It’s no secret that medical cannabis has been growing in popularity across the United States, and many people are finding relief from the plant’s healing properties. As more people use cannabis to treat their ailments, myths about the drug continue to persist even though there’s often not much scientific evidence to back them up. To separate fact from fiction when it comes to cannabis, here are five myths about medical cannabis and the real truths behind them.
MYTH #1: Marijuana Can Help Treat Cancer
One of the most common and most persistent myths about medical cannabis is that it can help treat cancer. Anecdotal evidence may lead some to believe this and more rigorous studies have been conducted in search of medical validity, but they have not been successful. Smoking marijuana cannot eliminate malignant cells or tumors, so it can’t provide therapeutic benefit to cancer patients in any way other than relieving certain symptoms like nausea, pain, and sleep deprivation.
MYTH #2: THC is the Only Benefit of Cannabis
The truth is that cannabidiol (CBD) may be the most important part of cannabis. If you’re unfamiliar with CBD, it’s a non-psychoactive compound found in cannabis. Cannabidiol does not produce any of the psychoactive effects that THC produces. This makes CBD an excellent option for many who want the benefits of cannabis but can’t handle or don’t want to experience some of the mind-altering effects associated with THC.
MYTH #3: The Health Benefits Outweigh The Risks
Outweighing the risks is a myth because of the potential to create an addiction. In clinical trials, researchers found that those with addictive tendencies had increased activity in the part of their brain known for craving and seeking rewards, which means that there may be greater risk of developing a problem when taking THC or cannabis-based medicine.
MYTH #4: Government Approved Drugs are Better Than Marijuana
Medical marijuana can be a good option for individuals who need treatments but find that some conventional medications don’t work well. However, it’s important to keep in mind that these treatments can come with side effects and interactions that might not be an issue with marijuana. While a person might like how they feel with medical cannabis, it may not always be the best choice for them to rely on this as their only treatment.
MYTH #5: Smoking Isn’t An Effective Way To Consume Marijuana
It is true that smoking isn’t an effective way to consume marijuana over other methods, like edibles, because it takes a while for the chemicals in cannabis to reach the bloodstream. For THC to take effect, inhaling smoke must enter the lungs, be carried through the bronchial tubes, and then be deposited in a deep lung area of the chest. This can take as long as 20 minutes. Smoking also increases potential health risks, such as airway irritations and respiratory problems that are associated with tobacco use.