5 Ways Cannabis Can Help Seniors
By: Zelda Flowers
With the social stigma of cannabis quickly fading, more seniors than ever are curious about medical marijuana. Used medically, cannabis can relieve many symptoms of common aging conditions. It’s recommended to meet with a doctor who specializes in prescribing medical cannabis as they can direct you to the types of strains you should try based on your symptoms.
It’s safer than prescription medications and with less side effects.
As many seniors can attest, prescription medications come with a host of problems. They often cause more and worse side effects than the ailments they were prescribed to treat. Cannabis can relieve and treat many common conditions without harmful side effects. While a very, very small percentage of the population can develop an addiction to cannabis (much smaller than alcohol or opiates), not one person has ever died from a cannabis overdose.
Cannabis offers natural relief from symptoms of ailments like Parkinson’s, arthritis and digestive issues.
Getting older comes with a lot of physical changes, often including chronic pain from arthritis, poor appetite, sleeping problems and age-related disorders like Parkinson’s and dementia. Cannabis can be used with or can even replace some medications used to treat these maladies. It’s been shown to inhibit tumor growth too, making it a new branch of research for cancer treatment.
It’s more affordable than many prescriptions that it can replace.
One problem facing the elderly is the outrageous cost of prescription medications. Even with insurance and discount plans, some seniors are faced with skipping doses or medications altogether. It’s not necessary to use high doses of cannabis for treatment to be effective. Some dispensaries offer senior discounts or have low-income programs to help those who need medical cannabis but cannot afford it.
There are many strains to choose from, including one that won’t make you feel “high.”
Cannabis comes in many strains. Whatever you’ve heard about cannabis, that it makes you sleepy or hungry or whatever, isn’t true of all strains. There are strains that can give you energy and decrease your appetite while others offer more sedation and appetite stimulation. Likewise, different strains are effective for treating different conditions. Therefore, it’s important to speak with a knowledgeable medical professional to give you an idea of what to try first. Don’t get discouraged if one strain doesn’t work for you. There are even strains that treat pain but don’t make you feel “high” at all!
You don’t need to smoke it. There are many ways to use cannabis, including teas and balms.
For those with respiratory conditions or simply have no desire to smoke cannabis, there are myriad ways to consume it. Some of the most popular, especially with seniors, are edibles, concentrates and topicals. Almost any food or beverage you can think of has been infused with cannabis and is available for purchase in legal states. Brownies, cookies, hard candies and other sweets for the sweet-tooth, snack mixes, teas and pretzels for those who prefer