Cannabis for Cancer-Related Pain: What You Need to Know
Cancer treatment often comes with a host of side effects, one of the most debilitating being pain. While traditional painkillers can offer some relief, they often come with their own set of problems, such as potential addiction and other adverse effects. This is where medicinal cannabis comes into play. At The London Cannabis Clinic, we aim to provide you with an alternative that is both effective and safe. Let’s delve into how cannabis can be a potent tool in your pain management arsenal.
The Science Behind Cannabis and Pain
Cannabis contains compounds known as cannabinoids, the most well-known being THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (Cannabidiol). These compounds interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which plays a role in regulating pain, mood, and other physiological processes. By engaging with this system, medicinal cannabis can offer significant relief from pain, making it a viable option for those undergoing cancer treatment.
Types of Pain Addressed
Cancer-related pain can manifest in various ways, including:
- Neuropathic Pain: Often described as a burning or shooting pain, usually caused by nerve damage from chemotherapy.
- Somatic Pain: Pain originating from tissues or organs, often a result of tumour growth.
- Visceral Pain: Pain stemming from the internal organs, often diffuse and challenging to pinpoint.
Medicinal cannabis has shown promise in alleviating all these types of pain, providing a more holistic approach to pain management.
How It’s Administered
Medicinal cannabis can be administered in several ways:
- Oral: Capsules or oils that you swallow.
- Sublingual: Drops placed under the tongue for quicker absorption.
- Inhalation: Through vaporisers, offering rapid relief but shorter duration.
- Topical: Creams and balms for more localised pain.
Your healthcare provider will help you determine the most suitable method for your condition.
Benefits Over Traditional Painkillers
While opioids and other painkillers are commonly prescribed for cancer-related pain, they come with drawbacks like potential addiction and gastrointestinal issues. Medicinal cannabis offers a safer alternative with fewer side effects and lower risk of dependency.
Legal Status in the UK
In the UK, medicinal cannabis was legalised in 2018 for certain conditions, including pain related to cancer treatment. However, it’s crucial to consult a healthcare provider for a proper prescription and guidance on usage.
While medicinal cannabis is generally considered safe, it’s essential to consult your healthcare provider for a tailored treatment plan, especially if you’re already on other medications. Side effects, although rare, can include dizziness and dry mouth.
Pain doesn’t have to be an inevitable part of your cancer treatment journey. Medicinal cannabis offers a promising, safer alternative to traditional painkillers, helping you focus on what truly matters—your recovery. At The London Cannabis Clinic, we’re committed to providing you with personalised care plans to manage your pain effectively.