Medical cannabis is a safe and natural alternative to help with the symptoms of menopause. It helps to relieve menstrual cramps, insomnia and hot flashes as well as to improve the general feeling of well-being.
The medical cannabis industry is growing quickly, and it’s no surprise. This plant-based medicine has a long history of use to help people with everything from PTSD to chronic pain. The industry has also boomed in recent years thanks to its recognition as a safe, natural alternative to help women going through the discomforts of menopause.
Cannabis is a natural medication that is safe to use and can help with the symptoms related to menopause.
Medical cannabis has become widely accepted as an alternative to traditional pharmaceutical drugs, which can have many adverse side effects and can be very expensive. Cannabis has been used for centuries for its natural manageability in relieving pain and other symptoms associated with physical and mental well-being.
A sleep study found that the growing use of cannabis in menopausal women improved their quality of life. It involved more than 250 perimenopausal women (women still having periods but who showed signs of the onset of menopause) and postmenopausal women. In this group, 86% were already using cannabis as a partial treatment for menopause-related symptoms (mostly by smoking and edibles) The had said that they were turning to medical cannabis because of menopause-related disturbances of sleep, mood and anxiety.
One interesting thing coming out of the study is that perimenopausal participants reported significantly worse menopause-related symptoms, including more anxiety and hot flashes, a higher incidence of depression and anxiety, as well as more use of medical cannabis to treat these symptoms.
How can cannabis help?
Cannabis has been around for thousands of years and is known to have many health benefits. Medical cannabis can be used in many ways. You can consume it as a food or drink, apply it topically, or use vaporization.
Cannabis contains hundreds of mood-changing chemicals, which are grouped into two main categories – THC and CBD.
THC stands for tetrahydrocannabinol and is the most abundant active chemical in cannabis. THC binds with the cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptors in the brain. It produces a sense of euphoria. It is responsible for giving people a high from smoking marijuana.
CBD is cannabidiol, one of over 100 compounds found in cannabis that contribute to its medicinal effects. Cannabidiol is non-psychoactive, unlike THC. That means its main effect is not to change your levels of euphoria or sedation and it produces none of the unwanted psychoactive effects of THC. Instead, small amounts of isolated CBD molecules in products such as oils, edibles, beverages and vape cartridges can produce noticeable effects by suppressing pain and boosting feelings of well-being.
For women undergoing menopause, the brain responds to the falls in levels of estrogen by resting more often and producing more of the neurotransmitter glutamate. This can cause confusion, agitation and a feeling of being “wired.” The effect of CBD in the brain is to overcome these unusual feelings and to restore a more natural balance.
CBD doesn’t act to cure any diseases, but helps with anything from arthritis and Crohn’s disease to multiple sclerosis and helps with anxiety, insomnia, and chronic pain.
Medical cannabis is being used more than ever in the management of menopausal symptoms by women changing their lifestyle due to these changes. It is often used alongside other treatments such as hormone replacement therapy, exercise and psychological therapies. Cannabis-based treatments is now being used in the management of menopausal conditions for its antiempathic qualities, which can help treat hot flashes, irritability and sleep disturbances.
Cannabis has also been shown to help with hot flashes, reduce anxiety and mood changes, improve appetite, and overall sense of well-being when used appropriately.
CBD has also been shown to affect the reward centers in the brain. It has also been found to promote neurogenesis and overall cognitive function, which can have positive effects on memory and learning.
What’s happening in menopause?
A woman’s body produces more estrogen as she ages. Estrogen is responsible for regulating menstruation, mood and sexual function. Th levels of estrogen change throughout a woman’s life. Once she matures from childhood and becomes fertile, there are normally very high levels of estrogen in her body, with sharp swings as she progresses through her menstrual cycle.
During menopause, a woman’s estrogen levels normally falls dramatically. This causes uncomfortable symptoms such as mood changes, anxiety and fatigue that sometimes lead to depression. Menopausal women whose estrogen levels are lower often experience reduced sexual pleasure, increased risk for osteoporosis and heart disease, decreased memory and cognition depression, anxiety, and hot flashes.
Hormone replacement therapy in menopause has significant benefits, but does not come close to the effects of the natural rhythm that a woman grew used to during her earlier years. The way that medical cannabis, most particularly CBD, works is to compensate for these changes in the brain’s response to abnormal estrogen levels. The desired effects are to reduce feelings of depression and anxiety, to improve your sense of well-being, and to restore many of the natural emotions that you enjoyed in the years of mature adult life before menopause took over.