See also: Cannabis chocolate: my cure for depression
Update February 2015: RIA neuroscience study points to possible use of medical marijuana for depression
“In the animal models we studied, we saw that chronic stress reduced the production of endocannabinoids, leading to depression-like behavior,” says RIA senior research scientist Samir Haj-Dahmane, PhD.
Endocannabinoids are naturally produced chemical compounds in the brain that affect motor control, cognition, emotions and behavior. As the name suggests, they are similar to the chemicals found in marijuana (Cannabis sativa) and its active ingredient, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
“Chronic stress is one of the major causes of depression,” Haj-Dahmane says. “Using compounds derived from cannabis — marijuana — to restore normal endocannabinoid function could potentially help stabilize moods and ease depression.”
- New Study Finds Marijuana To Be Effective Against Depression [2/15] “Neuroscientists from the University of Buffalo’s Research Institute on Addictions found that endocannabinoids — chemical compounds in the brain that activate the same receptors as THC, an active compound in marijuana — may be helpful in treating depression that results from chronic stress.”
- Pot May Improve Cognitive Functioning in Bipolar Disorder “There was a general pattern of superior cognitive functioning in the group with a history of cannabis abuse. These patients performed better than their drug-free cohort on all significant measures, such as processing speed, attention, and working memory.”
- Cannabinoids in bipolar affective disorder: a review and discussion of their therapeutic potential
- Cannabis: GOOD for mental health? Breakthrough study claims it could be used to help treat depression
- Antidepressants No Better Than Placebo: JAMA Study
- Antidepressants Can Cause Long-Term Depression
- Are antidepressants accomplices to school shootings?
What follows is what we believe to be a compelling list of reasons to consider forgoing the use pills and give Cannabis a try when dealing with depression or bipolar disorder.
[Above videos do not mention Cannabis. It covers the seedy side of anti-depressants]
Your Own Personal Hell
“I sold my soul to Big Pharma in exchange for a lab bench and chemical hood….during this time, I’ve made some surprising discoveries about psychiatric meds, which include antidepressants, antipsychotics, stimulants, and anti-anxiety drugs. Understanding what I’ve learned will protect you from the flood of side effects that are now being discovered at breakneck speeds, courtesy of the myriad of patients taking them in the name of mental health.”
Antidepressants strive to increase the levels of a “coping” molecule known as serotonin in the brain. It supposedly helps us find happiness when it’s covered in an avalanche of nastiness. But, it’s never been proven. Still, the drugs attempt to boost serotonin by “selectively” stopping the “reuptake” among brain cells. This is where the whole SSRI acronym came from – “selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor.” It’s a slick name, but a stupid idea. Nothing is selective in the body.
While trying to block the reuptake of serotonin, antidepressants can also prevent its release and that of another brain compound known as dopamine. The areas of the brain responsible for release and reuptake of these neurotransmitters are so damn similar (after all, they work on the same molecule) that an antidepressant drug isn’t smart enough to understand which one it is supposed to work on. So it does what any dumb drug would do, it blocks both. That’s why users usually carry a glassy stare in their eye. Fully under the psychiatric spell, they’ve tuned out.
Deep sadness, fear, anger and aggression can set in over time. By removing serotonin and dopamine from the brain, long-term antidepressant users can’t find or feel happiness. Instead, they may become buried in the avalanche of nastiness. And if you can’t find or feel happiness in life, what’s the point? What’s going to stop you from snapping your own neck or spraying bullets on your classmates? Not much when you live in your own personal antidepressant hell.
Think this is all opinion? Read the rest here
Adverse Side Effects of Antidepressants – via Dr. Jeffrey Dach MD
When placebo and SSRI antidepressants are compared and found equally effective, the next question relates to adverse side effects. By definition, placebos have no adverse side effects. However, this is not true for antidepressants which have the following adverse effects: Sexual dysfunction, weight gain and sleep disturbance are the most troubling adverse effects of SSRI anti-depressant therapy. The most common side effects associated with SSRI antidepressants are nausea, headache, nervousness, insomnia and sexual dysfunction. More side effects are listed here.
SSRIs and Suicide Risk
Another troubling adverse effect of SSRI antidepressants is increased suicide first reported by Teicher in 1990. According to David Healy (Let then Eat Prozac), the original clinical trial data was manipulated by moving the suicide cases from the treatment arm over to the placebo arm of the study. This manipulated data was then submitted to the FDA who conveniently looked the other way. This disturbing information was presented at a Cornell University Mar 25, 2009 talk by David Healy which can be seen here on You Tube.
The Army and Military Suicide from SSRIs Antidepressant Use
Another striking finding is the unprecedented increased suicide rate in the military with widespread use of SSRI’s and other psycho active drugs in the Army. Again this is a rather sad commentary, and another nail in the coffin for SSRI drugs as being more harmful than helpful.
This article was originally published on DrDach.com
- Why antidepressants often fail
- Antidepressants in Pregnancy May Delay Developmental Milestones
- Risk of suicide 5 times higher with antidepressant use
- Effexor can cause birth defects and even death
- Antidepressant drugs cause premature birth
- Antidepressants decrease sex drive
- Mental Marijuana
Dr. Khan reviewed clinical trial data submitted to the FDA for nine SSRI antidepressant drugs approved by the FDA between 1985 and 2000. This included 10,030 depressed patients in 52 clinical trials. The Placebo (inert dummy pill) worked better than the SSRI antidepressant pill in more than half the studies. This is astounding information showing the power of the Placebo, or the lack of effectiveness of the SSRI antidepressant drugs.(1)(2)
Irving Kirsh, PHD, wrote a review of his findings regarding the placebo effect for the Huffington Post: Antidepressants: The Emperor’s New Drugs? Here is an excerpt from the article:
As you might imagine, our study was very controversial. How could these drugs, which account for about 15 percent of all prescriptions in the US, be placebos? The antidepressants we studied had been approved by the FDA. If they were just placebos, why did the FDA approve them?
To answer these questions, my colleagues and I used the Freedom of Information Act to get the data that the drug companies had sent to the FDA in the process of getting their medications approved. What we found was even more shocking that what our 1998 study had shown.
The difference between drug and placebo was even smaller in the data sent to the FDA than it was in the published literature. More than half of the clinical trials sponsored by the pharmaceutical companies showed no significant difference at all between drug and placebo. What they did find was differences in side effects, like nausea and sexual dysfunction, produced by antidepressants; and the FDA later determined that SSRIs, the most common type of antidepressants, actually increases the risk of suicide for children, adolescents and young adults. So why did the FDA approve these drugs?
Here is a reprint of the news regarding serious health effects
From Natural News The U.S. is a nation on mind altering antidepressant drugs. An astounding number of Americans, some 27 million, are now taking selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) like Prozac, Zoloft and Paxil.
As a handful of doctors and researchers tried to warn the medical community and the public over a decade ago when these drugs began to soar in popularity, SSRIs can affect the brain and body in a host of detrimental ways. For example, evidence has accumulated that these drugs can induce suicidal and murderous actions in teens and cause young women to drop dead from heart arrhythmias. And now there’s another danger to add to the list.
A huge study of over 136,000 women concludes SSRIs significantly increase the odds of stroke and death in women after menopause.
Far more likely to suffer strokes when on SSRI drugs
The new findings, from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded, multi-institution Women’s Health Initiative Study, were just published in the December 14 online edition of the Archives of Internal Medicine. Principal investigator Sylvia Wassertheil-Smoller, Ph.D., division head of epidemiology and professor of epidemiology and population health at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and colleagues analyzed data from 136,293 women between the ages of 50 and 79 who were not taking antidepressants when they enrolled in the study. They were followed for about six years.
Data from 5,496 women who were taking antidepressants at their first follow-up visit were then compared with data from 130,797 women not taking antidepressants at follow-up. The researchers found no difference in the rate of heart disease (which they assessed by how many women had fatal or non-fatal heart attacks). However, they did find a troublesome difference in the occurrence of another potentially deadly health problem.
Antidepressant users were 45% more likely to experience strokes than women not taking the drugs. What’s more, when the scientists looked at the overall death rates of the research participants, they discovered that the women taking antidepressants had a 32% higher risk of death from all causes compared to non-users.
It wasn’t only SSRIs that raised the stroke risk — so did the older class of antidepressants known as tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs). However, the SSRIs appeared to be even more dangerous than TCAs because they carried a higher risk of hemorrhagic stroke. In other words, the postmenopausal women on SSRIs were more likely to have a stroke caused by bleeding into the brain.
Dr. Wassertheil-Smoller and colleagues noted that even small increases in stroke and death rates can have significant implications for large patient populations. And middle-aged women on SSRIs are a huge patient population. The researchers acknowledged in their statement to the media that antidepressants are among the most widely prescribed drugs in the U.S., especially for postmenopausal women.
As a matter of fact, Big Pharma has aggressively pushed the use of SSRIs in recent years as a “treatment” for mid-life hot flashes and mood swings as well as late life depression.
Predictably, in a statement to the media, the researchers defended the use of antidepressants as valuable drugs because depression can be “debilitating or even fatal”. Dr. Wassertheil-Smoller stated women who may be concerned about taking their antidepressants based on this study should discuss the matter with their doctors.
The researchers also said “it remains unclear” from their data whether antidepressants are solely responsible for the greater mortality rate among users, claiming that depression itself could be related to the increased stroke and death rates.
However, if that’s so, then it appears the antidepressant drugs aren’t working for the women being treated. After all, logic and common sense suggest if depression is linked causally to stroke, then women taking drugs that supposedly alleviate depression would have their stroke risks lowered, not increased.
Now for some good news:
From Science Daily Researchers at McGill University in Montreal in 2007 reported in the Journal of Neuroscience that THC in low doses actually serves as an antidepressant…, producing serotonin. It has been known for many years that depletion of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain leads to depression, so SSRI-class anti-depressants like Prozac and Celexa work by enhancing the available concentration of serotonin in the brain. However, this study offered the first evidence that cannabis can also increase serotonin, at least at lower doses.
Dr. Gobbi and her colleagues were prompted to explore cannabis’ potential as an anti-depressant through anecdotal clinical evidence, she said. “As a psychiatrist, I noticed that several of my patients suffering from depression used to smoke cannabis. And in the scientific literature, we had some evidence that people treated with cannabis for multiple sclerosis or AIDS showed a big improvement in mood disorders. But there were no laboratory studies demonstrating the anti-depressant mechanism of action of cannabis.”
The anti-depressant and intoxicating effects of cannabis are due to its chemical similarity to natural substances in the brain known as “endo-cannabinoids,” which are released under conditions of high stress or pain, explained Dr. Gobbi. They interact with the brain through structures called cannabinoid CB1 receptors. This study demonstrates for the first time that these receptors have a direct effect on the cells producing serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that regulates the mood.
Cannabis Science: The Endocannabinoid System
Marijuana users have a less depressed mood than non-users:
“Over 4400 adult internet users completed The Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression scale and measures of marijuana use. We employed an internet survey in an effort to recruit the most depressed and marijuana-involved participants, including those who might prove unwilling to travel to the laboratory or discuss drug use on the phone or in person.
We compared those who consumed marijuana daily, once a week or less, or never in their lives. Despite comparable ranges of scores on all depression subscales,
…those who used once per week or less had less depressed mood, more positive affect, and fewer somatic complaints than non-users. Daily users reported less depressed mood and more positive affect than non-users.
