While medical cannabis remains illegal at the federal level, over half of U.S. states have passed legislation allowing cannabis use for treatment purposes. The current presidential administration made many cannabis activists nervous, but the midterm elections brought in new hope that one day, the FDA will recognize the herb for the incredible heal-almost-all it is.
In the meantime, women in states that permit medical cannabis use find themselves staring at a veritable cornucopia of cures at their local dispensary. Despite many female entrepreneurs entering the industry, the medical cannabis world remains dominated by males. However, the times really are a-changing. Increased access to research demonstrating the efficacy of medical cannabis for treating common female ailments will result in more women enjoying safe and effective pain relief.
1. Cannabis and Pain with Intercourse
Vaginismus refers to a spasm of the vaginal muscles so painful that many afflicted women find sexual intercourse difficult, if not altogether impossible. While ads for erectile dysfunction medications abound, vaginismus remains a condition hidden in the shadows, receiving little if any attention. This is due in part to the reluctance of women to mention this private agony to health professionals.
Medical cannabis, particularly certain indica-sativa hybrids, heightens sexual pleasure and decreases inhibitions. As many women with vaginismus developed the condition as a result of sexual trauma, using cannabis in conjunction with sex therapy can help women relax enough to tolerate intimate touching. Indica-dominant strains help relax the body and ease muscle spasms while sativa strains elevate the mental state.
2. Cannabis to Combat Endometriosis
While many outside the cannabis industry remain in the dark about this, the human body contains natural endocannabinoid receptors, as do most mammals. The body naturally produces endocannabinoids, but occasionally women become deficient. When endocannabinoid deficiency occurs, painful conditions such as endometriosis often result.
Cannabis can resolve this deficiency, bringing the body back into proper balance. Many women with endometriosis find medical cannabis relieves symptoms entirely. While little documentation exists to support the theory — a shortage primarily due to cannabis’s Schedule 1 classification — some herbalists assert that medical cannabis may even help cure endometriosis, not just alleviate symptoms.
3. Support During Surgery
Women requiring surgery often suffer undue pain while awaiting their turn to go under the knife. Given the rise of the opioid epidemic, many physicians understandably hesitate to prescribe people anything stronger than ibuprofen.
However, medical cannabis can alleviate the misery of pre-surgery pain. The best varieties for those awaiting surgery generally lean toward the indica-dominant, high-CBD strains. CBD serves as a nerve tonic while also reducing painful inflammation.
4. Finding Freedom from Fibromyalgia Pain
Medical professionals remain baffled as to the precise cause of fibromyalgia, and some health care providers still doubt the disease’s validity despite many women sharing their experiences with this painful disorder. However, cannabis doesn’t concern itself with the causes of human suffering — it simply heals.
Exercise remains one of the most effective treatments for fibromyalgia, but sufferers may find getting off the couch difficult. Energizing sativa strains can provide the pain relief fibro patients need to ease their bodily pains and get moving without causing drowsiness.
5. Easing Inflammation Naturally
Cannabis reduces inflammation, although researchers still don’t understand exactly how. Regardless, medical cannabis offers powerful relief for those suffering from just about any kind of inflammatory condition, from Crohn’s disease to arthritis.
Chronic pain patients often find sleep difficult due to the inability to find a comfortable position. Indica-dominant, high-THC blends help ease pain-sufferers into sleep naturally without the need of prescription sleep aids, so their bodies can get the healing rest they desperately need.
6. Hope for Migraine Relief
Like fibromyalgia, migraine disease continues to baffle the health care community. Some migraine sufferers respond well to first-line treatments such as Topomax, while others experience some relief from more intensive therapies like Botox and CGRP injections such as Aimovig. Still more find scant relief from traditional medical science and seek alternative treatments.
Cannabis strains such as Blue Dream hold promise for successfully calming both the nausea and vomiting associated with migraine, in addition to providing pain relief. Many sufferers in online migraine patient support groups report that when even anti-emetics like Zofran fail, cannabis-infused candies soothe the digestive tract enough to allow the patient to hydrate with water, nibble some bland foods and experience deep, healing sleep.
7. Infused Tampons to Ease Period Cramps
Many women experience mild menstrual pain, but for others, the agony becomes excruciating. One benefit of medical cannabis is that it works topically as well as internally.
Innovative cannabis bud tenders have now developed cannabis-infused tampons that many women find efficacious in alleviating monthly cramps. In one study, women using cannabis-infused tampons experienced relief within the first 20 minutes of insertion with few, if any, negative cognitive effects.
Naturally Woman, Naturally Healthy
As society moves toward more natural cures, medical cannabis holds out a beacon of hope for women suffering more health conditions that can fit on a list. Many women prefer nature’s remedies to chemical ones, and cannabis offers relief from painful symptoms as well as a potential cure for diseases as serious as cancer. As legalization progresses and medical science breaks free from the shackles of prohibition, women and men alike can look forward to reaping the considerable health benefits of one of Mother Nature’s most curative plants.