6 Best Strains of Medical Cannabis for Improving Athletic Performance

Medical cannabis can have hugely beneficial effects on athletic performance. Improved recovery, pain management, sharpened focus, decreased anxiety, increased appetite, and better sleep are some of the effects of medical cannabis for athletes in all sorts of sports.

Athletes involved at a high level in weightlifting, bodybuilding, Brazilian jiu jitsu, mixed martial arts, marathon running, and even professional basketball have sworn by the effectiveness of medical marijuana for improving their mental and physical performance.

In high-pressure situations that could provoke detrimental and distracting anxiety and stress, medical cannabis can reduce anxiety and induce calm focus.

 

MMJ - athlete running

No matter what type of athlete you are, medical cannabis can benefit you.

When an athlete needs to relax deeply after a grueling session in order to be optimally recuperated and ready to perform again as soon as possible, a calming indica can relax the mind and body, and induce a pleasantly healing comatic slumber (not to mention encourage lots of eating, which will refuel the body with vital nutrients and promote rapid recovery).

Medical cannabis for athletes isn’t just restricted to elite performers. Many people report that medical marijuana improves their gym workouts too. Under the influence of MMJ, weightlifting, bodybuilding, and cardio can all be done with a quiet focus that allows a person to tune out the myriad distractions that exist in a modern commercial gym and concentrate deeply on performing their workout to the absolute best of their ability. (MMJ can also make the crappy music they play in most commercial gyms quite a bit more palatable!)

Here is our list of six of the best strains of medical cannabis for improving athletic performance.

Royal Medic is a sativa-dominant hybrid strain from Royal Queen Seeds with a light and fun high that calms the body and enlivens the mind. With 10% THC and 12% CBD, the effects are smooth and mellow – just enough to take away any anxiety and sharpen up focus for optimal sports performance.

Lemon Power Haze by Zamnesia Seeds is a sativa-dominant hybrid with 20% THC and not very much CBD at all. This results in an energetic, heady high that is perfect for athletic performance as it fuels imagination and motivation, kills anxiety and stress, and allows crystal-clear focus, while leaving the body untouched and ready to exert energy at a high level.

OG Kush is an indica-dominant strain that boasts an eye-popping 25% THC, so despite her indica roots, she brings on a powerful heady high that tends to instigate motivated productivity. OG Kush is the lovechild of a threesome between Lemon Thai, Pakistani, and Chemdawg and has gone on to outperform all of its parents in terms of popularity, especially with sportspeople. The high from OG Kush starts off heady and ends in a fairly powerful body high, which is perfect for long-distance runners as it allows them to enjoy steadily pushing on through the pain barrier on long runs. OG Kush is also ideal for use after intense exercise as it strongly relaxes the body and mind, allowing for optimal recovery.

Amnesia Skunk Automatic is a strain that packs a good punch, being relatively high in THC and CBD. It provides a cerebral and heady high while also giving a beautifully calming body-buzz. This is ideal for weight-training as it allows the user to push through the pain barrier with relative ease and really enjoy squeezing out those last few reps (the reps that really count!). Amnesia Skunk Automatic is a strain known for its powerful pain-reduction and anti-inflammatory properties, so it is an excellent aid to post-workout rest and recuperation.

 

MMJ - woman weightlifting

MMJ has a whole host of benefits both during and after a workout.

Sweet Tooth is an indica-dominant strain bred by the good folks down at Barney’s Farm in Amsterdam. It has a solid 16% THC and a high amount of CBD that provides a heavy body-based high. Sweet Tooth is a mage-relaxing strain of medical cannabis and so would not be ideal for fast-paced sports, but is ideal for slow cardio or long, laidback weight-training sessions. With its high CBD content, Sweet Tooth is ideal for inducing some serious relaxation after a grueling match or workout.

Casey Jones is a strain bred from Trainwreck, Sour Diesel, and Thai Genetics. It is 40% indica and 60% sativa. It has a THC content of around 20% and gives a happy, uplifting, and motivating high, which is perfect for getting rid of anxiety and replacing it with energy and excitement – making it the ideal medical cannabis for athletes. Due to its indica genetics, Casey Jones provides a strong and long-lasting body high. The physical buzz brought on by Casey Jones completely alleviates pain and is great at reducing inflammation, which can help to improve performance during a game or training session, and will also promote rest and recovery in the aftermath of physical exertion. Casey Jones is a great all-rounder that is ideal for athletes of all types.

Hopefully this list has inspired you to see if MMJ can improve your athletic performance. Let us know how it goes in the comment section!

6 Best Strains of Medical Marijuana For Inducing Sleep

Before we get into the best strains of medial marijuana for inducing sleep, let’s talk about insomnia.

Insomnia is a frustrating and debilitating condition that impacts the lives of 60 million Americans. Not being able to sleep, despite being tired, drained, and having little energy, is very unpleasant and can lead to all sorts of negative physical and psychological effects.

For most of us, the harder we try to fall asleep, the more difficult it is to do so. If you suffer from insomnia it can be damn near impossible to drift off, no matter how many sheep you count!

Conventional sleeping pills are one solution, but they can have unpleasant physical and mental side effects. They can also be addictive and many people develop crippling dependencies that are extremely difficult to escape.

Another cure for insomnia is medical cannabis, and now that cannabis cards are legal in 29 states, more and more people who find it difficult to get some shut-eye are using particular MMJ strains for sleep benefits.

It seems that medical cannabis really is a bit of a magic bullet when it comes to treating insomnia.

MMJ - medical cannabis plant

Did you know you can use medical marijuana for inducing sleep?

But not all strains of medical cannabis are created equally when it comes to blasting people off into dreamland. Indicas, with their less heady and more heavy, relaxing body-high, are usually best for inducing slumber. Most sativas, on the other hand, tend to have a more energizing, heady effect that may in fact keep you awake.

But not all indicas are equally insomnia-crushing either – some strains will knock you out more assuredly than others. So here is our list of the six best strains of medical marijuana for inducing sleep.

Big Bud is a very strong indica plant with (yes, you’ve guessed it!) big buds. These big buds contain a super-dose of potent CBD that will make your eyelids feel heavier than boulders in no time. Big Bud will essentially knock you out within a few minutes. With this CBD-heavy beast circulating in your bloodstream, sleep is guaranteed. It is advisable to put your pajamas on and brush your teeth before you hit Big Bud, because you might not manage to do so afterwards.

Pound Hammer is an indica that is renowned for its mind-quieting and anxiety-reducing properties. For people who struggle with a head full of frantic thoughts and incessant self-chatter, Pound Hammer is a great choice of medical marijuana for inducing sleep. It gradually turns the volume down to zero on your self-talk and your worries, replacing them with a silent, dreamy, relaxed calm. Once you have a few hits of Pound Hammer there’s no turning back – it is well and truly time to say (or slur) “goodnight.”

MMJ - man sleeping

Try one of these strains for some quality shut-eye.

Afghan Kush is a famous old indica strain that incites a heavy, drowsy, body-focused high. It is brilliant for getting rid of pain and quieting anxious thoughts. A few hits of Afghan Kush will give you a strong desire to eat anything you can get your hands on, but an even stronger desire to sleep. So don’t smoke unless you are ready to fall asleep pretty darn soon, and quite possibly wake up 10 hours later covered in chips and chocolate wondering, “What the hell just happened?”

Blue Mystic is one of the less potent “insomnia-blasters” on the list. It will not necessarily knock you into a coma in the same way that Big Bud or Afghan Kush will, but it will give you a delightful body-high and a warm, tingling feeling of relaxation. The chilled-out body-high and feelings of wellbeing that Blue Mystic induce will gently nudge you into a zone in which you can chill out and watch some TV, but you could also kick your shoes off, lie back, and drift off into a warm, fuzzy snooze. Blue Mystic is ideal for people who have mild insomnia or just like a little hit of something light to help them unwind, and maybe nap in front of the TV.

Bubba Kush is a hybrid of Bubble Gum and Kush. It has a relatively low THC content of 16%. Bubba Kush gives a strong, CBD-induced body-high. It is very relaxing and almost numbing. A few hits of Bubba Kush and you will have a blissfully clear mind (almost as if you’ve just been on a month-long meditation retreat!). With Bubba Kush massaging your neurons, the world moves in slow motion and sleep becomes impossible to resist. A gallon of strong coffee couldn’t keep you awake after a few tokes of Bubba Kush.

Critical Mass is an indica-dominant strain that is a heavy sleep-inducer. It has a mellow, earthy, citrus flavor and strong, strong sedative qualities. When the Sandman gets even a faint whiff of Critical Mass in the air, he drops whatever he’s doing and immediately follows his nose straight to the source, where he gently puts his index finger on your forehead and whispers “Sleep.” Just a few hits of Critical Mass and you will be ready to pass out wherever you happen to be sitting… Preferably in the comfort of your own home!

Which Medical Marijuana Strains Treat Anxiety?

Anxiety is just one of the many debilitating conditions that can be helped by medical marijuana strains. It is often one of the more challenging disabilities to have to deal with because firstly, unlike pain or reduced mobility of some sort or an illness which drastically changes your appearance, anxiety is not always visible to other people.

Secondly, it clearly inhibits the sufferer in social circumstances, which is difficult to handle and can make life very restrictive. Luckily, if you are in possession of a cannabis card, help is at hand.

Recommending MMJ for treating anxiety is not as straightforward as recommending it for other types of illness. This is because, for some people, taking marijuana can actually make their anxiety worse, and throw in a bit of paranoia to boot. If you are one of these people then you need to be very careful about which strain of medical marijuana you obtain with your California MMJ card.

Watch That THC Content

Research has shown that medical marijuana strains which are high in THC content are more likely to increase your anxiety. THC stands for tetrahydrocannabinol. Something you might not know is that our bodies naturally make cannabinoid chemicals.

Certain areas of our brain, which are associated with things like pleasure and memory, contain cannabinoid receptors. THC is attracted to these areas and by attaching to them, certain things like memory, pleasure and thinking are all heightened. So you can see how this might be very welcome by some people, but not great for those prone to anxiety.

The good news is that there currently many strains available that contain little or no THC. The best strains for treating anxiety are known as hybrids, which means they contain a mixture of both sativa and indica.

The main thing you need to know about these two elements is that sativa tends to be more energizing and uplifting; whereas Indica gives you a stronger higher which makes you more sleepy. Bear this in mind when selecting the best strain to help with your anxiety.

If you experience anxiety on a daily basis, the good news is that there currently many medical marijuana strains available that contain little or no THC.

Here are a few medical marijuana recommendations for you to research and sample. It’s worth experimenting with several different strains to find out which suits you best, as no two illnesses are the same and no two people react in the same way to MMJ.

Cannatonic

This MMJ strain contains 50/50 sativa and indica, as well as quite high levels of Cannabidiol (CBD), which is known to reduce anxiety. You might not get a great ‘high’ from it, but it will help to relax you without clogging your brain. It has a nice lemony, pine scent.

White Widow

By way of a contrast, White Widow contains higher levels of sativa and will give you a greater, kinda spaced-out high without leaving you too sleepy. It’s one of the more famous strains, which was first cultivated in Holland. If this is your way of dealing with anxious situations, then don’t be put off by the name!

Grandaddy Purple

A popular hybrid strain, Grandaddy Purple contain more indicas than sativas. The result of this is more relaxation and a feeling of calm, with the added bonus of persuading your body to release any stress. It’s a popular strain with cannabis card holders, featuring a mixed berry and grape aroma curtesy of its parent plant – Purple Urkle.

Strawberry Cough

One of the more popular choices for anxiety sufferers. Strawberry Cough is one of the milder strains, containing sativa and offers a good balance between relaxation and energizing. As you probably guessed, it has a sweet strawberry aroma and after-taste, but beware of the thick smoke which is responsible for the second half of the name – cough!

Chocolate Chunk

(We kid you not) this is a 100% indica strain which has a – guess what – chocolatey after taste! It’s helpful for panic attacks, as well as general anxiety, and its effects are quite long-lasting, so you don’t have to take much of it. Along with the chocolatey aroma, this strain gives off quite a musky, earthy smell.

When it comes to MMJ strains for anxiety, there are some that taste like fruit and others that taste like chocolate.

So, there are five recommended strains for you to try out if you suffer from anxiety. If you’re not yet registered for a cannabis card, it’s easy to get your medical marijuana card online, via MMJ Recs. You just need to fill out a standard medical form and upload any relevant medical documents.

You’ll then have a short evaluation – either over the phone or via Skype – with one of our medical marijuana experts. You will need to tell him or her about your disability and why you think taking medical marijuana would help alleviate your symptoms. Your specialist is highly trained and professional; everything you divulge will be treated in absolute confidence. If you’re approved for a California marijuana license, it will be forwarded to you by mail.

Once in possession of your medical marijuana card, you will be able to purchase marijuana from licensed premises, as well as buy it online. You can also grow your own plants – you’re actually allowed to cultivate up to 100 square feet of marijuana plants. Find out which strain relieves your symptoms and then grow it yourself so that you always have it to hand. It couldn’t be easier!

Hopefully, now you are on your way to making a decision that may help change your life.

5 MMJ Strains That Are Perfect to Consume at Work

It’s time to forget those stereotypical images of the lazy, sleepy stoner. These days, marijuana – particularly medical marijuana – is no longer associated with lethargy, drowsiness and lying on the couch in your underwear all day, working your way through a whole tray of cookies. For too long, medical marijuana card holders had to put up with being portrayed as this damaging stereotype. Thankfully, with the further spread of the medical weed card and use of MMJ strains across the country, these nonsense falsities about cannabis card carriers are being debunked faster than you can say ‘Duuuuude’.

While there are undeniably some MMJ strains that can make the user less active, there are plenty of other strains that boost energy, focus concentration and get your creative juices flowing.

Choosing the Right MMJ Strain

The key to choosing the right medical marijuana strain boils down to the age old indica vs. sativa argument. On a chemical level, the two types of MMJ are significantly different, with indica strains exhibiting a high THC: CBD ratio while sativa strains exhibit the opposite. Although indica strains do have their uses, they’ll end up giving you that all over body stoned feeling, a.k.a. the dreaded couch lock. After you consume indica, you are exponentially less likely to be productive. For this reason, indica should be steered clear of while you’re working (unless you want to get into a raging argument with your boss!)

Sativas, on the other hand, are uplifting and energetic and can be consumed while working with no negative side effects. Not only will you experience no bad side effects, but you’ll also find yourself more productive, more positive and much more likely to get a whole lotta work done.

Here’s our top picks of the best sativa strains to consume while at work.

MMJ Recs - Man Working

Instead of making you drowsy and unmotivated, there are plenty of MMJ strains that can boost energy, focus concentration and get your creative juices flowing.

Jack Herer

There’s a good reason why Jack Herer is one of the most popular strains on the market today. The strain is energizing, uplifting and incredibly mentally stimulating, making it the perfect go-to strain for busy medical marijuana card holders. If you’re got a tight deadline looming and are starting to become a little overwhelmed by the task at hand, consuming even a small about of Herer will help. If you can’t get your hands on Jack Herer itself, opt for a derivative of the strain, like Jack the Ripper or Galatic Jack.

Sour Tsunami

Some MMJ card holders find themselves to be incompatible with high THC strains, as they can leave them anxious, drowsy or nauseous. If this sounds like you, Sour Tsunami will be a godsend. Sour Tsunami is a high CBD strain that is excellent at focusing concentration. This mellow focus will enable you to complete mountains of work, without any added stress. If you consume this at work, the only thing you’re at risk of doing is bothering your colleagues with a seriously upbeat, positive attitude.

Haze

Like Jack Herer, Haze is one of the most popular strains of MMJ on the market, and for good reason. This strain is ever popular for work consumption due to its unrivaled ability at combating depression and fatigue. Perfect for consuming during a mid afternoon slump, Haze will provide you with the energy – and the attitude – that you need to smash your day’s targets with no stress.

Purple Trainwreck

The spicy lemon and berry scent of this incredible strain is enough alone to boost your energy levels for the day. Twin that delicious scent with the euphoric, energizing, pain busting effects of PT, and you’ve got yourself the ideal strain for using at work. Effects of this strain are strong and immediate, so you’ll start to feel all that goodness wash in straight after consuming it. When using Purple Trainwreck, it’s important to be careful with your dosag- smoke too much and you could fall victim to the dreaded couch lock.

Sour Diesel

As a strong sativa strain, Sour Diesel produces a euphoric head high that is ideal for focusing your mind on the work task at hand. You can forget needing a morning coffee when you’re consuming Sour Diesel, as it is the ultimate awakener, providing you with enough energy and mental stimulation to keep you buzzing throughout the work day. As well as significantly tackling fatigue, Sour Diesel is excellent at warding off work related anxiety, stress and depression.

Cinex

Cinex is a marvelous sativa dominant hybrid strain that is a firm favorite among those with particularly challenging jobs. When consumed at work, Cinex produces a cognitive stimulation effect, similar to that which you’d get from a good, strong cup of coffee. If you have a complex task that you need to carry out with razor sharp precision, consuming Cinex will guide you through it with ease. While there’s no doubt that this strain can be invaluable to some MMJ card holders at work, it’s important to note that you should be careful with your dosage, as too much Cinex can cause users to feel anxious.

MMJ Recs - MMJ Strain

The MMJ strain Cinex is as powerful as a strong cup of coffee, but don’t consume too much or you’ll get too anxious and won’t be able to focus.

By opting for any of the above MMJ strains, you’ll be sure to banish any notion of inactivity for your important work day. As you would in any other environment, it’s important that you consume discreetly while you’re work, so as to avoid any discomfort for yourself or your co workers. For tips on how to consume discreetly and respectfully, check out our handy go-to guide.

What Medical Marijuana Strains Are Best for Treating My Specific Pain?

Pain relief is the No. 1 reason why Californians obtain a medical marijuana card. With many people growing weary of prescription medications due to their numerous harmful side effects, MMJ is quickly becoming one of the most popular ways for cannabis card holders to alleviate pain without the use of narcotics. From cluster headaches to chronic back pain, certain medical marijuana strains have been proven time and time again to be an effective and safe treatment for pain.

Although pain works the same way throughout the body, different areas react to pain differently. As pain encompasses a broad and diverse spectrum of areas, types and reactions, you should be treating it as such. Don’t assume all medical marijuana strains are equipped to treat all pain equally.

Choosing the right strain of medical marijuana to treat a specific pain is an important decision to make for any MMJ card holder. Sure, some strains can be amazing at eliminating your post-surgery pain, but if they knock you out in the process, you need to opt for something else. Likewise, a certain strain could effectively target your lower back pain, but if it keeps you up at night, chances are it’s not worth it.

Humming and hawing over which is the right strain sound like a laborious process, but trust us, when you’re walking on air thanks to the perfect pain-combating medical marijuana strains, you’ll know it’s worth it. To help guide you in the right direction, here are some of the best pain-busting MMJ strains available to California medical marijuana holders right now.

MMJ rec - seedling

Forget prescription pain relievers. These MMJ strains relieve pain without nasty side effects.

Mild Pain: White Widow

Probably one of the most famous medical marijuana strains worldwide, White Widow is a mixed sativa-indica strain first cultivated in the MMJ haven of the Netherlands. A soothing mix of Brazilian sativa and Indian indica, White Widow is a majorly potent strain that will effectively soothe your mild aches and pains while also providing you with a euphoric buzz. Not only does White Widow act as an ultra-effective pain reliever, but also it is a favorite of creatives the world over due to its unrivaled ability to stimulate their creative side.

Severe Pain: Blackberry Kush and Northern Lights

Although high-CBD medical marijuana strains are often thought of as the go-to painkiller for severe pain, due to their relative newness, they’re not very easy to acquire, especially outside of 420 card states. Instead, medical marijuana card holders who need a more potent painkiller should opt for Blackberry Kush. An indica strain that is super high in THC, Blackberry Kush is nearly guaranteed to obliterate any pain you have. The sensation received from this strain is a wholly numbing effect, alleviating pain and giving you a relaxing feeling that is guaranteed to take your mind off your ailment. However, it’s worth noting that due to the potency of Blackberry Kush, it’s recommended that you do not consume it before work, school or any other important commitment.

Another great alleviator of severe pain comes in the form of Northern Lights. This high-indica strain will numb your aches and pains, making your mind and body ultra-relaxed. However, like Blackberry Kush, it’s recommended to only be used when you have a day of relaxation ahead of you. This is not a work-friendly strain!

Inflammation: Harlequin

Harlequin is a sativa-heavy strain with a high CBD content. However, unlike a lot of CBD-heavy medical marijuana strains, it still produces a CBD to THC ratio of around 5:2, making it an excellent pain reliever, especially pain related to inflammation. Popular among arthritis sufferers, Harlequin gives you a euphoric high with the much-welcomed addition of making you super focused. The clearness of this strain means that it’s perfect to consume before work, school or any other activity that requires your full focus.

Migraines: Blueberry Headband

MMJ Rec - headache

Blueberry Headband is one of the best medical marijuana strains to alleviate the drilling pain between your eyes.

The unmistakable aroma of Blueberry Headband is just one of the many things that stand out about this MMJ strain. Part of the Headband hybrid family, Blueberry Headband offers a cerebral effect that goes straight to the crown of your head. The targeting effect gives completely focused relief with a happy, relaxed buzz, which will soon make you forget about that drilling pain between your eyes.

Back Pain: Mazar-I-Sharif

For chronic, debilitating back pain, it’s best to go for a potent indica-heavy strain such as Mazar-I-Sharif. This Afghani plant is best known by its reputation as the ultimate relaxer. One puff of this stuff, and you’ll feel a wave of calm wash over you like you’ve never experienced before. Thanks to its high cannabinoid content, it’s no surprise that those suffering from persistent, stubborn back pain are such big fans of it. However, overindulgence in this strain can lead to potent immobilizing, narcotic effects that can be too much to handle for most people, so dosage supervision is vital.

With your medical marijuana card, a diverse world of pain relief is opened up to you. As more and more people flock to benefit from MMJ’s unrivaled pain-busting power, more pain targeting medical marijuana strains will become available, giving you even more options to choose from. As ever, it’s best to consult with your doctor before starting any form of MMJ treatment, but with the above list and your 420 card, you’ll be more than equipped to know the best place to start.

11 Best MMJ Strains For Depression

There is a growing body of evidence, both research-based and anecdotal, that a medical marijuana card California can be an invaluable tool for improving the symptoms of depression. That’s because certain MMJ strains can greatly improve depression symptoms in many patients.

Certain strains of cannabis can enliven and energize, while others can promote feelings of well-being and euphoria, while others still can relax the body and mind and bring on sleep. All of these can be useful when a patient is battling depression.

Mild to moderate depression can be alleviated pretty effectively by using your California medical marijuana card to pick up some of the following MMJ strains.

Jack Herer

MMJ Rec - weed

Like many MMJ strains, Jack Herer promotes well-being, positivity and creativity.

Named after the famous marijuana activist and Emperor of Hemp, this strain is sativa-dominant with a THC content of 17 to 24 percent. It promotes well-being, positivity and creativity, which makes Jack Herer an ideal weed to smoke when you are trying to write and record an original music album or make some exciting art. It gives a nice body buzz and makes the user want to be active. It is very effective at boosting mood, so it is great for combating depression. Use your cannabis card to get ahold of this strain of herb, and watch your depression melt away.

Amnesia Haze

Well-known for relaxing the mind — perhaps that’s why it’s called Amnesia Haze now that I think about it! — this is a sativa-dominant hybrid that often brings on giggling fits and happy feelings — the perfect antidote to a blue mood. This is an energizing strain that motivates the user to get out and into the world.

AK-47

This awesome strain has a trophy cabinet teeming with cups and medals at home. It is an MMJ industry favorite. The high produced by this sativa-dominant hybrid with 20 percent THC is calming while also being quite euphoric. It is a relaxed, hazy, joyful buzz, which will gently but insistently chase away the black clouds of depression. It is available in most good dispensaries with a marijuana card California.

Blue Dream

Many MMJ strains, including Blue Dream, help reduce anxiety and depression.

Easing anxiety and stress is the name of the game here. A sativa-dominant strain with a fair chunk of indica thrown in the mix, too, Blue Dream reduces anxiety while uplifting the general mood and injecting a pleasant shot of positivity into the user — ideal for somebody who is suffering from depression.

Girl Scout Cookies

GSC is one of the indica-dominant MMJ strains with a hefty chunk of sativa DNA in their also, so it packs an impressive punch both physically and mentally. This MMJ strain brings on deep feelings of relaxation as well as a pleasant elevation in mood and a nice psychoactive high. It has a THC range of 17 to 28 percent, which is high for an indica-dominant strain. The creative and euphoric moods it brings on are great for showing depression the door.

Chiesel

This hybrid strain is the result of a wild and steamy love affair between Big Buddha Cheese and NYC Diesel. Either Big Buddha Cheese forgot to suit up, or NYC Diesel lied about being on the pill, but whatever the truth of the matter, Chiesel was born. Although it was a shock at first, everyone now agrees that the world is a better place with the little guy in it! This sativa-dominant hybrid gets people happy and energetic but still leaves them very clear-headed. It inspires creativity, happiness and a pleasant mood.

XJ-13

This robotically monikered weed has a citrusy scent and provides an uplifting high that leaves the user clear of mind, happy and positive.

Jillybean

If you want to smoke during the day and be sure you will still be able to get stuff done, then Jillybean is the perfect strain for you! It has a light and pleasant effect on body and mind and calms both just enough to take the edge off while leaving the user more capable than ever of getting out into the world and getting important work done. A calm focus is the game that Jillybean is playin’. It’s the ideal strain for a depressed poker shark out on the make.

Kill Bill

A 50:50 balanced hybrid, this tasty strain will bring a peaceful equilibrium to your mood. You’ll be calm and relaxed yet eager to get to work. It has a THC range of 15 to 19 percent, so it’s not too psychoactive. A cerebral calm accompanied by an undeniable itch to be creative will descend upon you when this herb gets its crystal-cover claws into you.

Harlequin

Another balanced hybrid, Harlequin will alleviate depression symptoms while leaving the patient’s mind clear, fresh and focused. No matter what is on your agenda for the day, it will be easy when you have traces of sweet Harlequin flowing around with your blood.

Pineapple Express

This delightfully named sativa-dominant hybrid strain’s mom is Trainwreck and pop is Hawaiian. The THC range is 12 to 17 percent, and the effect is a happy, energetic high dancing through a clear and focused mind. The body is relaxed but ready for action, and the mind is euphoric but focused. It’s just lovely!

Your 420 card will feel proud that you used it to get a hold of these awesome MMJ strains.

9 Best MMJ Strains for Treating Anxiety

Anxiety can attack a person in many different ways. For people who suffer from generalized anxiety disorder, just being out and about, living a normal life, can be a real ordeal, whereas acute anxieties and phobias can render victims totally unable to face even rewarding activities, such as flying in a plane or asking an attractive stranger on a date. One way to cope with these crippling anxieties is to get a medical marijuana card online, and use your 420 card to acquire some of the MMJ strains that are especially good at alleviating the symptoms of anxiety.

Here is our list of the nine best MMJ strains for anxiety. 

Strawberry Cough

MMJ Rec - weed plant

Many people report that certain MMJ strains, such as Strawberry Cough, help them enjoy being out in public.

This high-THC strain has a very uplifting high. It gives the user a real pep as well as some nice and relaxed psychoactive effects. Its energizing effects make it ideal for daytime use, as it leaves its user full of life and ready to get out into the world and connect with others, which is perfect for the person struggling with anxiety. Many people report that this strain makes them really enjoy being out in public, meeting people and chatting. It has a THC content of 18 percent and a lovely strawberry flavor. This strain makes you lively and alert while also maintaining a solid sense of control and calm — a great strain for the anxious patient to pick up with their medical card California.

Blue Dream

A high-THC hybrid that is very popular with cannabis card carrying anxiety sufferers, Blue Dream is predominantly sativa, so its effects are energizing and enlivening. This makes the user clear-headed, happy and eager to go out and be social. This strain has a nice little hint of indica in the mix, too, so the happy energy is accompanied by a pleasant calm and relaxed sensation in the body. Ahh … lovely.

Stress Killer

In times of high anxiety, a patient may benefit from certain MMJ strains such as Stress Killer, which brings on a mild, sedative high. This is a high-CBD strain with relatively low THC levels, so the effects are felt mostly in the body, and the mind is only lightly massaged by a very gentle psychoactive high. Stress Killer’s physically relaxing properties can be the perfect antidote to an acute case of nerves.

Alternative Cannabinoid Dietary Cannabis

MMJ Rec - weed plant

Some MMJ strains are breed as a form of dietary marijuana.

ACDC, as you may have guessed from the catchy name, was bred specifically as a form of dietary marijuana. It is certainly good to cook with or juice, but it’s also great smoked or vaped. It is a high-CBD strain with minimal THC, so a very mild psychoactive high flutters above a very calm and relaxed physical demeanor. A clear mind operating inside a highly relaxed and mellow body is often a recipe for success, especially in a task that would otherwise provoke anxiety. ACDC is proving to be one of the very popular MMJ strains among anxious patients.

Harlequin

This solid and dependable strain of medical cannabis has a CBD to THC ratio of 5:2. It has quite a bodily high, but it leaves the mind pretty clear. Using Harlequin allows a patient to feel physically calm and relaxed without compromising rationality or the ability to think clearly in any big way.

Afghan Kush

For anxiety sufferers who like to knock themselves out from time to time, this potent indica is the ideal strain. With your California marijuana card, you can get Afghan Kush at all good dispensaries. It’s a favorite of big-time stoners the world over because its powerful punch brings on deep relaxation from the first hit. It is excellent at alleviating the symptoms of acute anxiety and bringing on a deep relaxation and dreamlike sense of calm. Best not to call your mother-in-law on this stuff.

Girl Scout Cookies

GSC is an iconic strain of herb that people from Amsterdam to Anaheim, California, to Afghanistan have been using to calm their nerves and enliven their mood for many years. It has a high THC content of approximately 25 percent, so it packs quite a psychoactive punch. A lot of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) patients with high anxiety use GSC to replenish their levels of a THC-like brain compound called anandamide, which studies have shown is often deficient in PTSD sufferers a

Catatonic

This pleasant high-CBD hybrid strain has a CBD to THC ratio of 1:1, so it is a very safe bet to use as a mild balm to cool the sting of anxiety feelings when they arise. This strain is relaxing without being overly strong, and it leaves the mind clear and focused.

Canna-Tsu

This strain is similar to Catatonic. It has a high CBD content that allows the patient to relax the body while maintaining an alert mind. The low THC content means you can focus on work while alleviating anxious bodily sensations. This is a practical anti-anxiety strain of medical cannabis.

Which MMJ Strains Are Suited To Treat Certain Ailments?

Medical marijuana is a complex drug. To ingest whatever source available with no consideration for taste/strength/effect is the way of the recreational user. However, those who use marijuana for its medicinal properties in the treatment of a disease or ailment will naturally seek out a deeper understanding of marijuana and its many different strains to better combat their particular ailment. After all, knowledge is power, and power in the realm of recovery/treatment can make all the difference to your health!

In this article, we are going to go through several particularly interesting marijuana strains in relation to the
ailments they are best suited to treat. Though we will only speak of what the scientific literature has proven to have efficacy, we still recommend getting advice from a medical practitioner before picking a specific strain. Then, get yourself an MMJ card online and, without further ado, let’s begin!

MMJ

Your doctor or budtender can recommend the right strain of MMJ for you.

Don’t Strain Yourself

Now that MMJ has been legalized in many states, it has gained the attention of modern medicine. Medical practitioners have found a plethora of health benefits of the plant, ranging from the prevention of epileptic seizures (2003 study for the VCU Department of Neurology) to improved lung health (2012 study published in Journal of the American Medical Association). And, in order to isolate the chemical compounds within marijuana responsible for these benefits, they are genetically modifying the plant and using these strands to treat very specific conditions. The positive implications of this advancement in the plant’s use are tremendous.

The choices of MMJ strains are almost inexhaustible, and in each individual case the strain that is most appropriate will vary, so some experimentation is recommended. The strands available – indica, sativa, and hybrids – all contain a whole host of cannabinoids. In fact, there are at least 113 different cannabinoids isolated from cannabis, each responsible for distinct effects in the body. A cannabinoid is a class of chemical compounds that acts on cannabinoid receptors (involved in a variety of physiological processes including appetite, pain, mood, and memory) in cells that alter neurotransmitter release in the brain. THC is the primary psychoactive cannabinoid of cannabis. It’s responsible for the high as well as being anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective (preservation of neuronal integrity so you stay sharp), and antiemetic (prevents vomiting). Cannabidiol (CBD) is another major component of the plant and the one accountable for many of the medicinal properties. Scientists say that CBD modulates electrical and chemical activity, thereby quieting the excessive activity in the brain that causes seizures.

There are two main species of marijuana: sativa and indica. Both come with a unique smell, taste, and strength profile. Sativa has a fruity, sweet aroma while indica tends to have an acrid, stinky odor. But the most important distinction between the plants is the amounts of THC and CBD in them. Plants with high levels of THC are typically considered indica; while plants with high levels of CBD are typically considered sativa.


Therefore, indica strains will be psychoactive making the user more relaxed and sleepy, while providing all the health benefits of THC. Indica is used to treat a larger number of conditions including cancer (chemotherapy), HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, insomnia and glaucoma as it is proven to be highly effective at reducing nausea, stimulating appetite, and reducing intraocular (eye pressure) pain amongst other things. Indica is characterized as giving patients a “body high”.

Sativa, on the other hand, will be far less psychoactive, increasing creativity, energy, and serotonin (a neurotransmitter that is responsible for the maintenance of mood balance and plays a huge role in the prevention of depression). With its high concentration of CBD – hypothesized to be an antipsychotic – it’s used to treat mental and behavioral issues such as depression, bipolar, ADHD, as well as epilepsy. Sativa brings about a cerebral high.

A simple way to remember the above distinctions between sativa and indica in relation to your ailment is to consider where the high takes hold: sativa, induces a cerebral high, and so is intended for treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and psychotic conditions; indica induces a body high, therefore, is intended for the treatment of physical conditions.     

Below are some quality strains that are worth trying if you’re looking to treat any of the ailments listed above.

Sativa/High CBD Strains

MMJ

MMJ is used to treat a variety of diseases and ailments.

  • Charlotte’s Web
  • Harlequin
  • Avidekel
  • Cannatonic
  • Sour Tsunami

 

Indica/High THC Strains

  • Black Destroyer
  • OG Kush
  • Amnesia
  • Tutankhamon
  • Pineapple Chunk

 

That’s it, folks! We hope you’re going away with a great deal more knowledge than you arrived with and that that knowledge informs your usage. Don’t forget, you need an MMJ card in order to take advantage of the many unique health benefits of the different strands and the easiest way to get an MMJ card of your own is to order it online.

What Are the Best Medical Marijuana Strains For Joint Pain?

Your body aches. Your joints crack as you walk up and down the stairs. It’s not pleasant. Actually, it’s quite painful. No one likes joint pain, but you’ve been suffering for too long. It’s time to get your online medical marijuana card and head down to the dispensary.

Before you do all that, it’s important to do a little research. You need to find out what medical marijuana strains are the absolute best for joint pain. You need to know whether THC or CBD is better for healing joint pain. Get your weed card in California, then use this article to help your recovery.

The Best Medical Marijuana Strains For Joint Pain

When the pain stemming from your knees, ankles, hip, elbows or shoulders is too much to handle, a little cannabis could be exactly what they doctor ordered. So here are some of the absolute best medical marijuana strains for those suffering from joint pain:

  • Sativa: These strains aren’t typically ideal for joint pain. However, many of the newer sativa strains come heavily infused with CBD. Many find the sativa strains high in CBD to be the perfect midday medication for joint pain.
  • Indica: Many indica strains are incredibly high in THC. This allows them to effectively kill pain. New strains of indica have begun to be infused with high levels of CBD, too. Strains high in both THC and CBD have been shown to be the better at offering pain relief.
  • Hybrid: Many individuals living in medical marijuana states have found hybrid strains the best at reducing pain. Hybrid strains have been proven to be helpful at killing pain and reducing inflammation through CBD.
  • New Cannabinoids: One of the newer cannabinoids found on the market, CBG, has been showing to offer great pain relieving effects. Individuals suffering in medical marijuana states may want to give CBG a try in the near future.

Stop Suffering Today

There’s no reason to continue suffering from joint pain in silence. You deserve to feel great and go about your life pain-free. You can visit a number of medical marijuana doctors in California, or you can do the smart thing: get your online medical marijuana card.

If option two sounds better to you, then we may be of assistance to you. At MMJRecs, we make getting your weed card in California a piece of cake. Just head over to our site, start the application process and you could have access to your weed card in less than five minutes after approval. Healing has never happened faster!

Explaining the Science Behind MMJ And Joint Pain Relief

These days, most people in the United States are aware that Medical Marijuana, aka MMJ, can be used for pain relief – and more specifically, joint pain relief for conditions such as arthritis. But why does marijuana help joint pain? What’s the best strain of MMJ to use for this purpose? And how exactly can you seek out joint pain relief with medical marijuana? Here’s all you need to know.

How does marijuana help joint pain?

When it comes to MMJ and joint pain relief, medical marijuana has two active chemicals that play a role in the process: THC and CBD. THC is the most well-known active chemical since this is the psychoactive stimulant responsible for the “high” many people associate with cannabis. However, THC also very closely resembles cannabinoid chemicals that occur naturally in our body, meaning when you introduce THC to your system, it binds to the cannabinoid 1 receptors, reducing pain.

Like THC, CBD is a phytocannabinoid found in medical marijuana. However, unlike THC, it has no psychoactive effects. It binds very weakly, if at all, to cannabinoid 1 receptors, and can in fact stop THC binding as much as it normally would, reducing the psychoactive effects. Does this mean less pain relief? Actually, no. In fact, consuming the two together (as naturally occurs in marijuana) can actually help. CBD reduces some of the negative effects of THC like increased heart rate, while increasing its half-life (which in theory can increase the length of its effectiveness), while also having its own pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties.

CBD and THC are by no means the only phytocannabinoids in MMJ to help with joint pain relief, but are certainly the most well-known and the most likely to be marketed at dispensaries.

MMJ Recs - woman holding MMJ

There’s a fortunate connection between soothing sore joints and MMJ.

Which strains and doses are best?

When it comes to the best strains and doses of medical marijuana for joint pain relief, it depends on many factors. As mentioned before, phytocannabinoids have been shown to work best when used together, as they are naturally found, which means individuals looking for general pain relief will probably be best off with a strain high in both CBD and THC.

However, due to the psychoactive effects of THC, this is not always possible, and so having MMJ high in CBD and low in THC could be a great option. This can have the same pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory effects – often the key problem for joint pain – while still allowing the user to get on with their normal day, uninhibited by the psychoactive side-effects of THC.

The dominant strains you will come across are cannabis sativa, which generally has a higher amount of CBD, and cannabis indica, which contains more THC. In addition to these, there are numerous hybrids with varying levels of phytocannabinoids, so the best option is to see what works for you as an individual.

Who does joint pain affect?

While we often associate joint pain with the elderly, it is something that affects many groups across a variety of ages. In fact, a national survey in the U.S. found that over a third of adults reported experiencing joint pain in the 30 days leading up to the questionnaire. It can be caused by aging, most commonly in the form of osteoarthritis, but also comes from the autoimmune condition of rheumatoid arthritis or any number of injuries and illnesses. This means that while the elderly or obese are most at risk, people who regularly play sports or do manual labor can also find themselves with severe joint pain.

MMJ Recs - elderly

Elderly people are most likely to suffer from joint pain, but others who experience it may also experience joint pain relief with medical marijuana.

How can I get an MMJ card?

If you’re interested in seeking joint pain relief with medical marijuana, the first thing you need to do is make sure you pursue it legally by obtaining a medical marijuana card. The requirements for an MMJ card differ from state to state, but generally speaking, if you have a condition that causes severe joint pain, you will be eligible. In California, for example, qualifying conditions include rheumatoid arthritis, which is what many people with joint pain suffer from.

The first step to acquiring an MMJ card is getting a letter of recommendation from a health professional that states that you would benefit from medical marijuana. While this can be done through your normal GP, many patients opt to apply online. Services like MMJ Recs allow joint-pain sufferers to carry out the whole process from their homes, first with an online medical form, then a video conference with a medical professional to determine eligibility. If accepted, you can get a recommendation almost immediately, allowing you to apply for your MMJ card.

Considering the possibly hundreds of phytocannabinoids that exist in medical marijuana, the exact science as to how it helps with joint pain is still being researched. However, there is a significant body of evidence that shows the impact of both CBD and THC on joint pain, so whether you are suffering from age-related arthritis or joint pain incurred from sports, it may be worth considering the connection between sore joints and MMJ!

4 Ways Medical Marijuana Can Help Arthritis Patients

Medical marijuana is used for many chronic conditions, one of which is arthritis in all its forms. Like many of the conditions that qualify patients for MMJ cards, the main course of action for arthritis suffers is management of their symptoms, which include joint pain and stiffness, among others. MMJ has been used by many arthritis sufferers to manage these symptoms. So how does marijuana help arthritis, exactly? Here’s what you need to know about MMJ and joint pain.

A bit of background on arthritis

Arthritis is a catch-all term for several distinctive conditions that cause swelling and tenderness in the joints, resulting in pain and stiffness. The two most common forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Osteoarthritis causes the cartilage in your joints to break down, while rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes your immune system to attack the joints, beginning with the linings of the joints, most commonly in the hands and wrists.

In both cases, the course of treatment is to manage the symptoms of arthritis to make the patient more comfortable, which often involves reducing pain and inflammation. This is where the relationship between MMJ and arthritis comes into play.

Can marijuana help arthritis?

If you’ve been wondering “Can marijuana help joint pain?”, the answer is yes! Medical marijuana helps with arthritic joint pain by targeting the two main symptoms: pain and inflammation. When taking medical marijuana, the phytocannabinoids it contains (specifically THC) bind to the cannabinoid receptors of your brain, producing euphoria and pain relief. Additionally, these same phytocannabinoids (specifically CBD) help reduce swelling and inflammation in different parts of the body, including joints.

Interestingly, rheumatoid arthritis causes the body to release inflammatory proteins into the joints, including cytokines, chemokines, nitric oxide synthetase, and by-products of arachidonic acid. These in turn causes the body to produce and release endocannabinoids – the chemicals that bind to the same cannabinoid receptors as THC. Why would the body release ECs as part of the inflammatory response while people use MMJ to combat it? Supposedly, it’s the body’s natural way to try to reduce this inflammation, meaning the phytocannabinoids in medical marijuana actually boost the body’s own natural anti-inflammatory response.

MMJ Recs - joint pain

The main symptom of arthritis is joint pain. So can marijuana help joint pain? Let’s find out!

How does marijuana help arthritis patients?

1) Pain relief

The interaction of THC, CBD and other phytocannabinoids with cannabinoid receptors leads to generalized pain reduction. The euphoric effects of THC have also been held up as reducing the painful symptoms of both rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis, even if only through distraction.

2) Inflammation reduction

More notable in the application against rheumatoid arthritis than osteoarthritis, the phytocannabinoids in medical marijuana are believed to help reduce inflammation, specifically in arthritic joints which show an elevated level of ECs. CBD is considered by some to be more effective for inflammation reduction, but current thinking tends to accept that the naturally balanced levels of unprocessed marijuana rather than extracts are the best option for most people.

3) Prevention of nerve damage

Most studies into MMJ and arthritis aren’t carried out on humans due to the ongoing federal ban, but one animal-based study found that “prophylactic CBD treatment prevented the later development of pain and nerve damage in… [osteoarthritis] joints.”

4) Reduced side effects

Medical marijuana certainly isn’t without side effects. Many might consider the “high” from THC and resulting physiological reactions, such as increased heart rate, as major issues – not to mention the potential dangers of consuming MMJ via smoking. However, the physical side effects are considered minor compared to those of other drugs like NSAIDs (e.g. aspirin, ibuprofen), which in strong doses can cause long-term damage to major organs.

What are the best strains?

The MMJ strains most appropriate for arthritis depend on the individual user’s needs. Generally speaking, there are two strains that you’ll come across: cannabis sativa, with high CBD levels, and cannabis indica, with more THC. Research increasingly indicates that a balance of phytocannabinoids could prove the most effective route to take, but those looking to avoid the psychoactive effects of THC may wish to consider getting a strain with higher levels of CBD.

MMJ Recs - Marijuana in Hand

MMJ and joint pain relief go hand in hand if you have the right strain.

How can arthritis sufferers get an MMJ card?

Arthritis is possibly the most common reason for a patient to get an MMJ card, which makes it a relatively easy process, especially when applying online through a platform like MMJ Recs. MMJ Recs allows the patient to complete the entire process from their own home and without having to deal with their normal GP. The first step to acquiring an MMJ card is getting a letter of recommendation from a registered medical practitioner. Through MMJ Recs, this can be done by completing an online medical form (along with the appropriate attachments), then having a conversation with a medical professional via video chat to determine your eligibility. If they believe medical marijuana is right for you, your letter of recommendation can be sent almost immediately, which is then used to secure your MMJ card to be used in dispensaries.

When it comes down to it, we don’t know all of the connections between MMJ and joint pain. However, there is a growing base of evidence that MMJ can manage pain and reduce inflammation for arthritis patients, and all with fewer side effects than other drugs.

Where To Buy MMJ In Oklahoma

A little over a year ago, State Question 788 was passed in Oklahoma, thereby making it the 30th state to legalize medical marijuana. The Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority was set up to allowing patients to register for the program, and one year later Oklahoma State has more MMJ card holders per capita than any other U.S. state. Possibly contributing to this stat is the fact that Oklahoma has, much to everyone’s surprise, become one of the more progressive states when it comes to its medical marijuana laws. MMJ laws in Oklahoma allow physicians to freely recommend medical marijuana to treat pretty much any condition for which they think it might be appropriate. In addition, the state has not put a limit on the number of Oklahoma MMJ dispensaries that can apply for and hold a business license. In only its first year, Oklahoma State has approved more than 1,500 dispensaries – and that number is set to increase over the next few months. So whether you’re a current MMJ user, wondering if you might benefit from becoming one, or visiting with an MMJ card from another state, Oklahoma is a good place to be!

MMJ Recs - cannabis
If you’re looking for good-quality Oklahoma MMJ dispensaries, you’re in luck!

Before we take a look specifically at Oklahoma marijuana dispensaries and the best places to buy MMJ in Oklahoma, it’s worth just running through a few health disorders that might benefit from medical marijuana use. There are no qualifying conditions as such in Oklahoma, but some medical conditions where the use of MMJ has proven to be beneficial include Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Crohn’s disease, cancer, polyneuropathy, seizures, and rheumatoid arthritis. A fuller list of conditions and common symptoms can be found here. If your own particular symptom or affliction isn’t mentioned, it’s still worth speaking to your physician to see if they think your life might be improved with the use of MMJ. You can apply easily and simply online with MMJ Recs for a stress-free assessment, which can be done via phone or video link. If approved, MMJ laws in Oklahoma allow you to legally have in your possession: up to three ounces of marijuana; up to six mature plants; a maximum of six seedling plants; up to one ounce of concentrated marijuana and a maximum of 72 ounces of edible marijuana.

Once you’ve been awarded your Oklahoma MMJ card, you’ll probably be asking yourself “Where can I buy MMJ in Oklahoma?”. Well, the answer is pretty much anywhere! As previously noted, the number of Oklahoma marijuana dispensaries currently exceeds 1,500 – so you shouldn’t have any trouble locating one wherever you are in the state. Oklahoma has many reputable dispensaries, but which are the most popular ones and why? Before we answer this, let’s look at the things that make a dispensary a good dispensary. The first thing is obviously the product itself. If a dispensary grows its own marijuana on-site, that’s a good sign. If it’s not clear how their products are grown or where they get them from, you should ask. The various strains on offer should be well-packaged and clearly labeled. It should look, and also smell, fresh. Find out not only where it comes from but also the sort of conditions it’s grown under. Ask as many questions as you like – remember, you’re the customer! The next thing to consider when you’re researching Oklahoma MMJ dispensaries is the staff. Ideally you want a knowledgeable, friendly and helpful budtender. Some can be too pushy or are clearly lacking in the necessary expertise; avoid them. You need to be able to talk with a person you trust – someone who can advise you on the best strain to take for your particular condition. It’s essential to get the correct levels of CBD and THC in your purchase. Your budtender needs to be familiar with and knowledgeable about edibles, oils, and all other forms of MMJ.

