Migraine sufferers sometimes feel like someone tied to the railroad tracks.
They can see the train coming. But there’s nothing they can do to stop it.
Migraine patients often can tell when a headache is coming. They become sensitive to light. Or they get a dull ache on one side of their head.
Shortly after, the pain comes roaring through. It’s so excruciating that work or any other normal activity is impossible.
Migraine drugs are hit or miss. They work for some people. But not at all for others.
And their side effects—weight gain, dizziness, fuzzy thinking—often cause people to skip them.
That means the best option for many sufferers is to lie down in a dark room until the migraine passes.
Now, new research finds there may be a better option.
The study was published online in the Journal of Pain. Researchers analyzed data from almost 2,000 patients who tracked their regular headaches or migraines before and after cannabis use.
The scientists found that cannabis cut in half the pain from regular headaches and migraines.
The research confirms an earlier study which found that cannabis reduces migraine severity and frequency. It was published in the journal Pharmacotherapy. Scientists tested medical marijuana in 121 migraine sufferers.
The subjects used marijuana at least once a day. Patients went from an average of 10.6 migraines a month to 4.6. About 12% of the patients said that when they felt a migraine coming on, using cannabis would stop it.
A 2017 study presented to the Congress of the European Academy of Neurology tested cannabis against amitriptyline (Elavil). It’s a prescription antidepressant drug commonly used to treat migraines.
Researchers gave migraine sufferers either a daily dose of marijuana or amitriptyline for three months. Both groups had about 40% fewer headaches. But the marijuana users reported an additional benefit that the prescription drug did not provide… When they did get headaches, they were less intense.
How to Use Cannabis to Improve Your Health
To use medical marijuana, you need a doctor’s approval.
Because marijuana is still classified by the federal government as an illegal schedule 1 drug, doctors don’t formally prescribe it…they “recommend usage.”
A physician’s recommendation letter is needed to purchase the substance at a medical marijuana dispensary.
You may also want to use the recommendation to apply for a formal medical marijuana card. It enables you to be a registered medical cannabis user in your state. It also offers protection if you need to prove to law enforcement that you are using it for a valid medical reason.
Even if you take CBD, not marijuana, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor so he or she can help guide your treatment. CBD (cannabidiol) is a non-psychoactive ingredient in cannabis that does not make you high. Many people find it helps with pain, anxiety, insomnia, and other conditions.
Dr. David Bearman is a pain management physician who uses cannabis in his practice. He says you should talk to your primary care physician about the benefits, options, and risks of using cannabis for your specific situation.
Your doctor may be able to offer guidance about which of the many forms of marijuana or CBD will work best for you. Topical gels and creams are often best for pain. Ingestible forms—capsules, tinctures, edibles, and smokables—are often recommended for mood and sleep problems.
You should also discuss interactions that CBD or marijuana may have with other supplements or prescription drugs you may be taking, Dr. Bearman said.
But you should not be surprised if you know more about cannabis treatment than your doctor.
If you get the sense your doctor is clueless about cannabis, or perhaps even hostile, it may be time to find a new health care provider. This is especially true if your doctor tries to “scare you straight” by talking about cannabis addiction or overdose.
There’s no reason to let an ignorant doctor keep you from improving your health with cannabis.
Editor’s Note: What conditions can CBD and medical marijuana effectively treat? You won’t find straight answers in the mainstream media. And many doctors are woefully ignorant. Independent Healing’s Cannabis Cure Protocol tells you exactly how to use CBD or medical marijuana to feel better than you have in years. Subscribe HERE.