Did you know that Multiple Sclerosis affects around 2.5 million individuals globally, with around 400,000 of those people residing in the United States? Although, many have heard of the condition MS before, most probably don’t fully understand what this serious medical ailment truly is. Even if no two people experience Multiple Sclerosis in the same way, often times the results of having this medical disorder are painful, frustrating, or even debilitating.
Within the medical marijuana community, patients with MS are beginning to appear, voicing their stories about how cannabis has drastically helped their disease, bringing glimmers of hope to those who maybe did not see light before. Additionally, although some conventional medical treatments can assist with certain forms of Multiple Sclerosis, the symptoms of this condition can sometimes not be effectively assisted by pharmaceuticals, or possibly a patient may want an alternative, more natural method of soothing their symptoms. This is where cannabis can play its role.
Learn more about the condition Multiple Sclerosis and the 5 Best Marijuana Strains for it…
What Is Multiple Sclerosis?
Multiple Sclerosis is a complex and multidimensional medical condition, that impacts each and every individual in a completely different manner. There is no official cure for MS, although some conventional medical treatments do exist to slow down or even dissolve negative impacts produced by the condition. These specific treatments will be discussed in further detail later on in this article. Even if the effects of MS can manifest in various ways, what is happening deeper within the body is always the same or similar, leading to a variety of outcomes because of one process.
What is occurring within when MS strikes, is primarily centered within the brain and spinal cord and their ability to receive signals and be properly supported by well functioning central nervous system. This results in challenges throughout many aspects of day to day life, because the central nervous system is so vital to human functions, making it possible for humans to do basic activities like walking, all the way to solving a complex problem.
Patients suffering from MS typically have a form of the condition that is categorized into four different groups; with symptoms that are either long lasting or temporary. The majority of patients fall underneath the temporary category, which is defined as relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS), and involves obvious attacks that seem to have frequent shifts, where remissions are often experienced between attacks and full recoveries often made, only for another attack to follow some time after. This form of MS has some conventional treatments available to assist with stabilization of the symptoms.
The next type of MS is known as clinically isolated MS (CIS), and is somewhat of the preliminary stage to a possible MS diagnosis. Someone given the label CIS must experience symptoms for 24 hours, and they may either go on to make a full recovery, or end up with an official MS diagnosis. Not all who experience CIS end up developing an official diagnosis.
The third classification of Multiple Sclerosis, is known as primary progressive MS (PPMS), and is usually a worsening in symptoms, specifically ones that create disabilities for an individual, as well as a lack of regular relapse and recovery, because the symptoms tend to appear gradually, intensifying with time.
The fourth, and final category of MS, is secondary progressive MS (SPMS), which is typically the result for patients diagnosed with RRMS as time progresses. With this form of Multiple Sclerosis, the symptoms tend to increase, and overall neurological function seems to further decline, often resulting in an even more immense worsening and shortening of periods between relapse and remission.
For those who experience little to no period of remission, such as patients diagnosed with progressive MS, must know that there is not much conventionally that can be done to improve the condition, for no medical treatments have yet been discovered, aside from one FDA approved medicine. The light at the end of the tunnel; plenty of research is constantly being conducted to discover new, effective treatments for progressive Multiple Sclerosis, so there is hope that progress will be made in the near future.
Causes and Symptoms of
The exact cause of Multiple Sclerosis is unknown, although scientists believe it may be caused by some sort of environmental factor that then causes the body’s immune system to attack the protective coating surrounding the nerve endings and internal wires, causing anywhere from mild to intense disruptions of signals attempting to move to and from the brain throughout the entire system. These environmental factors are said to only cause an immense situation as this one when someone is genetically predisposed to have a reaction.
Research is constantly being continued regarding MS, so hopefully more clarity about this condition will appear with time and further experimentation and observation. The symptoms of MS are unpredictable, and they include blindness, numbness, fatigue, strange tingling, memory loss or problems, mild to severe pain, odd or sudden mood changes, and even in extremely serious cases, paralysis. There are other symptoms as well, but because the medical disorder is so diverse and never affects any two people in the same manner, it is impossible for medical practitioners to properly define all of the difficulties that have ever been experienced as a result of MS.
Conventional Medical Treatments Which are not Marijuana
Officially, no cure for any form of Multiple Sclerosis yet exists, so various treatments must be used for the time being. These treatments primarily focus on extending the periods of remission between attacks, as well as lessening the frequency of attacks and the extent of intensity of any possible symptoms occurring as a result of MS. Since Multiple Sclerosis is expressed within the diagnosed in such different ways, some people do not actually need any treatment, because their symptoms and effects are mild enough so that the condition is possible to live with reasonably comfortably.
