Whether it be for athletic pain or healing after a surgery, patients continue to flock to marijuana for relief. It makes sense as to why; cannabis fights inflammation, eases pain, and helps patients manage the long-term effects of injury both physical and psychological.
Surgery is a serious and acute injury. This is especially true with invasive surgeries but even minor operations can result in significant pain and inflammation. To ease pain, it is necessary to reduce inflammation as it relieves the pressure on nerve cells. After any injury that occurs the human body triggers a pro-inflammatory response. Cannabis use switches up signals sent by the immune system and directly engages cell sites on nerve cells. Cannabis helps by suppressing the release of cytokines and increase anti-inflammatory compounds instead. The result is less pain as it’s managed the inflammation.
The most effective treatment for immediate pain relief post surgery is opioids as they block pain receptors completely. After this acute pain has subsided, many patients continue to suffer from chronic pain which opioids cannot be used long term for. Opioids are very hard on the body and are highly addictive. Taking painkillers long term can have very detrimental effects on the liver as well as other organs. Cannabis is useful as long term pain relief because the endocannabinoid system controls the pain signals in spinal cord cells. This allows for pain receptors to be dulled and provide significant relief to the patient.
Cannabis Vs. Pain Killers
For too many doctors and patients, the first option for pain relief fall in the class of opiates. Prescriptions for hydrocodone, oxycodone, and oxycontin clearly do relieve pain. On the flip side these drugs cause sedation, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, constipation, physical dependence, tolerance, and respiratory depression. Physical dependence and addiction are clinical concerns and have created an opioid crisis in North America. Marijuana does not have long-term adverse effects, is not physically addictive and is all natural.
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