What is Alcoholism?
Scholars call it the “Alcohol dependence syndrome” and it is a severe disease that’s destroying millions of people’s lives. It wasn’t always recognized as a disease, but only in the last thirty years. So, what makes it a disease, you ask. Well, there are a couple of elements, such as alcohol craving, which is a strong need to drink, a compulsion. Then, loss of control, once the person starts drinking.
Physical dependence occurs when it’s too late and a person needs treatment – these are withdrawal symptoms, such asand sweating, shaking and tremors or heavy anxiety. It happens when use of alcohol is stopped after a longer period of consuming it. The symptoms are relieved by drinking alcohol again or by taking sedatives. Finally, let’s not forget the tolerance build up – every next drunken episode requires more and more alcohol to get the desired effect of it.
Groups like Alcoholics Anonymous help patients deal with their alcoholism, but quitting is extremely difficult and often treatments don’t end successfully. AA’s meetings do work and help throughout person’s emotional and physical healing. But the period of withdrawal is a time when most of the patients turn back to alcohol. So, how can marijuana help?
Cannabis and Alcoholism: The Research
Back in 2009 a research that focused on the benefit of cannabis as a treatment for Alcoholism emerged. According to the study conducted by Amanda Reiman from the University of California, Berkeley, USA, substituting marijuana in place of drugs that are more harmful may be a winning. Not the Charlie Sheen kind of winning, but an actual one. Majority of the people that participated in this study reported that they used cannabis as a substitute because it has less adverse side effects than alcohol or prescription drugs. Other study was conducted by the late Dr Tod Mikuriya, who has long been an advocate of medical marijuana. Among 92 patients, all reported the treatment as effective. Again, with fewer side-effects than alcohol or prescription drugs.
How Does Cannabis Help Alcoholism?
Let us repeat, once more, that the 12 step program from the AA’s is successful for many patients. The problem lies among those who cannot be treated that way, for various reasons. The path of harm reduction and substitution of alcohol with a less toxic and less harmful substance usually works. Reiman, who conducted a study mentioned above said: “Substituting cannabis for alcohol has been described as a radical alcohol treatment protocol. People might substitute cannabis, a potentially safer drug than alcohol with less negative side-effects, if it were socially acceptable and available”. Beside a strong desire to eliminate alcohol from your life, this approach has proven to have a high success rate.
Therapeutic Cannabis Dosage for Alcoholism
It’s been reported that one or a couple of tokes in the morning or in the evening is an optimal dosage. If you are not a smoker, thenor any other known cannabis consumption such as making a cannabis tea. The best thing is to consult with a pharmacist at a dispensary or a licensed doctor. As for strains that are classified as good for alcoholism, Pure is mentioned, which is an Indica type of strain and a very potent one too. Another known helping strain is OG Kush, also Indica and also very, very potent. Both strains are known as “one-hitters” which says a lot about them.
Should marijuana should be used to treat alcoholism?