Medical Marijuana and CBD for migraines

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  • Updated 447 days ago
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Migraine involves restricted blood flow and lack of oxygen supply to the brain. Platelets, the blood cells that aid in clotting, are stuck in the pathways because of contracted blood vessels.

Migraine is a common condition that can impact the quality of your life. Social plans get cancelled, productivity at work is slashed in half, and life gets put on hold when a migraine hits.

That is generally why migraine sufferers are so open to trying new treatments that show promise.

But, first – what exactly is a migraine?

Migraines are a nerve disorder characterized by recurrent episodic headaches. Researchers believe that people suffering from migraines have a disordered nervous system.

Scientists have uncovered from which areas of the brain the pain actually arises, and which molecular changes signal the onset of one.

They have also studied how cannabinoids affect these changes (but we'll get to that soon)!

The majority of individuals with migraine have a problem with a specific part of the nervous system, called the trigeminal nerve.

Migraine involves restricted blood flow and lack of oxygen supply to the brain. Platelets, the blood cells that aid in clotting, are stuck in the pathways because of contracted blood vessels.

There are two types of migraines. Classic and Common:

Classic migraines: A migraine with aura.

This is a recurring headache that strikes after or at the same time as sensory disturbances called 'aura'.

Symptoms of the aura are:

It is a vascular type headache with sharply defined, transient visual, or other sensory symptoms.

  • Flashes of light
  • Blind spots other vision changes
  • Tingling in your hand or face
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion

Common migraines: A migraine without aura.

This is the most common type as the name suggests. It doesn't have the early symptoms, called an aura, that some people have before a migraine begins, like vision changes, dizziness, confusion, feeling prickling skin, and weakness.

Marijuana – the Best Treatment for Migraines:

There is a long history of using cannabinoids for the effective treatment of pain conditions.

What does the research say?

  • According to the founder of Johns Hopkins Hospital, cannabis is probably the most satisfactory remedy for migraines.
  • The active compounds in cannabis were more effective at reducing the frequency of acute migraine pain than prescription migraine meds.
  • Medical Marijuana cut migraine pain by 43.5% compared to traditional medication.
  • The side-effect of MMJ is also much fewer.
  • There were fewer stomach aches and muscle pains, and fewer incidences of colitis than those taking the prescription medications.

However, on the downside, those using medical marijuana reported some drowsiness and difficulty concentrating.

The Endocannabinoid System:

Endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a comprehensive signalling system alive in virtually every cell type in our body. It also plays a critical role in maintaining the body's homoeostasis.

Besides, ECS is involved in processing pain signals as well as inhibiting them.

Various studies have also proven the linkbetween endocannabinoids and migraine headaches

The exact causes underlying migraines is not fully understood. But it is seen that ECS has a therapeutic effect in reducing both the physical and inflammatory symptoms of pain that are involved in migraine attacks.

How about CBD?

Encouraging Research:

Research on the use of CBD for migraine is limited, but the evidence is mounting.

Although the research is limited, laboratory studies have encouraging results, suggesting that CBD oil may help all forms of chronic and acute pain, including migraines.

How to Use CBD for Migraines

According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), CBD oil can be used in various ways to manage migraine

  • Ingested
  • Applied topically
  • Vaped
  • oral

Oral CBD has lesser side-effects than vaping and is thus a better option.

You can consume CBD oil orally by:

  • Putting a few drops under the tongues
  • Taking CBD capsules
  • Eating CBD gummies

Vaping can come in handy in cases of severe migraines when it is your only resort.

According to The National Cancer Institute (NCI), inhalation is quicker as it delivers the compounds directly into your bloodstream.

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