Cannabis for Migraines [The Definitive Guide]

If you have ever suffered a migraine, you know it can be tough to treat. Migraine headaches can be incredibly debilitating. As well as the headache, you may deal with nausea and sensitivity to light.

So what do you do if over-the-counter or even prescription drugs aren’t working? Marijuana could be a remedy you can consider for migraine relief.

Some research shows that using cannabis for migraines may be worth pursuing since it can ease migraine symptoms. And it can also possibly keep them from starting at all.

In this blog post, we will explore the following:

  • The Effects of a Migraine
  • How Can Using Cannabis for Migraines Ease Your Pain?
  • What About CBD Oil for Migraines?

The Effects of a Migraine cannabis for migraines

So what exactly does a migraine involve, and how can you use cannabis to cure it?

A migraine is a complex condition with several symptoms including the following:

  • Painful headaches
  • Disturbed vision
  • Sensitivity to light (photophobia) and sound (phonophobia)
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Disorientation
  • Problems with coordination

Currently, there are many medications for pain relief. They include:

Preventative medications include cardiovascular drugs (beta and calcium channel blockers), anti-depressants, anti-convulsants, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

However, these have side effects, which include nausea, dizziness, drowsiness, and muscle weakness.

While using cannabis for migraines has been practiced for a long time, it is only in recent years scientists have been able to determine why.

new study published by Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Colorado looked at the effects of inhaled and ingested cannabis and how it had benefits for migraine sufferers.

Researchers reviewed reports from 121 adults who took part.

  • The average number of migraine headaches decreased from 10.4 per month to 4.6
  • 11.6% of subjects reported cannabis stopped their migraine headaches
  • Almost 40% of subjects reported positive effects
  • 19.8% of subjects claimed medical marijuana helped to prevent their severe headaches
  • About 85% of subjects reported having fewer migraines per month when using cannabis
  • Only 12% saw no change in migraine frequency with cannabis
  • Only about 2% saw an increase in migraine frequency

How Can Using Cannabis for Migraines Ease Your Pain?

Inside your brain and other parts of your body, you have a network of cannabinoid receptors. These tiny loops of protein impact how you feel pain. Marijuana has natural compounds called cannabinoids. These cannabinoids go into your body and look for receptors.

This is when they can calm down pain signals. Cannabinoids may also help with nausea, anxiety, muscle spasms, or other health problems. THC is the cannabinoid in marijuana that can make you feel high or relaxed.

Meanwhile, cannabidiol (CBD) doesn’t make you feel intoxicated and may help ease the pain. Several states have made it legal for CBD to be used for medical reasons.

The fastest and best way to use cannabis for migraines involves inhalation. Edible cannabis took longer to provide relief and had more side effects. These included sleepiness and euphoria. Other complementary therapies, which have been recommended, include:

The Mayo Clinic and the Migraine Trust also recommend a selection of herbs, vitamins, and minerals.

What About CBD Oil For Migraines?

Cannabidiol oil may relieve pain and reduce inflammation. It has shown positive results as a treatment for migraines. The great thing about CBD is it has no mind-altering effects. Some claim cannabis can reduce the symptoms of some types of headaches.

There is evidence that CBD oil can reduce inflammation and pain in arthritis. Accordingly, researchers believe that it can help migraines as well. 

In a review of studies, published in 2017, researchers saw a useful and effective role for marijuana in treating migraine. A purified CBD oil containing no THC received approval by the FDA in June 2018. This was to treat two rare and severe types of epilepsy.

However, to obtain it you need to have a prescription. Most products available do not have approval, which means the user cannot always be sure the product is safe.

Dr. Stephen Silberstein told the American Migraine Foundation caution should be used when using CBD oil, especially by adolescents.

He said: “In general, it should be avoided by adolescents until more research has been conducted.” He also added CBD oil: “works locally, and even if taken orally, it won’t produce intoxication. “If you have a lot of neck pain or soreness, it is perfectly reasonable to use CBD oil. It may even prevent nausea and vomiting.”

Talk to a doctor about CBD and using cannabis for migraines and whether it is safe and legal to use. As studies conclude on the effectiveness and side effects of CBD oil, there will be further changes in laws and recommendations.

However, there is little evidence currently CBD oil is effective as a treatment option for migraines. More studies about how CBD works are necessary.

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