It’s already known that marijuana is not highly physically addictive like opioids, but many in the healthcare field want to know a lot more about how it affects the body.
As it is though, in Pennsylvania and other states, medical marijuana is now commonly prescribed for chronic pain.
“Chronic pain is the number one diagnosis that medical marijuana is used for, and marijuana has elements in it that attach to the same receptors as opioids. However, they don’t attach to receptors in your brain stem and those are the ones that cause you to stop breathing and cause respiratory death,” said Carrie Delone, the medical director of Geisinger Holy Spirit.
And that is what an overdose of opioids does: causes you to stop breathing. Delone believes that in the next three to five years, the medical marijuana business will evolve and become more sophisticated and easier to navigate. Getting research results will be key for several prescribers
If you have a loved one who needs treatment for opioid addiction, the number to call is 1-800-662-HELP. A medical professional will answer, will help get you or your loved one into rehab, and help you figure out how to pay for it.