The three groups did not differ on interpersonal symptoms. Separate analyses for medical vs. recreational users demonstrated that medical users reported more depressed mood and more somatic complaints than recreational users, suggesting that medical conditions clearly contribute to depression scores and should be considered in studies of marijuana and depression. These data suggest that adults apparently do not increase their risk for depression by using marijuana.”
Read the full report: Decreased depression in marijuana users
Marijuana proliferates brain cells and boosts mood
From Science Daily Most drugs of abuse decrease the generation of new neurons in the brain, but the effects of marijuana on this process, called neurogenesis (creation of new brain cells), had not been clear.
In a paper in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Xia Zhang and colleagues from University of Saskatchewan show that a potent and synthetic cannabinoid (active ingredients in marijuana) promotes neurogenesis. This drug also exerts anti-anxiety and antidepressant-like effects.
The researchers suggest that there is a positive correlation between increased adult neurogenesis and modified behavior following chronic cannabinoid treatment.
These data expand the existing knowledge about the positive roles cannabinoids and their receptors play in brain processing and medicine. Moreover, cannabinoids are perhaps the only illicit drug that can enhance adult neurogenesis and subsequently modify behavior.
Marijuana can elevate your mood
From Disabled World: Even though mild anxiety is a common side effect in some users, cannabis can elevate your mood and expand the mind
“With the expansiveness that occurs with marijuana, the subject may begin to notice infinite possibilities to raise the quality of his/her life that would otherwise have remained hidden from normal, defensive consciousness. And feelings of health and happiness naturally lead to hope, which of itself can be curative.” – Joan Bello
Many obsessions or quick fixes to psychological problems can be alleviated by Marijuana as well. Many people eat because they’re depressed. If the depression is treated, the obsession to eat should be gone as well.
Marijuana and bipolar disorder
“Bipolar affective disorder is often poorly controlled by prescribed drugs. Cannabis use is common in patients with this disorder and anecdotal reports suggest that some patients take it to alleviate symptoms of both mania and depression. We undertook a literature review of cannabis use by patients with bipolar disorder and of the neuropharmacological properties of cannabinoids suggesting possible therapeutic effects in this condition…” Read entire abstract
Oslo, Norway: Cannabis use is associated with “improved neurocognition” in subjects diagnosed with bipolar disorder, according to clinical trial data published online by the journal Psychological Medicine.
Researchers at Norway’s University of Oslo, Institute of Psychiatry investigated the association between cannabis use and neurocognition in 133 patients with bipolar disorder. Researchers reported that subjects who used cannabis performed better than non-users on a series of neurocognitive tests. Authors determined that marijuana use was associated with “statistically significant” improvement in attention, executive function, verbal fluency, logistical memory-learning, and logical memory-recall.” Read Abstract
See Also: Lester Grinspoon of Harvard University: The Use of Cannabis as a Mood Stabilizer in Bipolar Disorder: Anecdotal Evidence and the Need for Clinical Research
Related articles: PTSD – Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
*Marijuana could alleviate symptoms of PTSD Isreali study released September 2009
*Dude, where’s my trauma? Marijuana could treat PTSD Time magazine
*Oregon Toxicologist Says Treatment for PTSD Should Include Cannabis
*Rat Study: Marijuana May Ease PTSD
*Marijuana Vs. Anti-Depressants for PTSD Marijuana Wins Hands Down
From one of our commenters in response to “Cannabinoids – every body likes them, some bodies need them“
Thank you for writing this. This is a wonderful article and I ran across it because I was looking for theories regarding endocannabinoid deficiencies.
I have battled clinical depression, which at times has been totally debilitating, for about 16 years now (12 of which I have been on pharmaceutical medication). I was advised early on to stay away from drugs and alcohol to try to stay mentally stable and of course I lumped marijuana into that category.
I have tried countless pharmaceutical anti-depressants over the past 12 years; some of them made me feel like a zombie, some of them had terrible side effects, and some of them were just completely ineffective. I finally found one that worked “best”—and by “best” I mean it was the most tolerable and most effective of the ones I’d tried. I continued to be mildly to moderately depressed on this medication, but again, this was the “best” one I had encountered in 12 years.
A year and a half ago I started looking into alternative treatments because I was unhappy with the side-effects of the anti-depressant I was taking (hand tremors, headaches, insomnia). I was also hoping I could find something that would be more effective for treating my depression. I had been hearing a lot about medical marijuana so I decided to do some research into whether or not that could be used to treat depression, even though I was convinced that marijuana was “bad” for my mental health.
I spent weeks researching cannabis, its potential risks and benefits, the mechanism through which it interacts with the brain, etc. I finally came to the conclusion that most of what I had learned about cannabis was a complete lie (it kills brain cells, it causes cancer, it compromises your immune system, etc.) and I also realized that the risks and side-effects of any of the countless anti-depressants I had tried over the years were FAR more significant than with cannabis.
I started using cannabis on a daily basis, ONCE a day before I went to bed, and within a short period of time I felt like my old self again, for the first time in over a decade. After about 6 months of nightly cannabis use I decided that I would stop taking my pharmaceutical anti-depressant. I tapered myself off that drug—and was finally free of the associated hand tremors, headaches, and insomnia—and then continued to use cannabis once a day. I had no problems with depression, whatsoever.
Recently I experimented with ceasing my cannabis use to find out whether or not it was really acting as an antidepressant or whether I had just stopped having problems with depression and had mistakenly attributed that to the cannabis. I felt fine for about 2 weeks after I stopped my nightly use of cannabis. During the third week, though, I started to feel depressed, and by the fourth week I was having days were I was VERY depressed, crying for no reason, feelings of worthlessness, etc. I then decided that the cannabis MUST have been working as my anti-depressant after all, so I went back to using it once a day before bedtime.
Within 2 days I felt COMPLETELY better again—that is, I went from a moderate depression to feeling no depression whatsoever. I have NEVER had that fast of a response with any pharmaceutical drug I have tried in the past; those have all taken weeks to have any effect (if they had an effect at all), and even then the effect was not enough to rid me of my depression completely.
Thanks to cannabis I feel like I have my life back. Please understand I am just a person with chronic depression that was never relieved by pharmaceutical drugs and I am NOT encouraging anyone else with mental health problems to follow this advice. HOWEVER, there is absolutely NO DOUBT in my mind, after all my experience with pharmaceutical drugs and more recently cannabis, that MY depression is somehow linked to an endocannabinoid deficiency.
I feel like 17 years of my life were stolen from me by a system that considers cannabis a “street drug” and therefore forces people with depression caused by endocannabinoid deficiencies into a system where they are treated with dangerous and ineffective pharmaceutical drugs. Please understand, I am not saying that these pharmaceutical drugs are ineffective in ALL cases, but in my personal case they were NOT very effective and I never ended up “feeling like myself again” the way I do when I use cannabis instead.
I hope that one day scientists and doctors can freely study the theory of endocannabinoid deficiency without the government and bureaucrats standing in the way. I also hope that people who want to supplement cannabinoids when their body doesn’t produce enough can use the natural plant form instead of being bullied into using the less-effective, more expensive pharmaceutical versions of cannabinoid-based drugs.
ive smoked marijuana for going on 9 years i personally stoped smoking due to my pregnancy but ive been diognosed as manic deppressive and bipolar and smoking marijuana was the best thing ever ive been on several different pills at once to help me but they did nothing but make me have slow moving and slow talking nothingness it was so horrible that i couldnt even think clearly but as i was saying smoking marijuana has helped me function and i was able to preform the jobs and nessesities that i needed so i say marijuana is better then pills
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I’m also diagnosed (correctly) as bipolar, and like you I used several different kinds of pills. Starting off with SSRI’s before they knew I was Bipolar, the SSRI’s gave me hypomanic episodes (effexor) or made me gain a lot of weight (Cipramil, etc.). I was eventually put on Lamictal, something basically made for epilepsy, this is the only drug that’s worked for me, and all it did was quash my manic episodes. It did very little for my overall mood, which is tolerable during the summer months, and unbarable during the winter months (live in the northern hemisphere, so I have SAD in addition to bipolar, double whammy of gloom and doom, basically)
Spring of 2012 I decided that enough was enough and that something needed to happen. I’m only 33, and the thought of being nothimg but half way done with my life and seeing no hope for improvement was just devastating.. Scored some weed (illegal where I live) just to blunt the anguish (previously experimented with alcohol with modest success after being a teetotaler for the first 32 years of my life) and get some breaks from the hopelessness.. Basically to get high, no noble intentions what so ever.. So I started vaping cannabis on a semi regular basis. Always had some on hand for the first 3 or so months, not really noticing that my life outside of the highs had improved significantly. I basically thoght I had a good summer, for the first time in about 8-10 years.. Cut to about a month ago, ran out of weed… first 4 days, no difference, day 5.. confusion and unease.. day 6, full on depression. It just came as a shock to me, even though the feeling was so familiar. I had gone symptom free for about 3 months, and the effect was so gradual that I hadn’t really noticed how drastic it was until I’d stopped. Anger came back, frustration, sadness, suicidal ideation, thoughts of ways to kill myself, total disregard for own health (started overeating again after having lost 23 pounds in 3 months by having a really healthy diet of lots of fruits and greens), self sabotage once again became my go-to release from the misery… You get the idea..
Making cannabis illegal seems like one of the most cruel acts the right wing religious lunatics have come up with in recent history. In addition to making my life livable, the highs themselves (I’m not one who tries to hide the fact that they are pleasurable) have given me a lot of valuable insight, and they have enriched my life. The same way a lot of people find positive effects with alcohol in a social setting, cannabis has given me something similar. I’m a solitary fella, I like being alone, and having those quiet moments to myself, listening to music, thinking about stuff, analyzing the memories that cannabis conjures forth has just been such a positive influence on my life that I now tell anyone who will listen that “hey, you’ve been lied to.” If people knew how wonderful cannabis is, it would be legalized instantly. It has UNDOUBTEDLY made me a better human being. It completely quashed my aggressive and frustrated side, which was wonderful. I’m not a violent man, by any means, but the anger and frustration I had to keep inside really did hurt me, and not having to deal with the suppression of anger has given me so much. I’ve finally been able to work on some music again, which brings a tear to my eye just thinking about it.
mental illness is far more debilitating than most people realize. I would actually much rather be in a wheelchair than be constantly depressed. Sure, wheelchairs are probably quite depressing, but at least then I’d have the possibility of getting control of my mind once I accepted being unable to walk. Bipolar acceptance is basically accepting very low quality of life, if you can even call it life.. And the point of this bit is.. Cannabis is kept from us.. Which is like keeping wheelchairs from amputees by spreading lies about their health risks.
All this because religion demands a monopoly on “mystical experiences”, or right wingers thinking it’ll make their lives worse if we use cannabis.. or.. whatever the hell the “logic” of the day is..
Slow down with the right wing religious lunatic angle.Jewish priest think that cannabis plants were the second plant that God put on this earth and it was to be used for the health of all human kind.These priest just don’t think people should smoke it to get stoned all the time and neither do i.I’m sure it beats the hell out of getting drunk all the time.
The ONLY reason it’s still illegal is because of the alcohol, tobacco, and Big Pharma lobbies have the government under their control. It’s nothing to do with religion or morality, it’s purely about money and greed. It’s not a right wing or left wing thing, either. All are guilty when it comes to the suppression of cannabis.
