Big pharma has a big problem on their hand. With CBD undergoing nationwide legalization and marijuana legalization growing in more and more states, more people are turning to cannabis products to medicate. With that, many are also putting down their prescription medication.
In fact, 4 out of 5 cannabis users (whether CBD or THC) have stopped using prescription drugs, according to Pain Treatment Solution.
Throughout this blog, we’re going to take a deeper look into this new phenomenon. From there, we’re going to express why we think this could be beneficial – not just for people seeking out medication, but society as a whole.
What the Study Reveals
A survey was taken amongst 473 adults who used cannabis for therapeutic reasons. Of that 473, 87% admitted to giving up the following in exchange for cannabis:
- Other illicit substances
- Prescription medications
The same study also found:
- 32% preferred cannabis products over illicit drugs.
- 52% preferred cannabis products over alcohol.
In fact, most adults participating in the study that were under the age of 40 were more likely to do away with all three substances in favor of medical cannabis.
What to Take Away From the Study
These statistics are great news to those struggling with (or those who know someone struggling with) substance abuse disorder. The study reveals that more people and more people are choosing to substitute their struggle with addiction with a substance that comes with a plentiful of medical benefits. And this decision is, in many ways, vital to substance abuse disorder as a whole.
It’s important to understand that addiction IS NOT as simple as a choice. It’s a disease that takes over the body and is extremely difficult to overcome. Though addiction may begin with a choice – the choice to take or not take a substance – nobody makes the choice to become addicted.¹
If addiction were as simple as a choice, America wouldn’t currently be facing an opioid crisis. To take things a step further, one of the biggest catalysts of this epidemic is prescription drugs. More often than not, people take prescription drugs for the sake of relieving various diseases and illnesses.²
With enough of this medication, an addiction naturally develops in the brain and body. In turn, people turn to the streets or other doctors to obtain their “fix”.
Cannabis may have the ability to end this epidemic. Not only has the above study revealed that more people are choosing cannabis over addictive substance, but cannabis also has medical properties that might be able to replace prescription medication.
Cannabis – A Hope for Change
Since people are choosing cannabis over other drugs, we have a reason to hope. However, when we begin to look at all the things cannabinoids (such as CBD or THC) can do, that hope becomes something more.
Research has shown cannabis as the ability to alleviate the following:³
- Cancer growth
- Chronic pain
- Gastrointestinal disorders
- Mental disorders
- Movement disorders
- Multiple Sclerosis
And that’s just naming a few. With more research and the right regulations, who knows how cannabis may be able to do more than help people medicate. It may be able to take society out of a drug epidemic.
¹ NIDA: Addiction Science
² NIDA: Misuse of Prescription Drugs
³ NCCIH: Marijuana and Cannabinoids