Cannabis is medical cannabis. However, many patients in Los Angeles California think of marijuana as a drug. In other words, cannabis patients believe that Cannabis is a “drug.” Therefore, it is rare for me to hear a patient talk about their cannabis as medicine. For instance, my patients only talk about cannabis alongside their tobacco or alcohol use. In other words, many patients view marijuana as a vice like tobacco, alcohol, or any recreational drug.
Cannabis As Medicine
To clarify, it is only when we start to think differently will cannabis be considered medicine. For example, many patients use medical cannabis to reduce their pain or distraction. In addition, many patients cannot do many activities that you and I can do. Therefore it is exciting for me to hear a patient talk about cannabis when I ask them about their medications.
Can recreational marijuana and the cannabis is medicine coexist?
Unfortunately we cannot as a nation have a recreational mindset if we expect lawmakers to take patients seriously. Fortunately, marijuana became legalized in California in 1996. Importantly, medical cannabis received support from seriously ill patients. For example, these disabled patients didn’t want to spend the rest of their short lifetime limited by their condition. However, there are individuals who see medical cannabis as a criminal substance. Furthermore, recreational marijuana patients give these individuals reasons to stop medical marijuana altogether. Moreover public recreational marijuana users makes it significantly harder for patients with serious medical problems to get access to cannabis.
However, medical marijuana patients rarely believe cannabis is medicine. Therefore it is our job to change the way we think and talk about cannabis as medicine. That is to say, it is very rare for patients to be as enthusiastic for their medicine as they are for cannabis. For instance, my medical marijuana patients have T shirts, socks, pens and multiple items that advertise their enthusiasm for cannabis. In contrast, I never see a patient wear a t shirt for viagra or ibuprofen. In summary, the next time you list your medications at your medical marijuana renewal please remember cannabis is medicine.