Let’s not forget our for-profit prison system as well. Legalizing marijuana would free nearly 50% of those incarcerated for drugs, which would greatly ease the overpopulation of our prisons and mean a huge slash in profits for the owners of the jails. Hypercapitalism requires the people to be perpetually sick and/or incarcerated. Marijuana kills the golden goose.
Just wondering if you vaped while on medication? I’m 35 and have horrible panic attacks, depression, anxiety, chronic pain from a terrible fall that left my right arm useless, am on a ton of meds including but not limited to cymbalta, oxycontin, t3s, cyclobenzapine, sublinox one month for sleep, then switch to zopiclone for sleep the next month. I’ve been researching cannabis oil and considered vaping, but with all the meds I’m on…… Should I go off them and just vape? Or taper and vape? Anyone know? Anyone done it? Doing it? I just want an alternative that isn’t made by Big Pharma……
I too have chronic daily pain, migraines & bipolar/anxiety/OCD – I just titrated off the Butrans patch this month, am only now taking Topomax & Propranolol for migraine prevention. I have found a significant improvement in both mood & cognition. Always titrate slowly off any drug you have used for a long time, to limit the trauma on your body. I use cannabis daily, now that it is legal in my home state & both smoke & vape. MJ completely alleviates the side effects of my other meds, controls pain better than narcotics, and has improved my ability to feel normal emotions. I wish we could have gotten legalization earlier – like 23 years ago, when my suffering began. Much happier now! Good luck!
I’m was on a similar regiment of meds and found that when I use marijuana I can usually cut out the sleep meds, mood stabalizers, and anti-anxiety meds, but for the pain the nerve medications and pain killers are still important. Marijuana does little to reduce the pain, though I hear it is an effective anti inflammatory. It does wonders with depression and anxiety attacks. It’s not a cure all. You will still have your emotions and feel them, but in a more accepting way. It does wonders to slow the racing thoughts to a more manageable speed. You can vape on any of the meds, and for some of those meds you really should taper off so as not to shock your body. When I came off the Effexor cold turkey it left me suicidal, but when I tapered off at another time, slowly reducing my dose by half every week until I could come off, I was ok. You can increase your vaping as you get through the transition period. Its quicker than xanax. I still take my cyclobenzoprine, hydrocodone, and neurontin. I vape every night before bed. My biggest issues are with pain, not mental health. There will still be the frustration of hurting all the time and having limitations you didn’t have before, but I don’t think there’s any drug for that. I’m diagnosed with bi-polar and ptsd, with severe depression and anxiety. Pot has been my saving grace and has helped me manage my symptoms psych med free for over 5 years, along side my pain medications. In my state that is illegal and earns me the label of a drug addict, though I don’t use any drugs that are not prescribed to me specifically, other than pot which I refuse to consider a ‘bad drug’. If i lived in another state I’d be a law abiding citizen under the same circumstance. It is very easy to turn plant to oil yourself and to cook with the oil, so you won’t have to vape or smoke and you can discreetly medicate by eating it. Hope this was helpful, if not a year late.
Yes! Please toss out all those poison pills and use cannabis. I’ve been prescribed almost all of the pills you listed, one time or another, and EVERY ONE of the psych drugs made me worse, not better. The only drug you mentioned that I WILL use is cyclobenzaprine, but only short-term, as the FDA recommends. I have Rheumatoid Arthritis, & I will not take any of the poisons the greedy doctors (these drugs are bought by the doctors, then marked up by them hundreds of dollars) try to push on me.
my partner suffers from
sever anxiety and drepeession along with OCD and is an insomniac. He Can not sleep without taking anything.
In the past he has been on medication I’m not 100% sure of all that he has taken but when I met him 4 years ago he was on seroquel and has was on a fairly high dose of it for 5 or 6 years.
For the last 3 years he has been seeing a nutrient therapist and that has put him on to high doses of vitamins and nutrients he is lacking. As he been diagnosed as undermethylated and pyroluria (not sure if you are aware of these or not) he feels he is bi-polar but has not been diagnosed. Shows all the signs of type II bi-polar though.
I have read up about cbd oil, I read about it and believe it could help.
I feel like we have exhausted all our options and he needs help with sleep amoung other things, he has not been able to work for the last 4
He currently takes melatonin calcium magnesium and inositol to sleep.
Also do you know if this will effect anything he is taking?
I have also read it can work by using it externally rather than consuming it.
I appriciate any information or advise you may have.
Have you tried CBD oil ? Or do you just smoke it and get the benefits of THC?
I haven’t heard a thing about CBD’s ability to restore healthy sleep. THC is the muscle relaxant and what makes people tired. The best way to use it is with edibles if sleep is the goal.
Let us know if you all try the CBD oil and the results.
cassus – i really needed to read that. thank you.
i’m unipolar and have generalized anxiety – my dads health is declining and we placed him in a nursing home last night. my depression (after about 10 years) is back with vengence – panic attacks like they never left. was tapering off lithium this year, pretty successfully. now my celexa has been increased to help me through this. i have a xanax rx but i really don’t want to even get it filled.
i don’t know if cannabis will help me – i don’t know if i can get off meds without making myself worse – and i don’t know if i can find a trustworthy doctor to help me, but i’m holding on to as much hope as i can.
at the very least, your post has encouraged me and lifted me some and for that i owe you so much thanks. i am a Christian – these things test my faith like nothing else, but i still have my mustard seed of faith. i hope you will not be offended if i say God bless you for helping me. and may your illness never return. oh, Lord, let it be.
thank you – Shana in Cali
Throw all those drugs,in the garbage,but take it easy ,on the addictive ones.Can’t quit them all at once!!..You don’t want with drawl,with everything else..Those pills ,are poisoning you…,and sounds like they have you on a boat load..They have more side effects,then you have ailments..
if only there were people we could go to to talk to about our problems…….
I was finally able to stop taking SSRI’s replacing it with cannabis. I flushed my system with high pH alkaline water, and lots of good things started happening. It took me 5 years of trying to quit them before succeeding. It was giving me seizures. Never again.
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I am also trying to get off an SSRI. Would be appreciative of specifics about how you were successful. Thank you.
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i think the use for depression and bipolar is a great idea and may decrease violence, im a strong believer in use for psyciatric issues 100 %.
i am bi-polar and i have actually been testing this and looking for an article im 16years old, and i never felt like i smoked for the reason i should be friends did it for fun and i used to but now its different when i smoke like a bong i feel happy and i have no sad thought at all really it amazing i wish i could do it all the time but being 16 i dont think i could get the medical prescription any help?
bipolar people need to read this study!!!! Legalize now!!!!!!!
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Hello, thanks for this article. I’ve been on celexa for 2 yrs fir anx/depr then switched to Ciprelex for a 3 months. I’m 23 now and it’s been about 3 weeks since my last script pill was taken and I feel soooooo good. I smoke half a joint roughly almost every night an hour or so before bed. When I made the transition from celexa to Ciprelex there was a three month gap in between which my anxiety came full force and subsequently so did the depression. So I know my body pretty well and am pretty sensitive to my daily mood as I’ve struggled my whole life with this. Weed is hands down the reason I’m not a crazy mess without my “anti depressants”. I have healthy energy, face has cleared up to the best complexion I’ve had since starting the scripts, I look younger ( I’m only 23 but I swear these pills mess up your system!) its just all around a feeling of freedom and logical happiness. I can’t believe looking back on old pictures how swollen my face was. I was dead inside, celexa choked out my soul and Ciprelex gave me pimples. Weed set me free. Maybe that’s why it’s soooooooooooooooo illegal. Our society is greatly messed up
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Marijuana is proved to be able to cause psychosis. Rapid cycling bipolar in it’s most manic state can already have psychosis. It also mutates sperm. It can also increase the chance of developing any psychotic disorder including schizophrenia, and paranoia, and decreases the ability of the hippocampus to perform properly and shrinks grey matter. Like morphine, when someone is in pain and nothing better is feasible, I agree there can be a medical reason to use a controlled substance. THC should be measured and distributed the same way as anyother pharmaceutical. At a drug store. The popularity of homegrown for medical has sadly kept many people in the dark aboutthe very real and harmful side effects to the brain and mental health of chronic users. It will not help someone with bipolar in the long run – it will make them sicker.
Update: Despite media claims that marijuana can cause psychosis or schizophrenia, there’s no science to back it up. Debunking the Myth of a Link Between Marijuana and Mental Illness
Poisoning from prescription drugs is now the second leading cause of unintentional injury death in the U.S.
Cannabis has killed no one, ever.
Perhaps the most influential voice on this matter is Harvard’s Dr Lester Grinspoon:
“According to Grinspoon, the cannabis-causes-psychosis line is disproved by the absence of “even a blip in the incidence of schizophrenia in the US after millions of people started smoking marijuana in the 1960s.” The prevalence of schizophrenia in adults is about 1% worldwide and seemingly independent of whether or not cannabis use is widespread in a given country.
A meta-analysis published in the Lancet in 2004 (Macleod, et al) stated, “Cannabis use appears to have increased substantially amongst young people over the past 30 years, from around 10% reporting ever use in 1959-70, to around 50% reporting ever use in 2001 in Britain and Sweden. If the relation between use and schizophrenia were truly causal and if the relative risk was around five-fold, then the incidence of schizophrenia should have more than doubled since 1970. However, population trends in schizophrenia incidence suggest that incidence has either been stable or slightly decreased over the relevant time period.”
Really? I have a family member that has smoked cannabis for a number of years. I have watched helplessly as he became isolated and paranoid. Now after several years of using cannabis, he is schizophrenic. He thinks people follow him everywhere. He is a delusional hypochondriac, thinks people are poisoning him, he even though his girl friend injected him with chemically induced lupus. Now, whether or not cannabis caused these symptoms or not I do not know. But my research on the issue, and knowing several other cannabis users who are also very paranoid, I think it has contributed a great deal to his illness.
Regarding marijuana and the brain:
Heavy Marijuana Use Doesn’t Damage Brain – Analysis of Studies Finds Little Effect From Long-Term Use
WEB MD http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/news/20030701/heavy-marijuana-use-doesnt-damage-brain
“By Sid Kirchheimer
WebMD Health News
Long-term and even daily marijuana use doesn’t appear to cause permanent brain damage, adding to evidence that it can be a safe and effective treatment for a wide range of diseases, say researchers.
The researchers found only a “very small” impairment in memory and learning among long-term marijuana users. Otherwise, scores on thinking tests were similar to those who don’t smoke marijuana, according to a new analysis of 15 previous studies.
In those studies, some 700 regular marijuana users were compared with 484 non-users on various aspects of brain function — including reaction time, language and motor skills, reasoning ability, memory, and the ability to learn new information.
“We were somewhat surprised by our finding, especially since there’s been a controversy for some years on whether long-term cannabis use causes brain damage,” says lead researcher and psychiatrist Igor Grant, MD.
“I suppose we expected to see some differences in people who were heavy users, but in fact the differences were very minimal.”
The marijuana users in those 15 studies — which lasted between three months to more than 13 years — had smoked marijuana several times a week or month or daily. Still, researchers say impairments were less than what is typically found from using alcohol or other drugs.”
Dr. Dean Ornish claims that one of the things we as humans can do to increase the size of our brain includes smoking cannabis!