MMJ Recs - medical marijuana
It’s important to know what makes a good-quality MMJ dispensary when looking for the best Oklahoma dispensary for you.

Before deciding which is the best Oklahoma dispensary for you, check out some reviews. This is the best way to get first-hand, objective information on how customers are treated, the quality of the products, and the customer service in general. Most dispensaries are likely to have the odd bad review, but if you see too many of them about any one dispensary, give it a wide birth. Some of the more popular Oklahoma marijuana dispensaries include Urban Wellness, Green Roots Wellness, and Elysium. Outside of Oklahoma City, Route 66 Dispensary and T-Town Medical Marijuana Dispensary (both located in Tulsa) come highly recommended. The latter even has a retired nurse on duty a few days of the week, to help you with any queries. Eden Pharmaceuticals in Midwest City is another highly rated dispensary, and Hartland Dispensary in Del City is popular as it keeps a journal for each of its patients, recording all purchases together with results from said purchases.

All you need to do now is make sure you have an up-to-date MMJ license (in Oklahoma you only have to renew every two years) or a temporary license if you’re visiting from another state, and start researching for the best Oklahoma dispensary for you and your needs!

What Strength of MMJ is Legal in Oklahoma?

If you’re considering using medical marijuana (MMJ) to help ease symptoms of a health problem you’re dealing with, you might be wondering, “Is MMJ legal in Oklahoma?”. The answer is yes! It can be a relatively easy process to use medical marijuana after obtaining an MMJ card. However, not being familiar with the different strengths and strains of marijuana products out there can cause confusion. Well, here’s some helpful information to help take the guesswork out of determining the legal marijuana strength in Oklahoma and which products you should be using.

First, MMJ products are typically divided into three categories:

  1. Indica – originates from the Hindu Kush mountains in India and has a relaxing effect; can also be used for chronic pain and insomnia
  2. Sativa – has more energizing effects; boosts energy levels and creativity
  3. Hybrid – a combination of these two types

From there, dispensaries can divide these three types into specific strains. The strains most popular in Oklahoma include Acapulco Gold, Panama Red, Durban Poison, Hindu Kush, Mazar Sharif, and Afghan Kush.

MMJ Recs - medical marijuana
Now the authorities have made MMJ legal in Oklahoma, there are plenty of varieties available to patients.

If you’re wondering “How strong is Oklahoma MMJ?”, you should get informed about the general strength of MMJ products. Unfortunately, determining the strength of MMJ products isn’t always completely straightforward. Although there should be a “total THC” number on the label of the product you’re buying (or what the dispensary lists it as), there’s no standard for calculating this and some dispensaries calculate the number in different ways. You just need to check out the actual amount of THC or CBD in the product, which can depend on the content of the product and the method you use to consume it. The highest strengths are usually between 10 and 35 total THC level (out of a percentage of the dry weight). The most common MMJ strength in Oklahoma ranges from 8% to 20% THC. However, if you decide you need something stronger, your local dispensary can probably assist you in finding the right strain and strength for your medical needs. Bottom line: the MMJ strength in Oklahoma that you need can be found pretty easily, especially as more state-licensed dispensaries are popping up throughout the state.

The MMJ laws in Oklahoma are pretty similar to the ones in other states in the U.S. where medical marijuana usage is legal. With a valid MMJ card, you are allowed to have:

  • Up to 8 ounces of marijuana in your home
  • Up to 3 ounces of marijuana on your person when you leave your residence
  • Up to 1 ounce of concentrated marijuana
  • Up to 72 ounces of edibles
  • Up to 6 mature plants
  • Up to 6 seedling plants

This means that you’re permitted to grow and cultivate your own marijuana plants if you have an MMJ license. Please note: you are only legally allowed to purchase from state-licensed dispensaries in Oklahoma, which means you’re prohibited from buying any marijuana products from a dealer or another MMJ cardholder.

So, how do you figure out which plants to grow or which products to purchase? Your best bet is to have a consultation with someone who works at the nearest dispensary. Most employees are very knowledgeable about their products, including which particular strains and strengths would work the best to help with your symptoms. You can let them know exactly what you want to use MMJ for (everything from relief from nausea or inflammation to reduction of symptoms of glaucoma or Parkinson’s). They’ll be able to point you towards products that won’t be too strong for you, but that will still help alleviate your symptoms.

MMJ Recs - weighing MMJ
Dispensary employees can usually help answer questions like “Which strand of MMJ is right for me?” and “How strong is Oklahoma MMJ?”

There are also some websites out there (like Leafly) that offer MMJ products that can be delivered to your home. This site is helpful because it allows you to easily compare various strains and strengths side by side. By seeing the THC content of each option, you can better tell which products will work best for you. Even just spending a little time doing research online can help point you towards the strength/strain that other people with your ailments have found helpful in the past.

The good thing about there being different strengths and strains of marijuana is that you don’t have to commit to just one. Experimenting with a variety of products can help you narrow down your search for the right product for your specific needs. Because pretty much all strengths and strains are legal in Oklahoma, you’re free to use whatever you wish as long as you have an MMJ card. If you don’t have an MMJ card already, you can apply for one through the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority (OMMA) at omma.ok.gov. You’ll also need to consult with a medical professional who can verify that you do have a health condition with symptoms that could be alleviated with the usage of MMJ. If you don’t have a medical professional to help with this, you can use the services of MMJRecs. They can connect you virtually to a licensed physician who can help you complete your application. You’ll also be required to pay a $100 application fee (or a discounted fee of $20 if you are on Medicaid SoonerCare or Medicare). As soon as you receive your official MMJ card, you can legally purchase MMJ products in Oklahoma.

Although it can be tricky to figure out which strain and strength of marijuana is right for you, you always have the option of getting advice from a local dispensary or try experimenting with different products. Once you find the perfect option for you, you’ll get all of the benefits of using MMJ in the great state of Oklahoma.

Do I Need A Medical Marijuana Card In Oklahoma?

Since 2018, medical marijuana has been legal in the state of Oklahoma. That means that if you live in Oklahoma and have been awarded a state-approved medical marijuana license, then you are eligible to legally purchase and consume marijuana. There are limits to what you can have on your person and in your home, as well as qualifications you must meet in order to get a medical marijuana card in Oklahoma, which is why it’s important to understand the law and your rights under it. If you’re from the Sooner State and think you may benefit from medical marijuana, then here’s what you need to know.

Do You Qualify for a Medical Marijuana Card?

Oklahoma is unique in that its medical marijuana law leaves it up to the discretion of the doctor treating you to decide if MMJ would assist in the treatment of your condition or illness. To put it simply: A doctor can recommend medical marijuana as a treatment for any condition they see fit.

This is great in that it gives your doctor full discretion, but it has disadvantages too. Your doctor may not consider medical marijuana to be an appropriate treatment for you. Luckily, if you find that’s the case, then you can simply consult another doctor for a second opinion.

Some of the most common conditions that doctors recommend MMJ for include (but are not limited to):

  • Seizure disorders such as epilepsy
  • Chronic pain
  • Muscle spasms
  • Terminal illness
  • Nausea
  • Inflammation
  • Glaucoma
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Cancer
  • Neuropathic pain
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia

If you think you can benefit from medical marijuana, then talk to your doctor. Remember, according to federal law, marijuana cannot be prescribed. Doctors are protected in recommending it to their patients, but they cannot help you to obtain it. That means they will not discuss specific cannabis products with you nor will they talk about dosages or strains. What they can do is fill out a form that shows they discussed the risks of the use of marijuana with you and certify that they believe the benefits to be worth it in the treatment of your illness. Once they sign off on the form, you have 30 days to obtain your medical marijuana card online via the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority website.

MMJ Recs - young woman
A medical marijuana card in Oklahoma can help you to lead a happier and more productive life.

The application fee for a medical marijuana card is $100. If you have Medicaid or Medicare, the fee is only $20. You should be notified within 14 days of your submitting your application whether you’ve been approved.

Once you are approved for a card, then you will receive an identification card with your photo, date of birth, name, city and county of residence, the expiration date of the license, and a unique license number just for your medical marijuana card. It is valid for two years from the date it is issued. Simply present it when buying from a licensed dispensary.

What the Law Allows

Once you have a medical marijuana card in Oklahoma, it’s not a license to have as much marijuana on you as you’d like. In fact, the state law only allows you to possess three ounces or less on your person, 72 ounces of edibles, eight ounces of cannabis in your home, or six mature plants.

The law also requires you to only buy MMJ products from a licensed dispensary. All dispensaries must be a licensed medical marijuana retailer. It’s illegal for you to purchase from someone who is not licensed or from another patient who has a medical marijuana card.

It’s also important to note that a medical marijuana card in Oklahoma also does not allow you to use marijuana in your workplace. While your employer cannot discriminate against you due to your status as a medical marijuana patient, they can still write you up or enforce rules against using it in the workplace or being impaired when on the job.

A few other crucial things to note about an Oklahoma medical marijuana card is that:

  • It does not allow you to take marijuana across state lines – especially to a state where medical marijuana is not legal
  • It does not allow you to go to another state that has recreational marijuana laws and bring marijuana back into Oklahoma
  • You cannot smoke marijuana in places that tobacco is prohibited
  • You cannot purchase marijuana with a credit card; dispensaries only accept cash
  • You cannot give your medical marijuana away to another person
  • You cannot operate a motor vehicle when under the influence of medical marijuana

Make sure you understand and follow all the laws surrounding medical marijuana in Oklahoma.

Your Rights

You may be worried about what to do if stopped by police with MMJ on you, which is why it’s important to understand your rights in Oklahoma as a medical marijuana patient.

MMJ Recs - police
Make sure you’ve got your medical marijuana card and have a firm grasp of your rights under the Oklahoma law.

First and foremost, have all your basic bases covered. That means you should always keep your MMJ card or a copy of it on you. Also, always keep the medical marijuana you have in its original containers from the dispensary and keep your receipt. When transporting medical marijuana in your vehicle, make sure it’s someplace that is not accessible, such as your trunk.

You can still be charged with driving under the influence if police suspect you to be impaired due to marijuana consumption. That’s why it’s important that you familiarize yourself with and follow all laws surrounded the use of medical marijuana in Oklahoma. If you’re ever confronted by police, you don’t want to give them any reasons to take further action.

Making MMJ Edibles At Home: Is It Worth It?

Edibles are one of the best forms of medical marijuana. What other medication can you think of that combines sweet treats with medicinal goodness? MMJ edibles are readily available in dispensaries, but many people consider making them themselves at home, questioning whether it’s worth it. Like most things, there are positives and negatives that you need to consider.

Medical marijuana is now a widely accepted form of treatment for many symptoms associated with conditions and illnesses including cancer, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, anxiety, depression, and eating disorders. While some states have legalized marijuana for recreational reasons, there are many more that have legalized it for medical use, meaning it has never been easier for patients to access a natural remedy to help them cope with debilitating symptoms.

There are many forms in which you can take medical marijuana, and MMJ edibles are one of the most popular. Simply put, edibles are foods that have been infused with medical marijuana. There are many different kinds, but they are usually cakes or sweets, such as cookies, brownies, lollipops, and other candies. They are easy to consume and are easily disguised if you wish to keep the fact that you take medical marijuana to yourself. Other forms of medical marijuana include lotions, vapes, tinctures, joints, and oils.

MMJ Recs - lollipops

Did you know you can even infuse lollipops with MMJ?!

The main positive of homemade MMJ edibles is the same as any homemade treat. You know exactly what is going into them and can control the level of medical marijuana present, as well as the sugar and fat if you’re making something like brownies. Homemade will usually be healthier and tastier than anything that can be bought in a store. On the downside, it can be time-consuming and sometimes difficult to make your own edibles. It is not the same as making regular brownies or cookies; you have to prepare a specific type of butter or fat to infuse the medical marijuana into your homemade treats.

Preparing cannabis butter can be difficult, but it can be done at home if you’re really set on making your own MMJ edibles. The first thing you’ll need to do is to visit your local dispensary and buy some cannabis buds. Make sure you get the strain of medical marijuana that you usually get if you buy edibles, as different strains have very different effects on the body. If you’re unsure of the strain that works for you, it’s best to speak to someone at your local dispensary and get some advice, trying out the strain in different forms before you try making your own MMJ edibles at home. Once you have the buds of a strain you’re happy with, bring them home and grind them into a fine powder. Melt some butter in a pan and add your powdered cannabis. Simmer on a low heat for about 45 minutes, strain through a fine mesh cloth, and chill. Now your cannabis butter is ready to be used as any kind of fat in a recipe for cookies, brownies, or candies.

MMJ Recs - cannabis butter

Cannabis butter is the key ingredient in MMJ edibles.

Once you have your cannabis butter ready to go, you can be as creative or simple as you like. The only limit you really have is your own imagination. Edibles are a good way to take medical marijuana incognito, as no one tends to suspect baked goods of being anything more than what they appear. It’s just important to be aware of the legislation anywhere you’re traveling to if you bring your edibles on the road. It is never advisable to break the law if you’re traveling, so it is important to remember that marijuana is still illegal at a federal level, despite being legal for medicinal reasons in several states. If you’re crossing state lines into a state where MMJ is illegal and you really need to bring your edibles with you, just try to keep them on your person, but make sure you don’t share them with anyone. The last thing you need is someone reacting badly to your medication! This type of discretion is quite common among people who have to take medical marijuana, as there is still a lot of stigma surrounding its use.

The choice to make MMJ edibles at home is a personal one, but it can be very rewarding if done properly. As long as you do your proper research and ensure you don’t make them too weak or too strong, your homemade MMJ edibles will be tasty treats that allow you to manage the symptoms of your condition in a truly delicious manner.

How to Use a Dispensary to Get Great Advice on MMJ

Medical marijuana is emerging as an excellent treatment for many conditions, but it can be tricky to find the right type of MMJ for your condition. The good news is, thanks to legislation that is regularly relaxing across the United States, more and more people are able to access a treatment that has long been confined to underground usage, and there are more and more dispensaries available in different states that employ people who are passionate about medical marijuana use.

Medical marijuana has been proven to help people suffering from the debilitating symptoms of a number of different conditions. People who suffer from HIV/AIDS, cancer, Parkinson’s disease, and multiple sclerosis, among other illnesses, have found relief from their symptoms thanks to laws that have been relaxed around MMJ. Now that marijuana is legal for recreational use in California, marijuana dispensaries are always opening, and the use of medical marijuana is becoming more and more common.

If you’re new to the world of MMJ, it can be a very intimidating thing to become a part of. Without proper help and education, there isn’t really a good way to just dive into using it, which is why dispensaries can be really helpful to MMJ newbies. If you visit a reputable dispensary, they can give you advice on the form of medical marijuana to take, as well as the strain.

MMJ Recs - marijuana leaf

MMJ dispensaries are a great place to seek tips and advice about using your product.

Medical marijuana comes in a variety of strains, which differ in the types and strengths of cannabinoid that are present. These different strains are better at treating different types of illness, so something that works for someone who is trying to fight the nausea brought on by chemotherapy won’t be as effective at treating anxiety brought on by a psychological condition.

There are plenty of medical professionals operating online who can help you to start this journey. While a lot of in-person primary care physicians may be reluctant to recommend MMJ to their patients, there is a world of expertise online that is helping patients gain access to medical marijuana. If you live in a state where marijuana is legal for recreational reasons, you won’t need a medical marijuana card, but if you do, you can get one online from a trained medical professional. Even if you don’t need an MMJ card, these professionals will be able to give you some guidance as to the strains of medical marijuana that work best for the condition that you’re trying to treat.

When you’re trying to decide on a dispensary to visit, make sure you pick a reputable one with a good following from people who use marijuana for medical reasons. Do your research – visit MMJ forums and listen to the reviews and experiences of people who are in a similar position to you. Education will help you to get access to a dispensary that is truly passionate about helping people, as opposed to somewhere that is just concerned about making money.

 

MMJ Recs - marijuana and joints

Joints are just one of the forms in which medical marijuana can be used.

When you visit your dispensary, make sure you’re honest about the kind of treatment you need so they can differentiate you from someone who is visiting for recreational reasons. Recreational and medical marijuana are very different uses of the same product, so the person you’re getting advice from needs to know what they’re dealing with. Let them know about the advice you got from the medical professional you spoke to online and the strains they’ve suggested. Dispensary employees are not medical professionals, so they can’t make fixed recommendations the way that doctors can, but they can offer anecdotal advice based on reviews from customers who have been in the same position as you.

As well as strains, dispensary employees can give you advice on the form of medical marijuana to take. While many people think of marijuana as solely something that is smoked in joint form, it actually comes in the form of lotions, edibles such as cookies, brownies, and candies, tinctures, and vapes as well as joints. The type of marijuana you take will be based on a number of factors, including your lifestyle, portability, and personal preference.

While medical marijuana feels like something that can be quite alienating, by putting your trust in dispensary employees who have lots of experience with many different types of patients, you’ll realize that MMJ may have the potential to change your life. Be prepared to try different strains and different forms of medical marijuana – along with the help of your local dispensary, you’ll find the right one for you and you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.

How to Store Your Medical Marijuana Properly

If you’re someone who uses medical marijuana, you’ll know what a lifesaver it can be in helping to treat the symptoms associated with some really debilitating illnesses. It can be taken in a variety of forms and strains, but there are some things you should know about how to properly store your medical marijuana so it can help you in the best way possible.

Medical marijuana is growing in popularity thanks to legislators and doctors who are finally realizing how effective it can be in helping people treat a variety of symptoms. While marijuana is still an illegal drug at a federal level, it is now legal to take recreationally in some states, and for medical reasons in even more states. People who use MMJ take it to treat symptoms associated with a wide variety of conditions, including cancer, HIV/AIDS, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, Parkinson’s disease, and multiple sclerosis. Most of these people are not the types of individuals that you’d associate with drug use, but marijuana is now so popular in medicinal form that more and more people need assistance and advice on how to use and store medical marijuana.

The type of storage you need depends on the type of medical marijuana that you’re consuming. If you’re a fan of traditional marijuana in bud forms, there are some easy tips to follow to ensure that your marijuana is protected from spoiling. First, make sure that you keep your buds in airtight glass jars. MMJ also needs to be protected from light, so keeping the glass jar in a drawer or pantry is a good idea to ensure that it stays fresh.

MMJRecs - MMJ equipment

It’s important to store your medical marijuana correctly.

Dispensary practices can also tell you a lot about the freshness of their product. Avoid dispensaries that use plastic bags or containers to sell their MMJ, as plastic is one of the biggest culprits in drying out marijuana buds. It’s also good to stay away from dispensaries that handle marijuana buds directly. Buds are delicate and direct handling can introduce moisture and germs into them, which is a surefire way of them spoiling.

Other forms of medical marijuana are a lot easier to store, but there is still some general advice to follow to ensure that it stays good for as long as possible. If you like to vape, make sure you replace your vaping pen regularly and keep it clean. Tinctures, like buds, should be stored in glass and kept away from direct light in order to avoid spoilage. MMJ edibles should be treated like the food they are. Cakes, cookies, and brownies have a shorter shelf life than candies and caramels, so if you’re not consuming medical marijuana regularly, it might be better to invest in some MMJ candy as opposed to cookies.

While there are certain steps you should follow, you can always get inventive and try cute and fun storage solutions for your MMJ. If you carry a vape pen in your handbag, why not treat yourself to a pretty and fun one as opposed to a regular plain one? If pretty isn’t your style, you can always look at something more industrial and formal-looking. Vape pens are especially open to customizing and there is a whole community of people out there who can advise on making your own vapes.

MMJRecs - marijuana bud

If you can see your local dispensary has good MMJ storage habits, ask them for some tips and advice.

Your local dispensary can also be a font of knowledge for ideas on how to store your medical marijuana. As long as the practices of storage in their store are good, you should ask employees if they use marijuana and how they would advise you store it. Like any industry, the people who work with MMJ are often passionate about what they do and are more than happy to share the knowledge.

If you’re traveling with your medical marijuana, be careful about where you’re going. As marijuana is still illegal on a federal level, it is not advisable to fly with it, and if you’re crossing into a state where it isn’t legal, you could face criminal consequences. Sadly, not all states are as liberal as others, so it’s important to be careful when traveling with your medication.

Marijuana is an herb and if you think about it in those terms, its storage is easy to navigate. Don’t let it dry out too much, don’t let it see sunlight, and if you’re cooking it, treat the form you’re cooking it into like any other cookie, brownie, or candy. When treated properly, medical marijuana will change your life and help you to live the best way possible alongside your condition. A little knowledge goes a long way, so don’t be afraid to educate yourself and explore all storage possibilities so that you don’t waste any precious MMJ.

How Senior Citizens Can Benefit from Using MMJ Products

More and more people are getting introduced to the many advantages of using medical marijuana. With its increased availability and popularity, senior citizens are becoming more likely to buy MMJ products. Between 2006 and 2013, the use of cannabis by senior citizens (over the age of 65) increased by an astounding 250 percent. In fact, the elderly make up about 14 percent of all cannabis users in the United States. And for good reason: there are actually countless ways that medical marijuana can help improve seniors’ physical and mental health.

Here’s a breakdown of some of the most common ailments seniors can use MMJ products to treat.

Cancer

Many seniors turn to medical marijuana for help with cancer symptoms. Because those undergoing chemotherapy are faced with severe nausea and vomiting, MMJ products can be helpful in alleviating these symptoms. Additionally, medical cannabis can be useful in treating pain – without the patient having to rely on harmful prescription painkillers. If cancer patients are facing loss of appetite, MMJ products can also provide a more natural way of stimulating their appetite.

In addition to treating symptoms of cancer, research has demonstrated that marijuana can actually kill cancer cells. Cannabis compounds have been shown to slow down the growth of different types of cancer (including breast, prostate, and lung cancers). Researchers even believe that cannabis can prevent cancer cells from spreading to healthy tissue.

Alzheimer’s

This degenerative brain disease affects around 10 percent of seniors in the US (more than four million people every year). While MMJ products can help with conditions associated with this disease (like loss of appetite and depression), researchers are also finding that the marijuana component, THC, might actually help slow the advancement of Alzheimer’s in the brain.

Parkinson’s Disease

This degenerative disorder causes brain cells that produce dopamine to die, resulting in uncontrollable shaking, muscle spasms, loss of balance, and a decrease in cognitive functions. A study recently conducted in Israel showed that Parkinson’s patients who smoked medical cannabis found reductions in their tremors and muscle rigidity.

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Chronic pain is common among seniors, but MMJ products can help with relief.

Chronic pain

Pain is one of the most prevalent symptoms treated by MMJ. While some of the topical applications can help with pain in specific areas of the body, some MMJ products can be ingested for overall body pain (like from nerve damage). Medical cannabis can also be useful in alleviating joint pain from arthritis (which is fairly common among seniors). A recent study with seniors even showed that a whopping 93 percent of patients felt improvement in their pain symptoms while using cannabis. The study also demonstrated that more than 18 percent of the participants were able to reduce or completely stop their opioid (painkiller) usage.

Mental Disorders

Seniors are often diagnosed with mental health disorders, including depression and anxiety. Many elderly individuals rely on MMJ products to ease these symptoms. Although people might not know this, eating disorders are actually common among seniors. Around 80 percent of deaths related to anorexia are among elderly patients. MMJ products can be used to help seniors keep up their appetite and encourage more food intake. Insomnia is also a common disorder for senior citizens – medical marijuana can help improve sleep patterns so individuals are getting better quality sleep every night.

Glaucoma

This eye condition occurs when there’s a buildup of fluid that results in damage to the nerves in the eye. It’s also the leading cause of blindness in seniors. MMJ products can actually help to relieve the pressure that develops with the buildup of fluid, creating an overall improvement in eye health.

Medical marijuana isn’t just for “young people” – it can really benefit the elderly too, and more and more seniors are taking advantage of it!

There are countless other conditions that MMJ can help with, including liver inflammation, lupus, irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease, etc. Because these products don’t work like typical prescription drugs, many people report finding almost instant relief from some of their harder-to-treat symptoms.

While seniors can easily see how they can improve some of their symptoms, they should also be aware of the other benefits they can get by using medical marijuana instead of prescriptions. For example, they can actually save money by getting an MMJ card – which is super valuable considering most seniors are living on a fixed income. Because there is no sales tax on medical marijuana in certain states (including California), seniors can save money on all their MMJ purchases. They also have the freedom to grow their own plants, which can be more cost-effective (especially since they can grow the strains that would best fit their treatment needs). Additionally, if seniors are able to skip taking some of their prescription medications in lieu of using MMJ products, they can also see some significant savings. For example, most seniors spend around $3,000 on prescription medications every year. Medical cannabis users usually only spend around $650 per year on MMJ products!

Seniors who use medical marijuana products can do so without worrying about becoming addicted as they would while taking most prescription painkillers. Also, there are very few side effects when using MMJ (like dry mouth or mild dizziness), as opposed to pain meds that can cause many serious issues. Basically, there are plenty of reasons that seniors should start using medical marijuana to help improve their health!

How to Fit MMJ Into Your Daily Life

If you’re thinking about using medical marijuana, you might be anxious as to how you can make it fit in with your daily life. MMJ has a difficult reputation, but thanks to a rise in use, further legalization, and increased research in the area, more and more people are turning to it in order to treat the symptoms of illnesses that can be difficult and debilitating. The good news is that it’s an incredibly flexible medication and you just need some specialist advice in order to integrate it into your life.

The first step is to log onto the internet and seek a medical marijuana specialist. While seeing a doctor online might seem a bit odd, the internet is one of the best places to seek advice on medical marijuana. As many traditional doctors have outdated ideas on what MMJ is and how it can treat patients, many specialist websites have been established online to provide patients with advice on how best to treat their conditions.

The next step is to make an appointment and then log on to speak to your doctor online. They will ask about your condition and talk to you about the best medical marijuana treatment plan for you. Medical cannabis can treat a variety of symptoms of conditions including, but not limited to, cancer, HIV/AIDS, eating disorders, depression, anxiety, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease. There are different forms and strains of medical marijuana that can have different effects on the body.

MMJRecs - joints

Joints are just one of the ways you can take MMJ.

Once you have your medical advice, you need to ascertain how MMJ is going to affect you and if you need to make special accommodations in your life in order to integrate your new treatment. Some strains of medical marijuana can have side effects such as drowsiness, which are not ideal when you’re working full-time or have an active social life. If this is the case for you, you’ll need to work out a treatment schedule that allows you to take your medication without interfering with your daily routine.

After picking the strain that’ll best treat your condition, you then need to decide which form of medical marijuana you’re going to take. The possibilities are endless and you are definitely not limited to smoking joints. Vaping, edibles, topical treatments, oils, and tinctures are just the tip of the iceberg and depending on your daily routine, there’s a perfect solution for you. If you’re unsure as to the best form of MMJ for you, the best thing to do is to go to a reputable dispensary for advice on what would work best for you. Not all strains will be available in all forms, but a dispensary employee will be able to give you advice on what works best.

When you have your medical cannabis, you’ll have to decide how best to take it. If you’re a busy professional, a discreet form of MMJ, such as a tincture or oil, would probably be best. Edibles are also a good way to take medical marijuana as long as you ensure that no one else mistakes them for normal candies or cookies and mistakenly eats one. You don’t want to be responsible for anyone else’s marijuana journey! If you have a more relaxed or flexible lifestyle, you can make the choice for yourself. It’s just important to make sure that you take your treatment with supervision if drowsiness or similar side effects are in play.

MMJRecs - medical marijuana

Medical cannabis is easy to incorporate into your daily life to treat the symptoms of your illness.

It is also important to remember the legality of medical marijuana while you’re traveling. While marijuana is legal for recreational reasons in some states and for medical reasons in others, it is still illegal on a federal level. This means that you cannot bring medical cannabis on planes and you could be arrested for bringing it into states where it is still completely illegal. This is obviously incredibly frustrating for people who rely on medical marijuana to go about their day to day business, but you do not want to risk getting on the wrong side of the law. It is often worth consulting a legal professional on this subject, especially if you’re traveling out of your state on a long-term assignment and genuinely can’t do without your MMJ.

Like any new medication, you will need to adjust your life slightly to your new medical regime. However, the payoff will always be worth it. Whether you’re using medical marijuana to improve your appetite, to reduce your nausea, or to control your seizures, you will feel a new lease of life in adding medical cannabis to your life. As well as physical symptoms, you may be able to use MMJ to help your mental health, so why not get some information and give it a try? It’s likely that you’ll never look back.

5 Benefits of Having A California Medical Marijuana Card

With over half of U.S. states legalizing medical marijuana (29 at last count), the drug is starting to be accepted as something more than simply an outlier treatment; it is a genuine, progressive form of therapy with tangible results. Although MMJ faced (and still faces, in some states) stiff opposition from conservative politicians, the wave of advocacy has been equally strong, leading to a steady increase in legalization over the years. The first state to adopt MMJ in legislation was California; it was also one of the first states to legalize recreational marijuana, which became legal on the 1st of January this year. Many patients are asking the question: if recreational marijuana is legal, do I still need to avail of the state’s MMJ program and own a California medical marijuana card?

This might seem like a conundrum for many patients; if they can just go up and buy marijuana legally from a local dispensary, then why bother with a doctor’s visit, a prescription, and a medical marijuana card? This is logical thinking, but the situation is a little more complex than it first appears. Marijuana, both recreational and medical, is a relatively new industry, and there are many different aspects to it. However, on balance, the answer is a resounding yes. Even in the face of legalized recreational marijuana, a California medical marijuana card is still a great idea; and here are five benefits of having one!

MMJRecs - Marijuana Leaf

California was the first state to legalize medical marijuana.

1. You Don’t Pay Sales Tax

Possibly the biggest incentive of a California medical marijuana card is that you can avoid paying sales tax on MMJ. This generous measure was introduced by the government as a way to reaffirm their commitment to their long-standing medical marijuana program, and to keep it running happily side-by-side with the newly introduced recreational rollout. We all know that health care can be an expensive venture, particularly if a patient suffers from a chronic condition. This sales tax rebate helps patients save money on every purchase, but only if they have a valid California medical marijuana card.

2. California’s Been Doing It The Longest

As mentioned above, California was the first state in the U.S. to legalize medical marijuana, and pave the way for the state of the countrywide legislation as it exists and develops today. The Golden State legalized the drug under Proposition 215 in 1996 – this  ruling was also known as the Compassionate Use Act. As California’s had over 20 years in the MMJ business, all of the teething problems have been ironed out, and the operation runs smoothly and effectively. Indeed, California is considered one of the very best states in the U.S. to avail of medical marijuana; while the recreational rollout will inevitably come with its own set of problems and issues, the MMJ program will continue functioning as normal.

3. There’s a Long List of Qualifying Conditions

California is known to be one of the most liberal states when it comes to a list of qualifying conditions that patients must suffer from to utilize medical marijuana. While the qualifying conditions cover a host of serious illnesses like cancer, Parkinson’s, ALS, arthritis, and AIDS, one of the most important entries on the list is “chronic pain”. It is well known and researched that marijuana can ease general symptoms of pain, and chronic pain is a condition many suffer from at some point in time. The inclusion of this symptom on the list allows doctors to prescribe MMJ to patients who can’t pinpoint their pain to a specific location. This is in stark contrast to some states, who don’t include chronic pain on their list of qualifying conditions, thereby limiting the treatment options for potential patients.

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Patients in California don’t pay sales tax on MMJ.

4. There Are Plenty of Vendors To Choose From

The MMJ program is so well-established in California that wherever you live, you won’t have to look very far to find your nearest vendor. New York came under fire recently for severely limiting the dispensaries in the state to under 20, which could potentially put pressure on the whole infrastructure of the industry. There are no such restrictions on Californian dispensaries. Not just any one can go about setting one up, of course; there’s still a hefty amount of procedure and licences to go through and obtain. However, you’re bound to find a dispensary closely to you when you live in California.

5. You’ll Have Access To Many Different MMJ Strains

As previously mentioned, it’s unknown at this early stage what kind of teething problems the widespread legalization of recreational marijuana will come with. There are bound to be some, however; taking an established black market industry and dragging it in to the light in one fell swoop is certain to come with some issues. You might think that you won’t need a California medical marijuana card once recreational marijuana is legalized, but without the card, you’re unable to follow your doctor’s specific advice. He or she will know which strain is the correct one to treat your condition, and chances are that strain won’t even be available in the recreational arena, at least not in the early days. Individual strains affect people and conditions differently; if you’re taking marijuana medically, it’s surely sensible to stick to your doctor’s advice and take the most beneficial strain for you.

How to Find the Best MMJ Dispensary in Your Area

 

1. Get your MMJ card

Your first step should be to obtain your own cannabis card. If you don’t know of a doctor who can prescribe medical marijuana to you, head to MMJRecs for either a phone or online consultation with a medical board licenced physician. They’ll determine if you’re a good candidate for MMJ and can help you get your official cannabis card to use to purchase your MMJ products.

2. Locate an MMJ dispensary near you

Once you’ve received your card, you can find an MMJ dispensary near you by using online services like WeedMaps. Sites like this one allow you to search by city for the closest location near you. If you can’t find an MMJ dispensary in your area, there are some businesses that even offer delivery services, so you don’t even need to leave the comfort of your home to stock up on MMJ products.

MMJRecs - dispensary staff

Staff at your MMJ dispensary should be professional, knowledgeable, and helpful.

3. Check out the staff

A great way to see if an MMJ dispensary is legitimate or not is to evaluate the staff. All employees and the onsite doctor should be knowledgeable, professional, and helpful. If the staff isn’t able to answer your questions about MMJ products, it’s probably not a very reliable dispensary. They should be able to speak about the background of the products as well, including where they came from and how they were grown. The staff’s professionalism can also tell you a lot about how the dispensary is run and if they’re following the proper regulations. This means that the dispensary should always ask for your cannabis card and a photo ID. The staff should also be able to help you become educated about products you’re trying out (including giving you reading material so you’re well-informed).

4. Make sure you like the atmosphere

A proper MMJ dispensary should remind you of a hospital or pharmacy – professional, well-organized, and clean. It’s also a good sign if you feel supported and welcome at your MMJ dispensary. If your dispensary is in an unsafe neighborhood, has lots of security, or has staff that isn’t friendly, it’s probably not a great fit, and you’d be better off trying out a different location.

5. Must have high-quality products

Your dispensary will only be worthy of you as a customer if they sell the best MMJ products. A good dispensary will have clear policies that ensure you’re getting high-quality medical marijuana, like food safety regulations for their edibles. In fact, well-run dispensaries should have edibles that are made in a safe, clean kitchen (like any establishment that makes and sells food to the public). If products are not grown onsite, the dispensary should be able to vouch that it’s grown with safety protocols that prevent any mold or contaminants from affecting the products. The dispensary you choose should also carry the specific MMJ products or strains you need to treat your physical symptoms. The best dispensaries sell indicas, sativas, and hybrid blends of cannabis, as well as alternative forms of marijuana (including edibles, balms, tinctures, and inhalants), so you can find what works best for you. Check with dispensary staff or their website to make sure they carry what you’re looking for. It can also be helpful to read reviews online (like on Leafly) of different MMJ products to determine what fits your needs.

MMJRecs - pot brownie

Products at your chosen dispensary should be high-quality and prices should be within your budget.

6. Consider if the products are in your budget

It can be really helpful to set a budget for yourself before you head to a dispensary to purchase MMJ products. Sites like Wikileaf can help you compare prices ahead of time, so you’ll know if you’re getting the most bang for your buck. You can even set a price range for yourself, and the site will let you know about dispensaries in the area that fit within that range.

7. Check privacy and patient’s rights

To make sure you’re dealing with a professional MMJ dispensary, check their privacy and patient’s rights policies before you make a purchase. You’ll want to make sure your information is being protected, and a high-quality dispensary will guarantee that your info is never shared with outside parties without your permission. Because good dispensaries are run like health care offices, the staff should consider your privacy rights to be of high importance.

8. Watch out for these red flags

If you end up just trying out a new MMJ dispensary, but aren’t sure if it’s the right fit or not, make sure to keep your eyes open for these red flags:

  • Big, colorful signs: the dispensary should look similar to a hospital or pharmacy
  • Smoking inside the facility: unless there’s a separate smoking lounge, no one should be using the products in view of other customers
  • Lots of security: a reputable dispensary won’t need considerable security
  • Random hours: dispensaries should have consistent hours that are always posted – unpredictable hours are a sign that the dispensary is sketchy

Don’t get overwhelmed with picking a good MMJ dispensary. Just follow these tips, and you’ll be able to select a dispensary that can help with all of your medical marijuana needs.

Now That Recreational Marijuana Is Legalized, What Does That Mean For MMJ Patients?

Marijuana in America is a tale of two strains. On the one hand, there is medical marijuana, or MMJ for short, which has been gaining traction as a progressive new health care option for the last two decades. On the other hand, there’s recreational marijuana, which has recently seen an upsurge in support, and has been legalized in nine states and Washington D.C. The question on many users’ minds, especially MMJ patients, is do they hurt or help each other? And while it might be still too early in the game to say definitively, we can make some educated guesses based on the states that have incorporated both so far.

Recreational marijuana is set to have its biggest year in 2018. It started out on the wrong foot, when President Trump’s Department of Justice, headed up by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, announced that it was repealing a key Obama-era memo that prevented federal meddling in each individual state’s marijuana laws. Marijuana is still illegal at the federal level, meaning that the feds can still come down hard on the drug, even in states where it’s legal to use it recreationally.

MMJRecs - Street Signs

Many MMJ users might be wondering how newly introduced recreational marijuana laws affect them.

However, as with much of our current administration, the rescinding seemed to amount to posturing and nothing more. There is little evidence so far that the government will do anything to combat marijuana on a federal level; it seems content to leave it well enough alone in states that have already legalized the drug. If you think it seems contradictory that the drug can be prosecuted on a federal level while legal on a state level, don’t worry; the majority of the Justice Department might just think so too. Federal prosectors around the country released vague statements soon after the rescinding, stating that there would be no new crackdown in recreationally legal states.

This is great news for California, the state that opened the world’s largest legal marijuana market to date on January 1st. California was the first state to legalize medical marijuana way back in 1996. Since that time, it’s always had a remarkably liberal policy towards marijuana in general, and cemented that status on November 9th, 2016, when it took the plunge and made recreational marijuana fully legal too. The state gave itself fourteen months to get the legislation together and prepare its citizens for a full move to legality, culminating in the January 1st, 2018 deadline.

Though California was certainly not the first state to legalize marijuana recreationally, it is definitely the most important yet. The state constitutes the world’s sixth largest economy, and of course, is the largest state in the U.S. Some four hundred businesses were approved to licence, and many cities all over the state have passed laws allowing local businesses to sell marijuana. Despite this, there have been some teething problems with the new legislature, and it’s with these discrepancies that we can measure the impact of recreational marijuana against medical marijuana.

Essentially, despite all the good will in the world, California is not ready to implement such a large recreational program of marijuana. Medical marijuana has been legal for 22 years, and although it’s largely been smooth sailing, there are still some lingering issues. It’s a tall ask for a state to bring together a previously black market industry (which, despite being a black market, is undoubtedly huge), and signs are that it’s not as straightforward as some in government would have hoped. For a start, every city in the state has to come up with its own distinct rules on what exactly can be sold and where, and to what degree. This makes for a confusing situation, as there’s no one rule to bind them all.

MMJRecs - Downtown Los Angeles

Marijuana laws for both medical and recreational use still differ from state to state.

In terms of MMJ patients who might be worried that their medical marijuana ID card is invalid because recreational marijuana is legalized, there’s a simple answer: don’t be. MMJ, procured from licenced dispensaries, is still the safest and most effective way to alleviate the symptoms it has been prescribed to you for. Your doctor will know which strain is best suited to your particular ailment. It’s not a good idea to attempt to self-medicate, nor is it a sure thing that all MMJ strains will be legally or immediately available in a recreational capacity.

As if to underline the importance of MMJ, the government of California has introduced a sales tax break to medical marijuana patients, indicating its continued commitment to the MMJ cause and legislature. If we take what’s currently happening in California as a microcosm for the whole of the U.S. we see that MMJ and recreational marijuana will undoubtedly continue to co-exist simultaneously, and even benefit from each other as they do. While the future is a little cloudy, especially when it comes to the number of states that have legalized medical but not recreational marijuana, there is no doubt that both strains will continue to exist harmoniously in the U.S. for a long time to come.

Why All California MMJ Patients Should Renew Their Medical Marijuana Card

Thinking since marijuana is legal in California you don’t need to renew your medical marijuana card? Think again! There are still a ton of benefits you can get if you renew your cannabis card in 2018. Check out the many reasons listed below to find out why you should hang onto your California MMJ card this year.

Saves you money

The most important benefit to having an MMJ card is your ability to save lots of money. If you want to make sure you’re keeping all of your cannabis costs low, make sure to renew your medical marijuana card instead of just purchasing products for recreational use. Once you have an MMJ card in your possession (it’s a super simple application process), you can pay a reasonable fee (between $25 and $40) to renew your card annually. This one-time yearly fee is quickly offset by the other savings you’ll see add up from using your cannabis card. One way to get major savings is the ability MMJ card holders have to skip paying sales tax on all cannabis products. Anyone with an MMJ card avoids a 15% sales tax – which can end up saving you major bucks. Additionally, consumers who are purchasing only recreational products can pay anywhere from 14% to 20% more on their purchases than those buying medical marijuana products.

You can also find savings when you shop at medical marijuana dispensaries. These specific stores usually offer a wider variety of products than recreational ones, so you can shop for products that fit within your budget. Additionally, there are often added opportunities for savings with things like rewards programs and discounts for referring other customers. Even if you don’t want to head out to a dispensary, having an MMJ card means you can grow more of your own product, so you can keep your overall purchasing costs low.

Keeping your medical marijuana card can help you save a lot of cash.

Access to better products

Although marijuana is now legal in California, having an MMJ card means you’ll have better access to higher quality cannabis products than if you were just purchasing for recreational use. Medical marijuana dispensaries often offer a wider variety of products (including edibles) and usually offer higher-grade strains with different THC:CBD ratios – which means you’ll be getting products that are more potent and are more likely to effectively treat your symptoms. If you decide to grow your own plants, you also have the opportunity to grow specific strains (and higher-quality products) that are right for your own individual needs.

Fewer restrictions

If you already have an MMJ card, you know that there are fewer restrictions than if you’re purchasing products solely for recreational use. For example, with a California MMJ card, you can purchase medical marijuana as long as you are 18 years or older. Without a cannabis card, you have to wait until you’re 21 years old to purchase cannabis products. For individuals with health issues who can’t wait until they’re 21 to purchase marijuana, having an MMJ card can be hugely beneficial.

There are also less regulations enforced for those carrying an MMJ card. Recreational users are only permitted to carry one ounce of flower (or eight grams of cannabis concentrates) at one time. Being able to carry edibles is also restricted for recreational users, who can only carry 10mg of individual doses at a time. However, with a cannabis card, you are able to buy and carry as much cannabis as your medical condition requires.

Just make sure to keep your MMJ card with you at all times, so you don’t face any issues if you’re out carrying or buying marijuana products.

There are far fewer restrictions for those who hold MMJ cards in California.

Can grow more product

Another helpful benefit of renewing your medical marijuana card is the ability to grow more of your own plants. While recreational users are only permitted to grow six mature marijuana plants on their property at any one time, cannabis card holders can grow an unlimited amount in any 100-square-foot section of their property. Not only can you grow more product (which can help keep your costs low), you can also grow the specific plants and strains that are appropriate for your medical condition and symptoms. This additional freedom means you won’t be stuck buying dispensary products that don’t fit your particular needs. Growing your own plants can also reduce your overall costs of purchasing products at a dispensary (who sometimes mark up their products).

Even though marijuana is now legal in California, there are tons of reasons you should renew your MMJ card immediately. Your cannabis card helps you save money and get the exact products you need to treat your symptoms – all with less regulations! So, renew your cannabis card now and get all of the many benefits that come with it!

6 Benefits of Having a California MMJ Card in 2018

Although recreational marijuana is now legal in the state of California, there are still plenty of reasons that you should obtain an MMJ card in 2018. With major bonuses of saving money and having less restrictions, there are so many advantages to having a cannabis card. Read on for all of the ways you can benefit from having a California MMJ card.

1. Continuous care

Let’s say you already have a cannabis card. One of the benefits of renewing it (despite the new legality of recreational marijuana) is that you can continue your consumption of cannabis products without any interruption. Similar to switching health insurance plans, if you discontinue using your MMJ card, you could face obstacles in obtaining your products. You would also likely face an increase in the amount you spend to obtain your cannabis. By keeping your California MMJ card (or renewing it annually), you can be sure that you won’t face any interference in your cannabis purchases or consumption.

2. Lower age limit

Now that recreational marijuana usage is legal, users still must be over 21 years of age to purchase or consume cannabis products. However, with a California MMJ card, you only have to be 18 years old to use medical marijuana. This advantage can be very helpful if you’re under 21 but still need to use cannabis products for medical treatment.

Even though recreational marijuana is now legal in California, you’ll be entitled to a lot more benefits if you have a California MMJ card.

3. More access to dispensaries

With a California MMJ card, you never have to worry about buying your product from a disreputable seller. Cannabis card holders have access to a large number of dispensaries (that often offer better quality products). Instead of purchasing cannabis products from an unknown seller, most medical marijuana dispensaries provide customers with higher-grade strains with a variety of THC:CBD ratios, so you’ll be getting product that is much more effective.

4. Opportunity to grow your own plants

If you’re interested in growing your own marijuana plants in your home, an MMJ card provides you with less limitations than a recreational grower. If you’re solely growing for recreational uses, you are only permitted to have six mature marijuana plants on your property at any one time. However, with a California MMJ card, you are allowed to grow more plants in any 100-square-foot area on your property. In addition to being able to skip the lines at a dispensary, growing your own plants also gives you the opportunity to grow a variety of strains (whichever best fits your particular medical needs) and ends up saving you money in the long-run.

5. Less overall restrictions

Although marijuana is now legal in California, there are still many restrictions in place in regards to using and growing cannabis products. If you’re solely using marijuana for recreational purposes, you can’t carry and use your cannabis products as freely as you can if you own an MMJ card. For example, recreational users are limited to one ounce of flower (or eight grams of cannabis concentrates) at a time, while users with an MMJ card can buy and carry as much cannabis as their treatment requires. Even edibles have restrictions for recreational users (with only 10mg of individual doses allowed at a time). If you have a California MMJ card, however, you’re able to buy and grow more product, in addition to having access to higher strength and better quality cannabis.

Having an MMJ card can help you save money in so many ways.

6. Can save you money

Last, but not least, perhaps the biggest benefit to having an MMJ card is the ability to save lots of cash. There are some minimal costs upfront to get a cannabis card, but it’s well worth it. If you’re interested in obtaining an MMJ card, you can apply for one for around $66 (or just $50 if you’re enrolled in Medi-Cal). There can be slight differences in price depending on the county you’re in, but there’s a cap of $100 for the entire application process. Then, you can either make a visit to a doctor’s office or do an online assessment for around $45-$150. Once you’ve completed the initial application, every year after, you’ll only pay between $25 and $40 to renew your MMJ card annually.

After you’ve obtained your MMJ card, you’ll be able to access major savings since you don’t ever have to pay sales tax on your medical marijuana products. Without a cannabis card, you’d be paying around 14–20% more for your cannabis purchases. For example, with a purchase of around $250 of product, you’d be charged a sales tax of 15% – which adds up to an extra $37.50 to your total! Cannabis card holders, on the other hand, can nix the sales tax and see their savings add up quickly.

