Opioids have been prescribed for pain relief for many years and have developed into a full-blown opioid epidemic in the United States. While people experiencing chronic pain need and deserve pain relief, opioids can be a blessing and a curse. With greater awareness of the opioid epidemic, physicians and patients are searching for alternatives and cannabis is always at the top of the list as a viable alternative for pain relief without the addictive and deadly effects of opioids. 

What Are Opioids and the Opioid Crisis? 

Opioids are a class of medications that work by acting on the body’s opioid receptors in the peripheral and central nervous systems and the gastrointestinal tract.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of deaths from an opioid drug overdose increased from 2018 to 2019 by 5% and has quadrupled since 1999. More than 70% of the 70,630 deaths in 2019, were from an opioid-related overdose. Another telling sign related to the opioid epidemic in America is that 1.27 million people in the U.S. receive medication assisted treatment such as methadone to treat an opioid addiction.

Cannabis As an Alternative to Opioids 

Many people are looking for alternative treatments to pain that do not involve addiction and possible fatal overdose from opioids. Cannabis is being recognized as an alternative to opioids for providing effective pain relief without the serious implications of drug overdose deaths. Just like opium is one of the oldest drugs used for humanity, cannabis has been around for millennia as well.  While more research needs to be done on cannabis and the pain relieving effects of cannabinoids on the endocannabinoid system, the research is promising, and many people have found successful pain relief using cannabis as an alternative to opioids.

According to a study published in 2017, Cannabis as a Substitute for Opioid-Based Pain Medication: Patient Self-Report, there are published indicators that show that in states where medical cannabis is permitted, there is a reported decrease in opioid related mortality as well as spending on opioids. Patients report a greater likelihood of using cannabis as a substitute to opioids with less stigma in an easily accessible environment versus states without legalization.

How to Use Cannabis to Reduce and Eliminate Opioid Addiction 

If you are interested in using cannabis instead of opioids to treat your chronic pain, it is helpful to find a physician that is willing to work with you to gradually wean you off of opioids with an effective strain of cannabis. Cannabis with the CBD content of 1:1, meaning an equal amount of THC and CBD has been shown to be effective in alleviating chronic pain and is being used to help wean patients off of opioids. The combination of cannabis with a high CBD content, which is the cannabinoid recognized for providing significant pain relief and reducing anxiety, with a smaller amount of opioids provides patients with effective pain relief while allowing them to significantly reduce opioid use.

It is especially dangerous to use opioids after reducing a prescription medication. Planning to reduce opioid use with cannabis should be taken seriously with dosages of opioids and cannabis followed carefully. Cannabis has been proven effective in phasing out the use of opioids particularly when used to manage chronic pain conditions. Many patients find cannabis is more effective at pain relief than using opioids which indicates that cannabis is a very viable and effective alternative for treating pain and could be considered as an effective alternative to opioids.

Cannabis has been used as a healing plant for centuries with many medicinal benefits with cannabinoids acting on the endocannabinoid system that effectively treat a host of health conditions.

Mosca Seeds offers high-quality cannabis seeds in various strains including high CBD content strains proven to provide pain relief and relaxation.  Mosca offers more than 15 years of experience in cultivating the finest in cannabis seed genetics and is recognized with several Cannabis Cup Awards. Find high-quality cannabis seeds from Mosca and explore the options of using cannabis instead of opioids.