Medical marijuana was officially legalized in Canada in the year 2000 when a court ruling overturned the prohibition of the plant for medicinal purposes. The medical marijuana program went through major changes in 2014, however, which turned the world upside down for some patients because they are no longer permitted to cultivate medical cannabis at home, nor to designate a caregiver to grow for them.
Now, under the Marihuana for Medical Purposes Regulations (MMPR), patients must obtain their medicine from an approved producer that is licensed by Health Canada. Under these regulations, patients no longer have to go through the hassles of registering directly with Health Canada. Instead, patients may simply register with the licensed producer of their choice.
Physicians are the sole decision makers who decide whether a patient may have access to medical marijuana therapy. There are currently 40,000 medical marijuana users in Canada, but that number is expected to jump to over 400,000 in the next ten years. One reason this number is expected to increase is because of the success that many patients suffering from mild to moderate medical conditions are experiencing with the use of medical marijuana treatment plans.
Medical marijuana can provide patients with a natural, more functional and controllable alternative-treatment option than pharmaceuticals, but the majority of patients do not even realize that this option is available. Where pharmaceuticals produce the same, often negative, side effects no matter what time of day they are administered, medical marijuana produces different effects depending on the strain. This means that strains can be chosen in correlation with day time use, evening use and everywhere in between, eliminating the risk of unwanted or debilitating side effects. Another positive fact about the use of medical marijuana is that it cannot kill a person like so many pharmaceuticals can.
This is an especially viable treatment option worth exploring for any of the millions of Canadians suffering from symptoms of such mild to moderate mental-health conditions as anxiety, depression or insomnia. It is also an option for people suffering from mild to moderate chronic pain and neuropathic pain. Cannabinoids, the chemical compounds that make up marijuana flowers, have shown promising treatment results in patients suffering from all of these conditions.
One benefit to the use of medical marijuana is the fact that different effects are produced depending on the strain. This means that the perfect strain exists for each condition and the time of day it will be used. Those who still need or want to work and accomplish normal day-to-day activities can find the perfect strain to allow that to happen while still relieving the symptoms caused by the condition. There are also strains available which promote heavier relaxation, rest and even sleep, if that is the desired effect.
In order to register with a licensed producer, a patient must first receive a diagnosis and written certification for the use of medical marijuana from a physician or nurse practitioner. Once the patient has the written medical marijuana recommendation, he or she may register with one of the medical marijuana producers licensed to dispense the medicine. This step is often the most difficult choice for patients to make.
One production choice for patients in Canada is The Hydropothecary, a brand which eliminates the guessing-game that happens when a producer offers too many options with little information about how each will make a patient feel.
Instead of using meaningless strain names that often leave patients confused, The Hydropothecary offers four simple and direct medical strains with names that clearly state the time of day each should be administered. The options are Good Morning, Midday, After Dinner and Bedtime.
As the medical marijuana industry becomes more saturated in Canada, discerning consumers will likely demand quality tied to simplicity. It looks like Hydropothecary will be there to meet those demands. It will be very interesting to see if other Canadian medical marijuana producers begin to follow the lead of The Hydropothecary brand’s straight forward approach to supplying patients with medicine.