For the patients diagnosed with RRMS (relapsing-remitting), disease-modifying therapies are utilized to lessen the effects of MS on the body and mind. Many different therapies exist, but some have challenging side effects, so it is vital to discuss with your doctor which treatment is right for you. Some of the commonly prescribed types of therapies include, beta interferons, Copaxone, Lemtrada, Tysabri, Ocrevus and many others.
There is only one FDA-approved disease-modifying medicine for those with progressive MS (PPMS), and it is called Ocrevus. It definitely does not cure the disease, but it can slow down the disabilities that arise for patients with this condition.
Specifically targeting the negative symptoms of MS, certain forms of treatment are prescribed in order to manage muscle spasms, fatigue, depression, stress, anxiety, etc. Physical therapy is often an effective method of treatment when paired with another form of relief.
Medical Marijuana and Multiple Sclerosis
Some of the symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis can be assisted with the help of medical marijuana, but specific marijuana strain types must be selected in accordance with the way in which they will actually benefit a patient experiencing a problem. Severe pain and fatigue are the two primary MS symptoms that can benefit from cannabis consumption, as well as any mood changes or mental sadness and stress that could be experienced as a result of an MS diagnosis, or just by the everyday difficulties of living with a condition like MS.
5 Best Strains for Multiple Sclerosis:
Here are the 5 best strains of marijuana for Multiple Sclerosis patients to try out, in order to calm down a variety of unpleasant symptoms:
1. Sojay Haze (Sativa Marijuana Strain)
This energizing and uplifting sativa is quintessential for patients of MS who are experiencing fatigue as a primary symptom of their condition. Although, Sojay Haze does increase energy levels, it also sets the body into a relaxed euphoria, making it a wonderful daytime marijuana strain if you need something that’ll get you out of bed, but still let you chill around the house if you desire. Furthermore, it is incredible at keeping the mind focused and creative.
2. Russian Assassin (Indica Marijuana Strain)
Although the name may seem a little questionable, Russian Assassin is actually an ideal nighttime marijuana strain for someone handling the discomforts of Multiple Sclerosis, because it is not only relaxing and sleep inducing, but also manages to numb the whole body, keeping any pain experienced at bay, as well as relieving stress. That way, you can fall asleep with ease, as your body melts right into the bed, because it isn’t feeling any uncomfortable moments, as your anxiety levels and breathing begin to slow likewise. This marijuana type is a beautiful combination for all-natural, healing and wellness.
3. Super Sour Diesel (Hybrid Marijuana strain)
Super Sour Diesel is a popular hybrid marijuana strain that not only has the energy inducing properties of a sativa strain, but also the mental relaxation and deep pain relief of an indica. This multidimensional combination is beneficial for MS patients, who not only need usable energy to function throughout their day, but also need to cut down some of the pain or physical issues they may be incurring. With an incredibly high THC content, a little of this marijuana strain really goes a long way, meaning that even just a hit can provide the body and mind with true relief.
4. Critical Mass (Indica Marijuana Strain)
Although Critical Mass can make its consumer sleepy and couch-locked as most Indicas have a tendency to do, more than anything, this marijuana strain aims to relax the mind and body, freeing it from any stresses, worries, concerns, aches and pains. This is in part why it is brilliantly suited for patients suffering from symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis, such as pain, stress, depression or anxiety. This cannabis specifically targets those areas, working full-force to leave its consumer with a smile on their face. This marijuana strain is perfect for the evening time or after work hours, because by the end of the high, this cannabis should hopefully have you drifting off into a deep sleep. Plus, with a slightly higher than average CBD amount at 5%, the medicinal properties of cannabinol can be experienced likewise.
THC: 19-22%; CBD: 5%
5. One to One (Hybrid Marijuana Strain)
A unique and highly medicinal marijuana strain that presents a perfect 50/50 ratio, in more ways than one. Its CBD to THC ratio is a pure 50/50 split, as well as its strain genetics; 50% indica and 50% sativa. One to One’s hefty CBD content implies fewer psychoactive effects, with more of the added healing power. Similar to Sativex, a THC derived prescription medication used in England specifically for MS symptoms, One to One matches the capabilities of a widely used pharmaceutical, meaning it is even capable of relieving unpleasant muscle spasms or cramping often experienced by those with MS.
THC: 14%; CBD: 14%
Final Thoughts about Multiple Sclerosis and Medical Marijuana as a Treatment
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading this informative guide regarding the 5 best marijuana strains for Multiple Sclerosis, and that you not only found it to be interesting, but also educational. It is important to remember that the consumption of cannabis is the sole responsibility of the user and discretion should always be taken.