MMJ card holders can also discover savings when they shop at medical marijuana dispensaries. These dispensaries (versus recreational stores) often give their customers a multitude of ways to save money, with everything from coupons and special deals to store credit bonuses and rewards programs. Being a loyal customer can often mean you’ll rack up even more significant savings. Some dispensaries even offer discounts for customers that refer other shoppers to them. So, with these extra savings and skipping the sales tax, having an MMJ card just makes financial sense!

There are many significant benefits to owning a California MMJ card in 2018. You can save money and face less restrictions on your usage. Plus, with a super-easy application process and minimal upfront costs, there’s basically no reason you shouldn’t obtain a cannabis card right away!

An In-Depth Look at MMJ Qualifying Conditions

Medical marijuana has been legalized in the U.S. since 1996, although the legislature applies on a state-by-state basis. The first state to blaze the trail was California, and since then, 28 others have followed in its footsteps, with several more waiting in the wings, on the cusp of legalization. Unfortunately for patients, MMJ law is not a federal affair, which can lead to a host of caveats for each legalization bill depending on the state you’re in. One of these caveats is the list of MMJ qualifying conditions for each state – that is, the conditions for which medical marijuana is an applicable and legal treatment.

Essentially, in order to qualify and avail of medical marijuana and allow doctors to legally prescribe it to you, you must have a diagnosed ailment that appears on the list of MMJ qualifying conditions accompanying every MMJ law that has been made per state. Once you’ve confirmed that your condition is on the list, then you can apply for your medical marijuana card from an authorized physician; this can be your primary care doctor, or it can easily be acquired online via telemedicine sites. Once you have that, you are free to visit dispensaries and avail of the medicine, in accordance with the supply and possession laws of each state.

MMJ Recs - Marijuana Plant

MMJ qualifying conditions vary from state to state, so it’s best to check your local policies to see whether you qualify.

Marijuana has been medically proven to lessen the symptoms of a great number of diseases; in fact, it has been used as a medicine in some form for many years, even preceding the introduction of it into law by California in ’96. However, not all states agree on what should be legally treatable with MMJ. The main reason for this is a worry that they might come across too vague, which would lead to abuse of a drug still considered illegal in many places in a recreational sense. Even with the advent of legal recreational marijuana, which has been legalized in eight states so far, MMJ qualifying conditions are still a hot topic among state governments.

In California, for example, the policy has always been very liberal in favour of medical marijuana, and the state’s MMJ qualifying conditions reflect that. Even though recreational marijuana has been legalized in the state since November 9th, 2016, it is still advantageous to have a medical marijuana card, because there are specific strains that treat specific diseases much better than the recreational strains. California and Colorado have also offered reduced sales taxes to patients in an effort to preserve their long-established and successful medical marijuana programs, which is a huge incentive for patients to continue with the program. There is also the fact that a state-wide rollout of medical marijuana has not yet been achieved by California, and could still be some way off, looking at the current progress on that front.

The most common MMJ qualifying conditions and ailments are pretty much seen across the board, in whatever state you’re in. They include cancer, arthritis, fibromyalgia, epilepsy, and multiple sclerosis, which are all conditions where the marijuana can induce relaxation to remove some of the pressure and stress on the muscles and afflicted organs. There are also many other less common illnesses which are listed on each state’s MMJ qualifying conditions list, although be aware that it does change from state to state.

MMJ Recs - Marijuana Plant

Laws regarding MMJ are very different in California than they are in New York.

One of the most controversial of these conditions is listed simply as “chronic pain,” which, when you think about it, is more of a symptom than a condition in and of itself. However, it is a crucial one to list on the spectrum of qualifying conditions because it allows a great many sufferers to avail of the medicine without needing to be specific about their condition. It also allows doctors a freer hand in prescribing the medicine, as they won’t be too caught up in the legality of what they’re prescribing and what condition they’re prescribing it for. “Chronic pain” was in the wording of the first MMJ qualifying conditions outlined in the U.S., by California in 1996, but unfortunately, not all states agree that it should be included.

One controversial example was New York, a state which is known for its generally liberal leanings. Many expected it to follow suit with a progressive medical marijuana bill, but not only did it take 18 years to get the bill through the Senate, when it was revealed, it proved to be an extremely restrictive piece of legislation. One of the many issues was the absence of “chronic pain,” an omission that left many patients unable to avail of the drug. Due to intense lobbying and pressure, “chronic pain” has since been added to the NY list of conditions, but unfortunately, there are still a few states where that is not the case. As we work toward building an MMJ-friendly country, it’s good advice to take note of MMJ law in each individual state, and make sure your specific condition is listed.

A History of California MMJ Policies (And What the Future Might Hold)

California might just be the leading medical marijuana state in the country. It has consistently been ahead of the curve when it comes to marijuana legislature, both recreational and medical, and its liberal approach to the medicine has no doubt eased many patients’ suffering in the 21 years it’s been legalized. As the number of states who have legalized MMJ tips over the halfway mark (29 and counting), the question is, will California retain its frontrunner position as the leading state in the medical marijuana arena? And what exactly does the future hold at this critical juncture in marijuana law, when the state’s government tries to introduce a recreational rollout against the well-established and successful California MMJ program?

California’s liberal leanings towards marijuana started way back in 1975, when it was among the first states to decriminalize the drug, under the Moscone Act. In 2010, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger added further measures to decriminalization in the form of State Senate Bill 1449, which further reduced the charge of possession on one ounce of cannabis or less, levelling it with an infraction, which constitutes a small fine and no court appearance.

MMJ Recs - Californian Highway

California has always paved the way when it comes to MMJ legislation and progress.

The 1975 decriminalization program paved the way for the California MMJ bill to be passed in 1996. Proposition 215, also known as the Compassionate Use Act of 1996, passed with a narrow 55% majority, making California the first state to legalize medical marijuana for people suffering from cancer, AIDS, migraines glaucoma, arthritis, and other chronic illnesses, demonstrating a remarkable range of qualifying conditions, even back in 1996. Over the years, the wording surrounding this law has been strengthened and clarified, and in 2010, the limit of possession on medical marijuana was lifted after the California Supreme Court ruled in People vs. Kelly. The key wording now lists a number of conditions, followed by the phrase, “and any other condition for which marijuana provides relief.” While other states have faltered in their ascribing of qualifying conditions, California has made the medicine accessible to every single patient who can possibly benefit from it, and in turn has reduced the pressure on doctors, who may worry about breaking the law if their patient’s illness doesn’t adhere to the qualifying conditions.

The passing of Proposition 215  was a watershed moment in the history of medical marijuana, and paved the way for many other states to follow in California’s footsteps. In the intervening 21 years, as a further 28 states have come on board the MMJ train, California has never wavered in its commitment to its program, and has gone to great lengths to implement a successful dispensary rollout across the state. The result is a program which is much more progressive than many other states, including the likes of New York, which implemented a surprisingly regressive MMJ bill in 2014.

Under Proposition 215, patients with a physician’s recommendation, and their primary caregivers, are allowed to cultivate their own strains of MMJ, and as an alternative, SB 420 allows patients to come together in collectives to grow their own medicine. The amount of medical marijuana grown must be in concordance with the size of the collective, and growth that exceeds this number is still liable for prosecution. However, this setup is set to change at the end of 2018, and all collectives must be licenced within the state. This gives patients a large range of options for growing and acquiring their medicine, and makes access easy for any patients that wants (or needs) to avail of the drug.

MMJ Recs - San Francisco Skyline

With changes afoot for both recreational and medical marijuana, what does the future hold for California?

On January 9th 2016, California voted to legalize recreational marijuana. Although they’re not the first state to do this, they have long been proponents and advocates of marijuana in general, so it came as little surprise to most people that they were among the frontrunners to legalize. Many people wondered how the recreational program would line up against the well-established California MMJ program, and indeed, that is the question that dominates conversations about the future of marijuana in the Golden State.

California has a lead-in time of 14 months to roll out their recreational program, with recreational marijuana becoming legal on the 1st January 2018. However, this proved to be too little time to completely overhaul a previously underground and decidedly massive industry; as it stands, it is actually impossible to purchase recreational marijuana anywhere in California, and that looks to be the case for some time.

A medical marijuana card is still the best way to procure the medicine in 2018, and will remain so for the foreseeable future. Just because both forms of marijuana are legal, it doesn’t mean that MMJ will become obsolete; in fact, it’s quite the contrary. The government actually imposed sales tax rebates on California MMJ when they passed the recreational law, renewing their commitment to the long-established MMJ program and providing patients with a cheaper cost for their medicine in the process. Ultimately, California looks set to continue being the shining example of MMJ progressiveness that it has always been.

Why California Medical Marijuana Patients Still Need an MMJ Card in 2018

Now that California has officially legalized recreational marijuana, many people are wondering if they should still be using an MMJ card in 2018. The answer is yes! There are tons of reasons that you should be hanging onto your medical marijuana card in the new year. Not only will you be able to escape all the limitations placed on recreational users, you’ll also be able to save money! Read on for the main reasons you should use an MMJ card in 2018.

1. Saves you money

Probably the most important reason for getting a cannabis card is to help save you money in the new year. First, if you don’t have a medical marijuana card yet, you can easily apply for a card for around $66 (just $50 for Medi-Cal enrollees). Sometimes the rate can differ between counties, but there’s a cap, so you’ll never pay over $100 for the whole application process. You’ll also have to make a visit to the doctor (or find ones who do online assessments) for about $45-$150. But, after that, you only have to pay between $25-$40 to renew your cannabis card every year.

Once you have your MMJ card in 2018, you’ll find huge savings because you don’t have to pay sales tax on your medical marijuana products. Recreational marijuana users do have to pay the tax, which could end up costing them between 14-20% more than medical marijuana. Let’s say you’re buying recreational marijuana without an MMJ card. With a purchase of about $250, you’d be charged a sales tax of 15%. That equals an extra $37.50 added to your bill! If you’re a regular user of medical marijuana, you could see huge savings by avoiding the sales tax.

2. Continuity of care

Anyone who’s had to change healthcare plans knows what it’s like to switch to a different provider in the new year – it can be such a complicated process! Hanging onto your medical marijuana card means you can escape the red-tape of changing your cannabis consumption and habits. With your cannabis card, you won’t have to worry about switching up your routine. You’ll have the same access to high-quality cannabis products that you wouldn’t necessarily have if you switched to buying recreational marijuana products instead. You’ll also be guaranteed lower prices with your MMJ card than with recreational marijuana purchases. If you want to maintain the type of product and costs that you had in 2017, keeping your MMJ card in 2018 is the smart thing to do.

MMJ - medical marijuana

Even though recreational cannabis is now legal in California, you shouldn’t throw away your MMJ card.

3. Lower age limit

With recreational marijuana, individuals must be over 21 years of age to purchase or consume cannabis products. However, if you have an MMJ card, you only have to be 18 years old to access medical marijuana products. This factor can be significant to users who have medical issues that are treated with the usage of cannabis. With an MMJ card, you don’t have to worry about being under 21 if you need these products.

4. More freedom

When you have a cannabis card, you are permitted to carry and use your marijuana products freely. There are many restrictions to using recreational marijuana (like where you can consume it and how you can transport it), but an MMJ card allows you more freedom with your cannabis usage.

5. Access to a larger number of dispensaries

Because California is brand-new to the legalized marijuana game, there is some uncertainty about how recreational shops will be set up. However, it is likely that medical marijuana users will have access to a larger number of dispensaries that offer higher quality cannabis. For example, most medical dispensaries offer products grown from high-grade strains with various THC:CBD ratios, resulting in better and more effective products. With access to more dispensaries and better cannabis, medical marijuana users are definitely at an advantage over recreational marijuana users.

MMJ - marijuana and medicine

There are so many benefits to being an MMJ cardholder in California – don’t give them up!

6. Less restrictions

There are several disadvantages to being a recreational marijuana user versus an MMJ card holder. Recreational marijuana users are limited to having only one ounce of flower or eight grams of cannabis concentrates, while MMJ card holders can purchase, carry, and consume as much cannabis as is prescribed for their treatment. Edibles are restricted for recreational users as well – they’re only permitted to have 10 mg of individual doses. With a cannabis card, individuals are able to access more potent and higher strength products with no cap on the doses available to them. MMJ card owners are also able to grow more plants (in any 100 square-foot space) than recreational users, who are limited to six plants at a time.

To access all of these advantages, make sure you get your MMJ card in 2018. Although some individuals will benefit from recreational marijuana being legalized in California, to truly have flexibility and to spend less money, it’s essential to still obtain a medical marijuana card in California.

If You Don’t Have An MMJ Card, You’ll Have To Pay Sales Tax When Marijuana Is Legalized In 2018

Thanks to the impending introduction of Proposition 64, the Sunshine State will soon see the statewide legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes. Though this is a truly joyous and progressive event for the state, it has left some MMJ card holders scratching their heads with the question: “Do I still need to keep my cannabis card if it’ll be freely available for all?” The answer is yes, absolutely!

The primary reason for this is because qualified patients who possess a legitimate California medical marijuana card will be exempt from retail tax when purchasing marijuana or marijuana products. This is on the condition that they – or their primary caregiver – present their MMJ card at the point of purchase. If you’re a consistent, long term medical marijuana user, this will save you a lot of money compared to paying recreational prices.

As many people with an MMJ card are limited in their ability to work, this is a huge relief as it means these users will see more money in their back pocket at the end of the day. Though some recreational users may deem this unfair, it is important to keep the lines between recreational and medical users clearly delineated to clearly indicate one group’s need for it taking precedence over the other’s.

If you own a California medical marijuana card, you can save yourself some money on sales tax.

Not only will your California medical marijuana card allow you to buy cheaper cannabis, it’ll also allow you to buy more of it than your recreational counterparts. MMJ card carriers will be allowed to possess a whopping 8 oz. of the cannabis plant, whereas recreational users will only be allowed to possess 1 oz. As well as this, unconventional methods of consuming cannabis like tinctures and topicals can be purchased at much stronger concentrations by those with an MMJ card as opposed to those who don’t have one.

Another good reason not to throw away your trusty California medical marijuana card is that you’ll still be able to consume in public places while carrying it, whereas recreational users won’t. Proposition 64 does not explicitly allow for recreational users to smoke or vape weed in public, but if you have your MMJ card on you, you’ll still be able to consume wherever the smoking of tobacco is allowed.

As a prerequisite for having a cannabis card is having a specifically diagnosed ailment, it’s important that you consult with a doctor before you start to consume. If you decide to forego an MMJ card in favor of just acquiring recreational marijuana instead, you’re denying yourself the opportunity to talk through your ailment with a medically qualified doctor, and more importantly, you can’t talk to that same doctor about what strains are best for treating your specific ailment. Though dispensary budtenders might know a bit about what strains are best for relaxing, they will not have the same medical knowledge of the plant, and therefore will not be sufficiently qualified to give you strain advice. This could lead you to fruitlessly trying out strain after strain until maybe you’ll get it right. Avoid the headache and stick to the medical route.

Hold onto your card so you can still utilize its benefits in 2018!

As different cities and counties within California will be allowing different types of sales, you may find yourself in an area that is still only permitting medical marijuana sales – another reason to keep your MMJ card! These more conservative counties will only allow weed sales through medical dispensaries. These dispensaries will strictly only have medical licenses and therefore will only be able to serve marijuana to those with a valid California medical marijuana card.

If you’d like to avail of tax-free medical marijuana once legalization is enforced, here’s what you have to do. Though you can go to a bricks-and-mortar doctor’s office to get a card, it’s a whole lot easier to buy a medical marijuana card online through MMJ Recs.

You’ll be asked to fill out a short questionnaire about your ailment and your need for an MMJ card. Once this is done, you’ll begin your online consultation with one of our licensed health professionals, who’ll give you a full evaluation over Skype from the comfort of your own home.

This evaluation will take no longer than ten minutes and will consist of the practitioner asking you some non-invasive questions about your qualifying condition and your medical history. You’ll also be asked why you think having an MMJ card and consuming medical cannabis will help you. Following this, the practitioner will assess your need for a medical marijuana card and you’ll be told then and there if you’re eligible. If you are, you’ll be sent your MMJ card recommendation straight away.

We hope this has cleared up a few worries for you. Now you know that it is positively, absolutely, conclusively a bad idea to get rid of your California medical marijuana card once legalization is implemented. If you’re still unsure about your options, or you’re yet to get your own MMJ card, get in touch with us today and we’ll help access all the amazing benefits that come with owning your own medical marijuana card.

6 Ways To Avoid Laziness and Lack of Productivity When Using MMJ

An unfortunate side effect of some strains of medical marijuana is laziness and a lack of productivity. These effects hit some cannabis card users more than others. While some people swear that they are far more productive whilst under the influence of medical cannabis, for many other people marijuana-induced ‘couch lock’ and inaction can be a real problem.

Most marijuana card users need their medicine regularly (many are daily users) and so in order for them to move forward in their lives and achieve what they want to achieve, it is crucial for them to discover ways to avoid laziness and a lack of productivity. MMJ patients need to be sure they can enjoy the medicinal benefits of medical marijuana while staying on top of their lives and being energetic, vibrant, and self-actualizing.

So with that in mind, here is our list of six ways you can avoid laziness and lack of productivity when using MMJ.

Clarify Your Goals Making clear and compelling goals is a crucial step towards ensuring that you stay productive. Humans need to be inspired to be focused and industrious. If you are not excited about your projects and life direction, it is all too tempting to be slovenly and laze on the couch wasting time. To avoid this, make a list of your goals and ask yourself why you want to achieve them. Make your “why”s compelling and exciting. Get thrilled about what you could achieve if you put your mind to it. Create vivid pictures in your mind of how good it will feel when you achieve your desires and hit your targets. And when you are tempted to stay on the couch and watch “just one more” episode of the Netflix series du jour (even though you have work to do), remind yourself of why you need to work… and inspire yourself to get to it!

Set Yourself Rules It is important to have clear rules about when, what, and how much you smoke. For example, if you are more productive without MMJ in your system (and your medical condition allows you to get away with having weed-free periods), then schedule the bulk of your productive work for before you smoke. Set yourself the rule that you must get all of your work done before, say, 5pm, and that you cannot smoke until 5.01pm. Make rules that work for you and allow you to avoid laziness and stay productive. Stick to them. Hold yourself accountable. Regularly breaking your rules will be stressful and guilt-provoking… And it should be! Discipline equals freedom!

MMJ - getting work done

It’s easy to stay productive while using MMJ if you set yourself a few simple rules.

Make Daily Schedules A great way to make sure that you stay on-track in life and get everything important that you need to do done, is to make intelligent daily schedules. Trying to balance the list of all of your important daily tasks in your memory is stressful. Instead, make a list, stick it to the wall, and then it’s “set and forget”! Having a formalized and clearly visible list of the important daily tasks that make your life better is reassuring and majorly stress-reducing. Ticking tasks off your smart daily schedule once they are done is very satisfying. And the first hit of MMJ after you’ve completed your entire daily schedule is the sweetest hit imaginable!

Choose MMJ Strains That Increase Energy and Motivation A very practical way to avoid laziness and lack of productivity (especially if you need to use MMJ while you work) is to choose strains that energize you. Typically, this will be relatively high-THC and low-CBD strains. A strain such as Lemon Power Haze, which has high THC and very little CBD, will tend to motivate, energize, and provoke high levels of productivity.

Kill Perfectionism A mindset that tends to lead to inactivity and a huge lack of productivity is the dreaded “perfectionist” mindset. Seeing as absolute perfection does not exist in the known universe and is merely a mental abstraction (everything can be improved in some way if you look hard enough!), people who demand perfection of themselves are burdening themselves with a debilitating and discouraging demand that they do the impossible. Instead of being a perfectionist, try to adopt the mindset that “good enough is good enough” and remind yourself again and again (and again if needs be!) that perfectionism is the sworn enemy of productivity, and one of the most lethal dream-killers in the known universe!

 

MMJ - man working out

Staying fit and healthy goes hand-in-hand with staying active and productive.

Stay Physically Healthy Finally, in order to be productive and energetic, it is crucial to maintain good energy levels and health. Do this by getting regular physical exercise, eating healthy food (even when you have the munchies!), and sleeping well.

Adopting some or all of these strategies should make sure that you avoid laziness and lack of productivity when using MMJ. Now, up and at ’em, you industrious busy bees!

Why New York Is The New Medical Marijuana State

New York State’s legal medical marijuana program became operational in January 2017. The program has caused a lot of controversy, both in the lead-up to its commencement, and since. And the controversy rages still.

The problem that a lot of people have with New York MMJ laws is that, despite the state’s tradition of inclusiveness, open-mindedness, and liberalism, the medical cannabis program that its scientists, legislators, and politicians devised and put into operation is pretty much one of the most restrictive and limited in all of North America. People who were excitedly anticipating New York becoming a weed-friendly state along the lines of Washington, Colorado, and California, with funky Manhattan dispensaries educating people and selling the latest boutique strains and tasty organic edibles, are now sorely disappointed.

Getting a New York medical marijuana card from your friendly old neighborhood doc and using it to pick up some Lemon OG Kush in your cozy corner dispensary to treat your insomnia, anxiety, glaucoma, or backache is absolutely not an option in New York.

Only ‘severe debilitating or life-threatening conditions’ qualify a person to get a New York medical marijuana card under the state’s ‘wet behind the ears’ medical herb laws. Originally, only having one of a horror show of diseases and conditions, combined with some truly gruesome symptoms, qualified people for a New York medical cannabis card. Cancer, HIV/AIDS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, spinal cord injury with spasticity, inflammatory bowel disease, neuropathy, and Huntington’s disease were initially the only conditions that made someone eligible, and on top of this, the patient’s condition had to include a symptom of cachexia or wasting syndrome, severe or persistent muscle spasms, severe or chronic pain, nausea, or seizures. Thankfully the state amended the law in March to include chronic pain as another qualifying condition. This more vague condition has made it easier for patients to qualify for the program. So it’s not as draconian as it was at the beginning, but it’s still considerably more limited than most other states with regards to what conditions qualify a person to get a New York medical cannabis card.

New York MMJ laws are particularly restrictive at this stage.

Alongside the severely limiting list of qualifying conditions, there are also several other issues that restrict the effectiveness of New York State’s MMJ program. There are only a meager twenty dispensaries allowed to operate in the state (a mere one for the entire island of Manhattan!); smoking and edibles are banned and only oils and tinctures are allowed; a paltry variety of MMJ products are available to choose from; the prices are higher than in other states; and home cultivation is strictly prohibited. Medical cannabis advocates and patients and many physicians in the state are feeling deflated and hard done by.

But is this situation going to change? Is this awkward, cumbersome, red tape-wrapped MMJ program the best that New Yorkers can hope for? And importantly, will New York State’s restrictive and, some might say, half-hearted adoption of a medical marijuana program serve as a template to follow for other states that have yet to legalize medical marijuana, but are likely to do so in the future?

Murmurs coming from the Department of Health are giving a glimmer of hope. Scientists responsible for designating a medical condition weed card-worthy are at pains to point out the fact that they are always careful to stay up-to-date with the latest research, and that no designation is written in stone. As soon as ample evidence presents itself that a condition can be helped by medical marijuana use, they say they will amend their decision and recommend that it be included on the list of qualifying conditions. They put their money where their mouth is in March when they decided that chronic pain should become a qualifying condition. They are also putting their weight behind moves to include PTSD and menstrual cramps on the list, and it looks like these conditions will become the newest ailments to be included on the list very soon.

With regards to number of dispensaries, available products, methods of ingestion, and home cultivation, things look like they will move more slowly, but with large states such as California going all-in, legalizing marijuana outright, and seeing huge economic benefits, it seems likely that New York State will move, albeit slowly, in the direction of less restrictive cannabis laws.

Will New York follow in California’s footsteps?

With regards to the question of other, more conservative states using the restrictive model of New York MMJ laws as a template for their own programs, this seems quite likely. New York is a highly influential state. The draft bill that Pennsylvania is currently working on is highly restrictive, and many southern and midwestern states are keen to introduce severely limited MMJ laws (if they introduce them at all).

This is an unfortunate state of affairs, as it gives states an excuse to introduce restrictive, unhelpful laws of their own, and thus may turn out to cause undue pain and hassle to patients in many different areas of the country.

Let’s hope that the slow movements New York State is making towards improving their program pick up pace, because as the newest and most high-profile medical marijuana state, they wield a lot of influence. The country is watching closely. What will New York, the new medical marijuana state, do next?

Are New York’s Medical Marijuana Laws Going to Relax Any Time Soon?

New York State’s new medical marijuana program, which came into effect on the 6th January 2017, has been criticized by a lot of people for being one of the most restrictive, limited, and non-user-friendly medical cannabis programs in the entire country. And these criticisms are certainly not unfounded. The New York medical marijuana card program is extremely limited in its current form.

There is an abundance of very strict and highly limiting rules and regulations wrapped tightly around the New York medical card program, and as a result of this, many physicians, providers, and patients feel severely hamstrung and unable to get optimal value from the program.

Currently only a limited list (much more limited than in other parts of the country) of ailments and conditions qualify a person to be treated with medical marijuana. Initially, only cancer, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury with spasticity, epilepsy Huntington’s disease, HIV/AIDS, Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, inflammatory bowel disease, and neuropathy qualified a person to be prescribed MMJ. More recently, on 22nd March 2017, chronic pain was added to the list. It was hoped that rheumatoid arthritis, Alzheimer’s, muscular dystrophy, and dystonia would qualify a person, but the Department of Health has refused at this time to designate these conditions a suitable to qualify a person for a New York medical cannabis card.

The laws are currently very strict regarding dispensaries. There are very few dispensaries in the state in which to use a New York marijuana card. The new program only allows 20 dispensaries in total to operate in the entire state. This situation makes life quite difficult for many MMJ patients.

The New York medical marijuana program is strict and not at all user-friendly.

The only dispensary on Manhattan, located near the 3rd Avenue subway station, is far from the welcoming, educational mecca to medical marijuana that many of the dispensaries in other, more MMJ-friendly states are. It is a tightly controlled building with unmanned security gates (almost prison-like) that patients get buzzed through. It is clean and efficient but it has no interesting edibles or innovative new strains of smokable herb to explore – a Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory of delightful medical cannabis treats it most certainly is NOT! There is zero edible or smokable MMJ for sale. Only tinctures and oils that can be taken from an inhaler or vaporizer are allowed in New York State, and the prices are higher than in most other states in the country. Insurance companies in the state do not cover a patient for medical marijuana use.

The certificate provided to a patient by a doctor recommending MMJ use must have stated upon it the type of MMJ they should use, the method of administration and the amount – this prevents a patient from experimenting with different types of medical cannabis and different methods of ingestion, which is very limiting.

New York residents are hoping the list of MMJ qualifying ailments will grow in the future.

Home cultivation is still strictly prohibited by the New York State program.

So for these reasons the medical marijuana program in New York State is currently very tight and restrictive. But there is a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel. There seems to be a very slow but gradual creep towards opening up taking place. A more relaxed and inclusive regime may not be too far away.

One gets the impression that, even though change and movement is slow, the vast majority of changes that occur over the coming years will result in more relaxed laws.

Despite the fact that the list of qualifying conditions is currently very restricted, there is a definite cautious open-mindedness detectable from the scientists at the Department of Health that are responsible for investigating what ailments should qualify a patient for MMJ treatment. While they are currently of the opinion that a shorter list of conditions is treatable by MMJ than their compatriots in most other states, they have reassured the public adamantly that they are keeping up-to-date on all new research and are completely willing to change their minds as soon as compelling evidence presents itself. This bodes well for a future relaxation of the laws regarding qualifying medical conditions.

This willingness to change the specifics of the program was demonstrated in March 2017 when ‘chronic pain’ was added to the list of qualifying ailments, opening the door to many new potential patients.

And the progress continues. PTSD looks likely to become a qualifying condition in the near future. A bipartisan bill that will designate PTSD a ‘qualifying condition’ has already passed the Senate Health Committee and is currently awaiting approval by the Senate.

Another ailment that looks like it will imminently be designated a ‘qualifying condition’ is dysmenorrhea (menstrual cramps). Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal has introduced a bill to allow menstrual cramps to be treated with MMJ. She is confident that the bill will be passed. ‘We’re a progressive state. It did take 20 years to get medical marijuana to be the law, but we’re going to work hard to get it passed.’

It seems like her optimism is justified. The cannabis card New York program is currently tight and restrictive, but as Rosenthal says, New York is a traditionally progressive state, and its MMJ program, although currently restrictive, does seem to be moving towards a more relaxed and open place, slowly but surely.

Medical Marijuana Can Help Your Performance in Certain Sports

Athletes use all sorts of weird and wonderful methods to enhance their athletic performance. Extremely hot saunas, extremely frigid ice baths, unusual eating schedules, supplements and performance-enhancing drugs (both legal and illegal) are just a few of these methods. Can medical marijuana also be used in a way that will improve performance in certain sports? It seems so.

Cannabis is a banned substance according to the World Doping Agency. Still, rumors abound that certain big name athletes have used medical cannabis to improve their performance. Many sporting superstars have spoken out about using weed to calm their minds, heal their bodies and improve their game.

MMJ and Athletes

MMJ Recs - basketball spin finger

Although it’s considered a banned substance, MMJ has been hailed by some athletes as helping them do better in their sport.

Stephen Jackson, who played in the NBA from 2000-2015 with the Brooklyn Nets, Indiana Pacers, Golden State Warriors, Milwaukee Bucks, San Antonio Spurs and Los Angeles Clippers, has talked about occasionally using marijuana before and during NBA games.

“I just gotta be real, you know it’s been a couple games where I smoked before games and had great games, it’s been some games where I smoked before the game and was on the bench after three minutes sitting on the sideline, ‘Please calm down. This high has to calm down.’ I done shot three shots that went over the backboard, like, I’m going to be honest, like, ‘Ah, I gotta calm down.’”

Former Chicago Bulls point guard Jay Williams told Fox that he reckons 75-80% of NBA players use medical marijuana – with little concern for drug tests.

Arnold Schwarzenegger famously smoked weed in the cult bodybuilding movie ‘Pumping Iron’ after winning the Mr. Olympia title. Was this merely a celebratory joint, or was he using MMJ for its recovery inducing properties?

UFC fighter Nick Diaz was banned for 18 months when he tested positive for marijuana use. He said, “If I’m at home and I’m training, doing my same things every day, then I’m definitely going to want to use cannabis. It’s gonna help.”

MMJ Recs - Jiu Jitsu

Some athletes who practice jiu jitsu, like Joe Rogan,  have admitted that smoking medical marijuana before a match increases their game.

Famous podcaster, UFC commentator and ace Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt Joe Rogan has, on numerous occasions, said he smokes before he plays BJJ and it improves his game considerably.

Professional ultramarathon runner Avery Collins has said he often uses medical marijuana during his ultramarathons (however, not during official events). Speaking to the Wall Street Journal he said, “If you can find the right level, [medical cannabis] takes the stress out of running,” “And it’s a post-race, post-run remedy.”

So plenty of big name athletes swear by medical weed’s effectiveness. But why might it be a good reason to improve sports performance?

Medical Marijuana and Sports Performance Benefits

One benefit of having a medical cannabis card is that MMJ can increase mental focus. This can mean an athlete is less prone to distraction and more acutely focused on the task at hand – playing their sport to the best of their ability. Marijuana can get rid of irrelevant thoughts and mental white noise.

Using your California medical marijuana card induces feelings of relaxation. This can be beneficial when an athlete is performing, as it can get rid of stiffness and stifledness brought on by mental or physical tension. It can also help after a performance when an athlete needs to relax as thoroughly as possible in order to recuperate.

CBD-heavy indica strains of medical cannabis can be useful sleep-aids. This can be hugely helpful for an athlete both in the run up to a performance, where getting adequate rest is crucial, and after a performance, when sleep is needed to allow the body to heal and recuperate.

California medical marijuana card use can reduce anxiety, and this can be invaluable to an athlete who is prone to getting nervous before a performance. Anxiety can be a big hinderance to an athlete and if medical cannabis can alleviate this anxiety, an athlete is freed up to perform at their very best.

Medical marijuana use is known to loosen tight muscles, which is very helpful for athletes, particularly after a hard game, race or fight when muscles have been used to the max and need to loosen, rest and heal.

The fact that cannabis increases appetite is very valuable to athletes who need to put on a lot of muscle. Bodybuilders and fighters in particular go through periods when eating a lot of calories is crucial – medical herb can help with this.

MMJ and Sports Performance Downside

There are also a few downsides for athletes using MMJ, such as it can increase heart rate, which can lead to him or her becoming fatigued more quickly that they would otherwise.

California marijuana card use can lead to impaired memory. This can lead to soccer players forgetting what direction they are supposed to be shooting, and even boxers entering the ring with no shorts on!

Medical cannabis cards can lower reaction time, which is obviously not ideal if you are involved in a fast sport such as tennis, basketball or skiing.

Smoking cannabis can damage lung capacity, which will decrease cardiovascular health.

So the jury is out, but there are certainly some positive signs that MMJ can really help with athletic performance. If you are a professional athlete, beware that cannabis is a banned substance, but if you are an amateur, then maybe give it a try and see for yourself how your performance is affected.

The Pros and Cons of Consuming MMJ

Like most things in life, medical cannabis use comes with some pros and some cons. As the old saying goes: “There is no such thing as a free lunch,” and this is certainly the case when it comes to medical marijuana use.

Many of the pros are so life-enhancing that, for many people, they make the cons easily handleable and well worth it.

If you are going to use a California medical marijuana card it is best to know exactly what you are getting yourself in for – the good, the bad and the ugly! So here is a list of some of the most common pros and cons associated with medical cannabis use.

The Pros of Medical Marijuana Use

It is now proven beyond any reasonable doubt that medical marijuana provides effective pain relief. It’s pain-relieving effects are on a par with (and often better than) the leading prescription painkiller pills on the market today. But cannabis card use comes without many of the unpleasant side-effects that pills have, such as addiction and loss of libido.

California weed card use causes an increased appetite. This is very helpful for patients who, due to the specifics of their illness or their mental state, find that they have little or no appetite, and so struggle to get the requisite nutrients and calories into their bodies.

The cancer-fighting properties of medical herb are now becoming more and more apparent. Research is now suggesting that cannabinoids can help to inhibit and (even completely stop) tumor growth. While chemotherapy tends to kill healthy cells as well as cancerous cells, cannabinoids appear to attack cancerous cells while leaving healthy cells alone.

Many PTSD sufferers report considerable reduction of their symptoms when they use a California medical card, and there is solid evidence to back up these anecdotal reports. A study at the University of Haifa showed that rats who were exposed to trauma and then given cannabinoids did not develop PTSD, while rats that were exposed to trauma but received no cannabinoids did develop PTSD (poor rats).

Dr. George R. Greer MD in Santa Fe, New Mexico says that according to his research, PTSD patients report, on average, a reduction of 75% in their symptoms when they use MMJ.

Medical cannabis, in its raw form, is mega dense in nutrients. As a dark and leafy green plant it is rich in iron, calcium and fiber. The cannabinoids and fatty acids found in the cannabis plant reduce inflammation, improve cellular function and reduce damage from free-radicals. Juicing medical marijuana is very healthy.

Many patients report a marked reduction of anxiety symptoms when they are under the influence of medical cannabis. The CBD has a strong calming effect on the body, relaxing any tensions that may be present. The THC can induce feelings of calmness, well-being and even euphoria – and it’s difficult to be calm, euphoric and anxious all at once!

There is solid scientific and anecdotal evidence that MMJ calms muscle spasms. This makes life a great deal easier for people who suffer from seizures, various symptoms of multiple sclerosis, physical injuries and cramps.

MMJ Recs - eye close up

MMJ has been found to help those patients with glaucoma feel less pressure in their eyes.

MMJ eases the pain of glaucoma. Glaucoma occurs when the optic nerve is damaged by a buildup of intraocular pressure. The THC found in medical cannabis has been proven to reduce intraocular pressure by approximately 30% for up to four hours.

For people who suffer from insomnia, a good, strong CBD-heavy medical cannabis can promote sleep and win them some much-needed rest, recuperation and rejuvenation.

The Cons of MMJ Use

Much anecdotal evidence points to medical marijuana-use promoting laziness and a lack of productivity. Regular cannabis-use can make a person so relaxed and listless that they have little motivation to do anything apart from laze on the sofa watching TV and eating candy.

Despite the fact that CBD-heavy strains of marijuana often cause a patient to fall to sleep, it is often a poor quality sleep. Many heavy cannabis user report waking up feeling tired, drowsy, foggy and heavy-eyed, almost as if they are experiencing an alcohol-induced hangover.

As we mentioned earlier, California marijuana card use is good for stimulating appetite. However, the other side of this coin is that excessive weight gain and even obesity are a risk with heavy weed use, and specifically the longing for food that can come with it.

MMJ Recs - man eating cookie

Using medical marijuana can cause people to eat more and gain weight.

Heavy MMJ use can bring on feelings of sadness and depression. This may be linked to a general existential angst brought on by guilt and worry about being lazy and unproductive (due to MMJ use), and/or to a consistent lack of high-quality sleep, or it could be to do with chemical imbalances in the brain brought on by too much exposure to the psychoactive THC in MMJ. Either way, weed seems to cause depression in some people.

Chronic medical marijuana use has been reported by many people to increase general anxiety levels. As we mentioned earlier, many forms of acute anxiety can be reduced and eased in the moment with MMJ use. However, over the long-term, general anxiety levels can often be raised by (relatively heavy) cannabis use.

So, now you know the main pros and cons and you can make your own educated decision. Good luck!

How to Grow Medical Marijuana in California

More and more California MMJ card carriers are cultivating their own plants at home, and it’s easy to see why. Though most cannabis card holders are likely to get their main supply from their local dispensary, it’s a useful – and fun – way to make sure you’re never caught without the wonder plant.

Before you consider home cultivation, it’s prudent that you get an MMJ card. This card will allow you to legally access medical marijuana – and it’s seeds – to treat your ailment with. The process of getting your MMJ card is quick and easy and can be done online from the comfort of your own home. While some people may question this ease of access, it can make a life changing difference to someone who has an ailment that leaves them housebound.

Getting Your MMJ Card

When applying for your California medical marijuana license you’ll first be asked to fill out a short, simple questionnaire on your ailment and how it affects your life. When you complete this questionnaire you’ll start your ‘virtual doctor’s visit’ via our HIPAA telemedicine platform. This ‘visit’ is an online consultation with a state licensed physician. Your appointed doctor will give you a full medical evaluation, where you’ll be asked a few non-invasive questions about your medical history and your ailments. This consultation should take you no longer than 20 minutes.

If the doctor thinks your suitable for a medical marijuana card, they’ll tell you there and then and you’ll be emailed your MMJ card recommendation straight away. When you receive this, it can be printed off immediately and brought to an MMJ dispensary for use. Your physical embossed copy of the recommendation will arrive in a few short days.

Know the Medical Marijuana Laws

MMJ Recs - trough in soil

If you’re going to grow MMJ in California, make sure you know the rules and limitations of Proposition 64.

It’s important that if you intend to grow medical marijuana, that you’re au fait with the laws surrounding cannabis cultivation with an MMJ card. Proposition 64, which came into effect on January 1 of this year, made home cultivation legal – within certain limits. Under this law, California medical marijuana card carriers may possess up to one ounce of the plant and can grow six mature, or twelve immature plants of their own at home. These laws apply to everyone aged 21 and over.

As home grow laws are still in their infancy, they’re not too fraught with taxes and restrictions yet, but as the medical marijuana program evolves, this may change. Make sure to check with your local authority before you get your hands dirty to ensure you’re growing within the limits of the law.

Roadblocks to Growing MMJ

Unfortunately, even with the promotion of home cultivation as a supply solution for MMJ card carriers across California, there are still some roadblocks to accessing equipment or information. As marijuana possession is illegal at a federal level, online retailers are reluctant to sell MMJ growing equipment for fear of legal repercussions.

Similarly, garden centers and nurseries have in some cases been withholding on information on how best to grow the plant, regardless of whether the customer has a medical marijuana card or not. As attitudes and laws surrounding MMJ further relax, this problem should become near obsolete.

Best Practices for Growing Medical Marijuana in California

MMJ Recs - Glove on wooden post

If you’re going to grow MMJ to help with your ailment or condition, know the best practices so you can get the best results.

Like with any other plant, it’s important to know the growing habits of MMJ before you plant your first seeds. Unusually, medical marijuana can exhibit periods of bloom in total darkness, but it’s best to give it plenty of light, water and fertilizer.

Medical marijuana responds very well to fertilizer, especially during the vegetative period of growth. During this period, use a fertilizer that is high in nitrogen to stimulate rapid growth. When the plant flowers, use a fertilizer that’s high in phosphate and potassium to encourage the growth of large, lush buds. Unlike other plants, MMJ’s response to fertilizer is so strong that the more you give it, the bigger and lusher it will grow.

Following the flowering stage of the medical marijuana life cycle, it will sadly die, and the whole growing process should begin again.

Depending on where you live in California, there are different rules and regulations about where you can grow MMJ. These rules are decided by your local authority, so it’s important to get in touch with them before you plant your seeds.

Though outdoor cultivation is easier and less expensive, a lot of local authorities limit growing to indoors. Unfortunately there has been no confirmation as to why that is, but it’s assumed that it’s because some neighbors don’t like the sight – or smell – of the plant.

If your local authority allows it, grow your medical marijuana outside. If your plants are exposed to the sun all day long, and the dark all night long, they should experience rapid growth and start to bloom big, beautiful flowers in no time. To get the same effect through indoor growing, you’ll have to invest in a indoor grow light.

Take your time to choose what MMJ strain you want to grow. It’s best to cultivate a strain that will effectively treat the ailment outlined on your cannabis card. If you’re not sure of what strain will work best to treat your illness, check out our guide here.

Although home growing is now legal in California for medical marijuana card carriers, it’s still inexplicably illegal at a federal level in the United States. Thankfully, the federal government adopts a laissez faire attitude on this topic, so it’s extremely unlikely that you’ll get in trouble with the feds for doing a little home cultivation.

If you feel like your green fingers are up for a gardening challenge, apply for your California MMJ card today and get digging!

When MMJ Can Work Better Than Traditional Medication

If you have a debilitating illness that affects your life on a daily basis, you’re probably going to try anything (like MMJ) that might help alleviate the symptoms. Conventional medicine generally follows the line of prescribing traditional medication. There are obvious reasons for this.

First, medics are trained in and knowledgeable about which medication helps with which ailment. They might not wish to deviate from the conventional path of offering tried and tested drugs to treat the long, and ever-growing, list of crippling diseases and illnesses. They might be afraid to ‘think outside the box’.

Another, more skeptical, reason is the drug companies and the amount of money that they generate. Who wants to be the one to rock that particular boat? So, let’s look at how owning a California medical marijuana card could be a better route for you to venture down.

Medical Marijuana Research and Support

MMJ Recs - Marijuana saying on plant

Many researchers and medical professionals support the use of MMJ for qualifying conditions and ailments.

It’s a fact that every drug has a side-effect. In some cases these side-effects are minimal and rare, but in other cases they can be pretty devastating and almost as horrible to deal with as the illness they’re designed to treat.

If you could avoid this, that would be a good thing right? If you’re currently on medication for chronic pain for example, the chances are you’re definitely suffering from some nasty side-effects. MMJ is far less harmful and also a less addictive way to treat persistent and chronic pain. A clinical trial was conducted in 2010 that found that just three puffs of cannabis a day can help reduce extreme pain.

Medical marijuana is becoming increasingly more accepted by the medical profession and by the general public, too. CBS News conducted a national poll in 2014 which found that 86% of Americans were in favor of doctors being allowed to prescribe cannabis for serious, debilitating illnesses. That’s a lot of people backing an alternative to traditional drugs.

It’s widely believed that medical marijuana has anti-inflammatory properties, can reduce swelling and can help with pain management. It’s not just the numbing effect that smoking or consuming cannabis gives you – it can actually help relieve your symptoms.

Dr Allan Frankel, one of the world’s leading authorities on dosed cannabis medicine, has been looking into the beneficial effects of medical marijuana since the 70’s. He is now convinced that it can play an important part in modern medicine. He thinks that many people are still against it because they’ve been indoctrinated to view cannabis as a dangerous and addictive drug. He thinks prescription drugs have a far greater potential for sparking addiction.

Dr Frankel stated, “In the US in 2010, there were four times more deaths among women from prescription painkiller overdose than for cocaine and heroin deaths combined.” This should make us very wary of prescription drugs and more willing to consider the alternatives.

Benefits of MMJ

If you’re in possession of a cannabis card then you have access to a lot of medical help and advice for your illness. You will be able to speak to doctors in confidence about your MMJ use and dosage. This can be done online or in person. These specialists will advise you about the best strain or strains for treating your condition and the amount you should take.

You’ll also have access to licensed dispensaries and specialized and protected medical marijuana sites. So you’ll be able to inform yourself on all the pros and cons of medicinal cannabis – something that’s not always so transparent with traditional medicine.

MMJ Recs - Prescription Dugs

Traditional medication, like pills, takes longer to go into effect than if you were to consume medical marijuana.

Another plus about MMJ is that – if you choose to smoke it – it gets into your system straight away and therefore, starts working immediately. Traditional medication, of course, takes longer to have an effect. Also, providing you get the right strain and the correct dosage, you won’t suffer any of those nasty medication side-effects with medical marijuana. You just get a general good feeling and a realization that your symptoms aren’t hitting you quite so badly.

Taking the correct dosage is important though; if you take too much it can cause paranoia and/or nausea, so be sure to get advice on this. If you prefer to ingest your medical marijuana, by experimenting you can determine how long it takes to start working and you can then decide the best time to consume it on a daily basis.

If you suffer from any of the 50 or more conditions that would qualify you for a cannabis card, it’s certainly worth looking into. You have nothing to lose by giving it a try, and plenty to gain. The best way to start is to apply for your medical marijuana card online.

The medical card evaluation is a simple, quick and private process. It will include a brief discussion with a specialist over the phone or via Skype, during which you’ll be able to ask any questions you like about usage, dosage, any side-effects and MMJ versus traditional medication.

Once approved, your California medical card will be mailed to you in a matter of days. You’ll then be at liberty to grow your own plants and/or to buy your recommended strain and dosage from recognized suppliers. Remember to always seek medical advice if you decide to come off any long-term prescribed medication.

Will California Always Be the Biggest MMJ State?

California is a trendsetter in many ways. It’s a center for entertainment and culture in the US, it’s full of the latest advances in technology and it has a massive start-up culture. Its weather is fantastic, the agricultural landscape is active and thriving and there exists the most liberal and exciting medical marijuana laws in the country.

California was the first state in the US to legislate for medical marijuana. Patients had been using marijuana for medical reasons illegally for a long time, and anecdotal evidence suggested that it provided excellent results for people suffering from a wide variety of different conditions.

History of Medical Marijuana Laws in California

MMJ Recs - holding small weed bud

Many medical marijuana professionals in California supported Proposition 215 because they had seen good results for patients with conditions like cancer, HIV and AIDS.

Proposition 215, also known as the Compassionate Use Act of 1996, was passed by 55.6% in 1996, which allowed for the use of marijuana for medical reasons for numerous conditions. The Yes campaign was spearheaded by marijuana activists from San Francisco who had noticed that marijuana had helped many suffering from HIV/AIDS in the gay community.

As well as anecdotal evidence from users of medical marijuana, many medical professionals also publicly supported Proposition 215, stating that they had also seen good results for patients suffering from conditions like cancer, which was far less stigmatized than HIV/AIDS at the time.

After the passing of Proposition 215, California was the first state to have legislated for medical marijuana. This presented problems at a federal level, as marijuana was and still is, considered a controlled and illegal substance. California held strong on its right to legislate for treatment for its citizens and the program has run successfully since 1996, inspiring other states to bring in legislation for medical marijuana.

However, there have been some DEA raids on dispensaries and farms in California, and the Supreme Court has ruled twice that federal law can overrule state law in some instances.

Despite some opposition from federal sources, patients have been happily accessing medical marijuana in California since 1996, and it is clearly the capital of medical marijuana usage in the United States.

Accessing MMJ in California

MMJ Recs - Golden Gate Bridge sunset view

Accessing MMJ in California is much easier than in other states because there are many more medical cannabis dispensaries and open laws.