Marijuana increases brain cells – TED talk
New Study Shows Marijuana Affects Brain Cells: http://youtu.be/iLvQoplLbss
“Many drugs -— heroin, cocaine, and the more common alcohol and nicotine — inhibit the growth of these new cells. It was thought that marijuana did the same thing, but this new research suggests otherwise.” http://weedtracker.com/cannabis/topic/71938-marijuana-grows-brain-cells/
Active Ingredient in Marijuana Kills Brain Cancer Cells – US News and World Report http://bit.ly/9nwmDt
Marijuana May Stall Brain Tumor Growth http://www.webmd.com/cancer/news/20040815/marijuana-stall-brain-tumor-growth
Combining marijuana components enhances inhibitory effects on brain cancer https://patients4medicalmarijuana.wordpress.com/2010/01/11/combining-marijuana-components-enhances-inhibitory-effects-on-brain-cancer-2/
Researchers study neuroprotective properties in cannabis https://patients4medicalmarijuana.wordpress.com/2012/03/22/researchers-study-neuroprotective-properties-in-cannabis-fox-news/
Cannabis as neuroprotectant for brain injury https://patients4medicalmarijuana.wordpress.com/2011/05/26/cannabinoid-system-in-neuroprotection-raphael-mechoulam-phd/
I developed alcoholism and bi polar mania with psychosis from prescribed SSRI’s. Immediately after stopping the use of SSRI’s my alcoholism and psychotic mania symptoms dissipated. It has taken me more than a year to recover from the physical withdrawal effects of those medications, and I’ll spend the rest of my life paying for the legal problems it created in my life. My dr tried to convince me to stay on that line of medication, and treat the side effects with mood stabilizers, anti psychotics and 2 other medications. Since I didn’t really appreciate the blackouts and waking up in jail, I decided to walk away from it. From what I’ve experienced I think marijuana is probably far less dangerous in comparison to modern psychiatric medications. I haven’t began using it yet but I’m looking into it, guarantee you should I go into a state of mania while smoking pot I won’t be able to muster the will power to leave my house, and that would just about make it impossible for me to wake up in jail. I had never even received a speeding ticket before SSRI’s, the craziest thing about it is that even though I was completely out of control on that medication, I couldn’t see anything wrong with my behavior, it was during a moment of clarity last January, that I checked myself into a rehab facility and quit SSRI’s in a safe place. SSRI’s destroyed everything, my health, my career, my relationships, and financial stability, it’s all gone. Really don’t think cannabis can be that destructive.
Wow !!! Hurray for YOU. I’ve spent years on SSRI’s, and, like you, have lost it all. Home,job,money,love. And like you, time in jail due to writing BIG bad checks in a mania… Am tapering off what I am currently on and not going back. Cannabis 2-3 x weekly and I am much better. Am currently making marijuana tinctures to use. Have used it on a loved-ones’ feet and it is remarkable in the pain-releaving process. I wish for you life-long-success and love and the best of results. Always, TheCatsMomma.
Reading Andromeda’s entry is like tracing the story of the last 12 years of my life – right down to having settled on a drug combo that is the “best” med docs can do for me. And I have the top docs at the top Depression Center in the USA, but … As with others commenting here, despite the best AMA Medicine can provide, I settle for insomnia, awful side effects, organ damage – in order to not have daily suicide ideation. This is not exactly a full life.
I’d like Andromeda or others to help by being more specific about the type (sativa and/or indica) and amt used in before bed dose. Or even daytime dose. My goal is to wean off these harmful pharmaceuticals (Depakote & Lexapro) and treat the cannabinoid deficiency.
My story … Recently, experimenting with daily 1/4 slice of edible “Spacecake” (on an Amsterdam journey) I found it returned me to a “normal” mental state, completely free of anxiety, better sleep, daily mental clarity, fluency, the old confidence in meeting and talking with people, freedom from tension pain & muscle spasms.
All of this without feeling “high” or giggly and stoned. Physical and mental senses were heightened, memory problems vanished, & was just focused on “the now” vs being dragged down into the negative triggers or past anxieties. Also, I went 4 weeks without therapeutic massage and chiropractic treatments for back pain/spasm.
Returning home, I went to see my physician who helped me with a medical marijuana application. I have my card now for legal use and need to find the type(s) of cannabis with THC dosage that would help me repeat my success.
I’ve read enough to know that regular small doses are key and that heavy or uneven recreational can push a cure into creating another problem. So, I’m seeking info on type and amt from anyone out there who has experienced similar success and can share specific cannabis dosage info. Thanks for any info you can provide. Jerry
Meredith you are a stupid naive woman. Take some time to really get educated on marijuana.
I’d like to know your qualifications. Are you a physician? A scientist that’s conducted independent research or perhaps spent hours pouring over the countless data available? I ask because pretty much every “fact” you mention happens to be false, refuted by many in the medical community, proven wrong by the hard facts of science. It sounds like regurgitated propaganda to me. You actually sound ignorant and failed to make one compelling factual statement.
Total propaganda you are full of **** The only bad thing about Marijuana in legit studies is that you cannot smoke until your brain is fully developed. Otherwise it does NO long term damage to the brain in fact in promotes new brain cell growth, KILLS brain cancer, is anti tumorous and so many other benefits. You need to pull your head out of the back end of the DEA where you apparently have it idiot!
I need links to your “studies” before i would ever consider taking this kind of “dis-info” seriously. Most tests have been performed on rats. Its a plant with an extensive history dating back more than 4000 years. Why does the fda only need ten months to help push synthetic drugs? Q: How long does the drug approval process take?
A: The 1992 Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) established a two-tiered system – Standard Review and Priority Review.
Standard Review is applied to a drug that offers at most, only minor improvement over existing marketed therapies. The 2002 amendments to PDUFA set a 10 month goal for a standard review.
Priority Review designation is given to drugs that offer major advances in treatment, or provide a treatment where none existed. The goal for completing a Priority Review is six months.
This is pure BS propaganda. I’ve ingested from age 16 to 40 daily. I look 10 years younger than my age. I am very successful and hardworking. I have a beautiful family. I am able to outwork people half my age. I NEVER get sick. Just like anything else don’t overdo it. Cannabis is less harmful than 99% of what CVS sells!!! And always stick with fresh hi quality product, never low grade crap cannabis. I also avoid doctors and use things like colloidal silver, and occassionally other herbs, like turmeric for health. Also avoid low quality booze and commercial processed foods, artificial ingredients and so forth. THE GOVT, BIG PHARMA, FDA, AND THE REST ARE LIARS AND KILLERS. To hell with them all.
Hey man. Do you Smoke or use Edibles? I’m 27, I’m asking since I have low mood, anxiety, disbelief in myself, depressed, tired, etc. The usual negative thought processes. I’ve lost my wife, family, friends, etc. I try to work out 3-4 times a week and eat healthy to keep myself going towards a better future. Most of the good things in my life have happened when I’ve smoked weed – uni applications, girls, friends, etc. I don’t want to go back to smoking daily because I don’t want to be dependant on anything or anyone but I feel like medical cannabis with measured doses could get me back on track. I need advice on this.
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I would love to know where you learned your statistics. I have been bi polar as long as I can remember. When I was 14, bi polar disorder didn’t exist. Marijuana can control my generalized anxiety disorder and bipolar mood swings. That are uncontrollable. I have only been on medication for about 16 yrs. I have taken them all! Literally. The ONLY reason I do not quit them is because the withdrawal symptoms are so bad, I would rather be hit by a truck. I take a huge amount of Paxil (3 x what is considered a normal amount) I have been a daze so long I feel like this life is surreal. If I don’t keep my meds at a perfect balance it can wreak havoc in my life. Problem us there is no perfect balance. I get a constant state of hypomania or full on depression. There is no middle. Without any meds there would be complete full on mania with hallucinations. I also take Lamictal. As well as hypnotic sleeping pill and xanax for anxiety. Your opinions …..since nothing you said is founded in fact, are incorrect. Update your information, read the actual scientific fact. Marijuana does not cause psychosis. It can cause elevated anxiety, rarely. It is not proven to shrink “gray matter”. Get real or at least educated before just regurgurgiating 25 yr old information.
It’s about time. Tired of giving my patients pills that just make them sick. It’s about time we’re allowed to give our patients something less addictive, with less side effects. The worst it can do is not work.
Sounds like your a Dr. who hasn’t bought into the drug manufacturer’s philosophy of Serotonin Discontinuation Syndrome. Went through it myself it’s in most ways identical to heroine withdrawal only much longer lasting. And we are now suppose to believe that is no longer a symptom of addiction, but only when it applies to specific pharmaceuticals? WTF?
Precisely. It would seem that the rapid cycling from one medication that does not work to another, most times without any type of titration would be far more risky than assisting patients with something that could potentially help and has far less side effects.
I was diagnosed with Bi-polar disorder at the age of 16, My psychiatrist and parents agreed to put me on several medications to help me cope with the symptoms of my mental-illness. These medications did noting but make me empty and lose a tremendous amount of weight. After a horrendous altercation with my parents I discontinued the use of the medications and started using marijuana recreationally just to escape the everyday suicidal misery I dealt with. When I consumed marijuana I had no emotional problems. I continued using cannabis though my early adult-hood problem free, just thinking that I really liked to get high. As I got older I realized that the reason I liked pot so much was because I wasn’t experiencing any mania or depression anymore. The only time I every experienced mania, or depression was when i didn’t consume cannabis for at least a few days. I am now 26, and am not on ANY pharmaceutical medications for my illness at all. I am now striving to complete my education to provide my family a better life. I am a straight A student, with a 4.0 grade point average, and I still use cannabis daily. The only time my grades seem to come even close to slipping, is when I don’t smoke. It may sound a little dramatic but for anyone who is bi-polar knows, the depression phase of the illness can be a real killer, leading you to think that you’d rather be dead then feel miserable and medicated for the rest of your life. If it were not for cannabis I would not be here at this moment.
My nightmare of bouncing from diagnosis to diagnosis began when I was 12. I’ve been on a laundry list of anti depressants, anti convulsants, anti psychotics, etc. Life has been one disaster after another. First, diagnosing children whose hormone levels fluctuate dramatically from day to day, who are too immature to understand their own feelings and whose brains and bodies are still developing is morally wrong, ineffective and terribly irresponsible. As an adult I’ve chosen to reject previous labels and have maintained with no medications other than therapeutic use of cannabis. I have never been happier or had a more clear, direct path to my goals. I’m glad to read the experiences of others 🙂
I think ur correct. I have bipolar all three of them, antidepressant, But I remember back in the days I would be upset or depressed. Light up one mj and my whole attitude changed for the good & it stayed that way even hrs after it wore off. Im in Utah orginally from montana but utah is one that everybody born here as it and picks up more farther down the yellow brick road. Its sad their on corners,streets,parks, everywhere kids and all. That will never pass here. If its not mormon its not welcome ha ha no but seriously I think the whole state of utah schould kick back and join together and smoke the biggest, fattest blunt the whole world could see and just forget about work, family troubles, school etc and just listen how quiet, peaceful life really is when u cut back for a minute and realize what we r missing because we r always too busy to see what we r missing. We only live once we r always to busy to stop for a min and see what live has to offer us on the slow, bright side. So stop once awhile and say thanks. Thank u.
