Many people throughout the world suffer from a worrisome eye condition known as glaucoma. Unfortunately, many of the conventional therapies and medications that are currently prescribed for this disorder are not always effective. However, recent research has shone some light on the potential benefits of medical marijuana treatments on glaucoma.
Do you suffer from this troublesome eye ailment and are looking for alternate forms of therapy? Perhaps medical cannabis can work for you! Let’s take a deeper look at the connection between marijuana and glaucoma.
What is glaucoma?
Glaucoma refers to a collection of eye diseases that attack the optic nerve. The optic nerve is essentially the primary nerve cable that connects our eyes to our brains. Since glaucoma affects this critical part of the eye, it can easily cause significant loss of vision. Some people have been permanently blinded by this condition! The most common symptom that glaucoma causes is abnormally high pressure inside the eyes.
What are the traditional treatments for glaucoma?
Since glaucoma causes increased pressure in affected eyes, most treatment options aim to lower it to safe, healthy levels to minimize the damage being done. The most common traditional treatments include prescription medications, laser therapy, and in some cases, invasive surgery.
Most glaucoma patients seem to react well to medicated eye drops that keep their dangerous eye pressure in check. Unfortunately, some people do not see much improvement from any of the above traditional treatment options. And that is where much of the current talk about using marijuana for glaucoma stems from.
How does marijuana help glaucoma?
Ever since states throughout the US have started legalizing the use of medical cannabis, research studies have started to illustrate the potential positive connection between glaucoma and marijuana.
Cannabis has been shown to drastically reduce eye pressure in those who use it, whether or not they have glaucoma. Since most of the conventional treatment options aim to do the same thing, it makes perfect sense that certain people that have adverse reactions to these treatments or want a more holistic based therapy might want to try medical marijuana instead to see how it works for them.
What are the downsides of using cannabis to treat glaucoma?
While marijuana can help reduce eye pressure effectively, these effects are quite short-lived. Most studies indicate that eye pressure is decreased for only 3 to 4 hours after using cannabis. This means that glaucoma patients would have to ingest marijuana every three hours in order to adequately control their high eye pressure. For most people, this is simply impossible due to the psychoactive effects (“high”) that also come with its beneficial healing properties.
What is the best way to use medical marijuana for glaucoma?
Most glaucoma patients seem to prefer smoking their cannabis because it enters the bloodstream and reduces eye pressure very rapidly. However, smoking anything long-term can cause complications with your lungs.
Some people prefer ingesting their cannabis orally through marijuana-infused beverages and foods or sublingually with tinctures that they drop under the tongue. While these options can also be quite effective, the cannabis compounds found in these products take much longer to become active in the bloodstream (when compared to smoking). Certain companies have attempted to make cannabis-infused eye drops as well. However, since most of the desired marijuana compounds are not very water-soluble, marijuana eye drops have not proven to be very effective.
Are you thinking about using medical marijuana for glaucoma symptoms? Well, then you are going to need a medical marijuana card in order to legally obtain and use this treatment option! If you happen to live in the state of Florida, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Biofit for more information on how to do so.