As well as its early adoption, it is also very easy to access MMJ in California. The first step is to organize a visit with a medical professional who can assert your need for medical marijuana. This does not have to be in person and you can actually do a consultation online. The medical professional will ask you about your condition and suggest ways to treat it with medical marijuana.

If you are deemed a suitable candidate, you will be sent a stamped, dated and signed letter, which you will be able to bring to any dispensary to avail of any form or strain of medical marijuana that you think will be able to help you.

Upon visiting your local dispensary, you will be able to speak to the people working there, who will be able to help point you in the right direction for the best treatments for you. There are many different forms of medical marijuana, as well as different strains. Strains contain varying levels of THC and PCP, which offer different types of relief – depending on your condition.

MMJ Recs - hemp plant growing

Choosing the right medical marijuana strain will offer different types of relief and effects, depending on your condition.

You can choose to buy joints to smoke, edibles like candies or baked goods, lotions and salves to rub into your skin, tinctures, vape liquids… amongst many other forms of MMJ. The only limit is your imagination!

Medical Marijuana Conditions in California

California is also notable with its liberal medical marijuana laws for not placing limits on the conditions that can be treated with medical marijuana. In other states, such as New York, there is  a strictly regulated list of conditions that can be treated with medical marijuana, but this does not exist in California, which is great for citizens of the state.

Evidence suggests that there are a variety of conditions, both physical and mental, that can be successfully treated with medical marijuana. These include epilepsy, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, cancer, HIV/AIDS, Huntington’s disease and Parkinson’s disease – amongst many others.

For many patients, the fear of being rejected for medical marijuana treatment can be a big deterrent for seeking treatment, as well as the stigma of using marijuana for medical reasons. Due to the proliferation of medical marijuana in California, as well as its place in the state for over twenty years, these issues do not seem to affect patients in the Golden State.

MMJ Recs - beautiful beach view at sunrise

California continues to not only be a beautiful state to live in, but also the top state for medical marijuana use.

California is rightly lauded as a mecca for patients who need medical marijuana and has served as an inspiration for many states that have followed in its steps. Many patients have actually relocated to California for the sole reason of seeking treatment that they cannot access in more conservative states.

Californians are lucky to be able to access this treatment that should be available to all citizens, but the battle continues on at other state levels and federal levels to provide medical marijuana to all residents of the United States.

Visiting a Medical Marijuana Dispensary in California: All You Need to Know

Although medical marijuana cards have been in use in California for what seems like forever, it can still be intimidating as a new MMJ card holder to step into a dispensary for the first time. Even the most confident cannabis card carriers can find themselves to be a little nervous at the prospect of their first dispensary trip.

So what exactly does a new MMJ card holder need to know before they take their first steps into this bright new world? Let us enlighten you!

There are hundreds – if not thousands – of medical marijuana dispensaries in California, so choose your dispensary wisely. The quality of dispensaries differ greatly with significant disparities on price, selection and quality – depending on what dispensary you go to.

Do your homework and check out what dispensaries are available before you make the journey. You can find a list of all of California’s medical marijuana dispensaries here.

Choose Your MMJ Dispensary Wisely

Dispensaries vary in function across California, with some choosing to focus on medical marijuana, some on recreational use and most focusing on a mixture of the two. Make sure to go to a medical marijuana dispensary or a hybrid dispensary, as staff in the recreational dispensary may not be trained to give you correct medical advice on suitable products.

If you elect to go to a hybrid medical recreational dispensary there will usually be two entrances: one labeled ‘medical entrance’ and the other labeled ‘recreational entrance’. Make sure that as a medical marijuana card holder you go through the medical entrance.

A Warm Welcome

When you get into the dispensary you’ll see a staff member seated behind a glass window in a waiting room. This is the person who you’ll show your medical marijuana card to. They’ll quickly appraise the card, make sure you’re the person who the MMJ card has been registered to, and then will grant you access to the main part of the dispensary where you’ll purchase your medical marijuana products.

Don’t forget to bring your MMJ card to the medical marijuana facility or you may just be window shopping!

It is absolutely imperative that you bring your California medical marijuana card with you when you visit the dispensary. Without your MMJ card, you will not be allowed access to the medical part of the dispensary and will not be allowed to purchase medical marijuana products.

While You Wait

Sometimes, you may be allowed immediate access to the main part of the dispensary, but know it is pretty common to have a short waiting period before you’re allowed in. This should last no more than 10-20 minutes. The purpose of this waiting time is to allow each patient ample time with the ‘budtender’, who will advise them on the best products to buy to treat their ailment.

While you wait, it’s a good idea to do a little research into exactly what you want to buy at the dispensary (if you haven’t already done this at home). Sure, browsing the entirety of the dispensary can be interesting but trust us, the dispensary’s budtender will seriously appreciate it if you’re au fait with the product selection before you arrive.

Nowadays, a lot of California dispensaries have online menus, so these are worth checking out in advance of your trip.

Knowing is Half the Battle

Each case in a California MMJ dispensary will be well labeled, but unless you’re clued in as to what strain you’re looking for, these labels will look like gibberish (we’re looking at you Golden Goat!). Know the difference between your indicas and your sativas before you get to the dispensary or know exactly what strain of MMJ you’re looking for. If you’re not sure what strain would be best to treat your ailment, check out our handy guide here.

The great thing about a medical marijuana dispensary is that it has well-trained staff who can help answer any questions or concerns.

Knowing what you want doesn’t mean just knowing what strains you want – you should also know through what method you want to consume. Are you looking for some tasty edibles? Some aromatic topicals? Or just a few vape cartridge refills? By knowing exactly what you’re looking for in advance of your visit, your dispensary experience will be as seamless as possible.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions

If you’re not sure exactly what you’re after make sure to ask the budtender for their advice. These people are friendly trained professionals and it’s their job to make your dispensary experience as comfortable as possible. They’ll know what strains or products are best suited for your needs and will deliver their advice with a smile to put you at ease. At a dispensary there is no such thing as a stupid question so ask as many as you need to!

One Last Reminder

As well as remembering to bring your medical marijuana card with you for your trip to the dispensary, remember to bring cash with you, too. Though most dispensaries are starting to become more card-friendly, a lot of them are still strictly cash only establishments. Avoid the stress of being caught penniless by making sure you have enough cash to make your MMJ purchases that day.

Remember, every dispensary is different and it may take you a while to find the one that’s a good fit for you. Shop around your locality and choose your dispensary wisely, basing your decision on which one makes you the most comfortable.

Which Ailments Are Covered Under New York Medical Marijuana Laws?

If you’ve read anything about medical marijuana, it’s likely that you’re aware of the very forgiving laws in California and are open to trying different strains and methods to treat your illness or condition. From anxiety, depression, eating disorders and multiple sclerosis, to cancer and Parkinson’s disease, medical marijuana can help alleviate many symptoms of different illnesses or conditions.

However, not all states have the same laws and New York has a particularly strict medical marijuana program that only covers certain illnesses and ailments.

Cancer

MMJ Recs - Hospital Room with Beds

Although some think that using medical marijuana for cancer symptoms shouldn’t be allowed, many have found that MMJ has helped alleviate the pain associated with cancer.

Cancer can be defined as a condition that is typified by abnormal cell growth. It can occur at any site on the body and means that tumors form due to cells reproducing too quickly. As a result of these tumors, other symptoms can occur including pain, bleeding, coughing, visible lumps and blood in urine or stool, depending on the site of the cancer. It can be easily treated through surgery or chemotherapy or can be a terminal illness – depending on the cancer’s location and the time of diagnosis.

HIV/AIDS

HIV is a virus that attacks the human immune system, destroying white blood cells and thus the body’s ability to fight illness. AIDS is the associated syndrome that occurs when HIV progresses into obvious illness. Symptoms of AIDS include pneumonia, Kaposi’s sarcoma  (a very rare form of skin cancer), sweating and diarrhea. HIV is transmitted through blood and sexual fluids and is most commonly passed on through sexual intercourse, sharing of contaminated needles for intravenous drug use and from mother to baby in utero.

ALS

MMJ Recs - Hospice Worker with Patient in Wheelchair

ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, is a severely debilitating disease that causes people to lose all muscle function.

ALS is also known as motor neurone disease, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease, and it affects neurones that control muscles in the body. It means that those affected by this condition slowly lose control of all muscle function and become unable to walk, speak, feed themselves or control bodily functions. It is a slow-killing disease and most sufferers die from losing the ability to breathe while sleeping.

Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease is a disorder of the nervous system that controls movement in the body. It is characterized by an unstable posture, muscle shaking and rigid limbs. It is slow-progressing and really impacts the lives of those affected, as it becomes impossible to take care of oneself without assistance due to incessant muscle shaking and posture limitations.

Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is a degenerative disease that affects the coverings of nerves in the brain and spinal cord. It can present a variety of differing symptoms depending on the type of MS present, but symptoms include fatigue, muscle weakness, general pain, diarrhea and muscle spasms. While it is not typically defined as a terminal illness, it does have the potential to limit the life expectancy of those who are diagnosed with it.

Damage to the Nervous Tissue of the Spinal Cord with Objective Neurological Indication of Intractable Spasticity

Intractable spasticity is a muscle control disorder that is usually cause by trauma to the brain or spinal cord. It is most common in those who have suffered an accident such as a car collision, fall or abuse. It is defined by spasms, deformities and generalized muscle and bone pain.

Epilepsy

Epilepsy is a neurological disorder that is characterised by seizures. The severity and frequency of the seizures varies from person to person and is also dependent on the type of epilepsy diagnosed. It can be present from birth or can be brought on by brain injuries, brain tumors or strokes. Epilepsy diagnosed in childhood can sometimes disappear with the onset of puberty.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Inflammatory bowel disease is a group of autoimmune illnesses that involve the ulceration or inflammation of the bowel and lower intenstine. The most common types of inflammatory bowel disease are Crohn’s Disease and ulcerative colitis. These conditions are often very painful and can limit the sufferer’s ability to live an independent life due to the need to be close to a toilet.

Neuropathy

Neuropathy is nerve damage that an affect any part of the body. Its cause can be obvious or totally unknown and symptoms include tingling, numbness, tremors and extreme pain.

Chronic Pain as Defined by 10 NYCRR §1004.2(a)(8)(xi)

The NYC MMJ bill defines chronic pain as “any severe debilitating pain that the practitioner determines degrades health and functional capability; where the patient has contraindications, has experienced intolerable side effects, or has experienced failure of one or more previously tried therapeutic options; and where there is documented medical evidence of such pain having lasted three months or more beyond onset, or the practitioner reasonably anticipates such pain to last three months or more beyond onset.”

Huntington’s Disease

Huntington’s disease is a genetically inherited illness that results in the destruction of brain cells. Symptoms usually begin in late thirties or early forties and include random muscle jerks, subtle changes in personality and random eye movements. Sufferers then degenerate further and sleep and muscle control are affected. Death most commonly occurs within twenty years of diagnosis from pneumonia, heart disease or suicide.

MMJ Recs - Close Up Cannabis Plant

Medical marijuana is helpful from a wide range of symptoms, from something serious, like cancer, to something more common, like nausea.

As well as one of the conditions above, you need to be suffering from one of the following associated symptoms or conditions as a result of your illness:

  • Cachexia or wasting syndrome
  • Severe or chronic pain
  • Severe nausea
  • Seizures
  • Severe or persistent muscles spasms 

Obviously, it is far more complex a process to get an MMJ card in New York than in other states. The best thing to do is to speak to your primary care physician if you suffer from one of the above conditions and to get their advice on if this is a good route of treatment for you to pursue.

Is It Safe to Treat My Child with Medical Marijuana?

Ever since the dawn of the medical marijuana card, there has been rife debate over whether children should be allowed to be entered into the MMJ card scheme. The issue has long been a touchy subject, with arguments on both sides insistent that they’re morally right.

Not helping the pro-MMJ card for kids side is detrimental media portrayals of medical marijuana and those who benefit from it – especially parents. In many parts of America, marijuana is still viewed as a recreational drug whose only use is to get its users high. Unfortunately, this negative press means that the issue of children and medical marijuana is rarely explored rationally.

It should come as no surprise to anyone that the vast majority of the MMJ card naysayers are people who don’t have very sick children themselves. Having been untouched by the tragedy of having a helplessly ill child, the ‘no’ debaters’ opinions on the topic often lack validity, clarity and worst of all, empathy.

Although many Americans believe allowing children to have medical marijuana cards is not right, desperate parents all over the country feel like they have nowhere else to turn after pharmaceuticals fail them time and time again. What can start as a desperate last hope for relief, can become a gentle, effective treatment plan that sees their little ones get their lives back.

The Effect Use of MMJ on Children

Medical marijuana is currently being used to treat a number of life limiting conditions in children like cerebral palsy, autism, epilepsy and other neuromuscular diseases.

It’s not surprising that a majority of the MMJ card naysayers are those who have not tried everything else imaginable to help their sick child.

One thing that the kiddy MMJ card naysayers are right about is that like all other children, cannabis card carrying kids should not be smoking the plant. For this reason, most parents treat their children with medical marijuana tinctures. A tincture is an concentrated form of MMJ that is made by mixing the beneficial elements of the plant in an alcohol based solution.

Administering MMJ to your child via a tincture is really easy and can be done simply and discreetly whenever your child needs to consume. The tincture essentially looks like an eyedropper and you use it by dropping the solution directly into your child’s mouth, or into their food. If your child is picky about taste, you can opt instead to drop it onto their skin and rub it in.

A common argument for the banning of children having medical marijuana cards is the worry that by using MMJ, children are exposed to the psychoactive parts of the plant. But what if a non-psychoactive strain could be developed? Well that’s exactly what some American scientists have done.

Charlotte Figi’s Medical Marijuana Story

The Charlotte’s Web strain – named after Charlotte Figi, a 5-year-old Colorado girl who suffers from Dravet’s syndrome – is a strictly medicinal form of MMJ that has been specially bred to not contain THC, a.k.a. the psychoactive element of the cannabis plant. Although the strain is still in its infancy, scientists are optimistic that it could be used to effectively – and gently – treat seizures in young children.

When Charlotte herself began treatment with this new wonder strain, she was initially given very low, non-psychoactive doses. In the week that followed her initial treatment, she went a full seven days without a seizure, down from the 300 that she had the previous week. Eight months later, she saw a 99% seizure reduction.

With this trial in mind, it’s clear to see how medical marijuana can be positively life-changing for certain children. With a medical marijuana card, they can live fuller, happier lives, not weighed down by the negative symptoms of their ailments.

Choose the Type of MMJ Wisely When It Comes to Kids

However, we must also take away from this trial that when it comes to treating a child with medical marijuana, choosing the right strain is key. There are plenty of other child-friendly strains on the market if you can’t get your hands on Charlotte’s Web. Strains like Harlequin and AC/DC are just as effective at treating various ailments and come with little to no psychoactive effects, thanks to the fact that they are high in CBD and low in THC.

If you’re considering using MMJ on your child, you must consult with your child’s doctor before embarking on a medical marijuana treatment plan.

It’s important to remember that as is the same case with adults, every child will not respond to medical marijuana treatment the same way. Effectiveness of the treatment will vary among different children, with some of them simply not being compatible with the drug. It’s vitally important that you consult with your child’s doctor before they embark on a medical marijuana treatment plan.

Whether you are for or against the use of medical marijuana to treat sick children, you can’t deny the mountains of evidence piling up to suggest that MMJ is an effective, kind treatment for sick children. Children across the country are seeing the very real results of being on a medical marijuana treatment plan, with many of them getting full control of their life debilitating illnesses.

If you feel like your child could benefit from having their own medical marijuana card, get in touch with us today and we’ll guide you through this life changing process.

3 Musicians Who Love Medical Cannabis

For better or worse, drugs have always been synonymous with the music industry. Some of the biggest acts in the world have confessed to being ‘inspired’ by various narcotics; The Beatles were on them, Pink Floyd were on them, Keith Richards is still on them. Out of all the drugs out there however, marijuana reigns supreme; it features all over the musical spectrum, from rap to psychedelic prog rock, and most musicians aren’t shy about professing their love for it. Some go the extra step, and become full on advocates for legalization; a select few are heavy proponents of medical marijuana, and have been furthering the MMJ cause in the public eye.

This kind of mainstream support for medical marijuana has certainly helped the cause, with some performers relentlessly campaigning for the drug over many years. The recent spate of MMJ legalization (29 states to date have legalized the medicine) is certainly a victory for advocates, and the trend looks set to continue over the coming months and years. Some musicians are advocates of marijuana in general – some specifically MMJ – and some even view the popularity of the drug as a premium business opportunity, lending their name to dispensaries and stains.

With all this celebrity endorsement in mind, we’re taking a look at three prominent musicians who’ve publicly endorsed or supported MMJ in the past, some of whom remain heavily involved in marijuana advocacy across the U.S. in 2017.

Melissa Etheridge

MMJRecs - Melissa Etheridge

American rock star Melissa Etheridge has been a fan of medical marijuana since she claims it helped her recover from breast cancer.

Singer-songwriter Melissa Etheridge is one of the most outspoken proponents of MMJ, especially after she underwent a traumatic experience with breast cancer. Diagnosed in 2004, Etheridge managed to beat the disease and is now completely cancer-free; she ascribes her recovery to her use of medical marijuana. She has since claimed that she believes everyone who uses marijuana ‘is doing so medicinally, whether they consider it so or not’.

Last year, Etheridge put her money where her mouth is and set up her own company, Etheridge Farms, which will soon be providing patients in California with her own homegrown product. Etheridge was also highly vocal about New York’s lackluster efforts to legalize MMJ, and called on Governor Andrew Cuomo to pass the Compassionate Care Act for patients across the state, which he finally did in 2014.

Despite the bill going through, New York legalized an extremely conservative MMJ program, which has undergone heavy criticism since its introduction three years ago. So it looks like Melissa still has a bit more work to do on the east coast; hopefully she might turn her advocacy attention back there sometime soon!

The Game

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The rapper known as The Game is a proponent of MMJ; he created his own strain earlier in 2016 for use in traditional cigarettes and drinks.

A recent newcomer to the MMJ scene is rapper The Game, who sees the legalization and recent acceptance of the medicine as a business investment. While he’s not the first star to involve himself in the marijuana business, he’s doing it in an innovative way; in August last year he became an official partner in The Reserve, an MMJ dispensary which operates out of Santa Ana, California. The Reserve is a legally licensed dispensary, which makes The Game the first celebrity to partner with an outlet of this kind.

He stated that he ‘finally has a platform to legally cultivate and sell a plant that saves lives and is changing our world in a positive way’. The rapper also created his own strain earlier in 2016 for use in traditional cigarettes and drinks, and is planning on creating a few more strains for his new partnership with The Reserve.

The Game isn’t the only hip hop star to dabble in marijuana creation; fellow rappers Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa have both invested in marijuana and developed their own unique brand of the herb, which is used medicinally and recreationally in legalized states.

Sting

MMJRecs - guitar

English rocker Sting has been an avid fan of medical cannabis use, especially because he believes it helps those with qualifying illnesses and conditions that need it for their health.

English rocker Sting has been a vocal proponent of ending America’s ‘War on Drugs’ for many years. In 2010, he came out with a strongly-worded article in the Huffington Post where he allied himself with the Drug Policy Alliance, an organization which champions the smart legalization of some drugs and condemns the failures and titanic costs of the ‘War on Drugs’. In the article, Sting explicitly mentions medical marijuana, and pointed out that those who are suffering from a variety of illnesses that could be effectively treated or eased by marijuana do not have access to it.

Obviously a lot has changed in the seven years since Sting wrote the article, and many across America can now legally access MMJ, but his point still stands; if it is an effective treatment for specific conditions, shouldn’t everyone who’s suffering be able to avail of it if they choose?

So it’s clear to see that music and marijuana remain steadfastly aligned in 2017. Hopefully we will see more and more musicians supporting the cause of MMJ as the medicine is embraced in states across the country.

6 Ways to Make Sure You Get the Right MMJ Strain

It can be very difficult to navigate the world of medical marijuana if you are unfamiliar with it, so it’s important to do your research and shop around to get the best treatment available to you. As well as the stigma associated with the treatment, the options available are just mind-boggling!

We’ve compiled a list of ways to ensure you find the right MMJ strain for you so that you can live the best life possible with the condition you have.

Research the Treatment

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If you’re unsure of the best type of MMJ strain to use for your illness or condition, contact a medical professional.

Most people who are eligible for treatment with medical marijuana may not be aware that they can access it. Depending on the state that you live in, if you suffer from cancer, HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, anxiety, depression, anorexia nervosa, epilepsy or countless other conditions, you may be eligible for treatment with medical marijuana.

First, find out if your state allows medical marijuana treatment. If it does, research the terms and conditions of the conditions allowed for treatment. Some states, such as California, are quite liberal about allowing citizens access to MMJ but others, such as New York, have very strict guidelines.

Go to a Reputable Medical Professional

MMJ Recs- Stethoscope

To learn more about medical marijuana strains, you can go online and talk to a medical professional, who will answer any questions.

If you live in a state with liberal MMJ laws, you may be familiar with the sketchy establishments that can assign you a medical marijuana letter. These are often quite intimidating, so a good option for first-time patients is often an online consultation. You can log on, have a video chat with a qualified medical professional who will ask about your condition.

Don’t worry about judgement. These professionals are open and really believe in the power of MMJ to treat people like you. They will then send you a stamped and signed letter that you can then use to access medical marijuana.

Get a Good Dispenser

Along with a good medical professional to recommend the treatment of medical marijuana for you, it is so important to get acquainted with the best dispensary possible. Put simply, dispensaries can make or break your medical marijuana experience. They are the experts who can advise you on the best strains and delivery methods available to you.

If you’re someone who doesn’t know a lot about MMJ, the best thing to do is to go in, be completely honest about your lack of knowledge and let the dispensary employees point you in the right direction. Think about it like asking a bartender for their advice on the best kind of cocktail to drink!

Research the Strains

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It’s best to know the differences between the different MMJ strains so you can get the proper one for your personal needs.

As well as speaking to your dispensary, it is possible to do your own, independent research. There is a wealth of knowledge available online on different strains and how they can effect and treat different conditions. Using strains with CBD, THC or a combination of the two in different strengths will have differing effects, so it’s important to be educated in relation to what works best for your condition.

Luckily, there is a wealth of knowledge online relating to strains that can treat different illnesses and if you have any difficult questions, this is something to ask your dispenser or medical professional. There is no such thing as a stupid question!

Research Methods of Delivery

MMJ Recs - Piece of Chocolate Cake

When it comes to MMJ strain edibles, the possibilities are sweet… and endless!

Often, when people think of medical marijuana, they think of stoners lighting up massive joints, but the reality is that MMJ can be delivered in so many different ways. People rely on edible MMJ in the form of cakes, candies or brownies, vape pens, body rubs, oils, tinctures and joints. These are just some of the ways that MMJ can be administered, but the sky is the limit.

Again, doing research online for some fun DIY projects or speaking to your dispenser about the wide range of treatments available are the best ways to go. There are treatments that you may not even consider, for example, women often use MMJ medicated body rubs to treat extreme pain associated with endometriosis or period pain, often reporting excellent results.

Enjoy Your Treatment!

Amongst all the paperwork, travel and research associated with medical marijuana, people can often forget the most important part of the journey: enjoy yourself! MMJ is truly a miracle drug that also offers some fun side-effects, aside from the soothing treatments associated with its medical administration. Don’t feel the need to be boxed in to any one form of treatment. Be flexible and play around with different things until you find the options that work best for you.

Make it fun and a treat that becomes the highlight of your day. It’s not like the mundane routine of popping a pill daily. You will be able to live your life better, stronger and unfettered by your condition, so make sure you celebrate that!

Which MMJ Strain is Best for Treating Migraines?

As medical marijuana becomes a widespread treatment across the United States, patients are familiarizing themselves with the various strains, and sussing out which ones work best for their particular ailment. It might come as a surprise to newer patients not used to marijuana that the drug even comes in different MMJ strains; but there are in fact subtle differences between the various different strands.

When it comes to treatment of the various afflictions for which MMJ is affective, the components and of each strain can have varying effects.  As medical marijuana becomes legal in more and more states across America, it benefits patients to know which strain is best to treat their particular ailment.

One of the most common causes of pain in humans is a headache. They can be debilitating and resilient, but can be largely managed with over-the-counter painkillers. Migraines are a different sort of headache altogether, and can’t be so easily tackled with the usual methods. Migraines usually affect one side of the head, pulsating with a constant rhythm and producing waves of often searing pain. The onset of a migraine can be accompanied by visual disturbances known as scintillating scotoma, where zigzag rainbow patterns distort the patient’s vision.

Unlike normal headaches, which usually disappear with a good night’s sleep, migraines can last from a couple of hours for up to three days, and will usually not abate or ease during the attack. They can be accompanied by nausea or vomiting, and can often make the sufferer extremely sensitive to light and sounds.

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Migraines, which are extremely debilitating and usually last days on end, can be treated with some specific MMJ strains.

Migraines are uniquely debilitating, and usually take days to fully recover from. Despite them being fairly common (over 15% of the global population have suffered from them at one time or another), not a lot is known about how they’re caused. It’s suspected that a mixture of genetics and environmental factors conspire to cause an attack, but the exact reason that they flare up remains unknown (for now).

What is known is that medical marijuana can successfully treat migraines, and that it has been used as a remedy for many years. It’s undeniable that marijuana is an extremely effective pain reliever, and as it comes to prominence as a legal, reliable treatment in 2017, we are in as good a position as any to explore how MMJ can help patients even further.

A number of recent studies have shown that MMJ can not only combat migraines when they flare up, but it can also help prevent them in the first place, which makes medical marijuana a vital tool in fighting these vicious headaches. But which strain is best? Well, in fact, there are a few strains that can effectively treat migraines; here are five of the best.

MMJ - Marijuana

With studies proving that medical cannabis can not only combat migraines when they flare up, but they can also prevent them, it’s no wonder more people are trying MMJ strains.

White Widow

This is a powerful and potent strain of marijuana that can help you relieve some serious pain when the situation arises. A classic strain that hails from the Netherlands, it should assure patients of its quality. You can avail of it uplifting, euphoric effects while still being assured of powerful pain relief, as it settles the body into full relaxation mode. Its strength is derived from the icy white resin that dusts its buds, and works especially well at removing that muscle tension which makes migraines so insufferable.

Sour Diesel

Also known as Sour D, this strain is a lot more appetizing than it sounds. A sativa-dominant concoction that smells a lot like diesel, Sour D is a fast-acting solution for when migraines spring up without any prior warning. The effects of this particular MMJ strain include a dreamy, heady sensation, as well as a potent burst of energy.

Sour D is not just useful for migraines; it is one of the go-to strains for those suffering with general headache pain and depression as well, making it a serious contender for the title of best strain currently on the market.

Purple Kush

When all that migriane pain just gets the better of you and nothing’s taking the edge off, often the best thing to do is simply sleep. Purple Kush is a pure indica, which is pretty easy to come by. Heavy indica strains have long been renowned for their significant sleep-inducing effects, and sometimes, this can be just what the doctor ordered; literally.

Purple Kush creates long-lasting body-numbing sensations, which can be just what you need to sleep your way through a migraine. Just be careful when you decide to take this strain; its knock-out effects means it’s best used just before bed.

The person in the best position to advise on your medicine is of course your doctor, but it’s no harm to know what works best for your specific ailments. Migraines are severely debilitating afflictions, but with the right medicine, most of their symptoms can be combated effectively, or even prevented altogether.

Luckily for sufferers, this medicine is becoming more and more accepted all over the United States, meaning that help is well and truly at hand.

6 Potential Negative Side Effects of MMJ Use to Watch Out For

Thank goodness for the continuing, relentless and seemingly unstoppable liberalization of medical marijuana laws that are sweeping across the United States (and to a lesser extent, the globe) at this moment in history. This period in time will forever be remembered as a genuine renaissance in which medical cannabis reestablished itself in its rightful place at the epicenter of human medicine.

There are a huge wealth of benefits to MMJ use. The magical herb relieves pain, stimulates appetite, stabilizes mood, calms muscle spasms, eases glaucoma, promotes relaxation and sleep, alleviates psychological and physiological tension, remedies nausea, and is even showing great potential to do damage to cancerous cells.

As more and more people are availing of the myriad of benefits that their California medical marijuana card brings, it is important to also create an awareness of the potential negative side effects of MMJ use. Like with everything (including water, exercise and even sex) too much of something, even something very good, can be bad.

The following is our list of six potential pitfalls to be aware of if you are a regular user of medical marijuana.

Constant ‘Munchies’ May Lead to Weight Gain

Using medical cannabis can cause you to get high on life, but it can also get you high numbers on the weight scale.

One of MMJs great benefits is that it stimulates appetite. A good appetite is invaluable for optimal health. But the other side to this coin is that weed can also promote overeating.

The ‘munchies’ are a very real thing. Food and drink tastes especially good when you are under the influence of medical cannabis, and when you couple that with a generally stimulated appetite (and perhaps a somewhat reduced capacity to be disciplined), gorging is always a distinct possibility.

Overeating can be combated by shopping wisely before you ingest any MMJ – buying only healthy foods. You may regret this when you are high, but you will thank yourself the next time you weigh yourself!

If You Smoke Medical Cannabis, You’ll Be Susceptible to Smoking-Related Health Problems

Smoking cannabis, especially if you roll your joints with some tobacco, is not good for your lungs. It can lead to shortness of breath, emphysema and even lung cancer. A good start to combating this threat is to roll joints using only pure cannabis, which means you will smoke less and get a more potent hit of medical marijuana.

An even better way to avoid smoking-related illnesses is to not smoke at all – vaping and edibles are both great ways to ingest MMJ without breathing in any harmful smoke.

Being Under the Influence of MMJ May Cause You to Appreciate (and Even Become a Big Fan of) Music You Would Otherwise Hate

Marijuana induces an altered state of consciousness, and in this altered state, things that are not all that interesting to the ‘sober you’ can seem altogether fascinating. Music that you would otherwise have no interest in, if heard when you are in this altered state, can sound amazing.

This can lead to ‘imprinting’ – which is when you essentially form an irrational attachment, or ‘fetish’, for a song and have a compulsion to listen to it all the time, even when sober. This can lead to a feeling of helplessness and also to embarrassment in social situations. There is no known cure for this. Prevention is your only hope.

Edibles Take Longer to Kick In and Can Be Very Strong, So Beware

It is a common mistake if you are a rookie (or even a seasoned MMJ user who is new to edibles) to eat some weed, in the form of a brownie for instance, and then to sit there twiddling your thumbs for an hour feeling zero effect. Then you eat some more and… BOOM, you get obscenely higher than you’ve ever been in your life five minutes later, as both doses erupt inside you at the same time.

Watch out for this. Edibles are often very strong indeed, and they usually take anything between 30 minutes to an hour to kick in. Be patient.

Medical Marijuana Can Disrupt Your Sleep Patterns

Marijuana use, especially if the strain is high in CBD, can induce sleep. If this happens early in the day and you pass out on the sofa for a few hours, it can be difficult to sleep at your proper bedtime in the evening. It’s a form of weed-induced jet lag. Also, particularly strong MMJ can lead to a very heavy, dead, dreamless type of sleep that can leave you feeling slightly dazed the next day.

A good way around this is to only use very high CBD strains if you have a condition which makes it hard for you to sleep. Otherwise, use strains with more reasonable levels of CBD.

Using Medical Cannabis Can Make You Lazy and Unproductive

Not everyone can be as productive and creative as The Beatles while using MMJ, so be cautious about when and where you take it.

Apparently, The Beatles worked busily on their best albums while baked on marijuana. That must have been some weak weed! All joking aside, some people can be productive and busy while under the influence of medical cannabis, but many people can not.

The very relaxed state that (particularly a high-CBD strain) of weed will bring on is not conducive to productivity. The highly altered state of consciousness and heady high brought on by a THC-rich strain can make you feel energetic and creative, although the art you create when high unfortunately does not always cut the mustard when you take a look at it sober the next day.

A good way to avoid this pitfall is to only smoke later in the day, after you’ve done your important work, or if you need MMJ all day, then try to smoke a lighter strain. Also, try to stay moving so you can avoid getting trapped on the couch watching Judge Judy with a packet of Oreos and a block of cheese.

 

Will MMJ Cure My Aches?

Chronic pain is one of the toughest conditions to live with. There is no standard test for it, it can take many forms, and it often varies wildly from person to person. Most patients are understandably reluctant to rely upon traditional prescription painkillers, many of which are addictive. But what is the alternative to living in constant pain?

Many studies have suggested that medical marijuana can assist in the treatment of chronic pain, and this could offer a lifeline to many people who are suffering daily.

What is Chronic Pain?

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Anyone can experience chronic pain in any part of the body, and it can have a harmful effect on your everyday life.

How is chronic pain defined? Simply put, it can be defined as a pain that will not go away and cannot be easily attributed to any one cause. It can occur at any site on the body, be it head, neck, back, limbs or any other area, and can defined as either nociceptive (which means that its root is damaged tissue) or neuropathic (which means that the pain is coming from a malfunctioning nervous system).

As there is no strict test for pain, and because it varies from person to person and medical professionals rely on the testimony of their suffering patients, it is often very hard to find causes and treatments for pain.

Why Use Medical Marijuana as an Alternative Therapy?

Patients have long turned to alternative therapies for pain management, including acupuncture, reiki, diet and other methods. Due to the addictive nature of opioid painkillers, many patients do not want to get into a cycle of carefully killing their pain while running the risk of becoming addicted, having to detox, and then being left without a way of managing their crippling pain.

Medical marijuana is a logical step for anyone attempting to manage chronic pain. It is a natural therapy that comes in many forms, so there really is an option for everyone.

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Although smoking medical cannabis is the most popular form of therapy for pain, there are many delicious edible recipes out there.

Smoking is clearly the most popular option when it comes to medical marijuana, but did you know that you can also get edible medical marijuana, vape pens and even body rubs? These are just some of the many options offered to patients who need help with chronic pain management. Body rubs, roll-ons and creams containing THC or CBD have also proved incredibly helpful for those suffering from chronic pain, as the ingredients attack the pain at the site.

However, if you’d rather focus on smoking medical marijuana, there are definitely some strains out there that will help you in chronic pain management. Edibles are also an excellent option, as they feel like a real treat in the form of yummy cakes, lollipops or chocolate bars. Vapes are really convenient and easily transportable, whereas traditional joints for smoking are best kept for use in the privacy of your home due to their distinctive smell. The smell of medical marijuana actually can be linked to its power in fighting pain, so in this case, the smellier, the better!

Types of MMJ Used for Pain

White Widow, Super Bud and Master Kush are a few types of medical cannabis used to treat pain.

Jack Herer and Super Bud are two strains that are known for assisting in nerve pain, which is a very common form of pain and one of the hardest to treat. White Widow and Northern Lights are best for muscle pain, as they are linked to relaxation (which can help for body parts that are ravaged with tension). Master Kush and Afghan Kush are great all-round pain relievers, and may prove helpful for anyone who isn’t really sure where to start when treating pain with medical marijuana.

Medical Cannabis Advice from Experts

Your local dispensary can be an invaluable source in talking to an expert. They will have dealt with many patients with varying levels and conditions of pain, and will be able to advise you on what works and doesn’t work in relation to the management of chronic pain through medical marijuana.

It may also be helpful to talk to your doctor or a medical professional in relation to managing your pain, especially if you are reluctant to go down the route of traditional opioid painkillers. You will need to speak to a medical professional to gain a MMJ card if you do not already have one, and depending on your state’s laws, you’ll have to meet strict criteria that fits a definition of chronic pain.

It is important to visit a liberal medical professional who takes medical marijuana seriously and views it as a legitimate treatment, as not all medical professionals believe this to be the case.

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Although studies have proven that MMJ can effectively treat pain, it’s ultimately up to you if you want to try it.

Studies exist that strongly support evidence that medical marijuana can assist in the treatment of chronic pain without the addictive quality of traditional painkillers. The key is to try different strains, as well as different forms of medical marijuana. Get advice from medical dispensaries and medical professionals, but the choice is yours.

There is a strain that works for everyone, and it’s about finding the correct treatment for you so that you can live the best life possible without your chronic pain holding you back.

Is it Safe to Consume Medical Marijuana if I Have Depression?

Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, affecting a staggering 350 million people. In stark contrast to its prevalence, depression often goes entirely untreated, leaving those suffering from this debilitating disease without the help they so desperately need.

For at least the past 400 years, marijuana has been used to treat the symptoms of depression. There is evidence to suggest that long before the advent of medical marijuana cards, the wonder plant was used in India in order to combat the ailment, and since then, this treatment has evolved little due to its simple but effective nature.

MMJ: A Matter of Opinion

Although we’d love to tell you an emphatic ‘yes!’ when you ask if it’s safe to consume MMJ if you have depression, we simply cannot do this. As with all medical treatments, the effectiveness of using MMJ to treat depression depends on the person being treated. While some MMJ card holders would swear that the plant alleviates all their depressive symptoms, others may find that it can worsen their condition.

Lester Grinspoon, psychiatry professor at the Harvard School of Medicine, has gone on the record to say “I think cannabis has a lot of potential in the treatment of mental illness”. However, he too recognizes that like other treatment plans, “it will not work for everyone”.

The Science Behind Medical Marijuana

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Endocannabinoids are chemical compounds in our brain that play an integral role in cognition, emotional response, behavior regulation and motor function.

Dubbed ‘Green Prozac’ by some medical marijuana card holders, it’s no doubt that MMJ has the potential to be a miracle treatment for depression. While the evaluation of cannabis as a form of natural antidepressant is still in its infant stages, initial research suggests that by and large, medical marijuana does have a positive impact on the moods of those suffering with the ailment.

This is thought to be because of the naturally occurring endocannabinoids that exist within our brains. These chemical compounds play an integral role in cognition, emotional response, behavior regulation and motor function, and their chemical makeup is strikingly similar to that of marijuana.

When we’re put under undue stress, the production of these all important endocannabinoids hit an all-time low, meaning that our psychological state is compromised. When medical marijuana card holders ingest the plant, these endocannabinoids are restored by the cannabinoids in the plant, thus reinstating their emotional equilibrium.

Using MMJ as an Alternative to Medication

Medical marijuana is often viewed as a more natural alternative to using antidepressants, which can come loaded with nefarious side effects. Unfortunately, due to the fact that a lot of doctors are wrapped around Big Pharma’s fingers, they can be eager to prescribe these unpleasant drugs – often in high doses – to patients in order to line their own pockets.

If your antidepressants have you suffering from these unwelcome side effects, you could benefit from treating your ailment with medical marijuana instead. Some people like to come off medication entirely in favor of MMJ, but it’s only recommended to do so on advice from a licensed physician.

If you’re new to the plant, it’s wise to use MMJ as a supplement to your prescribed antidepressants until you think you’re in a good enough headspace to come off them entirely.

As medical marijuana is often used as a pain suppressant, this has the secondary impact of depression reduction in MMJ card holders who suffer from chronic pain. Not only does medical marijuana reduce chronic pain in those suffering from it, it also treats its side effects like insomnia and lack of appetite.

The enhanced independence and mobility that comes with reducing chronic pain mean that these cannabis card holders see their mood significantly improve as their horizons widen again.

Medical Marijuana is Not for Everyone

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If after using MMJ, you feel like your symptoms are worse, then you should let your prescribing physician know as soon as possible.

Similar to other drugs, marijuana will not work to reduce depression in everyone. In fact, in some rare cases, it has been observed to significantly worsen the mood of some MMJ card holders suffering with the debilitating disease. This is thought to be because ingesting cannabis can raise THC levels in the body, which in turn can affect our serotonin production.

Serotonin is the chemical in the body that regulates our happiness, so it’s imperative that we produce as much of it as we can. If this production becomes stifled by consuming MMJ, some medical marijuana card holders may see their good mood deplete.

In more extreme cases, cannabis use has been seen to trigger schizophrenia and psychosis in susceptible patients, although research suggesting this isn’t entirely robust.

Medical marijuana card holders who have been newly prescribed MMJ to treat their depression are advised to monitor their moods closely. If you feel like your symptoms may be significantly worsening, with no sign of reprieve, then you should return to the physician who prescribed it to you and voice your concerns. They will alter your treatment plan – perhaps to a different MMJ strain – and will ask you to continue to monitor your progress.

If you still feel unsure of your condition after another period of time, it’s advisable that you stop your course of medical marijuana.

Successful Strains of MMJ

Different strains of medical marijuana vary in how successful they are at treating certain ailments. Strains that are particularly effective at treating depression include AK-47, Chiesel, Blue Dream and Amnesia Haze.

Depression is an incredibly complex condition, which means there is no clear-cut answer on this one. Using medical marijuana to treat depression can be extremely effective for some people, but it can lead to a worsening of symptoms for others.

As with any medical treatment plan, it’s imperative that you talk through your options in detail with your physician before deciding on any course of action.

MMJ Myth-busting: Separating Fact from Fiction

Experimenting with medical marijuana can be very intimidating for a lot of people. The sad thing is that there are many types of people who could benefit from MMJ who are being put off by the hype, stigma and lies surrounding its use. Luckily, we’re here to bust some of the most common myths surrounding medical marijuana so that you can get back to consuming your medication without worrying about myths over truths.

Myth: MMJ Is Only for Stoners

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The primary reason for using MMJ is not getting high. It is the legitimate treatment of debilitating conditions.

This is probably one of the most pervasive arguments that people use when showing their disdain for MMJ. Medical marijuana is not the same as street-level weed used for recreational purposes. People with MMJ cards are patients who have seen medical professionals who deem them worthy of treatment with medical marijuana. The process is legal, safe and not about getting high. Most users of medical marijuana view getting high as a side effect of their medication as opposed to the main reason for consuming it in the first place. Now, we’re not saying that you can’t enjoy the high! Of course, it can be a fun side effect, but the primary reason for using MMJ is not getting high. It is the legitimate treatment of debilitating conditions.

Myth: Medical Professionals Don’t Approve of Medical Marijuana

In California, there is a legal process for obtaining MMJ cards. Firstly, you must attend a consultation, either in person or online, with a fully qualified doctor. The doctor must conclude that you need a medical marijuana card. They must then write a letter, outlining your condition and why you require MMJ to treat yourself. This can then be used to obtain MMJ from a dispensary. There are countless doctors in California who approve of the use of medical marijuana for a variety conditions, and some even work solely on writing letters of recommendation for medical marijuana to those who need it. Do not be self-conscious about seeking help for your condition via medical marijuana. If you are in California, it is very easy to find medical professionals who are passionate about this form of treatment and who want to help patients access it as easily and quickly as possible in a perfectly legal manner.

Myth: MMJ Leads to the Abuse of Hard Drugs

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Although there have been some links shown between the use of cannabis and harder drugs such as meth, cocaine and heroin, it is clear those who use marijuana medicinally do not have this issue.

There is a big difference between using a drug recreationally and using it to treat the symptoms of an illness. Although there have been some links shown between the use of cannabis and harder drugs such as meth, cocaine and heroin, it is clear those who use marijuana medicinally do not have this issue. By treating MMJ as a medication instead of an illicit drug, the stigma of its use for this reason can be broken. By continuing to associate medical marijuana with drug abuse, the false links among addiction, criminal activity and the use of medical cannabis will continue to be spread. This is incredibly negative for the many patients who use MMJ daily to manage their conditions and who may be easily put off by what they perceive to be the danger of opening a gate to hard drugs via the legitimate use of medical marijuana as an alleviative treatment for chronic conditions.

Myth: Medical Marijuana Doesn’t Have Proven Benefits

The benefits of MMJ are obvious to anyone who has ever used it to treat an ongoing or chronic condition. MMJ, depending on the strain, can alleviate symptoms associated with numerous illnesses and conditions, including anxiety, depression, eating disorders, insomnia, post-traumatic stress disorder and multiple sclerosis. Cancer sufferers have also reported that MMJ can ease the side effects of chemotherapy, which can often be incredibly grueling. If patient testimony is anything to go by, medical marijuana has a variety of benefits and allows patients suffering from a wide range of illnesses to go out and live their best lives while unwell.

Myth: MMJ Is a Cure-all for Illnesses and Diseases

Although MMJ is an amazing medicine that can help alleviate many conditions, it has not been shown to cure any major condition. Medical marijuana serves its purpose as an alleviative drug. It treats symptoms as opposed to the root causes of illnesses, which is why it is so helpful in assisting patients who suffer from long-term and chronic conditions. Although this may be disappointing for those looking for a quick fix, it shows that MMJ can be incredibly helpful for people who have been put on a variety of pharmaceutical solutions to treat different symptoms of chronic conditions. It’s just about treating your conditions with the best medication available, one of which can be medical marijuana.

7 Things a New York Medical Marijuana Patient Needs to Know

When Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed medical marijuana legalization into law in July 2014, he made New York the 23rd state to do so. Although this was most definitely a step in the right direction, New York’s medical marijuana laws are still among the strictest in the country, so it can be hard for medical marijuana card holders to keep up with what’s allowed and, more importantly, what’s not. For those of you who may not be au fait with the MMJ 411 in the Empire State, we’ve made a list of seven things that all New York medical marijuana patients need to know.

Acquiring Medical Marijuana in New York Takes a Few Steps

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If you are specifically interested in getting medical marijuana, it’s important that you choose a physician who is registered with the New York Department of Health’s Medical Marijuana Program.

The process of getting medical marijuana in New York isn’t quite as straightforward as it is elsewhere. The first step in doing so is going to your doctor to discuss with them the issue you think might qualify you for medical marijuana certification.

If you are specifically interested in getting MMJ to treat this ailment, it’s important that you choose a physician who is registered with the New York Department of Health’s Medical Marijuana Program. This doctor will do an assessment of you and your illness, and if they think you are suitable for it, they will issue you with a medical marijuana certificate. After this, you need to register with the Department of Health’s online Patient Registration Program. This will get you your Registry Identification Card, which will enable you to acquire MMJ.

You Can Only Get Medical Marijuana at Registered Dispensaries

Once you have your Registry Identification Card, bring it to any one of the registered dispensaries that are dotted around the state to acquire your medical marijuana. It is important that you bring your certificate with you, too, or else you will be denied service. If you are acquiring MMJ as a caregiver, you must bring your caregiver’s registry identification and your patient’s certification. To find out where the nearest registered dispensary to you is, see this list.

New York Medical Marijuana Laws Are Much Stricter Than Elsewhere

Although any kind of legalization should be welcomed with open arms, New York’s medical marijuana laws are unfairly restrictive. Unlike California, in New York, you must be suffering from a life-threatening illness such as cancer, ALS, HIV or multiple sclerosis to receive medical marijuana certification. Even then, your ailment must have “associative or complicated conditions” such as chronic pain or persistent muscle spasms.

Additionally, some methods of medical marijuana consumption have been banned (more on that later), and you cannot deviate from the method of administration appointed to you by your doctor. When you’re at the dispensary, you can only acquire 30 days or less worth of medical marijuana. Unfortunately, unlike other states, you cannot grow your medical marijuana at home.

Different MMJ Strains Help Different Ailments

There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to marijuana strains. Every strain is different, and different strains relieve different ailments differently. Choosing the right strain of medical marijuana to use to treat your ailment is a vitally important part of the treatment process, and you and your doctor should put a lot of consideration into it. Although this can be a long and boring process, it’s well worth the benefits you’ll be reaping once you find the right one. For more information on what strains are best to tackle different types of pain, check out our blog post on the topic.

You Cannot Smoke Medical Marijuana in New York

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Medical marijuana card holders are safe in the knowledge that they have access — albeit restricted access — to the plant that brings them so much relief.

Unlike other states that have legalized the use of the plant, New York has banned all smoking of medical marijuana. This bizarre news came as a surprise to just about everyone who had been campaigning for legalization. Although smoking is not often the preferred method of consumption for medical marijuana card holders — due to the obvious detrimental health effects — it is still annoying for those who are most comfortable consuming this way.

Medical marijuana card holders are still somewhat at a loss as to why exactly this strange rule was brought in with many speculating that it could be because smoking marijuana is typically more associated with its recreational use rather than its medical use. Although this is likely to change eventually, until then, medical marijuana card holders are strictly advised to stick to other methods of consumption.