I am 51 years old and was diagnosed with bipolar II disorder at age 49. From about age 18 until 25 when I quit marijuana altogether, I smoked it often. During this time, I was frequently depressed, attempted suicide once and dropped out of college due to depression. I don’t think marijuana use caused those outcomes, I think my undiagnosed bipolar disorder did. But I can say for certain that smoking marijuana only increased my feelings of depression. I never felt energetic or like a capable person while high. In my case, marijuana use only numbed me to my suffering–it did not alleviate the pain or make me perform better than I performed while not high. Far from that, it weakened my performance and left me feeling tired. I’m glad I quit while I was still young because I believe continued use would have harmed my brain.
You smoked too much at once haha. Try one hit, and your response above will be much different.
This is me replying again–the almost 52 year-old. To the person who says I smoked “too much,” I’m sure you’re not qualified to say that. You don’t know me nor do you have any idea how much marijuana I smoked nearly 30 years ago.
I can only speak on my actual experience. I stopped smoking marijuana at about age 25. Before, during, and after that, ever since I was a teenager and up until this year, I suffered from cyclical depressions whose onsets I could neither predict, prevent, or stop once the depression hit. I spent nearly half of every year depressed, in intervals of 1-6 weeks at a time. When I wasn’t depressed, my mood was usually “normal” (for me) or I was hypomanic. However, I never recognized the periods of euphoric or dysphoric hypomania for what they were, because bipolar II, with its hypomanic phase, was not even recognized as a condition until about 1995. I was over 30 by then, had my first child, and had no diagnosis because I never saw a doctor for my depression. I was determined to cure it–my lifelong affliction–through Buddhist prayer.
Meanwhile, during times of hypomania, I was a sleepless screaming bitch or I was sleepless amazingly joyful, productive self-employed person. During both types of hypomania, I never realized my delusions of persecution or grandeur for what they were–delusions.
While depressed, mostly I just slept ALL. DAY. LONG.
Neither phase–hypomania or depression helped me be a good parent to my three kids. That is a major regret of mine. But I don’t dwell on it.
Anyway, as I said in my first comment, I was diagnosed going on three years ago. I take lithium (750 mg) and started Wellbutrin (300 mg)in late spring when my psychiatrist worried that my seasonal depression was getting the worst of me. I have that too Seasonal Affective Disorder–aptly named SAD. What led me to seek treatment 3 years ago was the suicidal thought I had after going 2 fall/winters straight–one year in total–almost always flat on my back depressed.
When I started lithium at that time, it helped with the hypomania, but not with the depression. So I spent fall/winter of 2011-2012 depressed again. Plus I got depressed spring and summer, as usual. That just wasn’t for a full 6 months. It was intermittent. As usual.
However, this summer (2013)–the first one during which I stayed on lithium and Wellbutrin–I DID NOT GET DEPRESSED AT ALL. The caps are because I have not been able to say that since I was about 11 years old.
Every drug is not for everybody. Marijuana is a drug. Lithium is a drug. Both come from the soil. One’s a plant. One’s a mineral. I experience(d) side effects I could do without with both.
I don’t know what Wellbutrin comes from, but I do know that, ultimately, it’s from the same stuff we’re all made of because we are all just one entity, one universe.
To treat my bipolar disorder, I’m sticking with what works (for now) for me. And that’s the stuff I’m currently taking, not marijuana, which, as I said, only heightened my depression.
P.S., I said I never saw a doctor to treat my depression until recent years. But I did see psychiatrists when I was teen a young adult. I stopped sometime between 22-23 because nothing relieved my depressions. Thinking I’d get the same antidepressants I got then, when my diagnosis was straight up “depression,” not bipolar, was a major reason I avoided seeing a psychiatrist for so long. I didn’t think they could help. And i was probably right, as long as I was misdiagnosed, I most likely would have received ineffective or damaging treatment.
But I realize this blog is about advocating for the use of medical cannabis. I have no problem with that. I think marijuana should be legal. I also think we should be as fully informed as possible about all possible treatments for whatever ails us.
I’m with this guy, I also work with a group of bipolar kids, guess which ones have the most recurring issues and the most manic / depressive episodes? You got it: The pot smokers.
I also smoked until I was around 25, then I quit, and guess what? I would say 90% of my mental issues went away with the pot use.
I’m not a doctor, I’m not employed by the FDA, and I’m not in with any form of law enforcement, I’m just agreeing with the very astute gentlemen above me.
Also – MOST (as in the vast majority) of the studies being posted on this page have never been peer reviewed or PUBLISHED – which should be a huge red flag for ANYONE.
Go two weeks without smoking, then light up a fatty and try to go shopping, you won’t want to, you’ll feel anxiety and panic, now do it again, this time don’t smoke… Notice that? It’s suddenly easy and normal and you didn’t fret about it all day did ya?
If you’re batshit crazy…thats what you are, weed or no weed, you most likely have personal issues that will never be reconciled. It doesn’t take a “Freud” to figure it out. Don’t blame a plant for your problems, talk to god, breathe well, and eat kind foods…..
Not as simple as that, Defender of the Plant. I’m at this moment getting SPECT brain scans at a clinic belonging to pioneer psychiatrist Daniel Amen, who has scanned more than 83,000 brains. His findings? Marijuna messes us the brain. According to him, It may be great for relieving bad side effects of chemo. But it messes up the brain nonetheless. He has pictures of real brains to prove it—more pics than any other doctor worldwide. http://www.amenclinics.com/dr-amen/blog/2012/10/effect-of-long-term-cannabis-use-on-the-brain/. He’s a leader in using SPECT scans to inform psychiatric illness. He also says most people’s brains are unhealthy in some way.
He only has 200 samples of “healthy” brains because they are hard to some by. Why make the brain worse than it already probably is? See my blog posts about my Amen Clinic visits here: http://bipolarity.us/tag/dr-daniel-amen/
Wow. Isn’t this a forum? A place where people can express themselves without being attacked? I guess not. I smoke cannabis daily; I also take a slew of psychiatric medications, all of which I plan to get off of under my Doctor’s supervision. But everyone is different. Just because someone is sharing their story, and part of their story speaks of marijuana not working for them, doesn’t mean they are ‘anti-marijuana.’ They certainly do not deserve to be judged, criticized, and treated so terribly as they are on this ‘forum.’ I’m surprised. Those who support legalization of cannabis seem so hostile towards anyone who reports experiencing a negative effect from it. Think before you write. Better yet, take a toke before you write; perhaps it would calm you down and help you to feel more compassion for these individuals who are simply honestly sharing their negative experience with cannabis.
So glad someone is taking on the SSRIs– The beauty of the cannabis treatment is that it’s not only more effective long term, but many times more dignified of a therapeutic experience than taking a pill addled with side-effects.
After beeing in a mental health because I was smoking marijuana at home daily with no permission of my militar grandfather I was forced to take and injected eith. With anthipsycotic drugd with no reason at all, well I got out I’m now suffering 8 months or more depression/anxiety and can’t smoke weed no more because it worse my condition I feel no more hapiness in my life I would really aptrciate any reply my email firstname.lastname@example.org
keep looking and go see a naturalpath
I have never taken any drug that has helped me as much as Marijuana. Antidepressants make my symptoms skyrocket! My doc told me last year I was bi-polar and gave me Seriquil..after 2nd dose, was almost ready to go to the ER cause I was jumping out of my skin, felt crazy! I have Anxiety and maybe a little PTSD, and after trying all their drugs for 22 yrs,.counseling and suicidal practically every day, because I never could get to a good place in my head, It has cost me everything and lost alot of years of happiness, then FINALLY I convince my doc that I know what I need, and it isn’t what you think I need. So we decided a low dose of Valium and I smoke…feel like a new person and can actually get out of the house and work and take care of myself. I have found the joy back in my life, have 3 grandsons I adore and I am finally happy! So say what you want about Marijuana, but I feel it is the only thing that has kept me here. Definately need to legalize it! It’s an herb not a man-made drug with deadly consequences. Just my opinion and my story.
Do you have a center I could be admitted to, to get off Rx meds and begin using cannabis for Bi-polar disorder?
I’d also like to know of a center like this. 17 years of going through the hell with hundreds different medication ‘cocktails,’ seeing different doctors for second opinions only to find that they all disagreed with each other and all gave me different diagnoses. I am so fed up; so sick and tired of always being sick and tired. These medications have completely numbed my emotions, destroyed my creativity (I’m a professional musician, and medication has created major problems in my ability to play music), and – I believe – has heightened in me all the symptoms that they are meant to treat. I am currently on Cymbalta, Klonopin, Wellbutrin, dexedrine, Neurontin, Temazepam, Trazodone. I also was prescribed Methadone for chronic nerve pain. I wish I never listened to the doctors who convinced me that Methadone is the best drug for my pain, because what I didn’t know at the time is that it is also the most difficult medication to get off of. So these doctors have essentially ruined my life and made me dependent on medications that are known for being nearly impossible to stop without extreme withdrawal that could last years. The only time of day I feel inspired, free of anxiety and depression, free of side-effects, pain-free, and happy is in the evening when I vape or smoke cannabis. I want to get off these poisonous medications once and for all and use only medical cannabis to treat my symptoms. But, I live in New York City, so I’m forced to get cannabis whose purity is unknown. I wish they would legalize it in NY already. I may have to move to CA or Colorado. Regardless, I really would like to know of any centers that would help me get off all my meds without throwing me into a rehab, since I am not addicted but just physically dependent (if I stop cold turkey, I’ll experience withdrawal – it’s just the nature of how these drugs work). So like Lisa, I’d really appreciate any guidance in this matter.
I hope that someone replies with help for you. Our stories are entirely different, so this is irrelevant, but i thought i would share anyway. I had a very severe accident and ended up on pills to control almost every function of my body, since i was paralyzed. I was also on psych meds since that’s how Western medicine deals with normal, justifiable emotion.
After being released from rehab, I met another girl who was paralyzed and had been put on tons of pills. She went off all of them cold turkey, and i decided to do the same. For two days it seemed i was excreting a lot more than usual (peeing a lot). I felt a little bit weird, but it felt right. After two days everything was out of my system, and i’ve been using natural medicine ever since.
Don’t take this as advice, just another person sharing their story.
Also, we have been using cannabis that hasn’t gone through testing since almost the beginning of time. At the same time, there is news recently that some cannabis being sold in CO has a ton of pesticides in it, the kind that become more harmful when ignited. So a legal state doesn’t necessarily provide safer medicine, and untested medicine isn’t necessarily unsafe (in fact, when’s the last time someone was hurt by untested cannabis? I’ve never heard of such a thing.)
Bottom line: Western medicine is a brand new science, only a little over 100 years old. It is the leading cause of death in the US and is essentially in experimental stages right now. Their pills cause more harm than good in many, if not most cases.
Cannabis is safe, and if possible, a good cannabis extract (“hash oil”) is all you need to make it through any reactions your body may have to getting off the pills. You might try doing it very slowly (unlike me).
I went most of my life not knowing exactly what disorder I had because of being misdiagnosed so many times. But at age 26 (I’m 34 now) I was diagnosed bi-polar. I’ve been taking abilify for the last 8 years since being diagnosed to treat the bi-polar disorder. And I not sure anymore if it ever really helped me. If it just “selectively” blocked certain chemicals in my brain to elevate me from a depressive state I guess it worked. But mind you I’ve also been a marijuana user for about 14 years and feel or have always felt that it helped even me out more than any pill I’ve taken to treat whatever diagnosis I’ve been given from ADHD, severe depression and a couple other short lived ones.
