Do you or a loved one have a major surgery coming up? Preparing yourself mentally to undergo the surgery is hard enough, but planning the aftermath is something even more complex. One only considers where the patient can rest comfortably and how they can prevent any infections, and people often forget a major part, which is the pain that follows.
Usually, people do not have to worry about that as the doctors will prescribe the patient some painkillers. But what happens when they are too strong or harmful to your kidneys? There are many other downsides to taking painkillers regularly, but you cannot just let your loved one suffer through a long recovery.
Therefore, you should consider medical marijuana as the perfect alternative to heavy painkillers. Now, you may have some questions, such as how effective it is? Will the patient get addicted? What are the side effects? Worry not, we are here to answer all these questions, and more! So, keep reading to find out more.
What are the Current Remedies for Pain After a Major Surgery?
In case a patient doesn’t have a smooth surgery, they will most likely be in severe pain. Even in cases of easy procedures, chances of swelling and inflammation are pretty high. There are many reasons this could happen, so doctors often prescribe conventional pain relief medications, such as NSAIDs.
Some people even get addicted to opioids after being put on them to deal with the pain. They are widely known to cause addiction. Some common opioid painkillers are oxycodone and hydrocodone.
So, what about cannabis? Is it safe to use after undergoing major surgery? Let’s find out.
Medical Marijuana and Surgeries
It is not advisable to smoke or consume marijuana products before you go into surgery as it may have a negative effect when coupled with anesthesia. Additionally, smoking marijuana may induce coughing, which can interrupt the surgery.
If you smoke marijuana on a regular basis, it is best to let your doctor know beforehand. This applies to any way of consuming marijuana, whether you add just a little to your tea, or take just one puff from a joint.
Now that we have cleared up how it is not safe to consume marijuana before surgery, let’s see when it is actually safe to use it.
Consuming Cannabis After a Major Surgery
There are a few studies that show how marijuana helps relieve pain, but it is still being studied to obtain a deeper understanding. In a 2006 study, participants were given a cannabis extract known as Cannador, after they underwent surgery.
The patients were given different doses – those who had higher doses suffered from nausea and increased heart rate. However, the patients that were offered lower amounts, reacted positively, meaning that cannabis works well as a pain reliever when used in regulated quantities. Not to forget that it is still far better than using opioids.
How Does it Work?
The cannabis plant contains over 400 chemical compounds, of which cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are the most widely studied. They are known to relieve symptoms like pain, nausea, etc.
The human body already has cannabinoid chemicals naturally present in the body that resemble THC. So when people consume THC products, it stimulates the cannabinoid receptors in the brain. Doing so activates the receptors, which in turn release more dopamine, and reduce pain levels. However, THC is a psychoactive compound, meaning that it causes euphoria. Although some people prefer that high as it helps them relax deeply.
CBD also interacts with receptors in the brain, similar to THC. It has anti-inflammatory properties, and antioxidants, and is known to be antiemetic, meaning that it helps keep nausea in check. So, what separates it from THC? Well, CBD does not cause any euphoria and you will not experience the high that is generally associated with marijuana.
Even though it has so many benefits, the medical industry is still far from prescribing cannabis after surgery. However, if the patient wants to steer clear of OTC painkillers, they can get in touch with a 420 doctor. For instance, if you live in Nevada, it would be best for you to find a local reputed Medical Marijuana Doctor Nevada. Visit Nevada MMJ Card Doctor to get in touch with highly skilled marijuana doctors and get satisfactory answers to all your queries.
Will Using Marijuana as a Painkiller Cause Addiction?
It depends. If you consume too much, your body may get used to it and then when you stop using it, you will experience symptoms of withdrawal. However, if you take it in regulated quantities, this should not happen. That is another reason why we suggest you get in touch with a doctor, as they can explain the right amount you need to take.
Another thing you should keep in mind is that relying on CBD products rather than THC can also help prevent addiction. In fact, CBD is often used to treat addiction to other substances, such as cocaine. Some people use THC because of the intense pain as it is much stronger, and they don’t necessarily get addicted to it.
You can also look into healthier ways of getting high. For instance, lots of cannabis oils and tinctures are specifically manufactured to relieve pain. Similarly, edibles such as CBD gummies are highly potent and can help you easily sleep through the night when you struggle to do so because of the pain.
So, it is best to look into alternative methods of cannabis consumption than smoking. Remember, smoking can also induce coughing which is something you must avoid. Also, avoid puffing on bong bowls. Regardless, keep communication open with your doctor to come up with the best way to consume marijuana for managing pain.
Side Effects of Using Marijuana in the Place of Painkillers
Not enough studies are available on this topic yet. However, as mentioned above, any issues that may stem from the use of marijuana are because of smoking or consuming it in excessive quantities. For more information, it is best to get in touch with a specialist.