There Are Several Ways You Can Consume Medical Marijuana

Unfortunately, the New York restrictions on medical cannabis don’t just disallow smoking, but the use of MMJ edibles to treat your ailment is also prohibited. Although this does limit medical marijuana card holders somewhat when it comes to how they can consume, there are still other options available.

The main method of consumption that New York medical marijuana laws allow is the use of liquids or oils for vaporization or inhalation. Vaporization — or vaping as it is more commonly known — is a very popular method of consumption even outside of New York. With vaping, you use a vape pen which heats up your MMJ and creates a cloud from it that you then inhale. Vaping doesn’t overheat cannabis, which means that you’re benefiting from every one of those all-important cannabinoids, which would be destroyed by other methods such as smoking. Alternatively, you could inhale the MMJ liquid using a purpose-built inhaler, which can be easily obtained at a dispensary.

New York medical marijuana laws also allow for the use of MMJ capsules, which can be taken orally. This is a great option for those medical marijuana card holders who might not be comfortable with inhaling MMJ.

You Can Consume Medical Marijuana Anywhere in New York

Like in other states, the key to the consumption of medical marijuana in New York is discretion. Although you may be completely within the realms of the medical marijuana laws by consuming in an obvious manner, this won’t be taken well by the local authorities, and you could find yourself in a spot of a bother anyway.

To ensure this doesn’t happen, make sure you’re always discreet. Consuming discreetly is pretty easy to do in New York as the only methods of medical marijuana consumption allowed here are discreet ones. Most vapes come with a scent to mask the weed smell from vaporizers so those around you while you’re using will be none the wiser.

Although New York is slightly more restrictive than other states when it comes to their medical marijuana laws, as the world becomes more marijuana friendly, these laws will become laxer. Whether we’ll eventually see full recreational legalization, we won’t know for a while, but for now, at least medical marijuana card holders are safe in the knowledge that they have access — albeit restricted access — to the plant that brings them so much relief.

Legalizing Medical Marijuana in Florida: The Steps That Need to Be Taken

More than 70 percent of Floridians voted in favor of Amendment 2. The new amendment will be a game changer for Florida medical marijuana patients, caregivers and health care professionals. It will revamp the state’s alternative health care laws and massively modernize the very conservative and limiting Florida medical cannabis laws that have been in existence since 2014.

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Despite the landslide majority vote in favor of more liberal Florida MMJ laws and the impending deadline for implementation, there is still heated debate happening around medical marijuana.

Amendment 2 will ensure much better protection for industry workers, patients, caregivers and physicians. It will also make medical marijuana a realistic and safe treatment option for many people in the state of Florida who, up until now, would not have been eligible for treatment with a cannabis card. Once the new rules are in place, there will be a much wider variety of medical cannabis products, as well as a larger spectrum of strains and strengths, from which to choose. This is all wonderful news for Florida and its inhabitants.

The state is legally required to adopt new medical marijuana laws by July 3, 2017. There will then be a bedding-in period of a few months before the state is obliged to have the new system fully up and running by September 2017.

Despite the landslide majority vote in favor of more liberal Florida MMJ laws and the impending deadline for implementation, there is still heated debate happening within the corridors of power, not to mention homes, cafes and public meeting spaces throughout the state, about the exact nature of the new MMJ laws and the specific details of what the new rules should look like. Many details of the new Florida medical marijuana program have yet to be finalized.

The debate is so heated in Florida because there are conservative in positions of power in the state who are not happy about the adoption of what they regard as laxer drug laws. It is due to these competing factions that much has yet to be decided.

How Much Medical Marijuana Can Patients Get?

Although it is fairly clear that patients will qualify for marijuana treatment with a variety of illnesses such as glaucoma, post-traumatic stress disorder, cancer, HIV, multiple sclerosis and muscle spasms — similar to other legal MMJ states — it is still not clear what size of prescriptions the law will allow for various conditions. It has yet to be decided how much medical marijuana a patient will be allowed to acquire each day. Will it be left up to the discretion of the patient? Or will there be limits on the amount of herb a person can buy depending on what condition they are suffering from? It is hoped that the Department of Health will decide to allow a flexible amount of medical cannabis to be available and for the patient to decide what they require.

Which Medical Marijuana Products Will Be Available?

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The only thing known is there will be no cap on the amount of THC medical cannabis products sold in the state can contain.

What medical marijuana products will be available has also not yet been finalized. It is hoped and expected that a wide range of products — from edibles to oils to aerosols and ointments to fresh and dried bud — will be available from dispensaries. But the exact details of what will be available are still unclear. What is known is that there will be no cap on the amount of THC medical cannabis products sold in the state can contain. 

What Are the Zoning Laws?

One particular point of contention that is proving particularly difficult to sort out is the exact details of zoning laws for dispensaries. There will be a large increase in a number of dispensaries opening in the state, and not every citizen or city is happy about having a dispensary in their locality. Many cities and districts, including Miami Beach, have put a temporary freeze on new dispensaries opening in their jurisdictions while they attempt to iron out the issues in a way that pleases as many local residents as possible. This is an issue that urgently needs to be sorted out.

What Qualifies a Person as a Caregiver?

It also remains to be decided exactly what circumstances and conditions will qualify a person to become a caregiver, how many people one person can be a caregiver for, and what exactly being a caregiver will allow a person to do on behalf of the patients they are caring for.

What Will It Cost to Join the Registry?

Another detail that remains undecided is the cost of applying to join the Florida Patient Registry. Joining the registry will be mandatory, but the costs involved remain unclear.

Can You Grow at Home?

Unfortunately, under the new amendment home growing will remain illegal. This puts the Florida medical marijuana program well behind other legal MMJ states such as California and Colorado on this issue. Allowing patients to grow their own herb, just as they like it, would have been a huge step in the right direction. Sadly, this is a step Florida did not take on this occasion. Hopefully, in the near future, there will be a rethink on this particular detail of the state’s medical cannabis program.

What About State vs Federal MMJ Laws?

One last gray area (and this applies to all legal medical marijuana states) is the contradiction between state MMJ laws and federal cannabis law. There is nothing the state itself can do about this issue, but surely, as more and more states vote to legalize medical cannabis, it will become unrealistic and silly for the federal government not to look into changing federal MMJ laws concerning medical weed.

It is an exciting time for Florida. They are joining the medical marijuana party in earnest. Amendment 2 will not be a silver bullet — it will have shortcomings, not allowing home cultivation being an obvious example — but it is a big leap in the right direction. There are a number of steps that still need to be taken and decisions that need to be made before full implementation is possible. Time is running out. Get your skates on Florida!

Getting a Medical Marijuana Card in California

For many people, the thought of getting a medical marijuana card in California can be very intimidating. As marijuana has been thought of and classified as illicit for so long, it can be difficult to change your mind and ignore the stigma to realize that medical marijuana is a necessary and helpful medication that can massively alleviate symptoms caused by a range of illnesses. If you suffer from anxiety, chronic pain, depression, anorexia, multiple sclerosis or a variety of other illnesses, using medical marijuana may prove very helpful in reducing your symptoms.

If you’re a resident in the state of California, it’s not just the great weather for which you can be grateful. California is one of 29 states in the U.S. that will allow the use of marijuana for medical reasons. California was the first state to pass a medical marijuana law. Ever since Prop 215 passed in 1996, patients have flocked to the Golden State to take advantage of its patient-centric medical marijuana laws that allow doctors to help patients manage their chronic symptoms. The medical marijuana law is flexible and allows patients to seek assistance from medical professionals in many ways.

Steps to Getting Your 420 Card

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As marijuana is still illegal at the federal level, doctors are not allowed prescribe it. The letter that your doctor will provide you is called a recommendation.

There are some steps you’ll need to follow to get your medical marijuana card in California. You will need a letter from a doctor, but this is not a prescription. As marijuana is still illegal at the federal level, doctors are not allowed prescribe it. The letter that your doctor will provide you is called a recommendation.

You do not have to go to your normal physician if you don’t want to. There are several physicians who work specifically in medical marijuana, and you can even attend an online consultation to get the necessary paperwork.

An online consultation is often the easiest way to get your recommendation. You will have to fill out a consultation form and questionnaire, detailing your reasons for requiring medical marijuana. It is important to pick an online physician that places high importance on your safety and security as a hack or leak of sensitive medical information would be disastrous.

After completing your questionnaire, you will then have a short consultation with a doctor who specializes in medical marijuana. After speaking to you, you will then receive a PDF of your medical marijuana recommendation, and a 420 card and hard copy letter will then be mailed to you, arriving less than a week later.

You will need to have an official form of U.S. identification, but it’s better to use a California ID as some dispensaries will not give medical marijuana to out-of-state residents. Although it is not a legal requirement to be a Californian resident, it is better to be safe than sorry and to comply with the request of your MMJ dispensary.

If you decide to go for an online consultation, it is important to be open and honest with them. Feel free to ask as many questions as you need to and to ask if they have any feedback about particular medical marijuana strains that may be more helpful for you and your symptoms. Different medical marijuana strains work on different symptoms. For example, if you have insomnia, you may benefit from a strain that will be completely unhelpful for someone with chronic pain.

Now Plan a Trip to an MMJ Dispensary

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It is very important that you choose an MMJ dispensary where you feel comfortable speaking to the employees and seeking advice so that you can get the best medical marijuana strains for your symptoms.

Now that you have your 420 card, what’s next? You’ll need to visit an official MMJ dispensary to collect your medical marijuana. Before making a purchase, make sure to ask the dispensary if they accept an online letter printed out or if you’ll have to return when your official letter and 420 card have been delivered.

Different dispensaries have different requirements, and you are not obligated to go to any one MMJ dispensary, so feel free to shop around. It is very important that you choose an MMJ dispensary where you feel comfortable speaking to the employees and seeking advice so that you can get the best medical marijuana strains for your symptoms.

Although the process of getting a medical marijuana card in California may seem troublesome, you just need to remember that you can attend doctors and dispensaries that are comfortable for you.

Although the use of medical marijuana may still be stigmatized, the people who provide marijuana recommendations are medical professionals who want to assist patients in getting the best relief possible for their symptoms. You don’t have to go to a sketchy MMJ dispensary or a dodgy doctor. Online providers will give you an open and safe space to get your recommendation.

You also can pick and choose the best dispensary that meets your needs and allows you to use your medication to live your best life. Get online, get your recommendation and blaze up without fear of prosecution. California will protect you and your rights to manage your condition in the best possible way: with medical marijuana.

Where to Find the Best Medical Cannabis in California

There are many great medical cannabis dispensaries in California. Long-established stalwarts are competing with new and enthusiastic upstarts, vying to provide the best possible MMJ dispensary service to the state’s fast-growing medical marijuana market. Competition among dispensaries is intense, and the happy result is that the standards keep rising. It’s a wonderful state of affairs for California medical marijuana card holders!

With so many excellent dispensaries now open for business in California, we thought it would be a good idea to give you a list of six of our favorite medical cannabis dispensaries operating in the Golden State today.

Exhale Med Center

980 N. La Cienega Blvd. #102, West Hollywood, CA 90069

Located in the heart of West Hollywood, Exhale Med Center is a members-only MMJ dispensary that is adored by its customers. It is very much the hub of a friendly community of medical cannabis aficionados who live in the greater Los Angeles area.

People come from all over the city — and beyond — to purchase some of the best MMJ in the world, learn from the friendly Exhale staff, attend lectures and talks, browse and soak in the positive atmosphere, and avail of the massage, acupuncture and yoga that’s on offer in this awesome, boundary-pushing dispensary. A visit to Exhale Med Center will be educational and eye-opening, and the medical cannabis on offer is absolutely some of the best you’ll find anywhere in the state.

Grass Roots

1077 Post St., San Francisco, CA 94109

Grass Roots has been one of California’s most trusted dispensaries for more than a decade. This San Francisco favorite is elegantly decorated. Entering the store feels like traveling back in time to a beautiful, old Victorian-era apothecary shop. The staff is famously helpful and knowledgeable. The selection of strains, variations, products and accessories on offer is very impressive. The staff is famously helpful and knowledgeable. The selection of strains, variations, products and accessories on offer is very impressive.

Grass Roots lab tests all their products to guarantee quality. They display highly accurate percentages of the different cannabinoids in each strain they sell. They also provide a home delivery service for any customer in the San Francisco Bay area. Grass Roots is a sophisticated, classy medical cannabis dispensary that is leading the way in terms of product quality and customer service.

Kushmart

1343 Hill St., Los Angeles, CA 90015

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Kushmart has possibly the tastiest edibles available anywhere in the state.

Kushmart is located smack-dab in the center of downtown Los Angeles. It has a huge variety of strains, concentrates, cartridges, and holistic products, as well as possibly the tastiest edibles available anywhere in the state! There are lots of cool special offers to avail of such as happy hours, free treats and free flower for war veterans. It provides for everyone. It is wheelchair accessible and has free parking. Kushmart is a weed dispensary with a big heart.

The Apothecarium

2029 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94114

Situated in San Francisco’s historic Castro district, The Apothecarium offers a large range of strains, flowers, edibles, topicals and concentrates at very reasonable prices. The staff are always up to date with the most cutting-edge industry information, so a trip to The Apothecarium can be highly educational and interesting.

Architectural Digest magazine christened The Apothecarium the Best Designed Marijuana Shop in America, so take a trip to this famous San Francisco MMJ dispensary, and steep yourself in fine weed, sophisticated knowledge and some world-renowned interior design.

GMC

7559 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90046

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GMC’s edibles menu is inventive and delicious.

Melrose Avenue’s GMC dispensary sells top-quality flower, edibles, and extracts right in the middle of one of America’s most iconic shopping districts. The prices are capped so they stay very reasonable year-round. GMC’s edibles menu is inventive and delicious — certainly one of the best in the state. Organic treats abound, so waistlines beware. GMC is a high-end MMJ dispensary with first-class customer service and a friendly atmosphere.

Mary Jane’s Collective

4901 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90029

Another Melrose Avenue dispensary with a great reputation, Mary Jane’s Collective has been selling top-quality medical marijuana for more than 10 years. They have a menu boasting more than 100 famous weed strains and inventive MMJ products. They specialize in high-end products and are best known for their signature Blue Dream, Emperor and Super Jack strains. They stock a variety of designer vape cartridges as well as a wide variety of marijuana-laced brownies, mints, chocolate, sweets, chewing gum and cookies. There are always a bunch of special offers on with daily free joints and big

There are always a bunch of special offers on with daily free joints and big discounts for senior citizens, war veterans and patients with disabilities. Mary Jane’s Collective staff pride themselves on providing their customers with a good education in MMJ and its benefits. The customer service is second to none.

So that was our list of six of the best places to find medical cannabis in California. Please don’t hesitate to comment and let us know of any great dispensaries that we may have missed!

Why Everyone Is So Interested in MMJ Tinctures?

If someone mentions medical marijuana, chances are that you’ll automatically think of a blazing joint or even a vape pen. The truth is that there are multiple ways to consume your MMJ. From edibles to smoking, the variety is wide. However, a method that is quickly growing in popularity is actually one of the oldest methods of consuming marijuana. MMJ tinctures are easily bought or prepared, and patients are ensuring that they are becoming more popular by the day.

What Are MMJ Tinctures?

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MMJ tinctures are actually one of the oldest methods of consuming marijuana.

A tincture is a high alcohol-based liquid that has marijuana infused into it. It is usually administered via a dropper onto the tongue from a small bottle. It allows for patients to dose themselves steadily throughout the day. It is also a more discreet way of consuming medical marijuana and is easily transported, given the fact that it is easily disguised.

Where Do You Get MMJ Tinctures?

You need to make sure that you have your medical marijuana card so that you can legally obtain MMJ. Speak to your physician, or get an online consultation and you’ll be given a letter stating your need for medical marijuana. Then you’ll be able to visit your local dispensary and speak to them about the best tincture for you. As with any form of medical marijuana, different strains work best for different symptoms, so make sure you’re informed before you make a purchase.

How Do You Make MMJ Tinctures?

The comfort of a professionally produced tincture is obvious, but what if you want to venture out and make your own homemade tincture? There are two main methods of doing this: the hot method and the cold method. There are positives and negatives to each method, and it is best to research both extensively before you try them out at home.

The Hot Method

Hot extraction means that heat is used to extract the THC from the marijuana buds into the tincture. It’s a far more involved process than cold extraction, but its fans argue that it is totally worth the effort.

First, you’ll need to chop your marijuana buds so you have a greater surface area with which to work. Then, you need to bake it in an oven for four to five minutes at 325°F. After baking, transfer your buds into your alcohol solution using the highest proof of edible alcohol that you can find. This will depend on what is available in your area. Simmer your mixture of marijuana and alcohol in a bowl in a water bath, making sure the mixture never actively simmers.

There are some safety issues in this process, so make sure you are extremely careful. If you’re in any way nervous, cold extraction may be a better option. Finish off your tincture by straining it. YouTube is an excellent resource for finding involved videos that show off every step of this complex process

The Cold Method

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Once you have your medical marijuana card, the easiest way to make MMJ tinctures is with the cold mehtod.

If hot extraction seems too intimidating, you may prefer to do the cold extraction. It takes a lot longer but is far easier for patients who aren’t as familiar with the methods involved in extracting MMJ to tincture form.

All you’ll need for cold extraction is a glass jar, medical marijuana and high-proof alcohol. Fill your jar about three-quarters of the way with medical marijuana. Then, top off the jar with alcohol, leaving some room to stir and shake. Put the lid on your jar, and shake it twice a day for about two weeks. When you notice the color has gone from the MMJ, remove the mixture from the jar, strain it and use it as a tincture. This process is much easier than hot extraction but will produce a slightly weaker tincture than hot extraction.

What’s the Best Way to Use MMJ Tinctures?

The best way to use a tincture is to place one or two drops under your tongue from a dropper bottle. Less is more with MMJ tinctures, and you will have to play with the dosage and frequency until you find the right amounts for you. As the concentration of MMJ tinctures can be a lot higher than smoking, vaping or edibles, take an easy hand at the start. The good thing about a small tincture bottle is that it can be easily slipped into your handbag or pocket, so if you feel the need to use more, it’ll be right there whenever you want it.

MMJ tinctures are a great place to start for someone who may be slightly unsure about the best way to consume medical marijuana. They are discreet, easily transported and without any other side effects just as having to smoke, vape or eat something to ingest the MMJ. As long as you have your medical marijuana card, the world of MMJ tinctures is your oyster, so get out and see what the fuss is about!

How Can I Get a Medical Weed Card in California?

Ever since the passing of Proposition 215, also known as the Compassionate Care Act, in 1996, Californians have had the right to legally possess and use medical marijuana. People across the state suffering from all manner of maladies — from chronic pain to epilepsy to multiple sclerosis — now had access to the plant, which, for centuries, has been used for its magnificent healing powers. There was only one catch: Those who wanted to consume the plant had to have a California weed card (also known as a medical marijuana license).

Although Californians recently voted to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, until the new legislation is brought through completely (and this will probably take about another year or so), you must have a medical weed card to consume marijuana in the state of California. If you don’t adhere to this law, you’re leaving yourself vulnerable to arrest, an entirely avoidable outcome if you take the correct steps.

The process of getting your cannabis card could not be simpler and can be done from the comfort of your own home — an important point to make for those who are homebound due to their ailment or injury.

Before you fill out your medical weed card application, you must consider what kind of pricing plan you want to go with. MMJ Recs offers three plans:

Plan One: $49

This plan gets you a medical marijuana recommendation, which will enable you to acquire medical marijuana. This plan does not come with an ID card.

Plan Two: $74

This plan comes with a medical marijuana recommendation as well as an ID card. We recommend getting the ID card as it makes acquiring MMJ much easier and can help you should you come into a spot of trouble with the police. If you’re consuming the plant and get questioned by the cops, you’ll have the least amount of hassle if you have your ID card on you. This plan is our most popular one.

Plan Three: $149

This plan comes with a medical marijuana recommendation, an ID card and a grower’s permit, which will enable you to grow a small number of plants at home. This is a great option for the horticulturally gifted. The exact number of plants you can grow is decided by your own municipality’s MMJ laws.

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In order to acquire a California medical weed card, you must have a recommendation from a state licensed physician.

Once you have chosen the plan that suits your needs, you’ll then be asked to fill out a short, non-invasive questionnaire on the website. This questionnaire will ask you simple questions regarding you and your ailment and won’t take you very long to complete.

After you complete your questionnaire, you will then be connected, via our HIPAA-compliant telemedicine platform, to one of our state licensed doctors. In order to acquire a California weed card, you must have a recommendation from a state licensed physician. When connected to one of our doctors, you will be given a full medical evaluation over video call from the comfort of your own home. The virtual nature of our medical evaluations gives our patients total flexibility when it comes to where and when they conduct their appointment. You could even do it from work via your smartphone.

This virtual doctor’s visit will be a straightforward assessment where you’ll be asked about your medical history and your current ailments. Additionally, you’ll be talked through the various benefits and risks associated with medical marijuana use. This consultation will last for around 20 minutes.

All our medical evaluations are completed to the highest standard and are in full compliance with the California Medical Association guidelines on medical marijuana cards as well as the state of California’s telehealth laws.

If our doctor thinks you’re suitable to start a medical marijuana treatment plan, then you’ll be emailed your legal medical marijuana recommendation straight away. This can then be printed and brought to a California dispensary and used immediately. The original embossed recommendation will then be sent via discreet post to you the next day. Once this arrives, you can use it to apply for your state issued ID card from the California Department of Public Health, though this is no longer a mandatory part of the process.

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Medical marijuana has long been hailed a super-plant.

As you can see, the process for getting your California medical weed card couldn’t be much simpler — but it could improve your life immeasurably. Medical marijuana has long been hailed a super-plant and has a proven track record of easing pain, ameliorating depression and anxiety, and in some cases even slowing and reversing the progress of some cancers in the body.

Now that you have your 420 card sorted, it’s time you considered a few more things like what is the best way for you to consume MMJ, what type of MMJ is best suited to treating your specific type of pain and even what delicious edible should you make next.

How Medical Marijuana Can Help the Elderly

When someone mentions the word “marijuana,” what typically springs to mind is an image of young people smoking recreationally. However, ever since the legalization of medical marijuana in 28 states, the use of medical marijuana among the elderly has become popular as a more natural alternative to prescription medicines.

There are various strains of marijuana, and some are void of THC, the cannabinoid that produces the psychoactive effects. This means that patients can take marijuana purely for the medicinal benefits without getting high. As people get older, they are likely to start experiencing a host of health problems from arthritis to Alzheimer’s. Here is a list of ways medical marijuana can help the elderly with a variety of health conditions.

Glaucoma

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Studies show that taking medical marijuana may help with glaucoma risk factors and symptoms.

Glaucoma is a condition that affects the optic nerve, which carries information from the eye to brain. As fluid pressure increases in the eye, vision loss gradually occurs. Current treatment includes laser therapy, eye drop medications and surgery; however, these options may cause undesirable side effects or may not even be sufficient in reducing the fluid pressure in the eye. Studies show that taking medical marijuana may help with glaucoma risk factors and symptoms such as reducing intraocular pressure, inflammation and mydriasis, a condition in which the pupils dilate.

Arthritis

Arthritis is a common health problem that affects almost 50 percent of people more than 65 years old. There are five main groups of arthritis, and the various symptoms include fatigue, weight loss, and swelling and inflammation of the joints. Despite mixed opinions as to whether cannabis can help with arthritis symptoms, THC, a cannabinoid found in marijuana, is known to help with chronic pain and has been shown to effectively treat patients and ease severe arthritis.

Cancer

Cancer is one of the most talked about diseases in the world, yet doctors and scientists are still looking for a cure. It affects people of all ages, though there are certain cancers that may affect the elderly more, such as prostate, breast and ovarian cancers. This is because of age-related factors such as chronic inflammation, in addition to changes in tissues and organs, make the cells’ microenvironment more ideal for cancer to develop. Unfortunately, there is no sure answer as to whether medical marijuana can cure cancer completely; however, patients have been known to shown improvements in terms of coping with the side effects of chemotherapy, such as nausea, after taking medical marijuana in the form of cannabis oil. Furthermore, research has shown that cannabis kills cancer cells by inducing a specifically programmed cell death called apoptosis. The compounds found in marijuana also stop the proliferation of cancer cells and tumors.

Alzheimer’s Disease

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Studies have revealed that THC can slow the production of beta-amyloid proteins in nerve cells, which is known to be a key factor in the progression of Alzheimer’s.

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive mental deterioration and is the most common type of dementia. With an increase in age comes with an increase in the likelihood of developing Alzheimer’s, along with other things such as a family history of the disease. Symptoms include memory problems, disorientation, insomnia, speech problems and even hallucinations. This can be a very distressing disease, not just for the patient but also for family members and relatives. Studies have revealed that THC can slow the production of beta-amyloid proteins in nerve cells, which is known to be a key factor in the progression of Alzheimer’s. Additionally, marijuana is also thought to help improve other symptoms of Alzheimer’s such as insomnia, motor functioning and weight control.

Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis is another condition that is likely to affect the elderly as bone deterioration increases with age. Bones become weaker and brittle, increasing the chances of breakage and fracture. CBD may help with strengthening of bones as well as heal broken bones. CBD does this by preventing the enzyme FAAH from breaking down bone-forming compounds, thereby helping to preserve bone strength. Bisphosphonate, which is typical medication for osteoporosis, can come with side effects such as muscular pain, fever and joint pain. Alternative treatment in the form of medical marijuana is promising as it combats theses effects and is a more natural form of medication to treat osteoporosis. For the elderly, smoking may not be the most appealing way to take medical marijuana; therefore, using tinctures may be a more ideal and discreet method.

Overall, there is still research to be carried out to confirm the viability of medical marijuana as a cure for a host of diseases, and there will always be experts for and against. Nevertheless, things seem promising as medical marijuana has time and time again been proven help treat inflammation, which has been called the root of most diseases, while modern medicine focuses on mainly dealing with symptoms.

Do I Need Medical Marijuana? A List of Some of the Most Notable Qualifying Conditions

Most people may not realize that cannabis has been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years. This may be because in the U.S. under federal law, it is illegal to be in possession of this plant. Times have changed, though, and as 28 states in the have legalized marijuana for medicinal purposes, the use of this once-controversial plant has increased dramatically and enabled people of all ages to use it as an alternative to help with a range of diseases and illnesses from cancer to epileptic seizures. This is great news for people looking for a more natural way to aid health problems. If you’re wondering if you might benefit from medical marijuana, here’s a list of illnesses and diseases that are considered qualifying conditions and that might make you eligible for a California medical marijuana card.

Crohn’s Disease

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Cannabinol (CBD), which is a cannabinoid found in marijuana, has anti-inflammatory properties, and in the case of Crohn’s disease, it can limit intestinal inflammation.

Crohn’s disease is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects any part of the gastrointestinal tract. People with this disease can suffer from cramping, abdominal pain and persistent diarrhea. Although diet and prescription medicines are some forms of treatment, around 60 percent of patients with Crohn’s disease will require surgery at some stage during their lifetime. Cannabinol (CBD), which is a cannabinoid found in marijuana, has anti-inflammatory properties, and in the case of Crohn’s disease, it can limit intestinal inflammation. This is because compounds found in the marijuana plant closely imitate endocannabinoids and have been proven to play a significant part in reducing gastrointestinal inflammation.

Cancer

Cannabis can’t cure cancer, but there is no denying that medical marijuana has helped many people cope with the side effects of cancer treatment, such as chemo-induced nausea. The National Institute on Drug Abuse has claimed that cannabis can even help to shrink tumors and kill cancer cells.

Depression

Depression affects more than 15 million Americans and is a serious mental illness regardless of the level. Different cannabis strains are known to have a stress-relieving effect, and low doses of THC have been proven to increase serotonin levels (happy hormones) as well as relieve anxiety. Most people who use medical marijuana smoke it because it is the fastest way to experience the effects.

Epilepsy

If you suffer from epileptic seizures, there is evidence of cannabis’s ability to reduce the debilitating condition. The research is promising, especially for people with a treatment-resistant form of the disease. For children and the elderly, two groups that epilepsy more commonly affects, medical marijuana in the form of tinctures is an ideal way to take the medication. CBD, which is the main compound in cannabis, is confirmed to be a safe and effective treatment for epilepsy.

Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is a neurological condition that affects the spinal cord, optic nerve and brain, which means it can affect your nerve system. This can result in symptoms such as fatigue, spasms, dizziness and balance problems, and the disorder is incurable, which can make life very difficult for patients. Medical marijuana, in the form of cannabis oil, or prescription medicine has been helpful in easing these symptoms by relieving pain and improving brain function as the cannabinoids are anti-inflammatory.

Chronic Pain

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The most common use of medical marijuana is to treat chronic pain.

Chronic pain can be caused by disorders such as multiple sclerosis and fibromyalgia as well as general pains such as headaches, muscle soreness and cramps. The most common use of medical marijuana is to treat pain, and it can work very effectively depending on the level and type of pain and a person’s own physiology. The main method of using cannabis for pain relief is to smoke the marijuana. This is also the quickest way to experience the painkilling properties.

Arthritis

Arthritis, like multiple sclerosis, is an incurable disease. It causes joint inflammation and pain, mainly in the spine, hands, knees and hips. This mostly affects people aged 40 and older, and taking medical marijuana in the form of tinctures or vaping are ideal ways of coping with this disease. Again, this works by reducing inflammation and pain in the joints as the compounds CBD and THC hold painkilling properties.

Insomnia

Insomnia affects many people throughout their lifetime, especially due to today’s hectic, fast-paced lifestyle. Medical marijuana can be used as a helpful alternative sleep aid as opposed to prescription sleeping pills, which may require higher and higher doses as your body becomes used to the drug. The indica strain tends to result in heavier sleep effects compared to sativa, which has more energizing effects.

This list is in no way conclusive of the diseases, illnesses and conditions that medical marijuana can help with. People with glaucoma, weight issues from illnesses such as HIV, post-traumatic stress disorder and Alzheimer’s disease could also potentially benefit from the use of medical marijuana. If you suffer from any of the above illnesses, all you have to do is obtain a medical marijuana card online and try this method of treatment yourself.

What the New Bills in the House and Senate Mean for Medical Marijuana in Florida

In November 2016, Florida voters approved Amendment 2, which took effect in January 2017. The controversial amendment formed part of the Florida Marijuana Legalization Initiative and was designed to extend the rights of patients, allowing for more potent strains of medical marijuana in Florida to become available and to be used in the treatment of a wider variety of medical conditions.

However, since this amendment has passed, and with just one month to go in the session, Florida lawmakers remain at odds as to how to carry out and put into practice the new amendment. Senate and House members disagree on the finer details of how to expand access to the drug, from licensing additional distributors to cover the increase in demand to requiring patients to be seen by the same doctor for at least three months prior to receiving their prescription.

What Does Amendment 2 Mean for Medical Marijuana In Florida?

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Amendment 2 means higher-strength strains of medical marijuana will be allowed in Florida.

Under Amendment 2, medical marijuana use will expand beyond the limited prescription of low-strength strains allowed under the 2014 law. The new legislation also expands the list of ailments that qualify for a medical marijuana prescription from cancer, epilepsy and chronic muscle spasms to include post-traumatic stress disorder, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, HIV/AIDS, glaucoma, Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease and potentially other chronic conditions.

It is still yet to be determined whether the new amendment will expand the rights of patients to choose how they would like to ingest their medication. Currently, patients are only allowed topical lotions with vaping being permitted only in the cases of terminally ill patients. This means that smoking, consuming edibles (brownies, gummies, lollipops etc.) and taking tinctures are still illegal with or without a legal prescription.

What Bills Concerning Medical Marijuana in Florida Are Being Debated?

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Follow SB 406 and HB 1397 to keep tabs on medical marijuana in Florida.

There are two major bills at play: Senate Bill 406, sponsored by Sen. Rob Bradley, is viewed as more permissive and has drawn support from advocates in the medical marijuana community. House Bill 1397, sponsored by Rep. Ray Rodrigues, has been criticized for being overly restrictive and is heavily backed by the Drug Free America Foundation.

What Do These Bills Aim To Achieve?

SB 406 would eliminate the current requirement that states that patients are required to be under a specific doctor’s care for at least three months prior to receiving a prescription for medical marijuana in Florida. HB 1397 would keep such restrictions in place, something that the medical marijuana community claims will outprice many of the patients who could benefit from the prescription.

Doctors are already experiencing a significant influx of new patients eager to qualify for medical marijuana prescriptions. As of now, there are currently seven dispensaries licensed to sell medical marijuana in Florida. SB 406 would immediately expand the number of licenses issued to medical marijuana distributors in the state to allow for the rapid increase in demand. HB 1397 would first require that more 250,000 patients sign up for medical marijuana in Florida before expanding the pool by an additional five businesses. This pool would continue to increase when sign-ups reach 350,000; 400,000; and every 100,000 patients thereafter.

SB 406 would also establish a coalition for medical marijuana research through Tampa’s H. Lee Moffitt Cancer and Research Institute and would require that an independent laboratory test all medical marijuana for quality and potency before it is made available to patients. Given the federal government’s previous troubles in producing medical-grade marijuana for patients, these last amendments have received a warm welcome by the medical marijuana community.

What Will Happen If Lawmakers Can’t Agree?

Amendment 2 states that the new legislation for medical marijuana in Florida must be adopted by the state by June 3, 2017, at the latest. If the Senate and House can’t agree on a workable bill by the end of the session May 5, then the health department will be required to issue the regulation on its own. This would make the new legislation much more vulnerable in terms of various legal challenges and would ostensibly leave the issue in the hands of the courts.

Stay tuned for further news on medical marijuana in Florida and what the new legislation will mean for patients’ right to access, conditions that will qualify for use of medical marijuana, different ways to dose with MMJ legally, and the different strains that will become available and how best to use them. In the meantime, if you’re curious about medical marijuana, its benefits and the rights of patients in other areas of the country, then check out the other articles on our extensive blog.

 

Which Is Best: Buying or Growing Your Own Medical Marijuana?

For someone who has a newly minted medical marijuana card, going to the local dispensary can feel like the only logical option to obtaining their medication. They tend to have a wide variety of MMJ and are staffed by people who can advise you. However, as medical marijuana laws in California also allow people to grow their own at home, many people ask themselves if growing their own medical marijuana is worth it. Before you decide which is best for you, here are some things to consider.

Do You Have Space?

The first thing you’ll need if you want to commit to growing your own MMJ is space. It might seem obvious, but your home must have the space for your project. If you live in a tiny one-bedroom apartment, it’s probably better to go down to the dispensary. Most people who grow their own have a dedicated room for their plants. This is not like growing a regular plant in a vase. Marijuana needs a lot of care and attention. It may seem slightly daunting, but with the right setup, anyone can grow their own.

Are You Following the Law?

Once you’ve decided on your dedicated space, you need to make sure that it doesn’t contravene the law. Under California medical marijuana laws, those who consume medical marijuana can grow plants in up to 100 square feet. If you’re a carer who is responsible for up to five patients, you can grow plants in up to 500 square feet. It may seem like a lot, but it’s definitely worth measuring and checking just in case so that you’re not accidentally breaking the law.

Do You Have the Right Equipment?

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Many supplies you’ll need to grow medical marijuana can be purchased in any gardening supplies store.

The initial equipment is expensive, but you will end up saving money in the long run by growing your own medical marijuana. In addition to the seeds or starter plants, you’re going to need to invest in sturdy pots in which to grow the plants. Depending on your preference, you can grow multiple plants in larger pots or individually plant them. Like any other plants, medical marijuana will require soil (air-permeable soil is best) as well as supplements to help it grow. Liquid or pellet nutrition supplements can be used, and they can be easily purchased in any gardening supplies store.

Lighting is also very important to encourage medical marijuana growth. You will need to purchase growth lamps to ensure that your plants get the best light. Investing in proper LED or fluorescent lights are the best bet for a crop that will meet your medical needs. Timed lights are best, and it’s advised that you have them on for 12 hours and off for 12 hours to ensure the correct balance.

Fans are also an essential purchase if you want to cultivate MMJ at home. Medical marijuana needs to have air circulating near it to ensure that carbon dioxide levels are at an optimum level.

Can Gardening Soothe Your Symptoms?

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The act of growing your own medical marijuana might even help your symptoms.

If your MMJ card has been issued for mental health or anxiety reasons, growing your own medical marijuana may prove to help your symptoms. Gardening has been shown to be a soothing and productive activity that actually can assist those suffering from symptoms of anxiety and depression. So, even when your plants aren’t ready to be consumed, they’ll still be helping you in a small way to alleviate your symptoms.

Do You Have the Right Seeds for Your Symptoms?

When picking your seeds, you need to know what specific symptoms you will be managing with the medical marijuana you’ll be growing. From chronic pain to anxiety to insomnia, it’s important to make sure that you don’t put a lot of hard work in on a crop that may actually work against your symptoms. Do your research carefully before you buy, and make sure you get your seeds from somewhere with a good reputation.

Do You Have a Great Local Dispensary?

Although there are clear bonuses to growing your own medical marijuana, there is also a lot to be said for being a loyal customer of your local dispensary. Dispensaries will have a full range of MMJ, so you’ll be able to try a few strains before you settle on the one that works best for you. The dispensary is also a great place to ask all the questions you might have before you embark on your MMJ journey.

If you’re a newbie to the medical marijuana world, the thought of growing your own might be impossibly intimidating. The professional retail environment of a dispensary can be reassuring as can the opportunity to ensure that you’re purchasing your medicine under the guidance of people who know exactly what they’re talking about.

Whether you’re growing your own or visiting the dispensary, do your research, and make sure that the medical marijuana strain you end up with is the one for you. Knowledge is power, so make sure that whatever avenue you go down, you’re armed and ready to make the best decision for you.

 

What Does Your California Medical Pot Card Allow You to Do?

If you suffer from a chronic condition and are living in California, the chances are that someone, either a medical professional or someone close to you, has recommended medical marijuana as a feasible treatment option. MMJ can assist with the symptoms of many illnesses, both physical and mental, including insomnia, Parkinson’s disease, anorexia nervosa, cancer and migraines. Although it can be odd to try something that has long held a social stigma of being an illegal drug, the truth is that California is a great place to be if you need medical marijuana. However, it’s important to know exactly what the law is and what your California medical pot card will allow you to do.

How Do You Get a Medical Pot Card?

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If you suffer from a chronic condition and are living in California, getting a medical pot card is a feasible treatment option.

First, it’s important to have proper medical guidance when beginning your medical pot journey. Have an open and honest conversation with your doctor about the symptoms you think could be alleviated by medical marijuana. A professional’s advice is invaluable, so speak to them, and they can help you manage your expectations of what medical marijuana will be able to do for you. It doesn’t have to be your family doctor. A registered doctor, osteopath or surgeon can be the person who helps you in your journey for relief.

If you’re nervous about having the conversation in person, you can use an online medical evaluation to get the necessary paperwork to obtain your medical pot card. Doctors are unable to officially prescribe marijuana, even though it’s legal in California, as it’s still illegal at a federal level. They must write you an official recommendation on professional letterhead featuring their contact information. People often refer to a pot card, but the reality is that it’s the letter that you need to secure your medical marijuana. However, for patients’ convenience, most online evaluation services will also provide you with a small, physical card in addition to the letter so you can keep it in your wallet for future use when you visit the dispensary. Don’t forget that you’ll need to get your medical marijuana letter renewed annually!

Sadly, for the rest of the U.S., California medical marijuana privileges are only extended to California residents. You will need to produce a legal form of California ID, such as a driver’s license, to secure your medical marijuana letter. If you want a state-provided card, you’ll also need to provide proof of residence, such as a lease or utility bill, as well as the official form filled out with the letter from your doctor and the relevant fee. A state-provided card might be a better option for patients who want a legal document in relation to their MMJ use, although the letter provided by your practitioner outlining your condition is usually sufficient for most dispensaries.

What Can You Do with A Medical Pot Card?

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MMJ can assist with the symptoms of many illnesses, both physical and mental.

Now that you have your medical pot card, what do you do? Well, you can either grow your own MMJ, which has positives and negatives, or if that feels like too much of a commitment, you can go to one of the numerous medical pot dispensaries in the state of California. It’s important to make sure you take care of your card because you’ll need it every time you go to the dispensary to pick up your medicine.

Dispensaries can be intimidating places for those who aren’t used to them, but it’s important to remember that they’re there to serve a function, much like a pharmacy. The people who work at dispensaries are often incredibly passionate about medical marijuana and its benefits, so if you’re a newbie to the world of MMJ, they can serve as your advisors or spirit guides. Ask questions about the right strains for you and the conditions and symptoms you need treated. You’d be shocked at the different types of MMJ out there!

If you’re feeling brave, you can cultivate your own medical marijuana. It’s important to read up on the legalities of growing your own. The Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act, which is the law governing MMJ, is strict in relation to the amount that patients or caregivers can grow. Technically, you can have the amount that you need to treat your medical condition, though this is clearly a gray area and up for debate. The act does state that you can grow up to 100 square feet of cannabis plants for personal use or up to 500 square feet if you’re a caregiver to five or fewer patients. If you’re going to take the step of growing your own, it’s important to make sure you’re very familiar with the law to ensure you don’t inadvertently break it.

Once you’ve made the step of getting your own medical pot card and you’ve experienced the relief it can offer, you’ll never look back. Don’t be afraid or worried because if you’re lucky enough to be Californian, the state backs your right to seek the best treatment for you.

Will Medical Marijuana in Florida be a Good Thing for Patients

There is a new understanding and acceptance of the massive health benefits of medical marijuana has taken place in the United States over the past decade or so. People around the country are catching onto the fact that this gloriously healthy herb can be of enormous help to patients who suffer from all sorts of physical and psychological ailments.

In 2014, Florida joined in on the action, albeit a bit sheepishly. The state allowed the medicinal herb to be used very sparingly and only in very specific cases. In the rare cases where medical cannabis use was allowed, the strain had to be very low-THC, and the weed could not be smoked. No fun!

But luckily for MMJ-interested Floridians, the good people of the Sunshine State decided by a large majority to upgrade their medical marijuana laws when they voted on the issue in November 2016. More than 70 percent of Florida voters decided to pass Amendment 2 and, in so doing, bring their medical cannabis laws firmly into the 21st century.

What Is Amendment 2?

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Amendment 2 is good for medical marijuana patients and the MMJ industry at large in Florida.

Amendment 2 will change (and greatly improve) the medical cannabis laws in Florida, making it much easier for patients to be prescribed medical cannabis by their local physicians. The amendment will protect doctors, patients, caregivers, industry workers and dispensaries from prosecution. It will recognize many more ailments as deserving of treatment with medical marijuana and will also make a much wider variety of strains and strengths of medical cannabis available across the state.

This is all very good news for medical marijuana patients and the MMJ industry at large in Florida. To have less draconian rules and regulations in the state can only be a good thing, freeing up the industry to innovate, grow and provide the best possible service for its customers. Businesses will be able to operate safely, and doctors and patients will be free to work together in finding the best possible treatments that will increase the quality of life of people suffering from a whole host of conditions. The state will reap major financial rewards, and new employment opportunities will be created. It truly is a win-win.

How Can Floridians Get a Medical Marijuana Card?

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A patient will only need a letter from a Florida physician stating that their condition will be helped by treatment with medical marijuana.

Amendment 2 will potentially put Florida at the vanguard of legal MMJ states. It will match most other open-minded states in the reasonableness and sensibleness of its medical marijuana laws. A patient will only need a letter from a Florida physician stating that their condition will be helped by treatment with medical marijuana and that the benefits of such treatment will outweigh any potential costs. A much broader list of medical conditions will qualify a patient for treatment with medical cannabis, including cancer, multiple sclerosis, glaucoma, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, post-traumatic stress disorder, HIV, Parkinson’s disease and Crohn’s disease.

Caregivers must be 21 years of age or older and must pass a background check. Dispensaries will be allowed to produce and distribute cannabis in a variety of locations all across the state. An extensive variety of marijuana products will be available, such as edibles, oils and sprays. These are all great developments for Florida MMJ patients and the industry.

Unfortunately, patients will not be allowed to grow their own herb, but hopefully, this will be something that the state rethinks in the not-too-distant future.

So a wide variety of high-quality, high-strength medical cannabis products will be available to Florida’s citizens under the new law. Fully legalizing Florida medical marijuana is a wonderful development that stands to improve the quality of life of thousands, if not millions, of people in the state in the coming years.

Why Should You Get a Medical Marijuana Card?

The benefits of medical marijuana use in alternative health care are now well-documented and no longer up for debate. Rafts of studies are showing that MMJ helps with myriad conditions, has strong disease prevention properties and can be a great promoter of overall health. MMJ inhibits tumor growth and even seems to kill cancerous tumor cells while sparing the surrounding healthy cells. This gives MMJ an advantage over conventional chemotherapy, which tends to obliterate all cells in its path.

Cannabis also has strong painkilling properties, calms the minds of people who suffer from chronic anxiety disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder, and shows great potential to improve neurological functioning after a person suffers a stroke. MMJ is is an excellent stimulator of appetite, it reduces nausea and vomiting symptoms, helps alleviate the pain and irritation of glaucoma, calms tense muscles, and reduces spasming. It also seems to control seizures in epileptic patients.

With all these health benefits, it is undoubtedly the case that Floridians will benefit hugely from the introduction of medical marijuana to their sunny state.

Welcome to the party, Florida!

Medical Marijuana in Florida: The Story So Far


On Nov. 8, 2016, Florida vote overwhelmingly in favor of the controversial Florida Marijuana Legalization Initiative, also known as Amendment 2, which allows patients diagnosed with debilitating medical conditions to lawfully obtain and use medical marijuana.

Some have argued that, even with this new amendment in place, the rules set by the Florida Department of Health that outline the new regulations for the issuance of identification cards, qualification and standards of caregivers, and rules for the registration of medical marijuana treatment centers are still too restrictive and would make it more difficult for new businesses to enter into the industry.

So what does all this mean, and what rights do patients have? How does one apply for a medical marijuana card in Florida? Can any doctor prescribe it? How long does it take, and where can you access it? The following article aims to answer all these questions and shed some light on what this new amendment will mean for patients, their caregivers and family members, and the public at large.

What Rights Have Changed?

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With the passing of Amendment 2, more people will be able to use medical marijuana in Florida.

The new amendment will allow the use of medical marijuana for patients with debilitating medical conditions that have been diagnosed by a licensed physician. Back in 2014, the Florida legislature approved the use of low-THC and non-smokable medical marijuana for patients suffering from cancer, epilepsy, chronic seizures and muscle spasms under the Right To Try Act. Last year, this was expanded to include patients with terminal conditions and allowed them to use stronger strains of MMJ. Under Amendment 2, patients suffering from HIV/AIDS, glaucoma, post-traumatic stress disorder, ALS, Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and other similar conditions will now be covered. So, a wider pool of patients will now be allowed access to medical marijuana as a form of treatment, and the MMJ itself will be available at a higher-THC concentration.

How Do You Apply for a Medical Marijuana Card in Florida?

Patients must be at least 18 years of age and be a Florida resident with a valid Florida I.D. to provide proof of residency. If you do not have a Florida I.D., then you can use an out of state I.D., passport or another valid form of photo identification in conjunction with a proof of residency document, such as a bank statement or utility bill. Patients must also obtain legitimate medical records from their primary physician that state they’ve been treated by for at least three months prior to application and that outline their diagnosis and medical history.

All patients will be required to register with the Department of Health — more details on this will follow once the Florida medical marijuana program has been fully implemented.

Finally, patients must also show that they have tried other forms of treatment, without success, and their ordering doctor must determine that the risks of this form of treatment are reasonable in respect to the benefits to the patient.

Can Any Doctor Prescribe It, and How Long Does It Take?

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Florida physicians must complete an eight-hour course and examination before they can prescribe medical marijuana.

