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Medical marijuana refers to the regulated use of the cannabis plant, via the plant’s extracts or in its whole, unprocessed form, to provide relief for various medical conditions. By Florida state law, medical marijuana can be legally dispensed to qualified patients under the statewide Medical Marijuana Use Registry.By Florida state law, medical marijuana can be legally dispensed to qualified patients under the statewide Medical Marijuana Use Registry.
People who explore medical marijuana as a treatment option may suffer from chronic or persistent medical conditions such as multiple sclerosis, anorexia, epilepsy, AIDS, or cancer. These conditions manifest in symptoms that can include arthritis, spasticity, migraines, seizures, nausea, or loss of appetite. Medical marijuana can also provide relief to those suffering from spinal injury, sleep disorders, and other debilitating conditions that disrupt daily life.
Medical marijuana primarily works through the cannabinoid THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol. THC stimulates chemical receptors in the brain in a way that significantly reduces pain and increases appetite. Among other benefits, this can lead to improved motor function, better sleep, enhanced food intake, reduced inflammation, decreased stress, and stronger mental clarity.
Apart from providing relief for chronic medical conditions, medical marijuana can also reduce the side-effects of treatments for said conditions. For instance, it helps treat nausea and vomiting from cancer chemotherapy. Medical marijuana also works well with existing opioid medications, and is regularly prescribed for end-stage palliative care in patients.
As a psychoactive compound, THC can also significantly reduce behavioral symptoms like aggression, agitation, and delusions for older patients suffering from Alzheimer's disease.
While the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has yet to approve medical marijuana as medicine, many states have legalized it for medical use. Research on the positive health effects of cannabis-based medication continues to grow everyday.
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