While medical cannabis is commonly associated with treatment for cancer, chronic pain, and sleep issues, its potential certainly doesn’t stop there. As legalization continues to gather momentum, medical cannabis is showing real promise as a treatment for several women’s health conditions.
Evidence of the use of cannabis to treat female health conditions dates as far back as the 7th BC, and modern science continues to validate cannabis as a valuable treatment method. More women than ever are beginning to realize the benefits of medical cannabis as a low-risk, highly effective treatment option. From menopause to sexual health and beyond, here are 6 women’s health conditions that cannabis can help treat.
Endometriosis is a condition where tissue that normally lines the uterus grows in other parts over the body, typically in the pelvis, near the uterus. Symptoms of endometriosis include severe pain, chronic inflammation, and problems with the genitourinary and gastrointestinal tracts. Pain relief can be challenging to find, and most treatments are currently hormone-based.
Cannabis shows promise for alleviating the pain of endometriosis symptoms, especially when it comes to pain management by activating the endocannabinoid receptors found in uterine tissue.
2. Premenstrual Syndrome
Many women anecdotally report significant relief of premenstrual symptoms with medical cannabis, and some studies suggest that cannabinoids may be effective in treating menstrual cramps. Treatment options for severe PMS often include antidepressants and hormonal interventions rife with potential negative side effects. Medical cannabis may provide effective relief from cramps, bloating, irritability, and tension, with fewer detrimental side effects.
A 2016 survey reported that women with menopause-related symptoms experienced benefits from medical cannabis, including a reduction in sleep problems, joint pain, and irritability. Many women also experience relief from hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and bladder problems through the use of medical cannabis. With few negative side effects, medical cannabis is increasingly being recognized as a valuable option to combat the common symptoms of menopause.
4. Chronic Pelvic Pain
Chronic Pelvic Pain in women is defined as persistent pain in the pelvic region lasting longer than six months. It is often associated with other somatic pain syndromes (irritable bowel syndrome, nonspecific chronic fatigue syndrome) and mental health disorders (posttraumatic stress disorder, depression).
Medical cannabis has been clinically shown to significantly reduce patient pain scores and is a safe alternative for women suffering from chronic pelvic pain who have not found success with other treatment options.
5. Sexual Health
Although sexual arousal and functioning are challenging to study in a controlled environment, there is some evidence that suggests that cannabis can play a role in promoting sexual health. Using cannabis leads to an increase in hormones including oxytocin and testosterone, which can improve libido.
6. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder affecting 7% of women worldwide. It’s frequently painful and a cause of infertility. Chronic pain causes not only physical discomfort but emotional pain like anxiety & depression, as well as issues with weight gain/loss.
Common treatment methods include using birth control pills that contain estrogen and progestin to regulate hormone levels. Although it is not a cure, cannabis has shown promise in treating both the potential causes and the symptoms of PCOS. Some studies have suggested that the causes of PCOS may in fact be due to dysfunctions in the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Cannabinoids like THC can potentially help the ECS in regaining balance. Medical cannabis can also help manage symptoms including chronic pain and anxiety.
Talk With a Doctor
If you’re interested in treating some symptoms of women’s health conditions with medical cannabis, you can get started on applying for your MMJ card today. Book an appointment with Heally, and we’ll connect you with a doctor in your state for a telehealth appointment.to start the application process. It won’t be long until you have an MMJ card and can reap the benefits described above.