To acquire access to medical marijuana in Florida, patients will first need to seek treatment from a licensed physician for least three months before they can validate their prescription. Additionally, the physician must have completed the required eight-hour course and examination. Of the 340 doctors that are already fully licensed, many have reported that they have received an influx of new patients to seeking medical marijuana as a form of treatment. There are currently 1,495 patients registered in the state of Florida, but that number is expected to increase steadily in the coming months. The Office of Compassionate Use, which is tasked with regulating medical marijuana in Florida, has predicted a significant increase in registered physicians within the first quarter of the year to cope with the rising demand.

Where Can You Get You Medical Marijuana?

There are currently seven licensed organizations within Florida, with five already authorized to distribute medical marijuana. At least one more additional license will be granted following a recent settlement made between the Department of Health and two southwest Florida nurseries. Once the patient registry reaches more than 250,000, an additional three licenses will be made available, with one being designated solely to black farmers. The dispensaries currently open are in Tallahassee, Clearwater and Tampa, but according to the Florida League of Cities, 55 cities statewide have put zoning moratoriums in place that either ban or heavily restrict dispensaries from opening. Most of the moratoriums that have been put in place are temporary while the cities and counties await news of the new regulations to come out from the passing of Amendment 2.

Why MMJ Helps Some People Sleep But Not Others

Although insomnia is not one of the qualifying conditions for obtaining medical cannabis in California, it is often a symptom of many of the qualifying conditions that allow you to apply for an online cannabis card. Most people have difficulty sleeping or have periods of wakefulness at some point or other in their life, but true, long-lasting and severe insomnia is something that is very difficult to live with. You’re in pain, and if you could only get to sleep, the pain would go. But you can’t get to sleep because of the pain! First, we’ll take a look at how MMJ can help some people sleep.

Why MMJ Helps People Sleep

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Taking MMJ at night could relieve some of your symptoms and help you fall asleep.

It’s well-known and well-documented that medical marijuana helps reduce stress and aids relaxation. Given this, cannabis can help you fall asleep more quickly. If you are in possession of or qualify for a medical marijuana card in California, then it’s likely that you suffer from a debilitating disease such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s, post-traumatic stress disorder or arthritis. All of these conditions — and much more — make it difficult to fall asleep due to pain and other troubling symptoms. So taking some medical marijuana at night could certainly relieve some of these symptoms and help you fall asleep — and hopefully stay asleep — more quickly.

It’s worth pointing out that inhaling medical marijuana will work more quickly than consuming it in an edible, but the effects of the latter last for several hours and will help you stay asleep longer. If edibles are your preferred method of imbibing cannabis, then make sure you take it a couple of hours before bedtime.

It’s well-known that there are many strains of cannabis, so it’s worth getting some expert advice as to which would suit your condition best. You can do this with one of the doctors when you apply for your medical marijuana card online. If you want help going to sleep and staying asleep, then it’s important that you use not only the right strain but also the right amount. You want to calm that brain down a bit, not liven it up just as you’re trying to sleep!

Why MMJ Is Better than Prescription Drugs

Why use medical marijuana to aid sleep rather than prescription medicines? Let’s take a look at this. Of course, there are many prescription drugs available that can help you fall asleep and stay asleep. You may have tried different ones. There’s no doubt that they can be effective for most people — but what about the side effects?

These can be many and varied. There’s no available drug that does not have any side effects. Some known side effects from prescription drugs include depression, amnesia, suicidal thoughts, headache, memory loss, trouble focusing and loss of appetite. They don’t sound good, huh?

Now, it may be a question of trial and error because everyone is different, so what might be hell for someone could be OK for you. But that could mean a lot of trials and a lot of errors!

Medical marijuana doesn’t have any nasty side effects — apart from a slight hangover the next day if you imbibe too much. (We’ve all been there!) Of course, due to the fact that there is very little research available on medical marijuana and its effectiveness, we don’t know for sure how it affects the brain or our ability to sleep. But it’s worth remembering that it is a natural, herbal medicine that’s been around forever. You have to weigh this against the fact that the side effects of prescription drugs are well-researched and documented.

Why Sometimes MMJ Doesn’t Help People Sleep

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For some people, marijuana makes them hyper.

There could be several reasons for this. First, it could simply be that you’re using the wrong strain, so check with your medical adviser. Second, you could be using too much. It’s important to get the right balance so that you fall asleep easily, stay asleep and then don’t wake up feeling too groggy.

For some people, marijuana makes them hyper. So obviously, if you’re one of these people, it ain’t going to help you sleep at night! If you are in possession of a cannabis card, then you must be suffering from one of the qualifying conditions. It may be that the MMJ is not relieving your symptoms enough to reduce the pain at night and help you sleep, so again, it would be worth discussing this with your medical provider.

There are more 80 naturally occurring cannabinoids in marijuana, and each one of these will affect each person differently. So it’s clearly a very complex area in which there are no definitive answers. It’s a question of taking appropriate advice and finding what best suits you.

Dr. John Cline sums it up well: “Cannabis is an exceedingly complex drug preparation, and its effects depend on the variety of the plant, the composition of the chemicals in any given sample, the route of the administration, the setting in which is it used and the psychological state of the user.”

So whether you already have your California medical card or you’re considering applying for a medical marijuana card online, be sure to seek some good advice on your own particular condition in order to obtain the best strain and take the optimum amount that will suit you.

Why More People Are Getting a California Medical Marijuana Prescription

California medical marijuana use became legal in 1990 after the Compassionate Use Act (also known as Proposition 215) was passed. This act allows citizens the right to access medical marijuana as a form of treatment for a variety of debilitating conditions as well as gives doctors the opportunity to prescribe an alternative treatment regime for their patients. Since this act has passed, more and more people are seeking out medical marijuana as a form of treatment for a variety of ailments including AIDS, depression, anxiety, anorexia, migraines, cancer, glaucoma, insomnia and chronic pain. Below are just some of the reasons why people are turning to California medical marijuana as a means of treatment for their medical conditions.

More Research and a Better Understanding of MMJ

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Legalization means more research into the benefits of California medical marijuana.

Doctors and research facilities are now able to assess the efficacy of the drug properly through in-depth investigations, randomized trials and the collation of different data sets from public records. From this research, they’re constantly uncovering innovative ways to harness the positive effects of MMJ to help better treat patients.

This has opened up many doors for people suffering from debilitating illnesses and reduced much of the stigma attached to the controversial medicine. California medical marijuana usage and dosage can now be finely tuned to suit an individual’s needs with tailor-made treatment programs that will ensure the best level of care for afflicted patients.

With backing from the medical community, society’s trust and acceptance of the drug is growing rapidly and is becoming seen as a sensible treatment option for a variety of ailments that would otherwise leave patients taking too many prescriptions and experiencing the unpleasant side-effects of traditional medicines.

Finely Tuned Medical Marijuana Strains to Suit Specific Needs

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Indica medical marijuana strains are known for their sedative effects.

Different strains of California medical marijuana can be cultivated to manipulate the levels of the compound THC, which is the main cannabinoid responsible for the many positive psychoactive effects felt by consuming MMJ. In this same way, growers can also alter the potency of the medical marijuana and the different effects that dosing with it may have. Sativa, for example, is a strain of marijuana that’s known to be more upbeat than indica, which is better known for its sedative effects. Being able to manipulate the genetics of the raw material in this way means that patients can be very selective in the kind of effects they wish they receive from their MMJ, which means they can avoid many of the “negative” side-effects they might associate with the drug.

Different, Inconspicuous Dosing Techniques

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Smoking isn’t the only way to get high on California medical marijuana.

More information on dosing techniques is another major contributor in leading many to consider using medical marijuana as a means of medication. For many, the idea of smoking isn’t all that appealing. Although social acceptance of the drug has definitely grown over the past few decades, lighting up in public can make many patients feel uncomfortable. Thankfully, there are a variety of ways you can consume your California medical marijuana.

Tinctures

Tinctures are a concentrated, alcohol-based cannabis extract that you dose with by placing one or two drops of the extract underneath your tongue. This form of consumption was actually the most common in the U.S. during the 1920s before Prohibition outlawed the drug completely.

Topical Lotions

Topical lotions are made by decarboxylating (a process that activates the cannabinoids present through heat) your California medical marijuana and extracting the active cannabinoids to create a concentrated cannabis oil. This oil can then be mixed in with regular body lotions or butters and applied directly to the skin for topical pain relief.

Edibles

The world of edibles has moved on a great deal from the stereotypical weed brownies that repopularized the drug in the 1960s and ’70s. Edibles also rely on decarboxylation of the medical marijuana. This can be done simply in the oven with baked goods, or more commonly, a cannabis oil is created and added to recipes to create anything from cakes and cookies to savory sauces and soups. This form of consumption makes dosing in public seem completely inconspicuous and helps put patients at ease.

Easier to Access California Medical Marijuana

If you believe that you have an illness or condition that would be eased by the use of MMJ, then access to your drug of choice could not be easier. After the passing of the Compassionate Use Act, dedicated medical marijuana sites such as MMJ Recs created a quick and easy platform in which to apply for your 420 card. They even provide access to specialized medical marijuana physicians who help to guide you through your new treatment regime and approve your access to the drug.

Who Can Apply for a Medical Marijuana Card in California and How To Get One

The Compassionate Use Act, also known as Proposition 215, was passed in the state of California in 1996. This act allows citizens who qualify for a medical marijuana card to legally procure, possess and use medical marijuana. It also provides a safe environment for patients to talk to medical professionals about medical marijuana use and appropriate dosages for their specific needs. Furthermore, doctors are now able to prescribe MMJ for a range of disorders and illnesses. Anyone can apply for a medical marijuana card if they have an ailment they believe would be alleviated by MMJ use. It’s an easy process that can be done online via a quick survey and an interview with a medical professional.

What Proposition 64 Means for Californians

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Don’t get rid of your medical marijuana card just yet.

Recently, the California government passed another law, Proposition 64, which allows any citizen to legally possess and use cannabis recreationally (much like having a glass of wine with dinner). This has left many who rely on MMJ as a means of medication to wonder where this leaves them with regards to access to medical marijuana and the available treatment options.

Although this new proposition has passed and it’s now legal to possess and use cannabis recreationally, the law won’t come into full effect until at least 2018. This means that until the proper legislation is in place, it will still be illegal to purchase recreational cannabis, so citizens without a medical marijuana card will have to rely on being “gifted” the substance if they wish to partake. This new proposition also forbids the use of cannabis in public arenas, so consumers will have to be discreet and keep to private spaces to imbibe.

Why You Should Hold onto Your Medical Marijuana Card

Patients who qualify for and possess a medical marijuana card will not have these obstacles and will be allowed to dose in most places that tobacco use is allowed. Another limitation to Proposition 64 is that citizens can only be in possession of 1 ounce of flowers or 8 grams of concentrate while in public spaces and will be limited to growing just six plants in their homes. Those with a medical marijuana card, however, will continue to be allowed to cultivate up to 100 square feet of MMJ at any given time.

Although Proposition 64 expands the public’s rights to use cannabis, patients who require MMJ as a means of medication will still receive certain allowances that average citizens will not. Many believe that even when the full legislation is in place, patients with a medical marijuana card will be given preferential treatment in regards to access to MMJ. These rights will include the ability to dose in public spaces, the ability to cultivate larger amounts of MMJ, access to shorter waiting times at marijuana dispensaries, foregoing the state’s sales tax, and protection from the fluctuating market value incurred from marijuana being sold as a commercial commodity.

How To Get a Medical Marijuana Card in California

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Under Proposition 64, without a medical marijuana card, you can only grow six plants in your home.

As mentioned earlier, anyone with a medical condition who believes that access to MMJ will help to relieve their symptoms will be able to apply for a medical marijuana card from a licensed physician. This can be done in a clinic by asking your primary doctor, visiting a specialized 420 doctor at an evaluation clinic or, to speed up the process, via an online service such as that provided by MMJ Recs.

However, some doctors still don’t feel comfortable prescribing MMJ as a form of treatment, and specialized evaluation centers are often located in hard-to-reach places. With long waiting times and short evaluation time, patients leave feeling uninformed and uncertain about their new treatment plan. Online services not only cut down on wait times, but they also provide access to highly specialized medical marijuana doctors who are able to give patients a tailored treatment plan that outlines the best methods of dosage, the different strains available, and an outline of the different benefits and risks associated with this form of medication.

Medical marijuana is often prescribed to alleviate medical conditions that substantially limit a person’s ability to conduct one or more of life’s major activities as defined in the Americans with Disabilities Act or, if not alleviated, may cause serious harm to the patient’s physical and mental health. Some of the most common qualifying conditions include arthritis, glaucoma, AIDS, cancer, anorexia, chronic pain and migraines. There are nearly 50 qualifying medical conditions that MMJ Recs physicians recognize, you can follow this link.

If you apply online, you’ll need to fill out a standard medical form that you can upload along with any other relevant medical documents. The actual evaluation from the medical marijuana physician takes only a few minutes and involves a short phone call or Skype conversation where you’ll provide information about your current condition, medical history and why you believe that MMJ will help to improve your quality of life.

Once you’re approved, your medical marijuana card and official recommendation letter will arrive in the mail complete with your full name, date, patient ID, expiration date (a renewal of your medical marijuana card will be required every year), a doctor’s signature and an embossed seal. With this card, you’ll be able to buy MMJ from licensed marijuana dispensaries or order it online though protected marketplace sites.

Obtaining a medical marijuana card in California couldn’t be easier and is viewed as an appropriate treatment plan for a variety of ailments. If you feel that your life would be improved by the use of MMJ, then you’re just a few clicks away from obtaining your card and full rights to this powerful, life-changing medicine.

Where Are the Best Marijuana Dispensaries in California?

California is on track to rake in approximately $1 billion a year in tax revenue from the medical marijuana market, so it’s not surprising that there are thousands of marijuana dispensaries active in the state. So how do you even go about finding the right one? Once you have your cannabis card, here are some of the absolute best marijuana dispensaries to buy your medical marijuana in California.

Elemental Wellness, San Jose

Almost like a spa for medical marijuana, Elemental Wellness has everything from yoga and sound-healing classes to massage and cannabis-cooking seminars. It truly combines the physical and mental well-being aspects of MMJ. The selection of things available is dizzying. There are some interesting seeds in the nursery, and its MMJ-infused skin care products are wonderful. But the star is its exclusive strain, The True OG, which is a seven-time Cannabis Cup winner.

Harvest, San Francisco

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Harvest is more farmers market than marijuana dispensary.

Harvest doesn’t look like other marijuana dispensaries. It’s basically an average store — with shopping baskets and all. Their motto — “From Farm to Feeling” — gives the place a farmers market/health store feel, which is exactly what it’s trying to emulate. You’re able to freely browse all the products, adding to the relaxed ambiance. It has a private lounge where members can use the MMJ they purchase, and with cannabis lockers, a 5 percent discount, and early access to rare and limited products, it’s worth becoming a member. With two San Francisco locations, think of it as the Whole Foods of marijuana dispensaries.

Caliva, San Jose

According to Business Insider, Caliva is the No. 1 dispensary in the country. These guys are incredible. Caliva has its garden on-site, so the menu changes frequently. Its concentrates and edible menus are diverse, featuring everything from chocolate-covered espresso beans to MMJ-infused bath salts. Also notable is that it has six exceptionally knowledgeable budtenders who all specialize in different areas and are deeply interested in all things cannabis. Also worth knowing: Caliva gives away free tacos on Taco Tuesday to anyone who spends more than $45.

Airfield Supply Co., San Jose

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Some medical marijuana dispensaries offer more than MMJ. Airfield Supply Co. also offers chiropractic and acupuncture services.

The aviation-themed dispensary Airfield Supply Co. cultivates its MMJ on-site. The staff is extensively trained, so you’ll always be in good hands. It offers cannabis cultivation classes, which useful for anyone who wants to grow their favorite medical marijuana strains at home. Founded by a group of health and fitness fanatics, Airfield Supply Co also offers chiropractic and acupuncture services so members can develop their physical, mental and emotional fitness. This marijuana dispensary strives to provide a complete healing solution, excelling in compassion and professionalism.

Purple Star MD, San Francisco

Name Leafly’s No. 1 dispensary in Northern California and consistently ranking on top of dispensary lists across the internet, Purple Star MD has more than 40 strains of indica flowers alone. Its menu seems to go on for days, but its standout feature is the deep roots the dispensary have within the community. It shares its profits with four local nonprofit organizations.

California Herbal Remedies, Los Angeles

California Herbal Remedies is one of the best for many reasons. First, there is a Mexican restaurant next door. I mean, you can’t really beat that, right? If you want more solid medical reasons to check it out, the fact that it carries more than 70 medical marijuana strains should be enough. There’s literally something for everyone regarding budget and medical need, and the growers always maintain top quality. Check out the specialty strains, which are highly psychoactive.

Coast to Coast Collective, Canoga Park

This place is different: Coast to Coast Collective is in its own building with security, and it comes with parking, so you feel comfortable and in professional hands straight off the bat. Then comes the fact that the dispensary takes the utmost pride in its product. It grows everything on-site, so it is rarely out of stock. The staff is highly intelligent and educated about the medical marijuana they grow. The dispensary has a friendly vibe and provides a sense of wholesome healing.

Humboldt Patient Resource Center, Arcata

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One of the first marijuana dispensaries in California, Humboldt Patient Resource Center holds a Clean Green certification.

Humboldt Patient Resource Center has been around for more 16 years, so it was one of the first marijuana dispensaries in California and rightfully has many awards to its name. It has a great selection of clones available for you to start your medical garden at home, and it holds a Clean Green certification, which ensures it abides by the best practices in the industry when it comes to all things fertilizers, pesticides, waste management and patient information.

RAW Medical Marijuana Collective, San Diego

This dispensary is the bomb. Not only does RAW Medical Marijuana Collective offer a classic range of MMJ strains, including old favorites such as Sour Diesel and Green Crack, but it also has its own brand of medical marijuana tinctures, edibles and oils called Dr. RAW Organics. It is all about delivery, and it’s shockingly speedy — within 20 minutes — so good when you’re in a squeeze. With budtenders who are truly passionate and knowledgeable and will respond to your every query, this dispensary is a laid-back place to get your MMJ.

Captain Jack’s Medical Marijuana Dispensary, Upland

Captain Jack’s is not only an awesome dispensary that has a good range of MMJ, but it also has some unique glassware. Don’t miss the famed dabs bar. This dispensary is less like a healing center and more like something out of Dude, Where’s My Car?

Now that you know what marijuana dispensaries to go to, make sure you get your get medical marijuana card online so you can enjoy all the benefits of MMJ.

Should Medical Marijuana Be Available to Those with a History of Mental Illness?

If you’re at all informed regarding medical marijuana use, then you’ll be aware that it is considered by some as a trigger for certain mental illnesses. But is it really a trigger, or is that a conspiracy theory preached by those who intend to demonize medical marijuana. It can’t be hard with things such as medical marijuana to separate fact from fiction and then make sound judgments. That’s why in this article we will be discussing whether medical marijuana should be available to those with a history of mental illness. We won’t mince the truth. Rather, we will lay it all out on the table so you can make an informed decision. If you haven’t already, make sure you get your medical marijuana card online.

In spite of government, media and doctors’ warnings about potential mental health issues, many people view medical marijuana as a harmless substance that alleviates stress. On one side of the fence, you have convincing data proving the powerful medicinal properties of the drug in the treatment of many chronic illnesses, diseases and disorders such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease, Crohn’s disease, nausea, seizures, arthritis, multiple sclerosis, lupus, poor appetite and weight loss. Combined with this you have the fact that it’s nontoxic and cannot cause death by overdose.

Furthermore, THC — the main cannabinoid in marijuana — has been shown to have positive effects on brain cells. THC is a potent neuroprotectant and sparks neurogenesis (the growth of new brain cells)! So if you haven’t already, get your medical marijuana card online!

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Medical marijuana is a drug, and every drug has notable physiological effects.

With all these benefits, medical marijuana can seem to do no wrong. However, it must not be forgotten that marijuana is a drug, and every drug has notable physiological effects when ingested or otherwise introduced into the body. Anything that changes how your body or brain functions, even temporarily, will have certain drawbacks. This includes even milder drugs such as caffeine. Any decision to use a drug should take into consideration the positives and negatives. Marijuana holds no distinction here.

Although there are almost innumerable benefits to using medical marijuana, it does have its detriments. THC is a psychoactive compound, meaning it affects the mind. Even though THC is a relaxant, in higher doses, it can have the reverse effect, increasing anxiety. Some cannabis users may suffer from hallucinations, delusions and paranoia. Frequent use of the drug seems to double the risk of developing long-term schizophrenia in those with a genetic vulnerability. Those who use cannabis while still developing — teenagers and young adults — have a far higher risk of developing schizophrenia, depression or bipolar.

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Medical marijuana isn’t right for everyone.

Who should avoid smoking marijuana then? Generally, those in their formative years or those with a family history of mental illness. Even those who start noticing heightened anxiety or stress during or after smoking should cease usage. The risk is just too high.

Medical marijuana definitely should not be available to those with a history of mental illness. But often mental illness goes undiagnosed, so how to enforce this on a state level becomes especially difficult. Far easier to implement would be the introduction of marijuana education in schools. This would allow students to make informed decisions based on their family history and their age.

But if those with a history of mental illness want to smoke cannabis despite the risks, then finding MMJ strains very low in THC and high in cannabidiol (another major component of the plant) is the next best thing. Unlike THC, cannabidiol is non-psychoactive. As it doesn’t affect the brain, it far less likely to trigger mental illnesses. There are even CBD oils that contain only trace amounts of THC, and these are likely the best option if you wish to get all the benefits of CBD — anti-inflammatory, anticonvulsant, antioxidant, antiemetic, anxiolytic and antipsychotic agent — without any of the THC drawbacks.

CBD is an antipsychotic agent. There is much evidence suggesting that the use of CBD in isolation can actually be used to treat psychotic disorders. Ask your local marijuana dispensary for details. If you need a cannabis card, the best place to get it is online!

Hopefully, you now feel a certain illumination concerning medical marijuana use among those with mental illness and can inform others of when (and when not) to avoid weed. There certainly is no simple answer, but having all the facts at hand will lead to better decisions.

If you need to figure out how to get a medical cannabis card online, be sure to check out our other articles, which clearly spell out the process. 

Which Medical Marijuana Strain Do I Need If I Have Insomnia?

Insomnia is a chronic condition that affects millions of people worldwide. Most people will experience the inability to sleep at some stage in their lives, but true insomnia can be a debilitating condition. It can be a symptom of an illness such as stress, heart disease or sleep apnea and can cause health issues such as irritability, poor concentration, stress and even depression. Fortunately, there is a medical marijuana strain that can help!

Insomnia can be divided into three types depending on how long it lasts. Transient insomnia, which lasts less than a week, is the most common type. Acute insomnia tends to last longer than a week but less than a month. It is most commonly linked to stress. The most serious and long-lasting type of insomnia is chronic insomnia, which can cause serious health issues including hallucinations.

The problem is that insomnia is incredibly debilitating. We need sleep to allow our brains and bodies to rest, so if you’re not sleeping properly, your work, personal life and health will suffer. Conventional treatments for insomnia can be problematic as many of the pharmaceutical solutions can be dangerous or addictive and won’t always help in the long term. Other solutions such as meditation, diet or lifestyle changes won’t work for everyone.

This is where medical marijuana can help. In obtaining a medical marijuana card online, a whole new world will be opened to you in terms of managing insomnia. Different medical marijuana strains have different effects, so you’ll need to know which strains are the most suitable for you. If you get it wrong, you could make your insomnia even worse!

Medical Marijuana Strains: Indica vs Sativa

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To treat insomnia, choose a medical marijuana strain with higher levels of CBD.

Generally, indica strains are better than sativa strains for treating insomnia. The ways in which you consume the weed are many and varied, but avoiding sativa is recommended if you need to drift off. Sativa strains tend to induce more of a giddy feeling, and this should be avoided if you’re trying to fall asleep. It’s also important to go for an indica strain that has smaller amounts of THC because high THC levels can induce anxiety, which could make your insomnia worse, especially if its roots are in mental illness or depression. It’s also important to choose a medical marijuana strain with higher levels of cannabidiol (CBD) as this has sedative effects and has been shown to work to treat other conditions such as extreme epilepsy and psychosis.

Afghani indica is often recommended as a good medical marijuana strain for those who are suffering from insomnia. This strain characterized by a soft and stress-free high that will allow your mind to wander and your body to relax, encouraging sleep to take hold. It also encourages pain relief, which is good if you suffer from other issues alongside your insomnia. A word of warning: This strain can often encourage a strong sense of the munchies so it can be helpful to keep some snacks on hand or else consume it via edibles to curb your hunger. Being full can also help to soothe you to sleep as the body expends energy digesting. This is why we often feel exhausted after having a big meal.

Choosing the Right Medical Marijuana Strain

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If your depression or anxiety is keeping you up at night, a CBD/THC combination can be a helpful treatment.

Sometimes it can be helpful to figure out if your insomnia is a stand-alone condition or a symptom of something larger. Picking strains that can treat the main illness, as well as the symptom of insomnia, can be helpful. The charmingly named Girl Scout Cookies strain contains a combination of THC and CBD that mixes to produce a mildly psychoactive high, which proves very relaxing for the body. It is known for helping to physically and mentally calm users and is also known as a helpful antidote to depression and anxiety, both of which can be the initial causes of insomnia. If your depression or anxiety is keeping you up at night, a CBD/THC combination can be a helpful treatment.

It’s also recommended that you consume your medical marijuana via edibles as their effects tend to be the longest lasting of all the methods of consuming cannabis. If you’re good at baking, the process of cooking your own edibles can also be relaxing enough to help bring on sleepiness. Baking and cooking have been shown to be a therapeutic process, so coupling your medication with an activity that is naturally relaxing can be very helpful in curbing insomnia.

Depending on the cause of your insomnia, there is a medical marijuana strain out there that can help you. It’s very easy to feel as if you’re the only one suffering, but the fact is that the vast majority of adults will suffer from insomnia at some stage in their lives. Medical marijuana can be an effective treatment, and once you’ve found the best medical marijuana strain for you, it won’t be long before you’re counting sheep and fast asleep.

How Long Until Medical Marijuana Is Legalized Throughout the US?

Marijuana laws in the United States have made great strides in recent years. Since California first made medical marijuana legal back in 1996, 28 other states and Washington, D.C., have followed suit. Although more states have also legalized medicinal marijuana use in certain respects, limitations are still in place that often restrict psychoactive strains and require a physician to prescribe the drug versus simply recommend it.

Nevertheless, the outlook on marijuana throughout the U.S. is clearly shifting in its favor. Not only is medical marijuana perfectly legal in more than half of the states, but also recreational use is permitted in eight of those states with California, Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada all electing to legalize recreational marijuana in November 2016. So how long until the rest of the country follows in their footsteps?

This is a question that isn’t easy to answer. Several key factors play a huge role in predicting which states will be next in casting a positive judgment on the use of medical marijuana. Given the results of the 2016 general election, along with the subsequent picks for certain positions within government, a wrench (or two) have certainly been thrown into the mix.

For example, although the general public has voted to legalize the use of marijuana on a state-by-state basis, cannabis use is still illegal under federal law. Despite there being a total of 44 states in which some form of cannabis law exists, the federal government regulates drugs through the Controlled Substances Act, which does not recognize a difference between medical and recreational use.

Medical marijuana laws have come a long way in recent years.

Under federal law, cannabis is treated no differently than other substances such as heroin and cocaine. Furthermore, Jeff Sessions, Alabama senator turned attorney general, is known to have a bitter disdain for any kind of marijuana use. Sessions once “joked” to an African-American colleague that he had no issue with the KKK, “until [he] found out they smoked pot,” and was quoted as saying, “Good people don’t smoke marijuana.”

So, perhaps it wouldn’t be wise to hold your breath for a change in federal law. However, as the federal government does not have the ability to direct state and local police, and with only 80,000 out of 1.2 million law enforcement agents operating at a federal level, tackling pre-existing marijuana laws would be rather difficult. Although states looking to legalize medical marijuana may face an uphill battle, it’s unlikely that they’ll stop trying.

So, which states are the most likely to legalize the use of medical marijuana next? Several states passed legislation in 2016 in the herb’s favor, and there were 13 more states that put forward legislation, including those outlined below. Although roadblocks may have been met, it’s clear that there are some states that will be pushing for medical marijuana in the coming years.

In fact, lawmakers in numerous states have already introduced medical marijuana bills in the 2017 session. Kentucky, Missouri, North Carolina and Texas all have a reasonably good chance to legalize medicinal marijuana within 2017 or soon thereafter.

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Kentucky, Missouri, North Carolina and Texas all have a reasonably good chance to legalize medicinal marijuana within 2017 or soon thereafter.

Kentucky has already implemented a highly limited law regarding cannabidiol (CBD) strains of medical marijuana, allowing patients with intractable epilepsy and a written recommendation from their physician to obtain CBD oil. Gov. Matt Bevin has also acknowledged medical evidence associated with marijuana. Furthermore, a 2013 Kentucky health poll found that 78 percent of state residents support legalizing the drug for medicinal purposes.

Missouri put forward the New Approach Missouri Bill in the 2016 election. Although regrettably falling short by 23 signatures to make the ballot, this bill would have given voters the opportunity to decide upon the use of medical marijuana. On Jan 5, 2017, Republican Rep. Jim Neely introduced House Bill 437, which would allow terminally ill patients access to marijuana. Additional support is highlighted through a 2016 public poll, which found that 62 percent of Missouri voters support medical marijuana.

It may surprise you to find Texas making this discussion, too. The historically conservative state still currently holds some of the strictest marijuana laws in the country. But in 2015, lawmakers legalized low-THC cannabis oil for patients suffering from intractable epilepsy. State Sen. José Rodriguez has since proposed a constitutional amendment authorizing the possession and sale of marijuana for medicinal use. Polling also found 71 percent of Texans support expanding medical marijuana treatment.

Although not as likely as other states, the possibility for North Carolina’s medical marijuana laws to be reassessed is certainly viable. Several bills introduced by legislators have suggested new policies will come eventually, and a CBD-only bill was approved in 2014 for those suffering from intractable epilepsy. With a 74 percent approval rate, polling found an overwhelming majority of residents are in favor of legalizing medical marijuana.

As is apparent from numerous state laws regarding the use of medical marijuana, progress is happening. Although it is unlikely to be legalized at a federal level anytime soon, more states are becoming increasingly liberal in their outlook toward the drug. Further state legalizations or not, cannabis is assured to continue its immense growth across the U.S. going forward into 2017 and beyond.

How Medical Marijuana Helps Fight Arthritis

By now, most folk who have more than a passing interest in this subject are familiar with how to get medical marijuana in California. You might still be asking yourself questions though. Is it for you? Will it help? Here we take a look at how MMJ can help arthritis suffers – both rheumatoid and osteo – and we also tell you how you can apply for a medical marijuana card online.

Whilst it still remains for the research into the full benefits of medical marijuana to be absolutely conclusive, a broad scientific consensus is emerging as to its definite therapeutic value based on an increasing number of successful preclinical and clinical trials. These studies show that cannabis has anti-inflammatory effects that can help arthritis patients live happier, healthier lives. Consequently, medical marijuana is gaining a great deal of popularity as a treatment for arthritis and there is an ever-increasing number of people applying for and getting a medical card in California. Medical cannabis can ease suffering and reduce swelling without the additional ‘pain-in-the-ass’ side effects caused by the frequent use of NSAIDs or opiates.

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Many older people are discovering the healing benefits of medical marijuana.

According to some statistics published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in the United States one in ten of our population is currently living with some form of arthritis. This astounding stat puts arthritis on the undesirable pedestal of being the biggest cause of disability. Women make up 60% of the arthritis diagnoses. There is no cure for arthritis, just pain-relief options, complete with those nasty side-effects of course. Anyone living with arthritis is only too aware that it can be one of the most frustrating illnesses. Simple tasks like opening a jar, standing up after sitting, or doing your grocery shopping can become pretty damn unmanageable due to chronic pain. 

So is medical marijuana rather than prescription drugs the best way to deal with your persistent pain?

Opiate abuse has reached epidemic proportions, so many would say that it’s more than time for MMJ to stand up and take a bow. Medical marijuana treatment is seen as a far less harmful and also less addictive way to treat the chronic pain associated with arthritis. According to Mike Hart, MD, head physician of the Ontario Chapter at Marijuana for Trauma:

“Cannabis is a much more effective and safer long term solution than opioids. The science is clear and demonstrates that cannabis is far safer than opioids. In fact, it’s not even close. Opioids have killed more people than all illegal drugs combined, while cannabis has never killed a single person.”

Pain is one of the most debilitating aspects of rheumatoid arthritis in particular. Fortunately, there is strong evidence that medical marijuana is one of the best chronic pain management tools around. In a 2010 clinical trial, researchers found that just three puffs of cannabis a day can reduce arthritis pain.

So we know that many patients are turning to MMJ for some effective relief from their arthritis nightmare, without the disturbing side effects. But, does medical cannabis really treat arthritis inflammation and the associated pain? Research suggests that it can. 

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Arthritis sufferers can wave goodbye to pain with MMJ.

In 2015, Canadian Researcher, Dr Jason McDougall, undertook a three-year study to find out how effective medical marijuana can be in the treatment of arthritis. The study is supported by the Arthritis Society to investigate if medical cannabis can actually fight inflammation and even repair joint damage, rather than just acting as a numbing agent to the brain against the pain.

When asked to describe the nerves of an arthritis sufferer, McDougall said

“The nerves are like wires that have been stripped of their coating. They’re all bare; they’re all raw and responsible for feeling a lot of pain. What we hypothesize is that by locally administering these cannabis-like molecules to those nerves, we’d actually be able to repair them and reduce the pain of arthritis.”

So we have an increasing number of professionals within the industry recognizing the therapeutic value of medical marijuana and, alongside this, the public is also becoming much more receptive to medical marijuana treatment. In January 2014, CBS News conducted a national poll and found that 86 percent of Americans believe doctors should be permitted to prescribe cannabis to patients who suffer from serious illnesses such as arthritis. 

Even though recreational marijuana is now legal in California for adults over the age of 21, the details of the new law are complex. It is recommended therefore, certainly for the foreseeable future, that if you need marijuana for medical purposes it’s imperative that you apply for a California marijuana card. The card provides you with benefits that recreational users of the herb simply won’t have.

To see if you have the requirements for a medical marijuana card in California, simply apply for a medical marijuana card online. You only need a form of US identification and a condition for which MMJ is recommended. Be sure to discuss with a doctor which strain would be best for your particular condition, as there are like a thousand different strains of the stuff out there! Once you have your CA medical marijuana card, you are ready to kick that debilitating arthritis’ ass. So what are you waiting for?

Which Medical Marijuana Strain Is Best For Relaxing?

In today’s world of constant stimulation from social media, email, text messages and phone calls, rising job insecurity, and both national and international tension, stress is at an all-time high. Feelings of stress or anxiety release cortisol – the stress hormone. Cortisol plays a significant role helping us deal with stress by shutting down unnecessary functions, like reproduction and the immune system, so that the body may direct all focus toward dealing with the stress. The functions of cortisol are beneficial in their natural state, believe it or not, but they are supposed to be temporary, lasting just long enough to narrow your focus on dealing with the stressor by fighting or fleeing. However, modern-day stressors are complicated and often resolution cannot be found with fight nor flight. So we live out lives on a constant supply of cortisol which leads to high blood pressure, less sleep, sickness and disease, loss of muscle and bone density, loss of hair, and neurodegeneration. It’s obvious then, that we should avoid stress as much as possible, but in those situations where it is inescapable, how do we go about reducing stress, how do we ensure we have down time, how do we ensure we relax? Well, one of the best ways we know of is to use medical marijuana.

But with an almost endless supply of strains, each producing its own unique set of effects inside the body, it can be a slow and arduous process of elimination trying to find the elixir of relaxation. That’s why we’ve written this article to help you find the best of the best medical marijuana strain for relaxing so you can get right to the smoking, eating, or drinking the potent plant. 

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Fancy a calm blue ocean in your mind? Get the right medical marijuana strain and you just might find it.

Don’t Strain For a Strain!

In deciding on a strain, a knowledge of THC and CBD and the difference between the two is the most important thing, so that’s what we’ll go into first.

The strands available – indica, sativa, and hybrids – all contain a whole host of cannabinoids. In fact, there are at least 113 different cannabinoids isolated from cannabis, each responsible for distinct effects in the body. A cannabinoid is a class of chemical compounds that acts on cannabinoid receptors (involved in a variety of physiological processes including appetite, pain, mood, and memory) in cells that alter neurotransmitter release in the brain. THC is the primary psychoactive cannabinoid of cannabis – responsible for the high as well as being anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, and antiemetic. However, those suffering from anxiety, paranoia or those with a propensity toward mental illness are likely to react poorly to the psychoactive THC. In fact, unless your particular ailment calls for it, we recommend finding a strain lower in THC and higher in CBD.    

Cannabidiol (CBD) is another major component of the plant and the one accountable for many of the medicinal properties. Scientists say that CBD modulates electrical and chemical activity thereby quieting the excessive activity in the brain that causes seizures. Users of strains high in CBD describe a cerebral high and studies have shown that it is an anti-psychotic likely to help with stress, anxiety, mental illness, and behavioral issues.     

As we just mentioned, there are two main species of marijuana: sativa and indica, as well as also hybrids of the two. Both come with a unique smell, taste, and strength profile. Sativa has a fruity, sweet aroma while indica tends to have an acrid, stinky odor. But the most important distinction between the plants is the amounts of THC and CBD in them. Plants with high levels of THC are typically considered indica; while plants with high levels of CBD are typically considered sativa.

Sativa increases creativity, energy, and serotonin (a neurotransmitter that is responsible for the maintenance of mood balance and plays a huge role in the prevention of depression) with its high concentration of CBD.

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Make sure that you purchase the correct medical marijuana strain to help you live a stressless life.

Note: Asking your local dispensary about specific strains for relaxation will help pinpoint your ideal strain, but nothing beats a bit of experimenting: each of us has a different composition and, as such, will react uniquely to each strain in ways that may differ from expectations garnered from the norm.  But below are our two favorite strains for relieving anxiety.

White Widow (Hybrid)

A cross between a South American Sativa and an Indian indica, this strain creates a sense of euphoria and positivity making it ideal for those who suffer from generalized anxiety, PTSD, and depression.

OG Kush (Hybrid)

Possibly the most popular hybrid is OG Kush. It creates a gentle elation ideal for users with extreme anxiety and PTSD. Not so relaxing you are left bed-ridden: this is high-functioning stuff.

So now you know how to find yourself the ideal medical marijuana strain to leave you relaxed and happy. Make sure you have your medical marijuana card so you can start to benefit from the drug’s long list of health benefits.

Does Medical Cannabis Work Better Than Traditional Medicine?

With all drugs, there is a tossup between the benefits/efficacy, and the detriments/side-effects. If the side-effects are more prominent than the desired effects, then the drug is, in most cases, considered dangerous and unhelpful. Then it’s back to the drawing board to find a more suited drug, a safer drug, or to make adjustments to the biochemical structure of the drug in question so that the dial of side effects is turned down and the dial of desired effects is turned up. This is how things are supposed to work, but pharmaceuticals are big money and so the investments – and therefore interests – of many people are dependent on the drugs that they produce, distribute, and sell. These vested interests mean the primary focus of pharmaceutical companies is not where it should be, not on the treatment of ailments and diseases but on reducing costs and increasing sales. I think we can all agree skimping on the medications of the sick members of our country is far from ideal. But even those pharmaceutical companies with ethics at the center of their scopes may be limited to certain areas. How does traditional medicine compare to medical cannabis? Are they two paths to the same result? Or do their results vary distinctly? What should we be using? All these questions will be answered in the below article as we close the book on the medical cannabis versus traditional medicine once and for all. If you haven’t already, make sure you get your medical marijuana card online. Without further ado, let’s begin!

The undeniable, powerful medicinal properties of marijuana have been shown to be extremely effective in the management and treatment of many chronic illnesses, diseases and disorders – such as multiple sclerosis, nausea, seizures, arthritis, lupus, poor appetite and weight loss, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease, Crohn’s disease, anxiety, panic attacks, depression, and bipolar. Many of these chronic diseases and disorders are also treatable with traditional medicine. But in order to see which works better, we must look at the degree to which either is effective and compare. With regard to mental illness, pharmaceuticals have been long known to sufficiently reduce the lows but at the cost of reducing the highs too. Users describe feeling empty or dead inside. This has been known to lead to self-harm or efforts at suicide in attempts to feel once again. Of course, when you have suicidal thoughts, having large quantities of potentially lethal drugs at your disposal is a very bad idea. More than 15 million people abuse prescription drugs, more than the combined number who reported abusing cocaine, hallucinogens, inhalants and heroin! And every day in the US, 2,500 more youths abuse a prescription pain reliever. Prescription drugs give the illusion of safety and this makes them incredibly dangerous and makes their users highly susceptible to overdose.

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Experts are now delving a little deeper into the science behind medical cannabis.

Medical cannabis, on the other hand, is able to create a natural sense of euphoria for long periods of time from relatively small doses of the plant (edibles) without producing negative emotions on the comedown. Furthermore, it is virtually impossible to overdose on the marijuana as it’s non-toxic so attempts at suicide won’t be done using what is intended as treatment. All this kind of makes you want to get your medical marijuana card online and start enjoying the benefits of marijuana right away, no?!

To make it more appealing, there are certain realms in which medical marijuana has been able to treat things no traditional medicine can. As much as 30 percent of people with epilepsy – many of which are children – still have seizures while on FDA-approved treatments. In some cases, seizures run as high as 200 daily leaving patients despairing and wondering if there will be an end. Those that turn to medical marijuana in an attempt to take back control quickly are astounded by its effectiveness and can often reduce seizures completely. Its advantages have been enough to have large pharmaceutical juggernauts shaking in their boots. Why fork out huge fees for unnatural drugs when there is an inexpensive, natural plant that proves just as effective? Get your medical cannabis card online!

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Does traditional medicine really work better than medical cannabis?

Also, marijuana – or more specifically, THC – has been proven to have plentiful positive effects on brain cells. THC is a powerful neuroprotectant. THC can also promote the growth of new brain cells through a process known as neurogenesis, with medical cannabis also boasting anti-inflammatory, antiemetic (anti-vomiting) properties. Oh, and it can also fend off prostate cancer.

Note: Medical marijuana has many variants, some of which are high in the psychoactive THC. THC can have detrimental effects on mental health for those with anxiety, panic disorder, paranoia amongst other mental disorders. If you think you or a close relative suffers from any such disorder it may best to avoid THC dominant strains. Medical marijuana is still a drug and should be treated as such, this article simply aims to prove that this drug may be more effective than other lab-based drugs; but they nonetheless all remain drugs and all have side-effects that may or may not mean that you should avoid.

We hope it’s now clear to see that medical cannabis works better than traditional medicine in the areas in which they are both options. And it’s for this that medical marijuana has become part of the mainstream: it’s benefits are undeniable. Its use will become ubiquitous and state laws and eventually federal laws will change to reflect the reformed opinions of the masses. Make sure you have your medical marijuana card so you can start to benefit from the drug’s long list of health benefits.

How A Medical Marijuana Card Can Free You Of Daily Pain

Pain plays a vitally important role in the human body. Whether we like it or not, pain acts as the important alarm system that tells us when something is wrong – we simply cannot live without it. For those of us who suffer from chronic, daily pain the search for effective and long lasting relief seems endless and oftentimes when something potent enough is prescribed it comes at the cost of debilitating side effects. Thankfully, as California medical marijuana laws become more lax, cannabis card holders can now enjoy the unrivalled pain relieving effects of MMJ without fear of being persecuted for doing so.

Nowadays, those with a medical marijuana card have been using the plant to treat a whole spectrum of painful disorders such as arthritis or peripheral neuropathy, it’s even been used to treat the pain caused by childbirth! When it comes to the pain-relieving power of medical marijuana, we really can’t underestimate things. A clinical trial conducted by Mark Ware MD at McGill University in Montreal found that as little as three puffs of MMJ a day significantly reduced the chronic nerve pain of medical marijuana card holders enabling them to live more independently and sleep much better.

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Here’s the chemical formula behind cyclization of cannabinoids – interesting, no?

So how exactly does MMJ ease pain? Put simply, it does so by working in conjunction with the endocannabinoid system within the human body. The endocannabinoid system is responsible for regulating some of our most important biological functions like sleep, immunity and pain. It does so by releasing endocannabinoids to control these functions when they start to get out of whack. When endocannabinoids are not able to deal with this problem on their own, this is where we get into serious trouble and where pain can start to spiral out of control.

When one consumes medical marijuana as a way of relieving this pain, the active cannabinoids within the plant mimic the work of the endocannabinoids giving them a much needed boost and enabling them to do their job better. Although there are hundreds of cannabinoids present in MMJ, the most well-known and hard-working ones have to be tetrahydrocannabidiol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). THC acts as an extremely potent pain reliever and anti-inflammatory as well as an antioxidant and muscle relaxant. CBD, on the other hand, has potent anti-convulsant, anti-inflammatory, anti-depressant and anti-psychotic properties. These two components have an amazing synergizing effect insofar as they work exponentially better together than they do alone. As THC is the ingredient in MMJ that produces psychoactive effects, it’s important that CBD is present for those medical marijuana card holders who want to enjoy the benefits of their MMJ without the drowsiness that can come with it.

As well as cannabinoids, medical marijuana also contains terpenoids and flavonoids which work in conjunction with the other active components of the plant to provide the body with further relief from pain and inflammation. This combination not only provides pain relief but also has been noted to ease nausea, stimulate bone growth, prevent seizures and even reverse the growth of some cancer cells.

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Many doctors are treating medical marijuana card holders with the useful MMJ herb.

As for the best strains of cannabis to treat pain, we’ll have to get more specific. Different types of pain can be vastly different in the way they need to be treated – you wouldn’t treat chronic nerve pain with an Aspirin! The same logic applies when you’re treating any sort of pain with medical marijuana, you need to use the appropriate strain for your ailment or else you could find it entirely ineffective.

 

For migraine relief go for a strain like Blueberry Headband. This strain is known for its ‘cerebral’ effects that target pain straight at the crown of your head, giving you near instant, targeted relief.

If you suffer from chronic spinal pain, opt for indica strain Mazar. Mazar is absolutely packed with cannabinoids that have an extremely potent painkilling effect, much more so than other strains.

Although most medical marijuana card holders typically wouldn’t use a sativa strain for pain relief, Harlequin is the exception to the rule. Perfect for treating inflammation and arthritis pain, Harlequin’s high CBD content makes it an effective pain reliever. The buzz given off isn’t as strong as other strains as well making it a perfect daytime consumable.

For generalized pain, opt for ultra-MMJ ACDC which has near unrivaled painkilling abilities. The secret to ACDC’s superpower comes from the fact that it contains very high levels of both THC and CBD making it the ultimate pain relieving medical marijuana out there.

Left unsatisfied by more traditional methods, people who suffer from chronic pain have benefited greatly from the medical professions increasingly lax views on cannabis as a form of analgesic. Cannabis usage as a way of relieving pain has been an absolute godsend for California medical marijuana card holders and thanks to the advent of more progressive MMJ laws across the country, more and more people now have access to the potentially life changing plant. As ever though, it is imperative that you talk to your physician and obtain a certified California medical marijuana license before embarking on your treatment.

Can Medical Cannabis Work In Conjunction With Medication

What are the effects of using medical cannabis in conjunction with other medication? Does your marijuana interfere with other medication? It is important to understand how any combination of drugs you are taking will work together and the effects that mixing them will have on your body and mind.

In order to avoid any unwanted effects from drug interactions inside your body, it is crucial that you keep your doctor informed and listen carefully to his or her advice.

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If you are taking traditional medical and medical cannabis, we advise asking your doctor what the effects coud be.

Although there is not a wealth of peer-reviewed studies on interactions between medical marijuana and commonly-used medications, there certainly are potential side effects that can occur when MMJ is taken alongside other drugs. Many widely taken prescription and nonprescription drugs, when taken in combination, will react chemically inside the body. These reactions can be good, bad, or benign. Cannabis card patients and their doctors should consider the potential reactions that both prescribed and ‘over the counter’ medications will have with the cannabis they use, because sometimes those reactions are not inconsequential.