That sounds very similar to my own experience. I was 12 though and many, many years, incorrect diagnoses and med after med later, I finally said screw the adderall, screw the wellbutrin. It’s been 19 and 6 months respectively and I’ve never been better. It’s amazing, completely life changing to not be a slave to pills that do very little if anything good.
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I have a rare disease and I feel what I am taking it not helping and also suffer from depression. I feel using medical marijuana would be awesome in NC.
The pain of RSD “reflex symptomatic dystrophy” that is serious pain and no pain relief to get rid of the pain remaining.
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You are all fools. manic depressive is the old wording for bipolar. Duhhhh Get a grip. Weed will make things worse. Destroy your family, marriage, children. I know i watched it all happen and i am the bipolar one NOT the weed smoker.
Y 18ur old Son has sufferd with a ecer case angry disorder amd has suffereb from the. He has been on chemical medications since the age 9. He doesn’t take them due to the die effexts of the drugs. I smoke by self medicating. Could U send me or and phone number to talk to some one who van help Me out.
COCERNS MOTHER Angie
I think it is important to remember that we all experience our bipolar symptoms somewhat uniquely…we also all have different underlying personalities…and we are all in different environments surrounded by different people and other influences…
For those who swear by traditional pharmaceuticals, you know you have had to go through several kinds as well as dosage adjustments to be where you feel you are right now…
So, what is so hard to understand that for many cannabis works and does not affect them the way you perceive it to?
Think about the myriad ways one single thing can affect a dozen different people, differently. Everyone has valid points worth looking at…well except for those who are commenting for the mere sake of commenting and being assholes contributing nothing, but insults and distraction from any real conversation.
This deserves a real conversation between those who choose to have an open mind and care about others recovery as well as their own.
This starts out talking about bipolar and then moves into SSRIs, which aren’t even prescribed for bipolarity on account of their tendency to promote mania. Much like sativas. We need highly predictable strains, we need reliable tests that can tell us how much CBD (which is what you generally want for psychosis and mania, and which growers rarely produce because most of them treat it like alcohol instead of medicine), and we need to figure out which strains are good for autism, depression, etc., and which ones don’t encourage paranoia. A lot of the people encouraging pot for mental illness seem to have goddamn holes in their heads. Having seen SSRIs not work for people and having also seen them save lives, I’m not real impressed with the medical rigor here, either. I really hate seeing “it’s natural” given as a reason a medicine is a good alternative to a pill, when so many natural remedies can range from useless to harmful, and when the efficacy of this particular natural drug depends so much upon the particulars. (See the series of articles in Slate in which a woman found that her autistic boy was so much happier and calmer when they had access to White Russian-based edibles, and how heartbreaking in was when that source was no longer able to deliver, and they found that other strains delivered in other ways did nothing for him.)
Let me tell you about my experience with meds. I’ve had several episodes of depression, got some real short-term benefit from shrooms, found weed much more attractive as I was becoming manic (the only strain that ever picked me up when I was depressed was Jack Herer, which is not what I was smoking; I can’t speak to whether it was too stimulating — anyway, this is the part that always worries me on message boards, the fact that of course manic people want to be told to smoke), and finally got myself hospitalized (which I needed; if the weed helped, that’s great), kicked out by roommates, and very nearly fired. I’m told that a QEEG scan indicates that the issue appears to be that my left temporal lobe is producing seizure-like activity without actual seizures, which makes sense, given that most mood stabilizers were originally anticonvulsants. I’m hoping to get stable enough to cut back a little on the pills and smoke a high-CBD strain once in a while, but since neither I nor my weed-loving doctor (who vastly prefers that I not smoke) are OK with antipsychotics, I am as delicate as can be over here. Without moderate-to-high doses of both a mood stabilizer and lithium, which for me causes crappy physical (but not mental, seemingly) side effects, I would once again be convinced that singers in 30-year-old songs were addressing me personally and that everybody could probably hear my thoughts and that I was the reincarnation of every famous person I liked all at once. (I was not able to think about this metaphorically. It was like having a baby in charge of my brain, except that I didn’t know it was happening.) I do not believe for one second that weed can handle that. And I’m often on the edge of it.
If I were rich enough, maybe it would be OK to be floridly psychotic. I don’t think I ever would have been a shaman, as per the romantic view of the mentally ill. I think that in most ancient scenarios I would have been either raped or eaten by something. So I’m really not that unhappy about the pills. At least lions aren’t taking giant bites out of my abdomen.
I Have been on SSRI for 4 years now, they have changed my life for the better. I no longer have panic attacks, no social anxiety. I have started my own business and cope day to day with all life throws at me. I was a heavy cannabis user from around age 14 to 24, I am now 38. I can Honestly say that Stopping smoking cannabis was the best decision of my life. A lot of my Anxiety and panicky behaviour I know was derived from 100% by my cannabis use. Paranoia and social anxiety are a simple fact of being stoned – these feelings eventually lead to depression and a sense of isolation, Cannabis is not good for you, that is just ridiculous to say it is good for you. It is perhaps not bad in moderation and perhaps even helpful in moderation. The problem is there is no consensus on sensible or safe use – for example we all know drinking half a bottle of vodka a day is not good – do we know how much cannabis a day is good, or in a week? – Anything in excess is bad and taken into our bodies is in excess is harmless, The people claiming it is “good” for you are just as stupid the people claiming you will end a heroin addict if you smoke a bit of weed. There needs to a bit more honest here, of course it can mess you up if you are stupid and it becomes a huge part of your life, spending every waking hour totally stoned is simply not going to be good for your mind any more than being drunk all day is going to be good for you.
I thank you for including your corresponding ages; it exposes a clearer truth. If quitting marijuana was the great relief from all the anxiety and panic as you say, why did you still need to turn to SSRIs? Oh, because quitting Marijuana wasn’t the monument of change you claim it to be. My mother is on SSRIs and lacks self awareness as well, so don’t feel too bad.
And as far as your comment about the vodka, an intelligent person knows that 0 vodka a day is ideal. To contrast it to determining a proper dose of marijuana implies that you believe that, while a half a bottle isn’t it, there is indeed a proper dose of daily vodka. Keep drinkin’ dude.
I’d also like to note that it makes me tingle with happiness to see that the cannabis friendlies are leaps and bounds more articulate in their speech(writing) than the opposers.
You start by arguing that ssri antidepressants don’t work, but then you say that marijuana works, and it works by increasing serotonin (same thing that ssri drugs do.) Not that I have a big problem with marijuana, but your logic is whacky and super biased!
You’re wrong. Learn to read. SSRIs don’t increase serotonin. They block the receptors from receiving it, therefore creating a backup or “traffic jam” of serotonin. Now what good is an infinite supply of serotonin if you mess with the receptors that recognize and accept it!?
Think of a dam. SSRIs stockpile serotonin on the wrong side of “the dam.” It’s like saying, instead of growing more trees to sustain us as a population, let’s just get rid of our dependence on oxygen. Yes, moronic.
Last clarification of my thoughts, I promise. Back to the dam… Does a dam create more water? It does not. Nor do SSRIs create more serotonin.
Im sorry but I cant trust any drug pushed by the FDA that only has a few years of research and a ten month patent process. Cannabis has over 4000 years of research but.. Cannabis and medicine isn’t black and white. Some strains provide more relief than others, some plants grown with chemical fertilizers create a “freebase” effect much like nicotine additives. If a plant is chopped and dried too soon it can give a paranoid pyscho-active effect. Do your fucking research before you label someone wacky. Ive been growing and researching cannabis for ten years, what do you know about the plant?
Physical symptoms. Some patients taking SSRIs develop insomnia, rashes, headaches, joint and muscle pain, stomach upset, nausea, or diarrhea. These problems are usually temporary, mild, or both.
Bleeding problems. A more serious potential problem is reduced blood clotting capacity that increases risk for stomach or uterine bleeding. If patients use SSRIs and NSAIDs (aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, COX-2 inhibitors) at the same time, the risk more than doubles, so these drugs must be combined with care.
Sexual effects. For many patients, SSRIs diminish sexual interest, desire, performance, satisfaction, or all four. Lowering the dose, switching antidepressants, or, for men, taking a drug like sildenafil (Viagra) can help.
Suicide. The risk that antidepressants will incite violent or self-destructive actions has become the subject of renewed controversy. One reason for concern is the increasing number of children and adolescents receiving prescriptions for antidepressants. When compared with a placebo, all antidepressants, including SSRIs, seem to double the risk of suicidal thinking, from 1%–2% to 2%–4%, in both children and adults…Ask me again why im biased?
Amen, yes I know his work…..Not really impressed with him either…The problem is whats in the herb itself, if you read my previous posts I go into the dynamics of using cannabis medicinally. If you smoke phosphates boron and copper and other harmful trace elements found in fertilizer good chance it will hurt your brain.. …..Washington, D.C., March 1998 — Under the guise of ‘recycling,’ millions of pounds of toxic waste are shipped each year from polluting industries to fertilizer manufacturers and farmers, who used toxic waste laden with dioxin, lead, mercury and other hazardous chemicals as raw material for fertilizers applied to U.S. farmland.
I want to apply for my mmc in nj for bipolar disorder I want to know if there are any other states where bipolar disorder is accepted as a chronic or life long disability in the eyes of the state. Either way I plan on fighting for it in the state of New Jersey, if by state rules I’m not able to be approved the first time. I always do my research and I am willing to try medical marijuana vs the drugs I have been legally given.
Are these proven enough? I smoked marijuana before but I stop due to the fact that I may get addicted to it.
Extremely entertaining comment, thank you! Out of fear of not being able to stop, you stop. I love it! Must not have been so addictive then, huh?
thank you so much as we people with disabilities fight this spiritual uphill battle to bring into light what GOD WANTS INTO EXISTENCE. TO HEAL HIS PEOPLE. SINCERELY, ADRIAN SANTEE. PLEASE”MAKE NOTE”-(QUEST COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION WHICH HOUSES PEOPLE WITH DISABELING CONDITIONS STILL HAVE NOT MADE IT INTO ACTION BECAUSE OF SUPERFICIAL RULES ABOUT RECOVERY,THEY IMPOSE ON US IN THIS TYPE OF HOUSING. I WAS CLASSIFIED WITH BIPOLAR DISORDER IN 1997,YET I ALSO RECIEVE DISABILITY(SSI)-,YET CLASSIFIED WITH ABDUCTIS METATARSUS VARUS BILATERAL TIBIAL TORSION,,AS A BABY,, AND HAVE NOW STARTED TO FEEL THE EFFECTS OF STIFFNESS,SORENESS,INFLAMATION IN MY LEGS,AND JOINTS,TO THE ANKLES.
