A New Study on Marijuana in Canada Provides Hope for Veteran Suffering from PTSD

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Veteran Suffering from PTSD


Statistics from the National Center for PTSD in the U.S show that seven or eight people out of 100 will develop PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) at one point in their lives. Although PTSD may develop after some trauma such as sexual assault and combat, anybody can experience the condition.

PTSD is a mental health condition that happens as a result of a traumatic event through experience or observation. Symptoms of PTSD can lead to debilitating changes in personal or social functioning of an individual. The symptoms include flashbacks, nightmares, depression, and anxiety. You can also experience emotional instability. The treatment of PTSD involves the use of neurotransmitters. This consists of the endocannabinoid system (ECS) as well as other systems such as serotonin and opioid pathways, which are regulated by the ECS.

A recent study on the use of marijuana in PTSD treatment showed that there is a potential of improving the PTSD symptoms through therapy when marijuana and human-made Cannabinoids acts on the endogenous cannabinoid system. This interaction helps in reducing anxiety, moderating memory-related processes, and inducing.

A report by the researchers from the British Columbia Center on Substance Abuse (BCCSU) and the University of British Columbia (UBC) show that, unlike marijuana consumers who do not have PTSD, Canadian PTSD patients who do not use weed to treat their symptoms are seven times more likely to suffer from depression, and five times more likely to have suicidal ideation.

The study, which was published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology, used data from the Statistics Canada Health Survey. The study involved 24, 000 participants. Four Hundred and twenty of the eligible respondents had PTSD, where 28.2% of them reported to have used weed within the past year, while 11.2% consumed marijuana but were not diagnosed with PTSD.

According to a research assistant at the BCCSU and PhD candidate at the UBC School of Population and Public Health, Stephanie Lake, treatment options for PTSD are limited. Thus, patients are self-medicating with marijuana to manage their symptoms. She further added that this is the first results from a national survey to show the benefits of marijuana consumption to people with PTSD.  


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