Children and Medical Marijuana: Understanding the Facts

Medical marijuana has become increasingly accepted in the United States. Many states have already legalized marijuana for medicinal purposes and other states are considering legislative changes as well.

The American public has become more accepting of marijuana, particularly when it comes to medical marijuana. Recent surveys have shown that a majority of Americans believe that marijuana should be allowed to be prescribed by a physician.

However, there are some patients that the public is less comfortable with when it comes to medicinal marijuana: children. Making children and medical marijuana a hot debate in America.

The idea of children using marijuana makes many people uncomfortable, even for medical reasons. However, a number of recent studies are showing that for some medical conditions, marijuana can provide children with much-needed relief.

Before passing judgement on this subject, here are some facts to consider:

Children and Medical Marijuana – Already Helped So Many

Even before there were studies about medicinal marijuana for children, anecdotal evidence started to amass showing that cannabis was a source of relief for children suffering from extreme illness, such as cancer.

It is devastating for any parent to watch their child suffer through the hardships that come from radiation and chemotherapy. So when studies started showing that marijuana can help ease the debilitating pain and nausea that comes with chemotherapy, plenty of parents wanted their kids to have the chance to benefit from such treatment.

Studies Have Shown the Benefits of Medical Marijuana in Young Patients

The medical industry has also shown support of helping children with medicinal marijuana when appropriate. The American Academy of Pediatrics provided a recommendation to the Drug Enforcement Administration to reclassify marijuana due to its potential to make a difference in treating severely ill children.

Cancer is not the only illness that children suffer from that marijuana may help. Medical cannabis has also had a major impact on children with extreme forms of epilepsy. This illness can cause up to thousands of seizures in a single day, leaving children without the ability to walk or talk. It can even be so bad that children may stop breathing for periods of time.

Suffice to say, any relief for these children was a welcome addition for their parents. Medical marijuana has proven in some cases to be more effective than existing medicines, with fewer negative side effects and a higher chance of stopping seizures, according to the Huffington Post. Some patients have not had a seizure since starting medical marijuana.

Medical Marijuana for Children is Often Created to Boost Health While Lessening “High”

For the children with epilepsy who use medical marijuana, the strains often have an increase in cannabidiol, an ingredient that helps to treat the seizures. These strains are also non-psychoactive and low in THC, which is the part of marijuana that creates the “high” feeling.

Though there may be side effects, like any other medicine, medical marijuana for children is intended to focus on helping the patient. Easing the pain of sick children is the goal, and studies show that cannabis can often help.