Although medical marijuana is available in many states, including Florida, the scientific debate about what it can be used to successfully treat continues. Studies regarding medical marijuana and anxiety have presented conflicting results.
Dr. Deborah Viglione and the staff at Living Waters Regenerative Medicine want you to live as full and healthy a life as you possibly can. We encourage good nutrition, regular exercise, and other lifestyle interventions to manage anxiety. Sometimes, Dr. Viglione also suggests medical marijuana.
Anxiety, THC and CBD
Many people believe marijuana can be useful in managing anxiety. Yet for some people, it appears to increase anxiety. Conflicting study results muddy the waters even more.
First, it’s important to understand what anxiety is. The American Psychological Association (APA) defines anxiety as “an emotion characterized by feelings of tension, worried thoughts, and physical changes like increased blood pressure.” Chronic anxiety, which is a persistent, long-term problem, can make life difficult and can have a negative impact on your physical health.
There are two different active ingredients in marijuana: CBD and THC. THC is the compound that is associated with feeling “high.” CBD is a nonpsychoactive compound that has documented therapeutic benefits. Both have been used to treat anxiety, but THC may cause increased anxiety for some people.
The dose matters
Lower doses of medical marijuana are generally more effective in treating anxiety. Higher levels of THC have been associated with feeling paranoid, having a racing heart, and other symptoms that are common when you have anxiety. Lower doses could help avoid those side effects.
One important reason to discuss medical marijuana with Dr. Viglione is that she can explain how medical marijuana has been effective in treating your condition in others, what the research says, what kinds of side effects you might expect, and whether it may be helpful to you.
In Florida, in order to use medical marijuana legally, you need to receive a prescription from Dr. Viglione to treat a condition included in a list of permissible health issues. Dr. Viglione discusses the potential of success in resolving your symptoms, and you must fill out a consent form so you can be registered in the state’s Medical Marijuana Use Registry. Once you’re registered, you must apply for an identification card, which you use to fill your prescription at a state-approved dispensary.
Although medical marijuana is viewed as safe, there are some risks involved. For example, it may negatively interact with your other medications. Dr. Viglione pays close attention to your personal medical history and makes recommendations based on your individual circumstances.
Medical marijuana can be an effective treatment for anxiety, especially if it’s combined with other approaches, such as talk therapy and lifestyle changes. If you’re curious about it, schedule an appointment to talk to Dr. Viglione at Living Waters Regenerative Medicine Center.