Marijuana can have an additive effect when taken in conjunction with certain pain medications. This additive effect, when one drug amplifies the effect of another, is called ‘potentiation’. The effect can be unpredictably strong. Cannabis is often prescribed alongside NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) for the relief of pain symptoms from arthritis. The combination is very effective for reducing pain. Patients using their California medical card alongside painkillers need to be careful because the potentiation of these drugs can lead to drowsiness or depression of the central nervous system which controls heart rate and respiration.

Medical cannabis

Medical cannabis is a wonderful herb but it’s best to learn about its effects on your body before consuming.

Medications that are dedicated central nervous system (CNS) depressants or sedatives can bring on a feeling of drowsiness. Certain strains of MMJ (usually indica-dominant hybrids) that have a similar effect can greatly enhance the effects of these drugs. Some medications prescribed for insomnia, anxiety, depression and, as previously mentioned, pain relief fall into this category. So be aware that taking sedative drugs and using medical cannabis may knock you out more than expected.

Antihistamines, which are used in the treatment of allergy symptoms associated with hay fever, have a depressing effect on the CNS. Antihistamines can cause drowsiness, so when used in combination with a California weed card can have a potentiated effect.

Antihypertensives are commonly used by people with hypertension to lower their blood pressure. Some strains of medical cannabis, especially sativa-dominant strains, can temporarily increase blood pressure, so if you are taking drugs to lower blood pressure be aware that certain strains of weed may counteract their effects.

Hormone medications can be effected by medical cannabis use. Marijuana can make the oestrogen used in birth control or as hormone replacement therapy less effective. This means the intended effects of these drugs may be compromised. What’s that we hear in the distance?? Oh it’s the the pitter-patter of tiny feet. How exciting!!! Or not. Seriously though, the effects of medical cannabis on birth control pills is often negligible, but it’s always best to be extra-safe and talk to your physician.

Marijuana can slow blood clotting, so when it is mixed with prescription medicines such as warfarin that slow blood clotting, or with nonprescription drugs such as ibuprofen and aspirin that have the side effect on slowing clotting, this may result an increased risk of bleeding and/or bruising.

The effect of medications that metabolize within the liver may be strongly impacted by the presence of medical marijuana in the system. Cannabis has been known to slow down, or speed up, certain processes the liver uses to break down medication. This can result in medications being at a higher blood concentration or lasting longer than would normally be the case, or alternatively, being processed more rapidly and losing their effect more quickly. Therefore, the dose or frequency of these medications may need to be adjusted when they are being taken in conjunction with medical marijuana.

It has sometimes been noted that certain medications that may be used to treat patients with cancer, HIV, and people who have had an organ transplant may sometimes interact with medical marijuana. Since many people with these conditions use medical cannabis to manage their symptoms, it is important to check with a doctor to be sure that the particular drugs you are taking are appropriate to take alongside MMJ.

Cannabis has been shown to decrease the effectiveness of metformin (known by the brand name Glucophage) which is used as an aid in controlling the blood sugar levels of diabetes patients, as the effect of lowering blood sugar is opposed by cannabinoids.

Also, marijuana can cross the placenta and be excreted in breast milk, so it’s best for breastfeeding mothers to discuss the potential risks of breastfeeding while using their MM card with their doctor.

So these are some of the more common potential side effects of mixing medical cannabis with other drugs. There can be many advantages to using your 420 card along with other useful drugs, but it is always wise to be conscious and aware of what you are putting into your body, and how those substances will react with each other.

I Have PTSD: Which Medical Marijuana Strain Do I Need?

Post-traumatic stress disorder is a disorder that affects certain people who have experienced a highly traumatic event. Being involved in warfare, extreme violence, or a road accident, or being the victim of child abuse, sexual assault, terrorism, or other threats to life can result in a person experiencing PTSD. It is also an affliction that can be treated with the use of medical marijuana.

Approximately 7.7 million Americans suffer from PTSD, and 11-30% of soldiers returning from combat in Iraq or Afghanistan have the condition. The main symptoms of this brutal condition are flashbacks, chronic anxiety, depression, insomnia and nightmares. Sufferers respond to innocuous events and cues in the external (and their internal) world with an acute panic response, because they remind them of the initial trauma they experienced.

There is a wealth of evidence demonstrating the benefits of medical marijuana for individuals suffering from PTSD. By aiding in something called memory extinction, marijuana can help reduce the association between innocuous stimuli in the present and traumatic events from the past. It also calms the body and mind, reduces stress, and aids sleep.

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PTSD can affect people of all ages and backgrounds.

There are plenty of studies to back up marijuana’s effectiveness in treating PTSD. A University of Haifa study from 2014 showed that rats that were exposed to trauma, who received a synthetic cannabinoid within 24 hours, did not exhibit PTSD symptoms, however rats that were not treated with the cannabinoid did develop symptoms. This study led to an understanding of the neurological characteristics of the behavioral effects of PTSD. In traumatized subjects there was an increase in brain receptors associated with emotional processing. Cannabis was shown to decrease the numbers of these specific receptors in the areas of the brain that imprinted traumatic memories.

A study by Dr. George R. Greer MD in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 2014 showed that participants with PTSD reported, on average, a 75% reduction in major PTSD symptoms while using medical marijuana. Dr. Greer reported, “Many PTSD patients report symptom reduction with cannabis, and a clinical trial needs to be done to see what proportion and what kind of PTSD patients benefit, with either cannabis or the main active ingredients of cannabis.”

As well as evidence from studies, there is also a wealth of anecdotal evidence self-reported by sufferers of PTSD who say that their lives would be unbearable if it wasn’t for the positive impact that medical marijuana has on their debilitating condition.

There is no doubt that medical marijuana is a very effective treatment for PTSD, but not all weed strains are equally effective. Here is a list of seven hybrid strains that people have reported work particularly well in combating PTSD.

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Medical marijuana can help sufferers of PTSD.

Blue Dream is widely available with a California medical marijuana card. It is a mildly high-THC hybrid, and offers very reliable relief from PTSD. The sativa-dominant strain has an energizing and buoyant effect. It contains a nice dose of indica which produces a warm feeling of physical relaxation also. The herb is not very strong, so you can go about your business, feeling clear headed and fully functional while enjoying its PTSD-busting effects.

Grand Daddy Purple is a very pleasant indica-dominant hybrid that produces feelings of happiness, positivity and relaxation. It is often used by cannabis card holders who suffer from depression, and is widely regarded as an excellent strain for treating PTSD.

Stress Killer this is a high-CBD strain created by Royal Queen Seeds and easily available to people with a California medical marijuana card. It has quite low levels of THC, and is ideal for people who enjoy a mild but very manageable psychoactive effect. It will produce a light, sedative high and is ideal for relieving the anxiety that comes with PTSD.

A very popular indica-dominant strain that is famously good for pain and stress relief is Blueberry Kush. This is a big favorite with California marijuana card holders. It puts the body into a very relaxed state, and is widely availed of by PTSD sufferers.

Northern Lights is a massively popular indica-dominant strain that is used extensively by people with cannabis cards who suffer with anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and PTSD. It brings on a mellow high and is a fantastic sleep aid. It takes hold fast and knocks you out hard. Northern Lights and heavy machinery are not happy (or safe) bedfellows!

Even more of an insomnia-wrecker is Master Kush. This is a firm favorite of people who are cursed with chronic and extreme insomnia. It is a very strong strain that is not for first time smokers. You should be an experienced 420 card user before you use this powerful strain! It will knock you out hard and fast, producing a super-mellow high and ultra-relaxed body. Don’t bother getting munch, you won’t be needing it! Oh and make sure you are seated somewhere nice and comfortable when you smoke this awesome strain, because you probably won’t be moving very far for the foreseeable future!

Pineapple Express is a relatively mild sativa-dominant hybrid strain with a THC content of about 20%. The effects are pleasantly relaxing. It provokes a warm, happy feeling, and is eminently usable for during the day. Many PTSD sufferers have enjoyed the effects that this pleasant strain has given them.

Why Cannabis Oil Is An Excellent Pain Reliever

Customers with medical marijuana cards are now able to buy specifically tailored medical cannabis products to aid them in their fight against pain. Cannabis oil is one of those products.

“The traditional use of Cannabis as an analgesic, anti-asthmatic, and anti-rheumatic drug is well established. Our results would suggest that cultivation of Cannabis plants rich in CBD and other phenolic substances would be useful not only as fiber-producing plants but also for medicinal purposes in the treatment of certain inflammatory disorders.”

Amazingly, this was the conclusion to a paper published in ‘The British journal of clinical pharmacology’ by The School of Pharmacy at the University of London, in 1988. They showed that medical cannabis could be four times more effective than Aspirin at giving pain relief and reducing inflammation. 

The scientists themselves acknowledged that this news was in no way groundbreaking; people have been using medical marijuana as a painkiller for millennia. One of the earliest references is in a Chinese legend in which the mighty king prescribes MMJ tea as an anti-inflammatory, way back in 4700 BC, and there are references to the plant being used both medically and socially in almost all Asian, European and African countries since records began.

What the ancients didn’t understand was the science behind this magical plant. Modern research has begun to unravel the mystery and it is uncovering a wealth of health benefits. The reason cannabis oil is so good for your health is because it has cannabinoids in great abundance. It’s these cannabinoids that are proving exceptionally effective at treating a whole range of ailments. These cannabinols mimic the body’s own naturally produced endocannabinoids, which govern many bodily functions. Sleep, appetite, the immune system, pain and many more areas are controlled by these and when there is an imbalance medical cannabis can help restore that balance without any dangerous side-effects.

THC, the most famous of the 80 odd cannabinoids present in MMJ, has always stolen the limelight as it has the most obvious effects on the brain – for this reason it has been studied more and is understood a lot better than its quieter (and second best known) companion cannabinol, CBD. Because of its effects, commercially THC has been the more sought after cannabinol, so for decades strains were bred for more and more THC potency. This meant that the benefits of CBD were largely overlooked.

But why is CBD that important?

Research is showing that CBD has incredible pain-inhibiting and anti-inflammation properties. One of the most effective ways to reap the benefits of CBD without having to smoke medical cannabis is to ingest cannabis oil. Cannabis oil is the cannabis plant extract. It is chock-full of cannabinoids and generally has higher levels of CBD to THC, although make sure to check before you go ahead with your purchase. Medical marijuana card holders who don’t want any of the ‘stoned’ effect can now buy cannabis oil with no THC in it, allowing them to carry on their day as normal.

The idea that cannabis oil is an effective pain reliever is not up for dispute at this stage

CBD has proved to be very effective in the treatment of epilepsy (even on drug-resistant forms such as Dravet Syndrome). Strains such as Harlequin, Charlotte’s’ Web, Cannatonia have been bred specially to have very high concentrations of CBD and very low level of THC. These strains are being used to produce medical cannabis oil with a low enough THC content to be suitable for even children! So for those of us who don’t want the ‘high’ associated with marijuana, these oils are perfect. But don’t worry, you can still get oils with high THC levels if you want to enjoy the benefits of both of the major cannabinoids.

As a treatment, cannabis oil has been shown to be very effective at targeting certain receptors (glycine receptors) that are important in causing inflammatory pain and neuropathic pain. The test suggested that CBD would be effective at relieving chronic pain for illnesses associated with multiple sclerosis and pain caused by severe nerve damage. Again, the Harlequin strain and Cannatonic strain are going to be most effective with their high CBD contents. These anti-inflammatory strains will provide relief from chronic inflammation pains caused by arthritis.

Back pain, muscle pain and wounds can be treated with these oils. Topicals can be made by mixing cannabis oil with lotions or diluting it with oils such as hemp oil or coconut oil. These topicals have traditionally been used as an antiseptic but can also be used as a burn and bite relief, and rubbed into sore muscles. This method is becoming more popular with people who want the health benefits marijuana has to offer but, again, don’t want to take up smoking.

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Cannabis oil can ease pain and give you back your regular life.

Research is only in its infancy, but the evidence is corroborating the stories and experiences of countless medical cannabis users from over the millennia.

Cannabis oil is a fantastic pain reliever – it can help regulate sleep, smooth running of the digestive system and alleviate anxiety and depression. Taken correctly, cannabis oil is good for you and it’s getting better with every study.

 

What’s The Science Behind Medical Marijuana?

For any medical marijuana card holder who’s just as interested in the science behind medical marijuana as they are the effects, delving into the genetic makeup of the plant begins with cannabinoids. The number of diverse cannabinoids contained within cannabis is vast; with scientists recently upping their discovered cannabinoid count from 104 to 111.

Cannabinoids come in all shapes and sizes, with some having much more of an impact on the body than others. For a long time, the solely discussed cannabinoid was tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC was first discovered back in 1964, and is the primary ingredient which provides the feeling of euphoria. THC, along with cannabidiol (CBD), are the key compounds for medicinal purposes.

An increasing number of Americans each year are turning towards medical marijuana for its ability to alleviate pain, insomnia, and anxiety, and also treatment for those suffering from cancer and HIV/AIDS. The medical benefits received from marijuana are due to a combination of cannabinoids, and how they interact with the human body. But how exactly do cannabinoids work?

Cannabinoids are sets of chemical compounds that bind themselves to receptors in the body that make up what is referred to as the endocannabinoid system. Many of our bodily cells possess specific binding sites containing cannabinoid receptors. Not only does our body naturally produce endocannabinoids which influence our appetite, mood, and memory, but as we consume medical marijuana, cannabinoids such as THC and CBD also bind to these receptors.

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Medical marijuana – so much more than just a plant!

Cannabinoids we inhale or ingest work by imitating the compounds already found within our bodies, increasing the potency of the chemical’s effect. THC and CBD are by far the most commonly cited cannabinoids found within medical marijuana. While THC has a strong affinity for the CB-1 receptors found in the brain, CBD prefers CB-2 receptors, which are found throughout the body.

For a current or potential cannabis card holder, knowing the difference between THC and CBD is vital, as they provide remarkably different effects and benefits. As THC is a strongly psychoactive cannabinoid, consuming THC-rich marijuana can help with pain relief and nausea. While CBD is effective at relieving insomnia, stress, and anxiety; THC should be avoided in these instances due to its potential causation.

For the longest time scientists believed that the CBD cannabinoid had little-to-no effect on the CB1 receptor site, however new data now shows that this isn’t the case. While THC has a more direct impact on the CB1 site, CBD has now been shown to influence how the receptor responds to THC stimulation – meaning that depending on the particular ailment, a mix of both THC and CBD may be advantageous.

The cannabis plant itself contains more than 500 natural compounds – with cannabinoids making up a significant percentage. As the wide range of cannabinoid compounds interact with our body’s receptors within the central nervous system and immune system, for example, our body is affected in a litany of varying ways: from loss of short-term memory, to a slowing down of reaction times.

While both THC and CBD have been shown to assist with the treatment of a number of conditions, they aren’t the only important cannabinoids found within medical marijuana.

Cannabinol (CBN) is formed through oxidization when THC is exposed to the air. CBN can provide a less potent but similar psychoactive effect to THC, yet when the two are combined together it can make you feel drowsy – assisting with those suffering from insomnia. Both cannabinoids are also the only ones that have been found to fight pain through the use of endorphins and relaxing blood vessels.

Cannabigerol (CBG) is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid, similar to CBD, and is in-fact the building block for both THC and CBD. While more commonly found in hemp than in varieties of cannabis, it has been shown to reduce intraocular pressure – ideal for patients with glaucoma, as well as a significant pain reliever.

The third most common cannabinoid in the marijuana plant is Cannabichromene (CBC). While CBD often gets all the fame, in some strains CBC can actually take dominance. Research carried out in 2010 found that when coupled with THC, CBC becomes an effective anti-inflammatory, and has shown promise in fighting breast cancer.

With nearly half the states in the U.S. having legalized medical marijuana, it’s no wonder great strides are being made in extracting healing from its chemical compounds. Through latching onto receptors in the body, cannabinoids are able to greatly improve the standard of living for a variety of patients.

While a great source of alternative medicine, if you’ve recently acquired or are thinking about obtaining a medical marijuana card, it’s important to have the science in mind. As cannabis widens the blood vessels and increases heart rate, use is not advised for anyone with a heart condition, for example. But above all, between THC, CBD, and the many other compounds, know which strain is right for you.

Where Can I Get a Medical Marijuana Card in California?

Proposition 215, otherwise known as the Compassionate Use Act, was passed in the state of California in 1996. This law gives individuals the right to use and possess medical marijuana legally. It also allows prospective medical marijuana patients to speak with a doctors regarding medical marijuana use, dosage etc; and, equally important, it allows doctors to recommend medical marijuana to patients in dealing with a whole slew of ailments. So if you have an illness that you believe will be alleviated through the ingestion of medical marijuana but don’t yet have your California medical marijuana card, this is definitely the article for you!

What is a Medical Marijuana Identification Card?

The California Department of Public Health’s (CDPH) Medical Marijuana Identification Card Program (MMICP) was specifically established to create a State-authorized medical marijuana identification card (MMIC), along with a registry database for verification of qualified patients and their primary caregivers. The MMP (medical marijuana program) web-based registry allows law enforcement and the public to verify the validity of a qualified patient or primary caregiver’s MMIC as authorization to possess, grow, transport, and/or use medical marijuana within California.

What Medical Conditions Qualify?

MMJRecs physicians recognize over 49 qualifying conditions for medical marijuana use. Some of the most common qualifying conditions treated include: AIDS; anorexia; arthritis; cachexia (wasting syndrome); cancer; chronic pain; glaucoma; migraine; persistent muscle spasms; seizures; severe nausea; any other chronic or persistent medical symptom that either substantially limits a person’s ability to conduct one or more of major life activities as defined in the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, or if not alleviated, may cause serious harm to the person’s safety, physical, or mental health. The following link provides a full list of the qualifying conditions and symptoms so be sure to check it out before applying: Qualifying Conditions

What Do I Need?

Any form of U.S. identification and a condition for which medical cannabis can be recommended.

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Learn all about your medical marijuana card before you apply, so you know what you can and can’t do with it.

Where Do I Apply For My Card?

You can get a doctor’s recommendation by asking your primary physician, visiting a 420 doctor at an evaluation center or online through a service like MMJRecs.

Any doctor licensed to practice in California can evaluate you and issue a medical marijuana card. However, not all doctors are comfortable recommending marijuana as an aid for ailments. So we recommend a doctor that specializes in the recommendation of Medical Marijuana.

That leaves 420 doctors at evaluation centers and online services. Often evaluation centers are stuck in hard-to-reach places in dangerous neighborhoods, have long wait times, and little time with the doctor, leaving you uninformed about how to use cannabis as an effective treatment option.

Online services such as MMJRecs, have chosen the most knowledgeable medical marijuana doctors from across the state to provide patients with the fastest and most secure MMJ evaluations. They are also highly informative, providing patients with a tailored, deep knowledge of dosage, strains etc, benefits and risks.

Is My Personal Information Safe?

The Medical Marijuana Application System does not contain any personal information such as name, address or social security number. It only contains the unique user ID number and when entered the only information provided is whether the card is valid or invalid. This ensures that only those in need of medical marijuana are able to purchase it. So yes, your personal information is completely safe!

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Getting an MMJ card in California is a simple process for anyone in need of medical relief.

What Does an Evaluation Entail?

You’ll be asked to fill out a standard medical form, and you’ll able to upload any medical documents you may already have. The evaluation itself often lasts just a few minutes and involves a video/phone conversation with a doctor about your current condition, medical history and how marijuana might help you.

Keep in mind, most online evaluation services won’t charge you unless you’re approved by the doctor; the consultation is free otherwise – you can’t lose!

What Now?

Once you’re approved, you’ll receive a digital PDF version of your recommendation via email, which you can use that same day by printing it out – though not all dispensaries accept this version. Next, you’ll receive your medical marijuana card and official recommendation letter in the mail complete with your name, date, patient ID #, expiration date (you must renew your medical marijuana card each year), a doctor’s signature, embossed seal. Now you can enter marijuana dispensaries and make purchases. Alternatively, you can order marijuana delivery through marketplace sites.

And that’s it! Over 1.4 million patients in California have a doctor’s recommendation for using marijuana as medicine, and now you know the ins and outs of the Californian medical marijuana card application, you’re well on your way to all the medicinal benefits of medical marijuana! 

How Medical Marijuana Affects Sleep

 

Due to its relaxing affect, cannabis has long been the go-to sleep aid for medical marijuana card holders and recreational users alike. Even the most persistent insomnia can, in some cases, be improved, if not cured, by indulging in a pre-bed toke. Although there is some contrarian theories, the general consensus is that medical marijuana has an overall positive affect on sleep, especially for those MMJ card holders who use their online medical marijuana recommendations for ailments that reduce their ability to get to sleep such as chronic pain or epilepsy.

It is prudent to first talk about different strains and the different ways in which they promote or inhibit sleep. Sativa strains, such as Amnesia Haze or Sour Diesel, may be among the most popular in the world due to their unrivalled buzz and long-lasting effects but they also act as a stimulant to those who take it, giving them an uplifting and energizing experience. While this can be great for alleviating stress and depression or even helping you overcome your writer’s block, these effects are not conducive to you nodding off with ease. If you’re currently using your California medical marijuana card to obtain sativa strains, then it’s best that you avoid MMJ for at least a few hours prior to your going asleep. On the other end of the MMJ spectrum are the indica strains, such as Purple Kush and Northern Lights, which give you the relaxing, analgesic effects that help ease you off soundly to a great night’s sleep. It is also worth noting that the older your cannabis is, the sleepier it will make you feel. This is because as Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) degrades, it is turned into cannabinol which is a much more potent sedative than new medical marijuana.

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Medical marijuana can work as a great aid for those with insomnia.

The most noticeable effect that medical marijuana will have on your sleep cycle is that it was dramatically reduce the amount of time it will take you to fall asleep – a phenomenon that has proven invaluable to the millions of insomnia sufferers across the country. The ingredient to thank in MMJ for this amazing effect is THC which has been proven in countless studies to significantly reduce the time it takes for both healthy sleepers and insomniacs to fall asleep. Not only does THC have a direct ameliorative effect on the speed at which you fall asleep it also drastically reduces symptoms of other ailments which inhibit sleep such as PTSD, Multiple Sclerosis, chronic pain etc. It’s important to remember that if you’re consuming your MMJ as edibles, they take a little bit longer to kick in. However, once they do start working you’ll notice that they work better than inhalation methods for making your sleep last longer. As with other issues you may be using your MMJ card to treat, it’s important that you don’t take too high a dose when using medical marijuana to help your sleep cycle or else you may experience a negative impact on exactly the thing you’re trying to treat.
Although 420 card holders will probably notice the affect that MMJ has on their ability to fall asleep the most, medical marijuana most positively affects sleep at stage three. Stage three sleep, also known as slow wave sleep, is the deepest stage of non-REM sleep. During this stage it is hardest to awaken the sleeper as they become dramatically less responsive to external stimuli. Medical marijuana has been observed to significantly lengthen the amount of time that users spent in this stage of sleep. This is incredibly beneficial to the sleeper as the most damaging effects of sleep deprivation are as a result of a lack of Stage Three sleep. Deep wave sleep is crucial to the restoration process that occurs when we sleep thusly those who use MMJ can notice that they feel more restored and rejuvenated when they wake up.

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If you have trouble sleeping, medical marijuana could be the answer.

One stage of sleep that medical marijuana is observed to have a negative effect on is REM – although no one is quite sure whether this is really as bad as it sounds. Scientists still aren’t exactly sure what purpose REM serves, making it harder to determine whether going without it is really that bad. Medical marijuana significantly reduces the amount of time users spent in  REM. Medical cannabis users report that over time the amount of dreams they have lessens and become less vivid the longer that they consume. This is because dreaming entirely occurs within the REM stage. However, if you no longer need your medical marijuana card and halt your usage, you’re quite likely to experience REM rebound whereby your re-immersion into REM will lead to you having intense, vivid and sometimes lucid dreams.

Another lesser reported positive effect that medical marijuana has on sleep is that it restores respiratory stability by modulating serotonin signaling in the brain. Although this may not mean a lot to those without respiratory problems, to the millions of sleep apnea sufferers across the US it is potentially life changing. Sleep apnea is an affliction that manifests itself with pauses in breathing and shallow breathing during the sufferer’s sleep. According to a 2013 study published in Frontiers in Psychiatry, “THC stabilizes autonomic output during sleep, reduces spontaneous sleep-disordered breathing, and blocks serotonin-induced exacerbation of sleep apnea.” Although this is one small study, the implications of this are huge as it could mean that the millions of sleep apnea sufferers across the country could opt to take an MMJ pill before bed to treat their ailment instead of using a cumbersome mask.

The positive effects that MMJ has on sleep are obvious for 420 card holder. With the advent of easily applying for a California medical marijuana card online, more and more people can benefit from what is being described as the ultimate sleep aid. If you’re one of the millions of Americans who suffer from sleep related issues, you’d be crazy not to avail of this amazing service which will nearly guarantee you the best night’s sleep of your life.

Tinctures and Topicals: The New Way to Consume Medical Marijuana

For those not comprehensively versed on the medical marijuana landscape, you may be surprised about the amount of ways marijuana is able to be consumed, and how alternative methods work in radically different ways. Many often assume that smoking or baking cannabis is the only means of consumption, but while that may once have been true, today the options are plentiful.

Medical marijuana: Tinctures and Topicals

Tinctures and topicals are an excellent alternative way to consume medical marijuana.

If you’re one of the many cannabis card holders in California, or are thinking about obtaining one, then learning about the medical marijuana that’s right for you is essential. Not only are there several strains, each with a range of chemical compounds that affect the body in different ways, but the method of consumption is equally as important of a factor when considering side-effects and lifestyle.

Of all the varying ways in which people are consuming medical marijuana, tinctures and topicals are two of the most recent developments. If you’re a cannabis card holder who focuses on a healthy lifestyle, and are concerned about the effects inhaling smoke may have on your body, or even the calories gained from eating baked goods, then tinctures and topicals are ideal alternatives.

Tinctures are typically made by first removing any unwanted part of the marijuana plant, and then taking the herbs and placing them within a glass jar. The jar is then filled with alcohol, tightly sealed, and left to sit for weeks (during this process topping up the alcohol may be necessary). Once a few weeks have passed, the planet material is strained out and you’re left with your tincture to bottle up.

Commonly, tinctures are used orally; placing a drop or two under the tongue, but it can be applied to the skin also. Tinctures are often used to help those suffering from sleep disorders, migraines, menstrual cramps, or even the common cold. Finding the correct dosage comes down to a case-by-case basis – if 1ml isn’t enough, try 2ml the next day, and so forth until you find the right amount.

Medical marijuana: Tinctures and Topicals

You can get medical marijuana-infused balms and lotions to treat localized areas of your body.

For obvious reasons, none of the health concerns which go hand-in-hand with smoking are prevalent with tinctures. For relatively little cost, tinctures are simple to produce and easy to regulate – being able to put a drop or two within any homemade meal with minimal added calories. Furthermore, if stored in a cool, dark location, they will last for many years, allowing convenient repeat use.

On the opposite side of the same cannabis card holder’s coin, you’ll find topicals. These cannabis-infused lotions, balms and oils are absorbed through the skin to relieve localized pain, soreness and inflammation. Unlike many other methods of consuming medical marijuana, topicals do not provide the euphoria associated with the herb, so are best suiting for purely medicinal purposes.

When applied to the skin, topicals work by binding to the CB2 receptors of the body. CB2 receptors are triggered by the body’s naturally-occurring endocannabinoids, or by cannabis compound such a cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC – the ingredient which often leads to that high sensation). However, even if a topical contains THC, it still won’t induce the high gained from smoking.

The lack of a high is due to the fact that topicals cannot breach the bloodstream. Instead, they are the ideal choice for more surface issues: headaches, skin conditions such as eczema, or even arthritis can all be treated through the use of topicals. When THC is left in its acid form and combined with CBD, they work together to relieve inflammation, while also containing muscle and joint relief components.

As with tinctures, topicals are relatively simple to make at home: melting waxes and other preferable ingredients and mixing them with the cannabis-infused oils. The beauty of topicals comes from the fact that you can customize them to nth degree. Once you have found the combination of ingredients which fit your taste, your product is not only easy to apply, but will last far longer than more traditional means.

Anyone who has purchased cannabis with their medical marijuana card will know that it isn’t as simple as it seems. Different combinations of ingredients instruct each strain and their effectiveness for any given ailment. As with purchasing the herb itself, tinctures and topicals come in an assortment of shapes and sizes, each with their individual benefits for various conditions.

If electing to sample the more modest marijuana methods, experimentation can work wonders. With no adverse effects on the body, and a myriad of ingredient combinations and processing methods, transdermal products such as tinctures and topicals are best experimented with until your find ones that work for you.

Fortunately for any cannabis card holder, more and more options for topical remedies are revealing themselves as time goes on. So if you’re suffering from pain or inflammation, these new modes of marijuana consumption are well worth exploring.

How to Curb Sugar Cravings After Smoking Medical Cannabis

You’ve smoked some medical cannabis. You’re feeling great. Then all of a sudden you get the urge to eat everything in sight. You promised yourself the last time that that was the last time. The plan was to resist the temptation to gorge. But it just feels so right. Once everything edible in sight is out of sight (and into your belly), you ransack the food cupboards and the fridge. Things you would have never considered before are making their debuts. You’re creating gastronomical gems that would have Wolfgang Puck weeping with joy.

Then the effects of the medical cannabis start to fade and you’re left with the destruction of your gluttony: empty packets of the fattiest, sweetest junk food you never even knew you had litter the floor and stare up at you in judgment, and a protruding stomach follows you wherever you go. Yes, every smoker has been on the receiving end of cannabis’ most notorious effect: the munchies. And, though for many the binge may be minor – or desirable for certain ailments and diseases (anorexia or HIV/AIDS come to mind) -, many others are binging hard and putting on unwanted weight.

This article is directed toward the latter group. We will walk you through the science of marijuana-induced food cravings and provide a powerful method to curb those cravings. Before we begin, don’t forget to get your medical cannabis card online if you haven’t already! Alright, now onto the main content.    

Why Does Smoking Medical Cannabis Cause Cravings?

medical cannabis sugar cravings

Stay away from sugary foods after smoking medical cannabis.

Smoking weed modifies two processes in the body that cause the munchies: olfaction (the capacity for smelling) and appetite regulation. We’ll discuss both processes and their weed-induced adaptations below.

Fasting from food for brief periods can increase the level of natural cannabinoids in the mammalian brain, which, in turn, triggers us to eat more when we’re hungry. What’s interesting is that it’s specifically the activation of cannabinoid receptors in the nose – specifically the olfactory bulb (the primary brain region controlling the sense of smell) – which leads to an acute sense of smell that causes the devouring of grub.

Studies have shown that endocannabinoids (cannabinoid receptors located in the mammalian brain and throughout the central and peripheral nervous systems) can disinhibit circuits of the olfactory bulb when triggered. When these receptors are activated by external cannabinoids, such as those found in marijuana, the consumption rate goes up again. Research points to THC causing the increased sense of smell. So our main tip to curb your cravings: find a strain low in THC and high in CBD. Note: strains low in THC are non-psychoactive, so if that’s something you require for you ailment, use a combination of the tips below instead.

medical cannabis sugar cravings

Many people use medical cannabis as a painkiller – but it can also cause serious hunger!

A connection exists between leptin and cannabinoids. Scientists have shown mice that don’t make leptin have oversized appetites and they have unusually high concentrations of cannabinoids in the hypothalamus (which deals with hunger control amongst other homeostatic systems). Young-Hwan Jo, of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, took a look at slices of mouse hypothalamus. When he brought cannabinoid compound into contact with neurons, the neurons fired. But when he first added leptin (also known as the “hunger hormone”), the neurons did not activate. Leptin helps keep hunger at bay by ensuring that the cannabinoids in the brain and throughout the gut are not over-activating. So our second tip: eat foods that increase leptin sensitivity and induce proper utilization of the hormone. Creating a leptin diet is beyond the scope of this article, but lean proteins, oatmeal, green tea and fish are some great examples (do not under any circumstances combine them!).

Another great tip: don’t rely on willpower, be prepared. Don’t expect yourself to act in times of weakness the same as you do in times of strength. Willpower is a finite thing, so depend upon it as little as possible! Instead, simply get rid of the temptation, and willpower is no longer needed. This may mean clearing your house of all the junk food. Or, if you’re really a slave to your temptations, it may mean also giving your wallet to someone you can trust until the effects have worn off. In addition, either prepare healthy snacks beforehand to satiate the certain hunger, or just fast/lower calories approaching your smoke and binge guilt-free!   

 

And that brings us to the end! Try out this method and let us know what you think, and don’t forget – you need a medical cannabis card in order to take advantage of the many unique health benefits of cannabis.

Is Medical Marijuana Better Than Prescription Pills?

People with California medical marijuana cards have been reporting that cannabis is a safe and effective treatment for the symptoms of AIDS, cancer, multiple sclerosis, chronic pain, epilepsy, glaucoma, anxiety disorder, depression, and insomnia.  

Not only is medical cannabis showing a great ability to ease the painful symptoms of disease, but it is also showing potential for actually improving health and functionality in its users. Research from the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom has found that cannabinoids, the chemical compounds found in cannabis, can help to reduce brain damage and improve neurological functioning following a stroke. Another study, from the National Cancer Institute, found that cannabinoids may have a protective effect against the development of certain types of tumors.

The use of medical marijuana has no known severe side-effects. A Canadian study conducted on 215 patients with chronic pain found that after using medical marijuana for one year, patients “had no greater risk than non-users (control group) to experience serious adverse events”. Many people have been using their cannabis card for years and have reported no ill effects, and only positive, life-enhancing results.

Prescription painkillers, on the other hand, seem to be doing a lot of damage to a lot of people.

Prescription painkillers can have a number of adverse side-effects that can lead to severe health complications for users. People have reported side-effects such as liver spots, severe headaches, and bleeding gums. Opioid painkillers can lead to chronic constipation, which can lead to colon cancer down the line.

A 2008 study showed that the common symptoms associated with opioid-based prescription painkillers include “sedation, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, constipation, physical dependence, tolerance, and respiratory depression”. It went on to say that, “Physical dependence and addiction are clinical concerns that may prevent proper prescribing and in turn inadequate pain management. Less common side effects may include delayed gastric emptying, hyperalgesia, immunologic and hormonal dysfunction, muscle rigidity, and myoclonus.” That’s quite a list of negatives!

A recent study has shown that opioid drugs used to relieve pain in cancer patients may stimulate the growth and spread of tumors.

The physical effects of using your California medical card certainly seem to be safer than asking your doctor to prescribe painkillers.

medical marijuana

Prescription painkillers can have much worse side-effects than medical marijuana.

Addiction is another major issue. American citizens make up 5% of the world’s population, yet they consume 75% of the world’s prescription drugs. Prescription painkillers can be highly addictive. They are often derived from the same sources as other highly addictive drugs such as heroin and morphine. They are frequently abused by adults and teenagers alike. 54.2% of pain pills in the US are obtained free from a friend or relative.

Tolerance to prescription painkillers tends to build up quickly, so people need to take more and more to get the same effect. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has declared that prescription drug abuse in the USA is an epidemic. As of 2010, an estimated 52 million Americans over the age of 12 use prescription drugs for non-medical purposes.

Experts believe that the rise in heroin use could be in part due to prescription painkiller abuse. When people become hooked on prescription painkillers, but then can’t get a hold of any, they often turn to heroin. So those people who peddle the old myth that marijuana is a ‘gateway drug’ should be leveling that accusation at prescription painkillers, which have a great deal more in common with harmful and illegal drugs like heroin than cannabis does.

medical marijuana

Medical marijuana has proved to be a much more effective remedy than prescription painkillers in a lot of cases.

Medical cannabis is non-addictive, and there is no evidence that you need to constantly up your dosage due to developing a tolerance to it. People use their California marijuana card for years at the same levels without needing to up the dose.

With the number of people addicted to painkillers increasing year on year, it seems that medical marijuana could provide a valuable and safe treatment alternative.

Both medical cannabis and prescription painkillers have potential psychoactive side effects, but the long-term effects of cannabis use seem to be much safer. Studies show that long term opiate use can lead to decreased brain function. Whereas most strains of cannabis, particularly low THC/high CBD strains, appear to have little to no effect on cognitive function at all. So for people suffering from chronic pain, your 420 card could offer similar relief to a prescription painkiller but without the negative effects of long-term opiate use on cognitive function.

Deaths caused by prescription drug overdose outnumber deaths caused by heroin and cocaine combined. Every 19 minutes someone dies in the United States of a prescription drug overdose. 17,000 people die of prescription pill overdoses per year. There are zero recorded deaths related to cannabis overdose. Ever. This is a big difference!

The legalization of the mm card may be a big factor in a 25% decrease in opiate-related deaths in the states that have legalized mmj so far. That’s a 25% reduction in deaths caused by pain pills, heroin, and morphine.

Pain medication should make your quality of life better, but it seems that a lot of current prescription painkillers in fact make people’s lives worse. Taking prescription pain-pills can lead to physical dependence and chronic, life-threatening side effects. Medical marijuana is very effective at relieving pain, and is less dangerous than opiates.

So it seems that getting yourself a California medical marijuana card may well be a better option than using prescription pills.

How to Become a Budtender in California

The budtender is the first person that any California medical marijuana card holder will encounter when they go to their local dispensary. He or she is the public face of any dispensary, so it is an incredibly important job. Most California medical marijuana card-owning patients rely on the budtender to educate them and help them to find the medicine that will improve their life the most.

A great budtender is passionate about medical marijuana, knows the cannabis card industry, and the product, inside out, and is a ‘people person’ who loves dealing with customers and helping them to improve their lives.

If you are a people person, then being a budtender can be an extremely rewarding and very often heartwarming job. You can create deep connections and friendships with your California medical marijuana card customers and watch as their quality of life massively improves.

If you want to become a budtender, here is what you need to do…

California medical marijuana card

Studying what products are available to California medical marijuana card-holders is an integral part of being a budtender.

Have an extensive knowledge of the products available to a California medical marijuana card-holder

As a budtender, you will need to know all about cannabis strains, their effects, and what ailments each is typically good for treating. You need to know how the product was developed, where and how it was grown, and how your prices compare with those of your competitors. You have to be able to talk about the background of cannabis, and its history. In order to educate your customers, you must be highly educated yourself. Study is crucial – read books on the subject by Jorge Cervantes and Ed Rosenthal. Invest in yourself and your career by doing the necessary work to become a genuine MMJ expert. Make sure that before you attend an interview you are deeply familiar with all of the products that that particular dispensary sells. Being knowledgeable is essential, so do not be afraid to show this off during the interview.

Visit local dispensaries to see how things are done

Visit all of the dispensaries in your local area so you can talk to the budtenders and get some insider knowledge on what products each store carries, and what is most popular with their customers and in the wider California medical marijuana card scene. Meeting these guys and girls who are already doing what you want to do will be invaluable preparation for your career as a budtender, and will no doubt inspire you. Ask them about how they got their position and how they went about becoming experts in the field. Learn from the pros!

California medical marijuana card

California medical marijuana card-holders may want to know everything about what they’re buying, so study hard!

Always educate yourself about new trends and directions in the industry

Study industry blogs and social media to stay on the cutting-edge. Follow industry leaders on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to see what is hot right now, and what exciting new developments are in the pipeline. Learn about new concentrates, extractions, and infused products. If your customers know that each time they come into your store you will have some interesting bits of advice, and tips about new products that are in the pipeline, they will come back to you again and again, and tell all of their friends about how interesting and informative their trips to the MMJ dispensary are. Also, stay up to date with new developments on the business side of things – who are the big industry names, what strains are making the most money, and what is the latest medical research telling us?

Go to cannabis conventions and meet people

Networking is important in any industry and the medical marijuana business is certainly no different. Cannabis conventions are excellent places to meet industry people from all over the state and beyond. Striking up friendships with fellow weed-lovers can be fun, informative, and can even create opportunities for career advancement. There are over 100 cannabis conventions each year worldwide, with most of them taking place in the USA and Europe. This is both a great way to meet other industry workers, and to learn about the most up-to-date and cutting edge developments in the industry. Put yourself out there, be brave and social, and make those vital connections!

Learn how to be compelling in your description of the product and its benefits

Being a compelling storyteller is an important part of being a great budtender. You want to fascinate, educate, and inspire your customers in equal measure. People need to enjoy the experience of dealing with you and learning about this fascinating subject that you are an expert in, and that will be having a profound effect on their lives. Connecting with customers on a personal level is key. Read books like How to Win Friends and Influence People to learn how to best connect with people and make them feel comfortable and inspired. Learning how to figure out what a customer needs and then sell it to them in a way that ignites their passion and imagination will make you a truly world-class budtender!

Bide your time before enrolling on a budtender course

There are a few budtending schools out there, but the California medical marijuana card industry is very new and the courses vary wildly in quality. You don’t need an official qualification in budtending to become a budtender. Genuine knowledge is the most important thing, and that can certainly be achieved with private hard work, lots of reading, and gaining lots of first-hand experience. With the growth of the MMJ industry, really high-quality courses will surely be established soon, and if you are going to spend money and get educated you want to be sure that your money is well spent, and that the information you are being taught is top-notch.

 

A career as a budtender can be fun, fascinating, and rewarding. It will require hard work and effort, but the experience will be well worth it. Learn, grow, develop yourself, and the sky’s the limit!

I’m Anxious: Which Medical Marijuana Strain Do I Need?

With the legalization of medical marijuana, as long as you have a California MM card, you no longer need to rely on whatever a back alley dealer has in stock for you. Now there are a huge variety of strains and types of medical marijuana available over the counter at your local dispensary. Each strain provides differing highs, and some are better at treating some of the core health benefits that medical weed delivers to you than others. In this article we are going to focus on the best strains of medical marijuana to help you treat feelings of anxiety and stress.

How does medical marijuana help you deal with anxiety and stress?  

medical marijuana

Medical marijuana can help soothe anxious feelings.

Marijuana’s ability to help people cope with stress and anxiety is one of the main reasons that getting a medical marijuana card in California is so popular. In fact, despite marijuana providing a wide range of treatments, the herb’s ability at helping people cope with stress and anxiety is the main reason that people report for using cannabis. Through numerous studies, marijuana has been clinically proven to help reduce anxiety and stress disorders amongst patients. This is because it has a direct impact on your brain and particularly on a system within your brain called the endocannabinoid system.

The endocannabinoid system’s job, amongst a variety of other functions, is used to help regulate and control your feelings of stress and anxiety. This is accomplished through the release of chemicals known as cannabinoids. As you can imagine from the name, cannabis has a component known as THC, which is essentially almost identical to the cannabinoids found in your body. When you smoke or consume medical marijuana you release these replica cannabinoids (THC) into your system and they work overtime on the job your mind intends the cannabinoids to do. With more cannabinoids (within moderation, of course) your body is able to relieve anxiety and relax from stress. For those suffering with aggressive levels of stress or anxiety it can be an amazing way to treat and calm them down.

So what’s the best strain of medical marijuana to smoke to deal with anxiety?

With so many options available at your local dispensary it can be hard to even know where to start. There are too many strains of marijuana to even count, not to mention the huge number of delivery methods including: smoking (joints/pipes), vaping, tinctures, oils, edibles, creams and on and on! However, we’re going to focus on the strains that we’ve found most effective at dealing with stress and anxiety, and leave the consumption process up to you.

medical marijuana

Choosing the right strain of medical marijuana is essential.

Great to start with the Northern Lights Strain

It’s one of the most popular and well-known strains of marijuana, and this is largely down to the fact that it never fails to deliver. This is the kind of strain of medical marijuana that is guaranteed to give you a euphoric dream-like high that sweeps over your body and mind and relaxes and delivers an amazing sense of peace. For those who suffer from acute stress or anxiety, it’s a weed strain that comes highly recommended as it delivers a smooth and long-lasting high that soothes mind and body.

Where is it from? Legend has it it comes from sensi seeds directly from Holland, but it first appeared sprouting on our shores sometime in the late 1980s, around Oregon.

What does it taste/look like? Thick crystal coated buds with a tinge of purple. The main flavors consist of earthy richness and pine.

Get Rich Relaxation from Purple Kush

medical marijuana

Purple Kush is a very popular strain of medical marijuana.

The kush is one of the richest strains of weed when it comes to relaxing the body and mind. However, when you take it be wary that after the initial high you’ll be so relaxed that you’re probably going to want to sleep; that’s how deep and relaxing it is!

Where is it from? Purple Kush is grown across the US and around the world.

What does it taste/look like? Purple Kush looks kind of like a Christmas tree. It’s a dark pine-like green that’s covered in orange hairs that look almost like Christmas lights. The taste is sweet, with earthy tones and vague flavors of grape.

Want something as smooth as jazz? Try the BlueNote strain

This is a rare strain, split between two equally rare sources and typically only found in California. It’s a glorious high that will not only leave you feeling euphoric but also completely energized. It’s not the easiest strain to come by, so expect it to be a little pricey when you rock up with your weed card at your local dispensary, but in terms of the kind of high that will cure what ails you, BlueNote is incredibly hard to beat. It’s a favorite of a lot of people when it comes to dealing with, and fighting off feelings of depressions and anxiety.

Where is it from? A hybrid dream of California and Lebanese seeds.

What does it taste/look like? This is one of the sweetest strains you’ll find and the scent gives you a wonderful smell of cotton candy, plus – even better – it tastes like bubble gum. It’s a truly unique flavor and taste.

The strains above are just a few of the most popular medical marijuana strains when it comes to treating feelings of anxiety and stress. For your chance to sample some additional strains make sure you have a cannabis card and head to your local weed dispensary where they’ll be able give you samples and additional advice.

5 Ultimate Christmas Gifts For California Medical Marijuana Card Holders

The festive season is upon us and it’s present-buying time. If you know someone who has a California medical marijuana card and are struggling to find a present for them, fear not! We’re here to help. Perhaps you’re an MMJ user and you want to treat yourself this Christmas, or perhaps it’s a friend or family member that you want to make sure has an extra special stocking filler? Either way, we’ve got you covered with the five ultimate gifts for a California medical marijuana card holder.

These gifts are only meant for those who have a valid California medical marijuana card; if you’re unsure whether your friend or family member has an MMJ card or how they can get one, why not check our qualifying conditions to see if they should apply today.

California Medical Marijuana Card

California medical marijuana card holders will appreciate a vaporizer as a Christmas gift.

Vaporizer

Sure, you may enjoy the ceremony of rolling joints and nothing may feel better than taking that first drag of MMJ from your rolled up roach, but haven’t you ever though that there might be an easier – not to mention healthier –  way?

Turns out, there is. You’ll have seen vaporizers hanging out of the mouths of hipsters for the last year or so, but don’t worry; these tools are not just for the tattooed, skinny jean-ed contingent of society. Vaporizers heat dry medical marijuana to just below 400*F, converting the active ingredients to turn into vapor, which you then inhale. Proponents assert that this is a healthier way to consume medical marijuana as it doesn’t ‘burn’ the herb and thus harm your lungs as much as smoking.

Still not convinced? Check out our article on Is Getting A Vaporizer Worth It? It’ll answer all of your queries and point you in the right direction.

MMJRecs cannabis oil uses

Why not get topicals for a California medical marijuana card holder this year?

Balm

If you don’t feel like getting a vaporizer, or if you feel like getting one and then another gift because, hey, it’s Christmas, you might want to look at cannabis balm, also known as a topical.

Cannabis-infused lotions, balms and oils are all the rage at the moment as they can treat a whole host of afflictions by directly targeting one area of the body. If you have sore joints or a point of inflammation, these topicals can offer localized relief.

Topicals are perfect for California medical marijuana card holders who don’t like the idea of inhaling smoke but still want to relieve their ailments in a subtle and soothing manner.

 

Stash box

After getting you hands on all of these new gadgets and bottles, you’re going to need somewhere to store your new equipment. It’s best to get a proper container, often referred to as a ‘stash box’, so that you know that your property is secure.

‘Stash box’ may have negative connotations in that it’s a place where you ‘stash’ illegal drugs, but as long as you have your California medical marijuana card with you at all times, you won’t be bothered by the police for keeping a small amount of MMJ for personal use.