Thank you very much for your comments;our uphill battle to help;lobby for norm to gain the rightful power for doctors to prescribe medical marijuana in Atlanta,Georgia;who have the highest percentage of disabilities in the states;in turn,which allows the federal government/state employees to balance their pockets,and grant $money$,off the backs of the poor,and disabled communities.(cannaibis-cbdoil for sever classifications such as sychological/physical disorders,yet disabilities still continues! sincerely adrian santee
I Have had psychosis since i was 10 years old and i have tried every anti psychotic Medicine from Seroquil to Zyprexa and everything in between nothing seemed to help with my depression and my hallucination problems. I have been hospitalized twice since i first started showing symptoms (i am currently 15) and they would give me more pills that just put me to sleep and i would have rashes from them and developed liver damage from all the medication i needed help so i was with my friends one day then they asked if i wanted a brownie being only 12 at the time i had no idea that you could put marijuana in brownies so i took it and for the rest of the day i felt content and i did not see or hear anything that wasn’t there. Since that moment i have been treating my psychosis with cannabis and i have not once hallucinated or have felt that chronic depression i have stopped manipulating people and i am living a life worth while and it all changed with that amazing plant
I have had depressions and anxiety since I was 13 years old. My third psychologist (I was 18) gave me antidepressants after just one appointment with him, and I used them for about 6 months, then I quit, feeling that it didn’t work. I was skeptical towards prescribed medication, and the fact that my psychologist recommended these after talking with me for only one hour really made me think… I stopped seeing him, and decided that no health professionals could help me.
About a year after that I tried smoking hash for the first time. During those first years of smoking, hash was more available than weed was. The goal was to get wasted, to hang out and we joked about ‘destroying our brains’. (this is actually interesting when I think about the fact that a few of us used to be ‘Good Girls’, high grades in school, kind and ‘respectable’. To ‘destroy’ our brains was the greatest misbehavior!)
We usually mixed smoking with alcohol, and we went about trying all the drugs we could.
When I was about 24 I had been needing to get out of it for quite a while, since the use of amphetamines together with liquor was becoming the usual weekend hang up, together with the marijuana usage. Most of my friends and acquaintances still smoked to get wasted, and when I smoked too much I had anxiety, and problems talking with people, and I became very tired, or I had spells of thinking too much.
Despite of this, I believe that smoking every week took away some of the worst depressions.
Then I met new friends, and these guys only smoked weed for medicinal purposes!
The Intent behind smoking marijuana was to enhance the senses, to breathe deeply, to connect with self/spirit, to meditate and to play, to dance, to be creative through drawing and painting, to jam and find the flow. The effects of doing yoga while smoking is also amazing: http://www.yogabasics.com/connect/getting-high-before-yoga-class/
There is no doubt in my mind-body-spirit about this: it works.
In this period I smoked daily or a few times a week, and I smoked a small dose. The effects on my depressions would last more than two weeks. I experienced euphoria, happiness and contentment for the first time since childhood!!!
It’s funny though, because now I stopped smoking for one year. The reason behind it is that I found a therapist who recommended me to stop, because it made me lose my grounding. My abilities to make healthy boundaries for myself were also compromised by alcohol/marijuana. I found this to be accurate. She is a shock and trauma expert, who has helped me (to help myself) tremendously. Her approach is holistic. Many people don’t even know that they’ve had shocks, or the fact that you can inherit traumas from your parents.
I wanted to add this, because there are other ways (more ways) to get help. I believe that most of our mental health problems comes from unresolved traumas.
But now I am researching marijuana to see if it can help additionally to my trauma therapy. I still have poor grounding, but the fact that marijuana helped my breathing and my body movements is something that I miss, and I know that smoking can help me, especially now that I have worked through some of my issues about boundaries.
The use of marijuana in the right doses and with the right intent is a great medicine. All substances can be misused, marijuana is no exception, but what is interesting is that while the governments treat it like a dangerous drug, a lot of kids use it like a dangerous drug (ex. to get totally wasted, mixing it with other drugs.)
I love the article, and I loved reading through the comments, thank you. Thanks for the tips on taking marijuana before sleeping, that is something I will try, to avoid being high when at school 😉
(though that might not be so bad after all!)
This study you’ve posted, as supporting your endorsement of treating bipolar and major depression with cannabis, only suggests that the endocannabinoid system, may, have something to do with emotional processing. This study was conducted on 11 healthy people, of which, none were afflicted with either of these disorders. The study, in and of itself, is unreliable at best. Reliability, in this context, meaning capable of meeting predetermined conditions as set by an audience of professionals in the field of psychology. Eleven is a very weak number when making a judgement of that magnitude. The fact that the patients were selected discredits much of what little science is actually taking place in this study. Let us not forget that ∆9-tetrahydrocannabinol is a dopamine antagonist. Being bipolar and consuming cannabis is a huge gamble. The fact that you’re recommending it in any form to someone with a mental illness ought to be considered criminally negligent. Should someone with bipolar read this article, consume cannabis, and suffer a manic episode, you could be the cause of their suffering. Please, before you write an article that endorses the use of a substance, which has affects that are medicinally unknown, or experimental, do research that is sufficient to supporting any judgement you intend to make. Likewise, when making a judgement, please, make sure your judgement aligns with the research you are using to support it.
No one has written an article here. This is an accumulation of some of the science (not just one 11-person study) available on the subject, with excerpts from other articles. To repost widely available information is not a crime.
I have used canabis for several years to help control my bipolar when the meds fail to do so. So much wish it was leagel in my state.
i went off all prescribed meds for three years and just used cannabis. It was the best quality of life Ive ever known. this should be studied and i volunteer. this is it and i know it.
Hi all, My name is Michael thanks for this page.I hope you can help .let me try to explain my situation and what I’m experiencing. .They got me very upset here .I’m a classic Manic Depressive with something I think they made up Sitzo effective excuse my spelling please.Now I’m currently treating with cannabis. But I’m currently in a war with my family and a so called Mental heath clinc.They don’t believe me.when I say this is my proper med.Ok what I really need from you guys is some back up on this issue and real great information witch I know you got.Oh yea I’m in Colorado.Plesse help me dispell this negitve thought form Ok! Later Michael (perma buzz)
Well, a recent study might be of interest – but those who are invested in believing one way will likely not be swayed even by research. Good luck to you!
http://medicalmarijuana.procon.org/view.answers.php?questionID=000226 / http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2012/07/14/medical-marijuana-a-patient-perspective/
http://www.healthcentral.com/bipolar/c/15/165750/medical-marijuana-bipolar-high/ / http://www.healthcentral.com/bipolar/c/15/165750/comments
Let me know if you need more, and what type of help specifically would be best.
thank you michael james;for those of us who suffer like you;who posses cognitive,or,character disorders; are behind you one hundred %,i am living in Atlanta,Georgia the peach state;so you can just about imagine the mind set is, for those of us who reside in this state;fighting to have the proper,legal access for all of us who continue in life therapy;INORDER to live our lives as,,business men,educaters,ministers,political figures;we all have a disability of some form in this life;it is when the states,along with real,continued advocacy will break through the greedy left wing,yet right wing congress;thank,GOD for NORMAL,AND OUR TRUE “FREEDOM FIGHTERS. be patient michael soon you will be,WELL WITHIN, able with legal representation to control your own “healing”! ,,BROTHER,>AD.”
Okay, marijauna can help, yes, but as a bipolar sufferer, it only numbs my symptoms until the high wears off.
We need to stop slamming psychiatric meds, not when plenty of them have saved lives. This article is crap to begin with, especially because SSRIs cannot be prescribed to those with bipolar disorder due to their ability to cause manic episodes. I was misdiagnosed with major depressive disorder and put on Remeron, a drug you’re supposed to be on for only 40 days. Within days I went manic. Then I was diagnosed correctly. Took a year to find the correct meds, but I’m on Lamictal, which has ZERO side effects for me. Sure, I’m depressed again, and, yeah, I smoke cannabis, but the cannabis has only numbed my symptoms during the time I’m smoking it. When the high wears off, I’m back to feeling the way I did before, which is why I prefer to call my pdoc and ask for an uppage for my Lamictal, as Lamictal as kept my mood far steadier than cannabis. Cannabis may work long-term for some people, but we need to stop spreading this toxic myth that psychiatric meds are bad and evil when for many they have saved lives.
If I have to constantly smoke marijauna to receive the exact same benefits my Lamictal gave me, what is the point? With lamictal, all I have to do is pop a pill. With marijauna, I constantly have to clean out my bong, refill it, and smoke it and smoke it and smoke it.
There is a lot of information about edibles, tinctures and oils on this and many similar sites. Most patients do not smoke all day as that is the least efficient method of administration.
I have had multiple diagnoses over a span of two decades, was on over two dozen different medications before finally arriving at major depressive disorder, anxiety, adhd and NVLD. What I have found is that the difference between inhaling marijuana and eating it is like night and day. I prefer tincture, oil or edibles (although edibles have lead to a bit of weight gain for me and that’s not something I can afford). When available, I can take a few drops of tincture or oil 2-3 times a day and am good to go. Knowing your strains is important as well. I steer clear of sativas and sativa dominate hybrids because they seem to drive my anxiety and can lead to paranoia and racing brain for me.
How you compare marijuana and ssri’s is a bit foolish. The treatment of brain disorders first of all is very hard because there are so many different chemicals that could be out of balance. You you say that ssri’s cause serotonin to not allowed to reach the receptors however that is not true. There is a chemical that comes and sweeps away the excess serotonin and in some people this action occurs before serotonin has completed its task. Once serotonin bonds to its receptor also it is used up so what the ssri does is to prolong the time that serotonin is available in the gap between the neurons. It is not a perfect process as it does create imbalances, however they are developing testshttp://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/cyp450-test/basics/results/prc-20013543 that can give a better idea of what drugs will work. Marijuana ‘ s action in the brain has not fully been determined and there are so many different strains that have different actions. There is definite potential for pot, but needs more consistency. Self medicating isn’t going to help someone suffering from a severe mental disorder.
I have been smoking for the past 2-3 years and before that on and off since I was 16. It started out recreational and turned to self medicating, I needed it because every time I do it chemicals are released and then you crash, not much different from if you were to drink a sugary drink. When the thc in the blood gets low the brain wants it again. The Srni I am on does the same thing but it has dosage guidelines and is prescribed by a doctor who knows way more about the mind and brain than me. I have tried both ways and I would love to rely wholly on pot but I can’t cause I need to work. Until there are dosage guidelines and it is treated more like medication then you can say it is like witch doctor medicine. Obviously there are ways around this such as searching for the strain and dosage that works for me, but I feel that would lead to more problems and a Neverending search since even the producers don’t know.
The anti-depressant effects, from what I understand, come about from edibles, not smoking. Maybe that’s because the cannabinoid level needs to be at a higher amount than can be obtained by smoking, and maybe they stay at a more level amount when ingested rather than smoked. Some people actually have a cannabinoid deficiency, and when that need is met, either through the body’s own endo-cannabinoids, or by ingestion, depression is often one of the symptoms of this deficiency that disappears.
I’ve never heard of anyone successfully using smoked cannabis as a means of alleviating depression. Ingesting a proper amount of the proper strain – before bed – is the way to go.
There are many studies and sources linked in the article that support the idea of considering trying the herb and forgoing pills. “Consider” being the operative word. We’re not suggesting any particular path.
For some, the pills work. This article is probably better for those who are suffering from side effects, or lack of effects, of SSRI’s.
There is an abundance of science showing the pills are no more effective than placebo, even less so. That isn’t the main problem, though, it’s the fact they they cause suicide in many, many people. That is the entire reason this article is posted.
But you’re entirely right, the medical marijuana industry is way behind when it comes to being ready to treat mental issues, and issues that need precise dosage info. For right now, if SSRI’s aren’t causing a problem and are working, it does seem like the way to go.
