Cannabis Not Only Replaces Opioids, It Treats Opioid Addiction
February 21st, 2017
Policy, Top News
Opioids, a class of drug that includes prescription pain relievers such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, morphine and codeine, as well as the illicit drug, heroin, were responsible for more than 30,000 deaths by overdose in 2015.
This statistic is even more alarming when one couples it with the fact that since 1999, the rate of overdose deaths involving opioids has nearly quadrupled, with approximately 165,000 people having died from an opioid overdose in the United States.
Needless to say, the opioid dependence and addiction epidemic in the United States is a growing problem, which begs the question: what’s the solution?
Cannabis for opioid addiction
Most who take prescription opioids do so to treat some version of chronic pain. And while opioids are, indeed, effective when it comes to alleviating pain, they’re also highly addictive, come with myriad harmful side effects, and increase one’s risk of death by overdose.
The detrimental effects of opioids on the body has led to increased research into better alternatives for pain management, with cannabis being at the forefront. And the results are encouraging.
In a Harvard-led review of 28 different studies examining the efficacy of cannabis to treat pain, it was found that the vast majority of participants felt a significant improvement in their symptoms, leading to the conclusion that, “Use of marijuana for chronic pain, neuropathic pain, and spasticity due to multiple sclerosis is supported by high quality evidence.”
Moreover, a University of Michigan study published in 2016 in the Journal of Pain found that cannabis decreased side effects from other medications, improved the overall quality of life for patients, and reduced the use of opioids, on average, by 64%.
Why, then, are opioids so widely prescribed but cannabis remains illegal in the majority of the country?
A major barrier to patients seeking cannabis for pain relief is the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) unwillingness to declassify cannabis as a Schedule I drug.
A Schedule I classification puts cannabis in the same category as cocaine and heroin, formally indicating that cannabis has no known medical value, despite growing evidence to the contrary.
Because cannabis has been held firm in this classification, there have been government restrictions in place preventing the abundant research necessary to categorically confirming its efficacy.
Additionally, being that opioids are typically prescribed by a doctor, it means they’re less susceptible to the stigma that surrounds sometimes-illegal drugs like cannabis. This likely influences more people to opt for opioids regardless of the research suggesting cannabis is a better alternative.
So what, exactly, makes cannabis a better alternative?
Not only do a growing number of studies indicate that cannabis is a more effective treatment option for chronic pain with fewer side effects, but we’re learning that cannabis also has the potential to treat opioid addiction.
Recent studies have found that those suffering from opioid addiction and withdrawal could benefit from cannabis use because it reduces both the reward properties and withdrawal symptoms of opioids. Moreover, an additional study revealed that cannabis substantially reduced cravings and anxiety in heroin users.
In conclusion, there’s mounting evidence which suggests that not only is cannabis a safer, less addictive alternative for chronic pain than opioids, but it can also be used to manage opioid addiction. Now it’s just a matter of continuing research so that there are fewer restrictions and more access to the drug for those in need.
To learn more about the cannabis industry, sign up for our free newsletter using the form to the right.
This article was published by CFN Enterprises Inc. (OTCQB: CNFN), owner and operator of CFN Media, the industry’s leading agency and digital financial media network dedicated to the burgeoning CBD and legal cannabis industries. Call +1 (833) 420-CNFN for more information.
Follow Us on Social Media
About CFN Media Group
CFN Enterprises Inc. (OTCQB: CNFN) owns and operates CFN Media Group, the premier agency and financial media network reaching executives, entrepreneurs and consumers worldwide. Through its proprietary content creation, video library, and distribution via www.CannabisFN.com, CFN has built an extensive database of cannabis interest, assisting many of the world’s largest cannabis firms and CBD brands to build awareness and thrive. For more information, please visit www.cfnenterprisesinc.com.
Disclaimer: Matters discussed on this website contain forward-looking statements that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such statements. CFN Media Group, which owns CannabisFN, is not registered with any financial or securities regulatory authority and does not provide nor claims to provide investment advice or recommendations to readers of this release. CFN Media Group, which owns CannabisFN, may from time-to-time have a position in the securities mentioned herein and will increase or decrease such positions without notice. The Information contains forward-looking statements, i.e. statements or discussions that constitute predictions, expectations, beliefs, plans, estimates, or projections as indicated by such words as "expects", "will", "anticipates", and "estimates"; therefore, you should proceed with extreme caution in relying upon such statements and conduct a full investigation of the Information and the Profiled Issuer as well as any such forward-looking statements. Any forward looking statements we make in the Information are limited to the time period in which they are made, and we do not undertake to update forward looking statements that may change at any time; The Information is presented only as a brief "snapshot" of the Profiled Issuer and should only be used, at most, and if at all, as a starting point for you to conduct a thorough investigation of the Profiled Issuer and its securities and to consult your financial, legal or other adviser(s) and avail yourself of the filings and information that may be accessed at www.sec.gov, www.pinksheets.com, www.otcmarkets.com or other electronic sources, including: (a) reviewing SEC periodic reports (Forms 10-Q and 10-K), reports of material events (Form 8-K), insider reports (Forms 3, 4, 5 and Schedule 13D); (b) reviewing Information and Disclosure Statements and unaudited financial reports filed with the Pink Sheets or www.otcmarkets.com; (c) obtaining and reviewing publicly available information contained in commonlyknown search engines such as Google; and (d) consulting investment guides at www.sec.gov and www.finra.com. You should always be cognizant that the Profiled Issuers may not be current in their reporting obligations with the SEC and OTCMarkets and/or have negative signs at www.otcmarkets.com (See section below titled "Risks Related to the Profiled Issuers, which provides additional information pertaining thereto). For making specific investment decisions, readers should seek their own advice and that of their own professional advisers. CFN Media Group, which owns CannabisFN, may be compensated for its Services in the form of cash-based and/or equity-based compensation in the companies it writes about, or a combination of the two. For full disclosure, please visit: https://www.cannabisfn.com/legal-disclaimer/. A short time after we acquire the securities of the foregoing company, we may publish the (favorable) information about the issuer referenced above advising others, including you, to purchase; and while doing so, we may sell the securities we acquired. In addition, a third-party shareholder compensating us may sell his or her shares of the issuer while we are publishing favorable information about the issuer. Except for the historical information presented herein, matters discussed in this article contain forward-looking statements that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such statements. CFN Media Group, which owns CannabisFN, is not registered with any financial or securities regulatory authority, and does not provide nor claims to provide investment advice or recommendations to readers of this release. CFN Media Group, which owns CannabisFN, may from time to time have a position in the securities mentioned herein and will increase or decrease such positions without notice. For making specific investment decisions, readers should seek their own advice and that of their own professional advisers. CFN Media Group, which owns CannabisFN, may be compensated for its Services in the form of cash-based and/or equity- based compensation in the companies it writes about, or a combination of the two. For full disclosure please visit: https://www.cannabisfn.com/legal-disclaimer/.