Is anxiety a diagnosis for medical marijuanas?

In some cases, cannabis use can cause anxiety. The results show that some people using the drug experienced anxiety as an adverse effect. It also suggests a link between anxiety and higher THC levels. For these states, being diagnosed with the approved type of anxiety disorder is enough to qualify for a medical marijuana card.

Many people with anxiety and depression self-medicate with cannabis. A study found that 50% of medical cannabis users use cannabis for anxiety, while 34% use it for depression. Proponents of cannabis use claim that it is a medication and treatment for anxiety, stress, pain, and also the opioid crisis. It's easier to make safety and effectiveness claims than to prove them.

A formal study can determine safety and efficacy, but in the meantime, cannabis has many advocates who argue that it is as good as any medication or therapy for anxiety and stress. However, no one has provided the type of evidence that would be submitted to the FDA as part of a new drug application. These claims have not been studied in randomized, double-blind, or comparably effective scientific trials. In the meantime, it is safer to conclude that this is not true either.

Neither Dr. James Connell nor the Honahlee team recommend the use of marijuana (cannabis) for medical or adult purposes. Understanding state marijuana laws will pave the way for the rest of the steps in your medical cannabis journey. A trial of Sativex, a THC-based drug, showed positive increases in patients' well-being scales.

This new study17 finds specific pathways in the brain that lead to anxiety, especially deterioration of 2-AG, and suggests that new drugs could be designed to work in this system and be a more effective anti-anxiety medication. There is growing evidence that medical marijuana can be an effective treatment for anxiety disorders. There are no FDA-approved cannabinoid drugs approved for psychiatric illnesses or even for the treatment of psychiatric symptoms. A risk identified in new studies is that cannabis and several cannabinoid-based drugs may make other drugs of abuse more reinforcing.

Medical marijuana also shows the potential to lower levels of cortisol, a hormone that indicates how much stress you feel. Drugs are considered dangerous until science proves their safety and effectiveness and is approved by the FDA. Using cannabis, vaping, or other products with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) can carry unique risks for those who “self-medicate” and worsen depression when used as imitation antidepressants. Early research on medical marijuana and anxiety shows that cannabis has components similar to pharmaceuticals manufactured for anxiety symptoms.

This means that if you can show that your anxiety disorder is hindering your daily life, you will likely still be able to get your medical card for this reason. Other states such as California, Oklahoma and Missouri give their doctors the discretion to recommend marijuana treatments to patients without directly listing approved medical conditions. Your healthcare professional will talk to you about your anxiety and review a questionnaire that is part of DMS-5, a doctor's guide for diagnosing mental health disorders.