Personally, i came within inches of loosing my own life to pills (Effexor and Prozac) that made me think of nothing but killing myself for days and days on end. When I finally ran out of Effexor, the suicidal thoughts stopped within 24 hours and never ever returned.
The reason people are more likely to commit suicide on pills, besides the fact that the pills can cause suicidal ideation to begin with, is that they energize the patient such that one who is normally too depressed to carry off such an act now has the ability to do it. A shrink told me this.
Many have compared cannabis with pills for the treatment of depression. This comes from observation of cannabis’ effects, not from some hippies’ desire to bash pills or anything like that. The idea is not new to this blog. But indeed, they can’t be compared chemically, that is true.
Finding an edible dosage that will work to heal a person isn’t as difficult a task as one may imagine. Look into the endocannabinoid system. Doctors don’t even know about this, as it was only discovered recently. Alopathic medicine (pills vs herbs/nutrition/etc) is a very new science and is the leading cause of death in the US. Herbal medicine that is thousands of years old and has never caused a death is seen as “witch medicine” only because of the propaganda put forth by this very lucrative industry – Big Pharma.
The fact that we don’t have an abundance of science backing this up, with clear guidelines for dosage, is by design. NIDA only funds research on cannabis if it finds negative effects, and will not look for any healing effects.
But again, this blog post is just an offering for those who want to consider another way.
Thanks for the reply.
Thank you for the comments. I feel silly though, as I hadn’t read through the many comments above where there are oodles of first hand accounts of depression being healed by smoking cannabis.
All I can say is that i smoked for decades never noticing any changes in my depression, which I had since age 12 (which is also when I was first put on anti depressants, and, after taking them, had my first suicidal thoughts/plans).
It wasn’t until I noticed in hindsight that after regularly taking highly concentrated cannabis oil to aid with sleep and pain associated with spinal cord injury and being wheelchair-bound, my depression was finally addressed! I tested it by stopping the oil, and sure enough, after two days I was feeling grey, hopeless and just as depressed as ever. One dose brings me back to a happy homeostasis.
Hope this helps 🙂
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I use cannabis for my bipolar, however, it is not legal in my state yet
I wish the government and general public will recognize pot as medicine and not a illegal drug.
You don’t see a pot user kill people like drunk drivers, nor do you see a pot user overdose.
Many people use marijuana for bi-polar disorders and depression but there’s still a lot to be learned on whether marijuana actually treats it or simply distracts you from it. There has been a ton of research showing it actually treats PTSD so I’m sure it could be that its treating the symptons of other depression related disorders as well. Remember different cannabis strains do have different effects on the body so some may work better than others. You should consult sites like http://www.wikileaf.com/strains/ or Leaf ly or both good sites breaking down strains by medical usage.
I can say it helps me. I was out of shape and cannabis allowed me to not only recover from darkness, but showed me the darkness I was living in. You start to question reality you made and progress away from sadness to hope. Cannabis truly changed my thoughts for the better.
it helps me. in fact just small amounts can heal depression within seconds and last for hours. Thank god for Cannabis! unfortunately many suffer from depression, because states are playing with human suffering i.e politics / drug war 1937 reefer madness.
FIRST, i am bipolar and smoke marijuana in low doses. NOTHING can cure this disease BUT being on the right prescribed medicine is the only way one with bipolar can function. yes, i enjoy smoking pot every weekend and yes i used to self medicate with it before i was on meds, it worked, but when I wasnt high i was having anxiety attacks and severe mania and marijuana would instantly get me stable and functioning. Realizing without pot i could not function, there was something wrong. I am now on the lowest dose prescribed possible of risperdal at .25 mg which is enough to stabilize my mania and depression. yes it is absolutely crucial to be on the right med, if you are truly bipolar, you need to be. but marijuana is awesome in moderation for me and i enjoy it responsibly now.
A lot of people have said it didn’t work for them by smoking, it only works if you ingest it because you need a significant amount of cannabinoids, which you can’t get through smoking.
Is there any solution yet? I live in NYC and there is every kind of regulation here. I suffer, and i mean suffer from Schizoid personality disorder. Going on 30+ years now and it only gets heavier. The doctors know that there is no known cure or medication for this disorder,yet they still prescribe me Anti-depressants and anti-anxiety meds for the unbelievable depressive modes that this disorder causes, not for the disorder itself. Marijuana is the only thing that has ever helped me get involved in the world. the only thing that has helped me care and want to contribute to society. Everything from doing the dishes to going food shopping. it helps my functionality and motivation (no laying back on a couch high). Yet I am broke, scraping what resin i can, trying to maintain a balance and peace of mind. i dont know what to do anymore. I feel like heading towards drinking, and i hate alcohol. I’ve tried countless meds and they’ve never worked for what I have, because it is not simply an imbalance. Please help.
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God bless you. I believe we are on the cusp of a new era, where Cannabis medicine is not only legal, but free. Just hold on. We are almost there. I’ll throw in my two cents here – Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders will likely legalize recreational cannabis when he becomes prez, but also will make healthcare free for all, just like in every other advanced country. You should not have to be made to even consider drinking poison (alcohol
) and it is so unfair that healthy, effective medicine is kept from human beings. The future is BRIGHT. Hang in there ❤
Thank you for your loving thoughts and support, They’ve reached far deeper than you had hoped. I wish I could say I were exaggerating, but as I sit here scraping the inside of an old pipe and smoking cigar fillings to ease my almost aching cravings, I see how bad it is. I am not, nor was i ever a criminal or addict, yet i am in the same boat as those who abuse and use it as a lifestyle. Myself and so many others. Like a number of other things, I cannot understand this ridiculousness.
Thanks again, friend. God bless ❤
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God bless, my friend. We’ll hang in there together – we are in the same boat, with a lot of others too! xxxooo
Paranoia, delusions and psychosis here with too much of the good stuff. With anything proper dosing and correct strain could be the key to improving depression and anxiety. I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen if first hand with my 22 year old son. He has been using marijuana recreationally for three years, but as treatment (under my blessing) for depression and anxiety for seven months. He had been diagnosed as having Bi polar disorder, depression, anxiety, ect. starting at a young age (9). Regular meds. were either ineffective or brought horrific side effects. About three weeks ago his depression became worse and started suffering from paranoia, delusions which caused him to attempt suicide. He was hospitalized and started showing improvements daily. The only change was no marijuana. They hadn’t even started him on any meds. He was released two days ago and decided to smoke again yesterday and the paranoia and delusional thinking returned.
Is it possible the strain he was using had a high propensity for paranoia?
I would like to volunteer for medical treatment trial’s for cannabis for my health and that would help others health and become medically legal and should not of been medically illegal any way.
Please stand by this Disabled Vets family. Cannabis is medicine..
Raymond and Amelia
ScienceDaily: Marijuana News
Gene could help identify psychosis risk in cannabis users
Posted: 16 Feb 2016 08:13 AM PST
A gene that can be used to predict how susceptible a young person is to the mind-altering effects of smoking cannabis has been identified by a group of researchers. The finding could help identify otherwise healthy users who are most at risk of developing psychosis.
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I like to use water-soluble CBD and find it helps me feel like I can adapt to my environment more quickly by allowing life to feel less stressful. As I get older things hurt, but with THC and CBD I can manage.
Thank you for this, i’ve been hearing great things about CBD for stress relief. Hadn’t heard of “water soluble” version yet.
Study points to cannabis’ effect on emotion processing
Posted: 29 Feb 2016 03:27 PM PST
According to researchers, cannabis significantly affects users’ ability to recognize, process and empathize with human emotions like happiness, sadness and anger.
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I’m in Arkansas my name is Emilio Guerrero and I wanted to get some information where I can get cannabis in this state for my bipolar disorder and depression I am currently disabled in the state of Arkansas please help
My friend, it looks like Arkansas doesn’t have legal medical marijuana yet. It will have in the future, but that is of no help to you now. I am in a similar position. I’m sorry it is so difficult right now while the laws remain archaic.
I’m the mom of a bipolar 2 son, who started using marijuana, he’s getting worse not better he’s verbally abusive to me out of the clear blue sky, he can’t seem to remember to do anything asked of him, I am just watching him go down hill,I hate watching him fall apart and can’t get through to him.He was diagnosed at 9 yrs and we have both went through hell, and now off his meds using weed, it’s like we’re back at square one
If using cannbis to treat depression and bipolar, smoking is not the best route. He should be using edibles or oil, taken before bed.
Thank you for this article. I have a question I haven’t seen anyone ask. I’ve tried cannabis in many forms – smoke, vapor, tinctures, edibles – all from dispensaries in Colorado while there on a canna-cation. Even after going on a tour with a bus full of people smoking, I’ve been unable to get high. A couple of the edibles, which I got specifically to help with insomnia, seem to be helping me sleep. But I also suffer from unipolar depression and chronic neck and back pain. I was hoping to find something to help with this.
Are there people who simply don’t have the receptors needed for cannabis to work? Am I broken?
Can someone recommend an eatable cannabis good for manic depression that don’t make someone anxious or paranoid.One that don’t give you munchies/gain weight.Promote weight loss would be great.Is there some with a fruity taste you can buy in gummy bears ?
Cannabis reduces creativity, but user generally not aware
Posted: 04 Oct 2016 09:58 AM PDT
Regular users of cannabis are less aware of their own mistakes, and they are not good at creative thinking, concludes new research on the effects of cannabis.
Have had ocd snd depression most if my life. Im 68 n need to feel alive for what time i hav left on this earth.
Need to find a doctor to giv me the right ingredients in the Marijuana for the ocd n depression.
I live in Wareham Massachusetts.
New Belford cape cod area
Maureen, Cannabis already has the right ingredients to cure depression. I would recommend using edibles at night. You could do this by buying cannabis-infused coconut oil or butter, when it becomes legally available. I didn’t know it worked for depression, and also suffered from it since age 12, until i had been using edibles before bed, and realized in hindsight i simply did not have depression anymore for the first time EVER.
I have been doing my own little experiment with cannabis. This may not work for everyone, but when I smoke a sativa and night before bed, I can go a VERY long time without taking my antidepressants without any brain zaps. I have been recording the times when I smoke, when I wake up, and how long it takes my brain to start zapping and every time I use my vaporizer at night, a small amount of sativa pure oil, I can go a long time without antidepressants. So much that I plan on lowering my dose back down to 20mg a day and getting off of them completely.
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Im 14 and i am trying to be medically prescribed to marijuana i habe done alot of research to prove marjuana is not as bad as everyone tries to make it seem so my mom will go along with this and i habe shown her many websites with the bad side effects and postive and so now she is going with it and i just need to figure out how to get a doctor to precribe me im going to talk to my counciler i have had to go to for 4 months since i was put in the hospital for a pill overdose
I would like to be abel to use canabis but haft to worry about getting fired wich takes away the benefits of it
I suffer from bipolar depression anxiety and PTSD and I’ve been smoking since the age of 20 it’s the only thing that helps me I’ve been on everyone medication there is and had so many side affects and I feel nothing no remorse no guilt im afraid to be on meds DCS has taken my children because I smoke marijuana one of my sons has been put up for adoption im trying to get my other son back but the only way is to go back on meds and I’m not sure that’s a very good idea there are other side affects that I can’t say due to my open DCS case is there anyone out there that can help me I don’t know what to do I want my children back
How to sensibly buy LEGAL cbd oil? Because I got a letter saying customs has confiscated my package two times already and I’m pissed.