intrusion: Intrusive thoughts such as repeated, involuntary memories; distressing dreams; flashbacks of the traumatic event. Flashbacks may be so vivid that people feel they are re-living the traumatic experience or seeing it before their eyes
Avoidance: Avoiding reminders of the traumatic event may include avoiding people, places, activities, objects and situations that may trigger distressing memories. People may try to avoid remembering or thinking about the traumatic event. They may resist talking about what happened or how they feel about it
Alterations in Cognition and Mood: Inability to remember important aspects of the traumatic event, negative thoughts and feelings leading to ongoing and distorted beliefs about oneself or others (e.g., “I am bad,” “No one can be trusted”); distorted thoughts about the cause or consequences of the event leading to wrongly blaming self or other; ongoing fear, horror, anger, guilt or shame; much less interest in activities previously enjoyed; feeling detached or estranged from others; being unable to experience positive emotions (a void of happiness or satisfaction)
Alterations in Arousal and Reactivity: Arousal and reactive symptoms may include being irritable and having angry outbursts; behaving recklessly or in a self-destructive way; being overly watchful of one's surroundings in a suspecting way; being easily startled; having problems concentrating or sleeping
Many people who have endured a scarring event will show symptoms such as those mentioned above in the days following the event. This is perfectly normal. However, if a person exhibits these symptoms for over a month, they can be officially diagnosed with PTSD.
PTSD can affect every single aspect of a patient’s life if symptoms are categorized as moderate to severe. Certain things may trigger extreme reactions, making it hard for a person diagnosed with PTSD to go about their life as they normally would.
How Can Cannabis Help?
Patients with PTSD stand to benefit from getting their marijuana card because of the proven therapeutic effects of cannabis.
A new study concludes that cannabinoids may significantly reduce activity in the brain’s amygdala, which is associated with fear and responses to threats. Cannabinoids have also been found to help with completely removing traumatic memories from the brain.
Further research has held that PTSD patients who used cannabis were 2.5 times more likely to recover from the disorder completely. The group in the study who used marijuana saw huge decreases in both the severity and the frequency of their symptoms as well.
Have You Been Diagnosed With PTSD? What Are You Waiting For?!
West Virginia’s medical marijuana program offers cannabis to patients with certain conditions and even an online application process! That’s right- you can even get your medical marijuana card online from the comfort of your own home with West Virginia Marijuana Card!
And we are now offering PTSD evaluations! So, if you think you may have PTSD but you haven't been officially diagnosed with it yet, we can help.
Simply schedule your PTSD evaluation and medical marijuana evaluation appointment today to get access to legal marijuana products available at dispensaries!
A West Virginia medical marijuana card will allow you the freedom to create your own treatment plan with your doctor, personalized for your individual needs. We’re dedicated to helping patients every step of the way!
Feel free to give us a call at 877-303-8424 and we can answer your questions about getting a medical marijuana card in West Virginia.
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If you have any questions, call us at 877-303-8424, or simply book a medical marijuana evaluation to start getting relief you can trust today!
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