In early September 2018, a bill was introduced in Congress that is aimed at expanding access to medical cannabis for veterans. The measure directs Veterans Affairs to allow VA doctors to discuss medical marijuana with its patients and recommend it according to state cannabis laws. It also declares VA property a safe haven for veterans from federal cannabis laws. Furthermore, it allocates $15 million to research into the use of medical marijuana for conditions common to vets such as chronic pain and PTSD.
On a state level, a majority of U.S. states have looked at the evidence for the efficacy of marijuana in treating symptoms of PTSD and have decided that it warrants adding the condition to their list of medical conditions which qualify residents to use medical marijuana. In fact, anxiety disorders, in all their various forms, including PTSD, are the leading reasons for which patients seek a doctor’s recommendation to use medical marijuana.
Although PTSD is infamous for its prevalence among combat veterans, vast numbers of civilians also deal with this debilitating condition. Most notably, victims of domestic abuse, predominantly females, also suffer from PTSD.
PTSD stands for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Before the condition was more well defined and widely recognized, it was previously known as battle fatigue. Although the condition, which causes flashbacks and panic attacks, usually arises in those who have been involved in abuse or violence, not everyone who is abused or involved in combat develops PTSD. This suggests that the condition is not the result of the trauma. Rather, the trauma results in fear memories which are triggered by a chemical imbalance in the brain.
When the human brain senses danger it reacts by increasing activity in areas of the brain associated with fear and traumatic memories. This process is known as fight or flight and when the danger passes, the brain decreases activity in those regions. This process is known as fear extinction. Both of these activities are mediated by neurotransmitters. For reasons unknown… Read More Here