Cannador offers an excellent container, with its 2-Strain Cannador® box being ideal for someone who wants to store, well, two strains of MMJ. The beautifully carved box contains two glass cups adjustable ventilated lids, as well as a lock and two keys. You can stick your vaporizer and your grinder in the bottom drawer and the wood (which is smell-proof, by the way) comes in walnut or cherry – your choice.

Juicer

If you’re a fan of healthy food porn on Instagram (who isn’t?!), you’ll have already noticed the trend of posting brightly-colored shakes and juices on one’s feed. But did you know that these intriguing libations can deliver your daily dose of medical cannabis?

Anyone with a California medical marijuana card can create  all sorts of delicious concoctions, as long as they have the right juicer, so that could shoot straight to the top of your presents list!

If you’re interested in juicing your MMJ, it’s best to check out Juicing Medical Cannabis: A How-To Guide; it isn’t as simple as chucking a few buds in the juicer along with carrots and apples, but once you’ve mastered the technique, you’re sure to be an instant convert.

Any healthy living fans should also cast an eye over The Health Benefits of Juicing Medical Marijuana to learn why juicing might be the best way to consume your medical marijuana.

Weed Wine

Christmas Gifts for California Medical Marijuana Card Holders

A bottle of weed wine will make the ideal gift for a California medical marijuana card holder.

We know that Christmas is all about Champagne and Sherry but in case you wanted to wet your whistle with something a little different this year, consider investing in a bottle or two of weed wine.

This unique tipple has been around in one form or another for centuries, but it’s only recently that a couple of entrepreneurs have brought the combination of cannabis and wine into the mainstream. Cancer survivor and (medical cannabis dispensary) Greenway owner Lisa Molyneux teamed up with the owner of Verdad Wines, Louisa Sawyer Lindquist, and have released Canna Vine, California medical marijuana card holders and anyone else who can legally imbibe the tasty nectar.

It’s been championed by rock star Melissa Etheridge amongst others and is said to be quite the palate-pleaser.

For further reading, check out Weed Wine: What’s The Hype?

 

There we have it folks, five ultimate gifts for a California medical marijuana card holder. We hope that you have a very merry Christmas and we’ll see you in the new year when you let us know if any of our gift recommendations were hits!

 

Growing Your Own Medical Marijuana: A Beginner’s Guide

If you have a prescription for medical marijuana but are struggling to find a source, if you simply want to save money, or if you want to go into the business of selling medical marijuana, but you haven’t a clue on how to get started, this is the place to be.

Come to us green and we’ll send you off green-thumbed, with a solid knowledge of strains, growth methods, and best procedures for harvesting and curing your crop – a real blueprint to homegrown, high-quality medicinal marijuana.

We recommend starting small and growing from there (pun intended), lest you decide farming is not for you but you’ve completely decked out your entire house and remortgaged the kids to finance it – you’ve gone beyond the point of return. Alright, without further ado, let’s get to it, fledglings!   

In what environment should I grow my medical marijuana?

Medical marijuana

You don’t have to buy medical marijuana; with the right license, you can grow it yourself!

We recommend that you grow your crop indoors with soil for security, control, predictability, and ease. While you can grow more marijuana outdoors, the quality of the crop can be greatly affected by pests and fluctuations in temperature or rainfall. These environmental issues make crop control – and the consequent crop quality – an expensive affair. Another option is hydroponics (growing plants without soil) which achieves higher yields than either of the other two options; however, its high yields come with an expensive price tag, a complex set-up, and a demanding maintenance regime. So avoid the headache and stick with indoor soil.

Which strain is best?

Well, there can be no definitive answer here: it will depend entirely on the individual and requires some experimentation. The types available – Indica, Sativa, and hybrids – are more or less suitable for treating different illnesses depending on their varying THC, Cannabinol, and Cannabidiol contents. The various strains of Indica and Sativa each come with a unique smell, taste, and strength profile so it’s best to do your research prior to committing to any one strain.   

Our main recommendation here is to pick a strain that is easy to grow. A few examples: AK-48, Northern Light, Aurora Indica, Northern Light Blue and Critical Express (autoflowering).

Your reputation pro-seeds you!

Note: You’ll need a medical marijuana license in order to purchase seeds legally. If you’re unsure how to get a  medical marijuana card online check out some of our other articles which detail the process.

Auto-flowering seeds: the buds in flowers are what contain the active ingredients in medical marijuana, so getting your plants to flower is essential. Unlike normal cannabis plants, which require 24 hours of light to grow and then 12 hours of light to flower, autoflowering plants flower with 24 hours of light. This means you quickly get from seed to weed with no need to separate growing plants and flowering plants. Definitely worth considering for the inexperienced grower.

Feminized seeds: There are both male and female marijuana plants, but only the female plants grow the buds that produce a high. You can – and should – purchase feminized seeds to ensure that you get a high-yield crop.

Note: Under stress, female plants will produce male flowers. Plant stress is onset by under or overwatering, lack or excess of nutrients, ph-imbalance, or irregular light-cycles – here the Goldilocks principle should be applied (it needs to be “just right”).  

Medical marijuana

To grow your own medical marijuana, you’ll need an MMJ card.

I’ve Soiled Myself!

If using garden soil, note that Marijuana needs soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7. For overly acidic soil, use lime to increase pH. To increase acidity, add coffee grounds. Alternatively, you can buy a soil mix designed for marijuana.

Water We Gonna Do?

Ideally PH neutral (pH7). Raise water’s pH by adding either some lime, wood ash, or a pre-mixed solution. Lower water’s pH by adding sulfur, phosphoric acid, or a pH-lowering solution.

Tend to Your Tent!

If you don’t want to use an entire room a grow tent is ideal. They come in all sizes, holding from 8 up to 256 plants. They keep light out, offer easy hookups for your grow lights, are waterproof, and provide an exhaust point. Fantastic for the uninitiated and we’re going to assume this is the set-up you’ll be using.

Let There Be Light!

To grow, your plants will need light provided by bulbs that provide a full spectrum of light, unlike normal household bulbs. We recommend going with LED lights: though they will cost more initially than some other options, they’ll save money in the long-run.

Block out all external light. Your marijuana plants will need total darkness for large periods of time.

Germination

The easiest way to germinate your seeds is by soaking them for a day in a glass of distilled water and then placing them in a warm, moist paper towel. Once it has sprouted, it needs to be put into the soil.

Seedlings

At this stage, it is best to put a seedling under at least 16 hours light every 24 hours – but make sure the light is not too bright.

Flower Power

In the flowering stage, your marijuana plant will finally produce smokable marijuana. During this stage, you will need to reduce the amount of light it receives to just 12 hours. You will also need to adjust down the brightness of the light, using a bulb with 2700k.  Run this light regimen until your plant is ready to harvest.  

Harvesting

The best way to tell whether your plant is ready for harvest is to check the plants’ trichomes (extremely fine hairs that can be seen along the surface of the buds). Using a 30x magnifying glass, check that around 80% of trichomes are cloudy, 15% are amber and 5% are clear. If this is the case, it’s time to cut and dry.

Drying and Curing

Don’t smoke it yet! You need to dry and cure it first. To dry the weed, hang it until the buds are dry to the touch, but do not snap when bent. The most common technique for curing is known as “burping”, which involves putting your bud in an airtight glass jar and opening it for a couple of minutes every 12 hours over the course of a month – how cute!

And there you have it. Your guide to growing your own medical marijuana. Hopefully, this beginner’s guide to growing your own medical marijuana has provided the inspiration to get started and the knowledge to take you to the end. Make sure you get your 420 card before you begin and enjoy growing!

How Medical Cannabis Oil Reduces Stress

For millions of Americans each year, stress is the number one factor that affects their quality of life. Stress can develop from the most modest of places but over time can grow into a much larger issue, leading to insomnia, and even severe anxiety. Fortunately, medical marijuana and the medical cannabis oil extracted from the plant, can work wonders in securing a far more balanced frame of mind. If you’ve been living with stress for far too long, a cannabis card may be able to help.

With a myriad of ways in which to consume medical marijuana, and the differences in chemical compounds within each strain, finding the best type for you can often become a daunting task. For those who are inclined to shy away from the more traditional means of consumption, such as smoking, medical cannabis oil is an effective alternative, one which is able to relieve stress with very little effort, while omitting the usual high that is associated with marijuana.

Medical cannabis oil

Medical cannabis oil can be a fantastic stress-reliever.

Cannabis oil is merely a concentrated, distilled substance obtained from the marijuana plant, where the plant itself has been removed via a solvent. There are two core compounds found within most common types of cannabis: tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and cannabidiol (CBD) – the former of which responsible for the “high” feeling. Typically, medical cannabis oil which is marketing for medicinal purposes contains far less THC – this being the primary reason why oil is able to have a positive impact on stress.

If you hold or are thinking about obtaining a cannabis card in California, it’s important to know the principle differences in strains (assuming the cannabis is being used medicinally, of course). Simply put, strains with higher levels of CBD are beneficial for those coping with stress, while high levels of THC should be avoided in this instance, due to chronic consumption often causing stress and anxiety. The emphasis on CBD is one of the reasons medical cannabis oil is the ideal remedy for one’s stress.

Opting to acquire a cannabis card is becoming more and more common for people suffering from a range of ailments. Anecdotal and scientific evidence both show that medical cannabis oil has the ability to release pleasure hormones, relaxing the mind in the process. These hormones lend themselves to reducing stress levels directly, allowing a peaceful calm to wash over the body. Through relieving stress, secondary problems such as insomnia or anxiety can also be mitigated.

With medical cannabis oil predominantly consisting of CBD, consuming cannabis in this way is safe, unobtrusive, and efficient, due to its ability to combat a range of underlying issues. If left to fester, stress more-often-than-not evolves into anxiety, which can have a major impact on your standard of living – something roughly 18% of the US population can attest to. However, research conducted at Vanderbilt University found that the CBD compound is able to regulate and relieve anxiety, preventing further stress.

Medical cannabis oil

The oil extracted from marijuana can help relieve a whole host of medical issues.

For those on the fence about obtaining a cannabis card in California, further studies have shown how CBD-rich marijuana (such as that of cannabis oil), can have a dramatic positive impact on people suffering from the effects of stress. A 2013 study conducted at the University of Haifa in Israel found that CBD-rich treatment was able to regulate the emotional response found within those who had undergone a significant traumatic experience, preventing stress-induced impairment.  

CBD treatment is able to work wonders on the mind, due to the way that it interacts with the body. Evidence shows that CBD is able to minimize stress through the affects it has on the receptors in the basolateral amygdala (where the majority of sensory information is received) and the hippocampus (the believed center of emotion). Supporting these scientific explanations is the fact that cannabis simply offers therapeutic comfort, with the Institute of Psychiatry stating that CBD offers great psychiatric potential.

Stress can rear its head due to a number of reasons, each specific to an individual’s personality and environment. CBD has been shown to improve cognitive impairment, as well as the discomfort people often have when faced with speaking in a public setting. These benefits also extend to those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), with a 2015 review published in the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy finding that cannabis treatment is effective at supporting military veterans.

A cannabis card is the gateway to relieving a plethora of ailments. Veterans who house PTSD frequently report cannabis treatment reduces their anxiety and insomnia – direct effects of intense stress, which can similarly be applied to anyone in their individual situation. The advantages to consuming products such as medical cannabis oil are tremendous; faster acting than standard prescription medication, and producing few side effects that meds all too often go hand-in-hand with.

The key for any cannabis card holder searching for the most effective herbal remedy is the compound levels. If you find yourself struggling through day-to-day activities due to the impact stress is having on your life, then a CBD-rich strain is the way to go – with medical cannabis oil being a prime candidate.

Medical Cannabis Oil And Cancer: The Facts

Medical cannabis oil is utilized to treat a myriad of conditions, with the number of those who purchase it for medicinal use increasing every year. One of the most common reasons people are choosing to obtain a cannabis card is due to the drug’s effectiveness at combating cancer, and the symptoms related to its treatment.

Medical cannabis oil

Medical cannabis oil is a great tool in the fight against cancer.

Each year, an annual international convention on cannabinoid medicine takes place, gathering doctors and researchers together to combine their findings regarding the effects of medical marijuana. While most of the information aired at conventions such as these is greatly under-publicized, there is no denying the anecdotal evidence surrounding the use of cannabis to treat various conditions.

If you have recently obtained a cannabis card in California for medicinal purposes, the information and options available to you can quickly become overwhelming. From the varying degrees of chemical compounds found within different strains of marijuana, to the plethora of ways in which to consume it, purchasing the drug that’s right for you isn’t always as easy as it seems.

Consuming cannabis through more traditional methods, such as smoking it in a joint or bong, also isn’t for everyone. For reasons such as these, more and more people are turning to medical cannabis oil. Cannabis oil is simply a concentrated, distilled form of the marijuana plant, with the plant material itself stripped away via a solvent. Typically, cannabis oil marketed for medicinal use is far less likely to give the high associated with cannabis use, but can still provide a tangible impact on those suffering from cancer.

Just like its herb counterpart, medical cannabis oil contains two primary ingredients: tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and cannabidiol (CBD). While cannabis oil is more likely to contain lower levels of THC, both compounds found within marijuana have been found to act as a beneficial alternative form of cancer treatment. While no proof suggests cannabis can actually cure cancer, there is significant evidence suggesting it may be able to reduce cancer cells.

Found within every cell in the body are sphingolipids – lipids which specifically manage the life and death of each particular cell. Simply put, if ceramide levels in a cell are high, the death of that cell is imminent. Through the use of medical cannabis oil, THC is able to connect to the cannabinoid receptor site of a cancer cell, causing an increase in ceramide synthesis which drives cell death. While killing cells may sound like a dubious proposition, healthy cells do not produce ceramide in the presence of THC, so only the cancer cells are affected.

Medical cannabis oil

Many MMJ users like to use medical cannabis oil to relieve themselves of symptoms of illness.

For those with a cannabis card, certain steps are advised to make the most out of your cannabis oil. The key to fighting cancer cells is the accumulation of ceramide in the system. Consuming a steady amount of CBD and THC over a consistent period of time is far more beneficial than using a large amount all at once. Keeping firm metabolic pressure on the cancer cells will provide the most advantageous route to maximize the effects of medical marijuana.

Substantial evidence found throughout studies carried out over years suggests that medical cannabis oil is able to combat cancer head-on. In 2013, a study completed at the Complutense University of Madrid found that THC actually causes cancer cells to auto-digest, thus drastically reducing tumor size and prevalence. Many people have claimed cannabis helped them recover from cancer, and while this is indeed the case, frequently this is due to the reduction in side effects associated with traditional cancer treatment.

One of the most effective uses of your medical marijuana card in California is nausea relief. For a wealth of people suffering from cancer, chemotherapy is an uncomfortable and draining reality. However, cannabis oil is able to relieve the symptoms that arise through chemotherapy. The National Comprehensive Cancer Network has stated that consuming cannabis can often be more effective than the use of most standard anti-nausea medication.

The range of uses for cannabis in relation to cancer is noteworthy, as they are able to directly affect the disease itself, as well as its symptoms. These symptoms – from nausea, to lack of appetite and pain – can be easily treated through the acquisition of a cannabis card. In fact, a study carried out at St. John’s Hospital in Tulsa found that the side-effects that go hand-in-hand with treatment for both cancer and HIV/AIDS were reduced by 38% in patients who consumed medical marijuana.

Through its ability to target both the cause and symptoms of cancer, cannabis – and the oil distilled from its mothering plant – is becoming an increasingly worthy source of treatment for a considerable amount of people. If you have a cannabis card, knowing the chemical compounds and means of consumption which are right for you is important – with medical cannabis oil being a viable and inviting option for many.

A Beginner’s Guide To California Medical Cannabis

With California medical cannabis still being a relatively recent legal development, knowing where to start can be overwhelming. Here’s a beginner’s guide to answer some of the most common questions.

California Medical Cannabis

California medical cannabis can even come in the form of massage oil!

What are the qualifying conditions for California medical cannabis?

Many people apply for a California medical cannabis license in order to treat a condition that hasn’t been helped by more conventional medicine. People unfamiliar with the potential benefits of medical marijuana are often surprised at the sheer diversity of patients that use it on a regular basis. In the state of California, medical marijuana can be used to treat the symptoms of serious ailments such as HIV and AIDS, lyme disease, multiple sclerosis, cancer, glaucoma and fibromyalgia. Medical marijuana is also used to treat eating disorders, anxiety, migraine headaches and fight the negative side effects of chemotherapy and radiation therapy. If you don’t see your condition listed, that doesn’t mean you won’t qualify for a California medical cannabis card however, as the law allows for other chronic or terminal illnesses to be treated this way.

How do you qualify as a medical marijuana patient?

You must first get a recommendation from a licensed healthcare provider. If possible, you should book an appointment with your primary physician in order to discuss receiving a recommendation for your ailments. If this is not possible or if you’re uncomfortable discussing the use of medical marijuana with your doctor, there are also a number of healthcare professionals who specialize in seeing patients to assess them for the use of medical marijuana or you could look into a weed license online. In California, any licensed physician will be allowed to give you approval before proceeding to apply for your cannabis card.

How do I get my California Medical Cannabis Card?

In order to get your medical marijuana, a doctor’s note will suffice at your local dispensary, although it will need to be verified on your first visit. Many patients, however, apply for a medical marijuana card to make the process simpler and easier in the future. This program is run by the state of California and once you apply with your doctor’s approval, it means that your details will be placed on an online state register so that physicians, dispensaries and any law enforcement will be able to quickly verify your legal right to use medical marijuana.

Your California medical marijuana ID is extremely useful to have on your person at all times because it shows that you are legally allowed to possess or cultivate marijuana for personal medical use. Should this question ever arise from the police or other law enforcement agencies, you can produce your MMJ card immediately, giving you legal protection at state level.

California Medical Cannabis

It’s best to be au fait with all of the laws surrounding California medical cannabis before you consume.

How do I get my medical marijuana?

Check online to see where your nearest medical marijuana dispensary is located. There are dedicated apps that can help you find your nearest one, or Google Maps will be able to help. You will need to bring along your doctor’s recommendation or your cannabis card, along with a form of identification that proves that you live in the state of California. You should note that if you visit the dispensary without a California cannabis card, the dispensary will call your doctor to verify your identity.

What kind of medicinal cannabis should I use?

Discuss with the dispensary staff what kind of medical marijuana is right for you. For a first time user, the different strains and products can be confusing. Don’t be afraid to take your time and talk with the staff about your condition and what you hope to achieve through use of medical marijuana. They will be trained to give you the best possible experience and guide you through the process. They will be able to recommend any particular strains of MMJ that will work best for your condition, as well as talk you through any possible side effects. There’s also a wide variety of possibilities for the way you ingest your medical marijuana in California; if you don’t want to smoke it perhaps you might be better suited to trying edible products, using a vaporizer, ingesting oil capsules or even applying a topical ointment instead.

As you become a more experienced medical marijuana user, you will be better able to navigate the variety of strains and options available. Many experienced users are able to tell the quality and strength of the different product by smell. There’s even a saying amongst medical marijuana users that ‘the nose knows!’ and it’s not uncommon for patients to smell a variety of strains before deciding on one to try.

You can also use the internet to do some research of your own and perhaps connect with other medical marijuana patients who have the same conditions as you. Ask them what strains helped them the most and how they prefer to consume their MMJ. Finding the right fit for you can involve some trial and error but it’s worth it to find the best solution.

California Medical Marijuana: Which Strain Is Best For You?

When you first get your California medical marijuana license, your first few visits to the dispensary can be quite daunting. The variety of strains available with a California medical card can be overwhelming, and it can be hard to know which one will best help with your particular condition. Ultimately, everybody is unique and different strains affect different people in different ways. Some patients respond best to one strain, some to others. Luckily, when you have a California medical marijuana card, you can experiment to your heart’s content!

The two main strains of cannabis are sativa and indica. Both are available to you when you get a medical marijuana card online. Sativa is typically less potent, but tends to have a higher level of the psychoactive compound THC. Most people who use sativa find that it increases energy, focus, creativity, and elevates mood. Sativa is more cerebral and gives a more heady, mind-based high.

Indica strains are more relaxing and sleep-inducing. They tend to relieve nausea, stress and anxiety and give patients a sense of calm. Indica is used to treat a larger number of conditions and is especially good for patients with AIDS, cancer and glaucoma. Indica tends to be more ‘of the body’, while sativa tends to be more ‘of the mind’. There are also many hybrid strains, usually sativa-dominant, or indica-dominant mixtures of the two main strains. The goal of a hybrid is to emphasize certain effects and minimize certain other effects. They are tailormade for various ailments and conditions. Indica-dominant hybrids are good for pain relief, while at the same time maintaining energy levels. Sativa-dominant hybrids are good for stimulating appetite and energy, while at the same time soothing the body, reducing pain, and increasing relaxation.

So, to get you started, here are some recommendations for various strains you can pick up with a California medical pot card, and that work especially well with certain medical conditions.

California medical marijuanaBest California medical marijuana for energy

Girl Scout Cookies is a very popular strain with a high THC content, often over 25%. It is excellent for pain reduction, and for people who enjoy the hard stuff. Girl Scout Cookies is a sativa-dominant hybrid and so it is nice and energizing.

Strawberry Cough is a high-THC strain that is perfect for people who enjoy the energy and psychoactive effects that a strong sativa brings. It’s a super-effective and popular strain, with a delicious strawberry flavor and uniquely uplifting high. With a THC content of 18%, it’s uplifting and ideal for daytime use.

Best MMJ for promoting sleep

Afghan Kush is a potent Indica. This will certainly relax you and is great for alleviating pain and insomnia, as well as calming you down. It’s a pungent and pure indica strain and it will bring on deep, relaxing sleep, so it’s not good if you are operating heavy machinery, or intending to get any work done!

Best MMJ for pain management

The Avidekel strain was bred specifically for the medical cannabis market. It comes from Israel, which is rapidly expanding its medical marijuana program, although recreational cannabis is still illegal in the country. This is a high-CBD strain of indica. It has 1% THC and 15-20% CBD so is very relaxing and nice in the evening.

Best MMJ for alleviating anxiety

Blue Dream is a big favorite with marijuana users who get a medical card in California. It’s a high THC hybrid that is mostly sativa and its effects are energizing. It also contains a little dose of indica and so it gives a pleasant feeling of physical relaxation. You will be nice and clear headed on this stuff so it is is good for during the day when you are out and about.

Bred by Royal Queen Seeds, Stress Killer this is a high-CBD strain with fairly low levels of THC around 11%, ideal for people who like a slight and manageable psychoactive high. It will produce a mild, sedative high and is ideal for alleviating anxiety.

California medical marijuana growingBest California medical marijuana for reducing seizures

Charlotte’s Web is a well-known strain of medical marijuana that’s named after Charlotte Figi, a young girl who had a rare type of epilepsy called Dravet Syndrome which results in hundreds of seizures every month. Having tried many pharmaceutical treatment to no avail, she finally found the Stanley Brothers and the high-CBD strain of cannabis that they had cultivated. This worked where no other treatment had. In her first week of treatment her seizures dropped from the hundreds down to single digits. Charlotte’s Web has a CBD level of 20% and a THC content below 0.5%.

Best medical cannabis for making healthy juices

ACDC, or Alternative Cannabinoid Dietary Cannabis, is a high CBD strain specifically bred as a form of dietary cannabis. You can smoke or vape this strain but it is especially good consumed raw, and it’s excellent for juicing. Heat converts CBDA and THCA into their active forms, so for people who want the nutritional benefits without the psychoactive side-effects, this strain is ideal.

Best MMJ for inflammation and arthritis

Harlequin is a hybrid 5:2 ratio of CBD to THC, so it’s relaxing and good for pain relief without a strong psychoactive high. This strain is also good for anxiety and mental health issues as it’s very calming, without much confusing psychoactive effects. It’s also good for muscle spasms, cramps, and other similar physical conditions.

Best for California medical marijuana for headaches and migraines

Blueberry Headband is a hybrid strain with a cerebral feel and heady high. This sweet berry-flavored cannabis is excellent for relieving headache.

Best MMJ for multiple sclerosis, muscle spasms and stiffness

One to One has a CBD to THC content of 1:1, so it is a very practical and usable strain for many conditions. It has a similar 1:1 ratio as the pharmaceutical mouth-spray drug Sativex that is used in 24 countries (although not yet in the United States) to alleviate the symptoms of multiple sclerosis. So this the perfect strain for people with multiple sclerosis who meet the qualifying conditions for medical cannabis  in California, but can’t yet access Sativex.

Everybody responds differently to each strain and the best way to go about finding what works for you is to get a cannabis card online and experiment with a few different strains to find out which one is your favorite.

Sleep Problems: Why Medical Marijuana Is Better Than Alcohol

There are a variety of reasons why more and more people each year are turning to medical marijuana to help relieve their ailments. One of the most common across the United States is sleep problems – chronic insomnia in many cases. An estimated 10-30% of Americans are affected with insomnia related symptoms at some point throughout their lives.

For a large quantity of the population who suffer from unruly nighttime restlessness, turning to alcohol is all too often their go-to move. For those fortunate enough to possess a medical marijuana card however, that can be a thing of the past. Whereas studies have shown that alcohol and a good night’s sleep do not mix, evidence suggests that not only is consuming medical marijuana beneficial in combating mild to severe insomnia, but is vastly superior to both alcohol and even a lot of prescription drugs on the market – which themselves can often house addictive qualities and negative side effects.

A common misconception is that having a nightcap right before bed will result in a better night’s sleep. A recent review across 27 studies found that alcohol does not improve sleep quality. While findings suggest that in some cases among healthy people, getting to sleep can occur more quickly after a drink, this is only a short-term effect; conversely reducing the time spent in the deep sleep phase, increasing the rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, which is much easier to wake up from. Furthermore, the more you drink before bed, the more pronounced these effects will be.

Medical marijuana and sleep

medical marijuana

Medical marijuana has been scientifically proven to help users sleep.

If you have a medical marijuana card in California however, cannabis has been shown to greatly benefit the standard of living for those suffering from insomnia related problems. While smoking any kind of cannabis can provide therapeutic qualities, the chemical properties it inhabits can have a potent impact on many types of secondary insomnia (that caused by an underlying issue, such as anxiety or depression). It’s important to understand the differences in marijuana strains though, as some can inhibit sleep as equally as alcohol.

The most common strains come across by cannabis card holders will be THC and CBD; this is due to the advantages they offer to people suffering from a range of illnesses, from insomnia, to cancer and HIV. High levels of THC can be of a detriment to those with secondary insomnia, as it can actually increase the effects of anxiety and depression if relied on too heavily, while high levels of CBD will have little effect on insomnia at all. If these are indeed the strains you’re working with to help lull yourself to sleep, it’s best to stick to a relatively equal dose of both.

alcohol medical marijuana

Alcohol does not actually help you sleep, while medical marijuana really can.

Alcohol and sleep

The medical director at The London Sleep Center in the UK has state that, “Alcohol may seem to be helping you to sleep, as it helps induce sleep, but overall it is more disruptive to sleep, particularly in the second half of the night”. He continues, “Alcohol also suppresses breathing and can precipitate sleep apnea” which is pausing breathing which happens throughout the night. This is effectively summarized by saying that the more a person drinks before bed, the more their sleep will be disrupted.

Even minimal alcohol consumption can interfere with the normal sleep process. Evidence found by Dr John Shneerson, head of the sleep center at Papworth Hospital in the UK, states that, “As the alcohol starts to wear off, your body can come out of a deep sleep and back into REM sleep […] that’s why you often wake up after just a few hours’ sleep when you’ve been drinking.” Further disturbances in sleep can come from simply needing the bathroom; as alcohol is a diuretic it isn’t just the liquid you’ve drunk that you’ll be losing either, as it encourages the body to lose extra fluid, which can in-turn comes with the adverse effect of making you dehydrated.

California medical marijuana card holders

For Californians, using your cannabis card is undoubtedly one of the best ways in which you can confront sleep problems head on. The most assured way to counter the effects of insomnia is to seek the indica strain of marijuana. The chemicals found within the indica strain are known to produce a physical ‘body high’, great for relaxation, and preferable over the more familiar THC or CBD. Synthetic cannabinoids such as nabilone are proven sleep aids too; reducing brain activity throughout the night, therefore resulting in far fewer dreams, helping those suffering from anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder stay asleep.

For cannabis card holders who desire a drink before bed, a prominent benefit to a healthy sleep can come from pairing herbal nightcaps with natural remedies, such as chamomile tea (un-spiked of course). As with alcohol, relying heavily on marijuana to soothe oneself at bedtime can result in a reliance if used too often, so it’s important to take breaks in between long acquaintances, as not doing so will eventually result in worsened sleep.

Sleep problems in those who are lucky enough to obtain a medical marijuana card, can be a thing of the past if used properly. Assuming the suitable strains to fight the effects of insomnia are used, the advantages over alcohol are tremendous – greatly increasing deep and long-lasting sleep. Turning to a nightcap only offers temporary relief; so if you desire to treat those sleep issues efficiently and directly, medical marijuana is the way to go.

Cannabis Card: Ultimate Weapon In The Fight Against Insomnia

If you’re one of the many people in California who suffer from insomnia, the prospect of obtaining a cannabis card due to the known benefits the drug holds when used as a sleep aid, can be an alluring one indeed. Across the United States, insomnia affects a staggering amount of people, with an estimated 10-30% of Americans being affected at some point in their life.

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Why You Shouldn’t Buy Medical Marijuana Off The Street

Before California legalized medical marijuana, buying MMJ on the street or from a dealer was pretty much the only way to attain it. But then Governor Gray Davis passed SB 420, or the Medical Marijuana Protection Act, that allows medical cannabis to be used by everyone in California, provided that they have an official California medical marijuana card. MMJ dispensaries have since popped up all over the state, meaning that there’s no need to buy medical marijuana on the street anymore.  But some people still do! (more…)

Medical Marijuana: Why It Relieves Anxiety

The use of medical marijuana in treating a large number of sicknesses and ailments is rapidly growing all around the world. And one of the leading reasons people have been turning towards cannabis is due to its benefits when combating anxiety disorders. This is the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting roughly 18% of the population.

Cannabis has been used in India for over 400 years to treat depression and anxiety, and for those who possess a medical marijuana card in California, using cannabis may provide significant relief as well as an overall increase in your standard of living.

However, purchasing weed at your local dispensary relies on several important factors that anyone suffering from anxiety absolutely must know. Throughout the medical community, the use of cannabis in regards to anxiety splits the room; some advocating it wholeheartedly, while others advising against it. This is due to the variety of active chemical compounds found within different types of weed – some of which relieve anxiety, and others that can actually become the source of the illness.

Outlined below is everything you need to know about the different strains of medical cannabis, as well as the positive effects it can have when consumed by those looking to relieve anxiety.

 

Medical marijuana

The natural plan of medical marijuana is a great boon to progressive scientists around the world.

Medical Marijuana: The Science

Research conducted by Vanderbilt University found that the use of marijuana was effective at regulating and relieving anxiety, with the only negative side effects occurring through chronic use. Research states that this relief comes from cannabidiol (CBD) – an active cannabinoid found within cannabis. Considering the evidence, it’s no surprise why several states across the US, including California, have legalized the use of medical marijuana cards. So how does cannabis relieve anxiety?

Contained within cannabis are 85 natural compounds, which when consumed attach themselves to receptors in the brain that seek out similar compounds found naturally within the human body. Through this process, compounds – specifically CBD – are then able to relieve a variety of illnesses to varying degrees. Because of this, particular strains of marijuana are purposely bred to contain exact levels of each compound with an aim to target specific conditions.

For those who have obtained a cannabis card with an aim to relieve their anxiety, CBD is a word you will quickly become accustomed with. This is because it’s the key compound which has been found to help with the relief of anxiety. Conversely, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – also found within cannabis, and the compound used primarily to treat nausea and vomiting in cancer patients – can actively work against CBD, and ultimately cause anxiety.

 

Medical marijuana

Medical marijuana is very useful in combating anxiety.

Medical Marijuana: Combating Anxiety

When it comes to purchasing marijuana to soothe the effects of anxiety, the trick is to get the right chemical balance – which can be easier said than done. While it won’t give you the typical high associated with cannabis use, CBD-rich cannabis has been shown to counteract the negative effects THC has on those with anxiety, and is an effective way to relieve anywhere from mild to quite severe symptoms.

Due to the adverse effects that THC can have, it’s important for those with a medical marijuana card to be absolutely certain what kind of product they are purchasing before use. Studies have shown that THC activates the amygdala area of the brain. This is the part of the brain that controls fear, which in turn can lead to acute anxiety upon frequent use. This strain of cannabis is relatively common due to its benefits towards other ailments, therefore be sure to check that the strain of cannabis has high levels of CBD and low THC if you’re consuming for anxiety related purposes.

Not only is CBD able to alleviate the negative effects of anxiety through attaching itself to specific brain receptors, but it has also been shown to offer significant therapeutic comfort. In fact, a study carried out by the Institute of Psychiatry has stated that CBD offers great psychiatric potential. Furthermore, The Division of Psychiatry with the Department of Neurosciences and Behavior concluded that CBD dramatically reduced anxiety within its patients, due to its effects on mood-altering areas of the brain.

Medical Marijuana: How It Can Help You

For anyone with a cannabis card, the positive effects of medical marijuana that’s rich with CBD isn’t just limited to relief from anxiety either. Improvements in cognitive impairment, as well as a reduction in discomfort when speaking in public, have been shown to occur also. These positive impacts of marijuana consumption provide advantages over standard prescription medication on a chemical level, while also being faster acting to deliver immediate relief and coming with very few side effects that often go hand-in-hand with meds.

Above all, the two most important factors for anyone using their medical marijuana card to relieve anxiety are moderation and making sure to purchase a strain with a much greater concentration of CBD as opposed to THC. Habitual use or consuming THC rich cannabis can indeed have the opposite effect. However, for those struggling with the impact anxiety is having on their lives, medical marijuana can provide immense benefits, bestowing instant and prolonged relief.

7 Things to Consider When You First Get Your Cannabis Card in California

You did it. You went out and got your hands on a cannabis card in California. First off, congrats! The wide world of weed just opened its doors to you. You now have access to more marijuana than you could ever imagine and in every form you could ever think of. From edible to prime kush to cannabis oil and more, you can have it all now.

While you can try it all, you shouldn’t. It may be difficult, but exercising a little caution can be a good thing when you first get your medical marijuana card online. Here are seven things to consider when you first get your cannabis card in California.

 

  • Take a Deep Breathe

You have your cannabis card now. There’s no rush. While you can’t get medical marijuana online, there’s no need to visit that sketchy drug dealer any longer. Relax. The dispensary isn’t going to run out of marijuana. Take a deep breathe and change how you view marijuana consumption.

 

  • Go to the Dispensary

We know you want to! After you’ve taken a deep breath and relaxed a bit, hop in the car and head over to the local dispensary. We recommend only bringing cash and only the amount you can afford to spend because, if you’re anything like us, you’ll try to buy it all. Yes, your first trip to the dispensary should be treated like your first trip to the casino.

 

  • Ask Questions

The employees at medical marijuana dispensaries are more knowledgeable than anyone else about weed and their product. While you may think you know more about marijuana than anyone else, feel free to ask these legit experts any questions you have about the plant and their selection.

 

  • Make Your Selection

Think about the medical benefits you desire as you shop around. Remember: strains high in THC offer a chance to get high, but strains high in CBD seem to help relax and reduce pain more effectively. Of course, you’ll want to find some fun stuff to try as well so feel free to get your edibles, oils and drinks on!

 

  • Act Normal

Easier said than done, but you’ll want to act normal as you walk back to your car with more weed than you’ve ever had your hands on before. You’ll feel like a criminal the first time, but you’ll get used to having so much weed on you.

 

  • Keep Away From Kids

Sure, the marijuana is fine for you, but you’ll want to find a proper place to store your new stash. Make sure you keep everything away from the children because the edibles can look just like candies to young ones.

 

  • Testing One, Two

It’s finally game time. You have all these new types of weed to try. What do you do first? Well, that’s up to you. Consume your cannabis in any way you see fit. Have fun with it and enjoy exploring all the different types of marijuana.

11 Health Benefits Stemming From Medical Marijuana

Each year more research comes out showing the health benefits of medical marijuana and just regular old weed. And every year more people come around to the idea that smoking a plant can be beneficial to your health in certain situations.

Smoking cannabis recreationally is still questioned by many. However, many medical experts have come around to using marijuana as a drug for medical purposes. After all, we use much stronger narcotics in everyday medicine. So there isn’t much of an argument to make against medical weed.

With this in mind, here are 11 health benefits stemming from marijuana:

For Tobacco Smokers

Medical marijuana has been shown to reduce carcinogenic effects of long-term tobacco consumption. As well, smoking marijuana increases lung capacity; tobacco smoking significantly hinders lung function.

Controlling Epileptic Seizures

Both children and adults suffering from seizures have seen marijuana consumption to help prevent or reduce the number of seizures. The key is to find a strain of medical marijuana that is high in CBD.

Stops the Spread of Cancer

While studies haven’t been completed on human subjects yet, the results from lab and animal studies have been profound: medical marijuana can stop or slow the growth of cancer cells.

Reduced Anxiety

Before you get your medical marijuana card to reduce stress, you must know that only select strains of weed will help. Other strains of marijuana can increase your anxiety. Strains high in CBD have been shown to help anxiety in certain cases.

Calms Muscle Spasms

Once you get your weed card, you may be able to eliminate muscle spasms that creep up, especially for active individuals who are aging. Weed relaxes muscles rapidly, allowing the spasms to cease.

Arthritis Relief

For people suffering from arthritis, many have found medical marijuana to be helpful in relieving pain. As well, individuals using weed for arthritis have found sleep significantly improved, too.

Improved Creativity

Marijuana releases dopamine in the brain. This can lead to increased productivity. Certain studies have shown positive mental effects of marijuana. Anecdotal evidence shows us that Hollywood is one of the creative capitals of the world, and many people working throughout the creative industry in the town consume regularly.

Treating PTSD

Coming home from war can have terrible effects on many men and women. Returning to normal life often leads to anxiety, fear, and depression. Many suffering from PTSD have found significant improvements when buying medical marijuana online.

Protect From Concussions

While research is preliminary, many have come to the conclusion that medical marijuana can protect and heal the brain from concussions. Weed is said to have a variety of healing properties after a traumatic incident.

Stimulates Appetite

Anyone who has gotten high before knows marijuana consumption can lead to hunger. Certain medical treatments, like chemotherapy, result in patients losing their appetite. Marijuana can help patients eat more after therapy.

Reducing Alcohol Consumption

Some consider medical marijuana to be much healthier than alcohol consumption or other addictions. For people with addiction problems, consuming marijuana instead of alcohol or another drug can help in recovery.

How Medical Marijuana Can Improve Your Sleep

Sleep isn’t easy for everyone. Many people struggle to fall asleep at night. Some of these people have turned to using marijuana before bed to help them sleep. Whether out of habit or necessity, cannabis can be an excellent sleep aid.

Cannabinoids, the chemicals found in marijuana, can mimic the chemicals found in the brain when preparing for or during sleep. The chemicals and biological pathway responsible for sleep regulation are called the body’s endocannabinoid system.

While there’s some science behind the benefits of medical marijuana to improve sleep, some evidence is decidedly anecdotal. Here are some of the ways medical marijuana can improve your sleep:

1. Falling Asleep Faster

Numerous studies show THC, the main ingredient in weed, helps healthy people and those with insomnia fall asleep faster. It’s worth noting strains too high in THC could counteract the benefits. When you want to buy medical marijuana online, it’s important to always buy indica strains. Sativa strains can keep you up.

2. Sleeping Deeper

THC doesn’t just put you to bed. The chemical actually helps individuals sleep deeper, too. This factor could be more important than falling asleep faster because, in comparison to other types of sleep, deep sleep offers the restorative effects the body needs.

3. Longer Sleep Times

Not only does consuming marijuana before bed put you to sleep, but you’ll probably sleep for a longer period of time. According to multiple studies, THC allows users to sleep longer.

4. Curing Sleep Apnea

Marijuana is being tested as an alternative treatment method for people suffering from sleep apnea. THC may be able to regulate breathing during sleeping hours for those with the disorder.

What You Need to Know

Before you go out to get your medical marijuana card online and buy some weed, you need to know a few things. We already discussed the benefits of choosing an indica strain over a sativa one. When looking to buy marijuana online, it’s also important to note aged cannabis will lead to better sleep when compared with fresh bud.

Smoking marijuana before bed potentially decreases REM sleep. While this will reduce your ability to dream, the overall effects on the body shouldn’t be relevant. Unless you love your lucid dreams, you’ll be okay with this minor side effect.

Overall, consuming weed before going to bed will lead to greater physical restoration, but could hinder dreaming and result in a minor hangover in the morning. For those who struggle with falling asleep, the risk is often worth the reward. Getting to sleep and staying there is more important!

Get in touch with us for more information on how you can get medical marijuana online to help you sleep soundly. We’re one of the best sources for getting medical weed quickly and easily!

Is Medical Marijuana Effective?

Whether you believe medical marijuana is a joke or you hold a weed card, it’s fair to look at the facts and learn if medical marijuana does its job or not. After looking at the benefits of medical cannabis throughout numerous medical research trials, we’ve found some answers.

It’s important to note medical cannabis used in research studies is a far cry from smoking a joint in your basement. The strains are specially selected to help with certain ailments, and the doses are selected by medical professionals who study cannabis for a living.

Not Just Getting High

It’s worth mentioning we’re not talking about getting high here. We don’t think anyone is debating that marijuana – whether medical or recreational – can provide a “high” feeling many users enjoy. When we are talking about the effectiveness of medical cannabis, we are referring to the benefits the drug offers in curing certain medical ailments.

Nausea and Nerve Pain

Overall, research proves medical marijuana is quite useful in treating nausea and nerve pain. Medical marijuana can offer instant relief and comfort for patients suffering from cancer or AIDS. Studies show medical cannabis is equal or superior to traditional drugs at treating nerve pain.

Epilepsy

Research shows medical cannabis high in CBD is highly effective in limiting the number of seizures patients with certain syndromes experience. Specific strains prove helpful for children and adults. Some patients have even moved to medical marijuana-friendly states to have access to such strains on a consistent basis.

Crohn’s Disease

Crohn’s disease is a horrific illness resulting in inflammatory bowels. Eventually, this ailment irritates the small intestine in a painful manner. It is most commonly treated with medications. In some cases, surgery is another effective option for treatment. However, recent studies show smoking medical marijuana high in THC can cause the disease to go into remission.

Cancer Treatments

According to lab and animal studies, both THC and CBD can potentially slow or halt the growth of cancer cells. Human studies have just begun. While the potential to help with cancer treatments is there, medical scientists need to conduct more research before concluding medical marijuana is beneficial in cancer treatments.

Glaucoma

Back in the day, before you could get a medical marijuana card online, many claimed they had glaucoma when attempting to get their weed card. While marijuana can lower pressure in the eye stemming from glaucoma, one would have to smoke weed around the clock to receive any further benefit. There are numerous other medications that prove much more efficient in treating this ailment.

Weight Loss

Medical marijuana was once thought to have beneficial effects on weight loss. Some claimed weed sped up the metabolism. After a few research studies, it has yet to be proven marijuana can help with weight loss. Don’t try to get your medical cannabis card just to lose weight!

The 4 Most Common Types of Medical Marijuana

Before you get your online medical marijuana card, it’s important to educate yourself. Medical marijuana can help patients treat a wide range of illnesses and ailments. Cannabis can even be used to cure some serious diseases. The issue with medical weed arises due to education. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of medical marijuana types available to the average user. It can be near impossible to find the right type to cure your pain properly.

That’s where we come in. Getting your weed card has never been easier. At MMJRecs, we’ve studied and found the best medical marijuana types for users looking to alleviate pain and find cures. Choosing the wrong weed for your problems can hinder your recovery. There can be any number of unwanted side effects. You need to make a wise decision when medical marijuana is involved.

Here are four of our favorite medical marijuana types with a proven track record of healing:

Indica Dominant Hybrid

Pure indica is an interesting medical marijuana family. Featuring significantly more CBD than THC, this family offers a full body narcotic feeling instead of a “high” feeling. As such, pure indica has amazing pain blocking qualities. If you’re suffering from any aches or pains, then this could be a perfect type of medical marijuana for you. Pure indica makes a great sleep aid as well.

Common pure indica strains include Hashplant, Herijuana, G-13, Pakistani and Afghani.

Many have found the hybrid indica breeds to also be the best for their pains. Most scientists and doctors agree that these types have the most beneficial medical effects of all cannabis. If you’re just starting out using medical marijuana for your pain, hybrid indica may be right up your alley.

Some popular strains from this family include Blueberry, Dutch Treat, Romulan, Northern Lights, Purple Kush, Master Kush and many more.

Sativa Dominant Hybrid

Pure sativa is not a common medical marijuana choice for most ailments and conditions. Due to pure sativa often causing irregular heartbeats and paranoia attacks, most medical cannabis users stay away from this type. These varieties are typically only used for individuals who suffer from depression or chronic fatigue syndrome. Sativa has a great penchant for uplifting spirits. As such, this is a go-to family for treating mental illnesses.

Popular pure sativa strains used for medical purposes include Acapulco, Burmese and Malawi Gold.

Offering the best of both worlds, hybrid sativa strains can be amazing when you need uplifting properties but want to avoid paranoia side effects. These types often feature a mix of sativa and indica – with the sativa side often featured in slightly stronger doses. Many medical cannabis users absolutely love these plants for their ability to curb depression and stimulate the appetite. Many long-time medical marijuana users find dialed in types of hybrid sativa are perfect for their exact dosage needs.

Great hybrid sativa strains include Haze, Willie Nelson, Jack Herer and Kali Mist.

Once you get your medical marijuana card online, you’ll have access to all of these breeds and much more. Get in touch with us to apply for your card and gain the help you need.

CBD and THC: What’s the Difference?

If you have a weed card, you need to know the differences in types of weed.

A weed card means you need to know the difference between CBD and THC.

If you found this article, it’s fair to assume you’ve heard about CBD and THC, also known as cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol, the two main ingredients in a marijuana plant. While these ingredients are different in their properties, both fall into a class of compounds commonly referred to as cannabinoids.

The Differences Between CBD and THC

 

So you want to get high? THC is the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. CBD is non-psychoactive. You can’t get a buzz on CBD alone. If you want to get high, you’ll want to buy medical marijuana online with high levels of THC. However, if you’re looking for marijuana for medical purposes solely, then a strain with high levels of CBD is often better. Children have even found success using medical marijuana with high CBD to alleviate a number of medical issues, including seizures.

Do you suffer from anxiety? THC has been shown to increase anxiety in many individuals. CBD, on the other hand, has proven to alleviate anxiety in an opposite manner. Studies have found administering CBD alone greatly reduces anxiety levels in a number of patients.

Ready to improve your sleep? Medical marijuana can be incredibly useful as a sleep aid. THC has been shown to aid in sleep for many. On the other hand, CBD promotes wakefulness in many patients. As such, some strains of marijuana high in THC make people feel drowsy (Indica Strain), while others high in CBD boost energy levels (Sativa Strain).

Can it be used as an antipsychotic? CBD tends to keep the effects of THC from letting people get too high. This combination greatly reduces the psychosis-like effects of THC. However, CBD can be used alone as a medicine with antipsychosis properties. Individuals with schizophrenia have seen success with CBD.

Isn’t This Illegal? Marijuana is illegal in most of the United States, although 20 states have legalized medical cannabis cards. Technically, CBD alone is still illegal and a Schedule 1 drug. However, a pharmaceutical form of CBD was recently cleared by the FDA. As well, CBD is found in hemp, which is legally imported and sold in the U.S. So CBD is technically illegal, but there are ways around this.

Understanding THC and CBD can be confusing. While both are found in weed, it can be difficult to separate the two and how they affect your body. We don’t sell medical marijuana online, but you can get your weed card from MMJRecs. If you’re looking for a safe, legal way to get your medical cannabis card in California, click here to learn more. 

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