When it comes to medicinal marijuana, the medical profession has opened up and said, “Ah...that sounds great.” In fact, per Us News, a 2016 survey found that 89 percent of doctors support, “allowing adults to legally use marijuana for medical purposes if their doctor prescribed it.” This support was consistent throughout demographics – 89 percent of those over 65 voiced support as did 81 percent of Republicans. (The majority were also on board with the legalization of recreational marijuana, though admittedly to a much less degree: 54 percent were for it. Interestingly, male doctors voiced more support for recreational Mary Jane than their female counterparts: 60 percent of men supported it compared to 48 percent of women.)
Let's Leave Medical Marijuana Alone
Yep, the “controversy” surrounding medicinal marijuana doesn’t really seem that controversial at all: it’s already legal in most of the US.
Twenty-nine states allow it as does the District of Columbia and the American territories of Guam and Puerto Rico
Even the Federal Government has agreed to let medical marijuana alone and Trump, who has gone back and forth on his recreational stance, has previously backed cannabis for medical purposes. He signed a bill forbidding the Federal Government from spending money to attack the industry. Of course, per Bloomberg Politics, he added provisions giving him the right to ignore the very bill he signed. But it’s unlikely that he’ll do anything to mess with medical marijuana; as long as he has the power to mess with it, he should be good to go. The point is medical marijuana isn’t that touchy of a subject, especially considering we’re in the midst of an opioid crisis. And, yet, many of us still have reservations about discussing it with our doctors.
Will My Doctor Judge Me?
Naturally, our hesitations aren’t limited to hash and the like; we might not tell our doctors that we smoke cigarettes or we might downplay how much we drink. We might give them a more reasonable number of sexual partners or claim to work out more often than we actually break a sweat (a coffee cup has weight – ergo, lifting a coffee cup is lifting weights). We do this because we don’t want our doctors to judge us; we fear they’ll sit around in their white coats shaking their heads at our choices. It’s their job not to judge but this doesn’t matter – we fear it enough to claim that the circular case inside of our jeans is Bubble Tape and definitely not sweet, sweet chewing tobacco.
Cannabis is another area where we often don’t own up. This isn’t as dangerous as denying other vices – telling your doctor that you don’t smoke cigarettes when you smoke eight a day can have a real, perilous impact on your health. But it’s something they should probably know anyway. Ideally, you’d be an open book when it comes to your habits, but – in concerns to marijuana – it’s about more than that. You may also find yourself wanting to ask your doctor to give you medicinal weed. And you may have no idea how to do it.
Take a deep breath and remember the above stats: most doctors are for medicinal cannabis, not against it.
This doesn’t mean you should hit up your PC for THC because you want to use it recreationally, but if you’re dealing with something – pain, headaches, nausea, anxiety – and medical marijuana can help, it’s time for a come to Jesus OG meeting.
How to Talk to Your Doctor About Cannabis
So, how do you go about this? You can always seek out a medical marijuana doctor specifically, but if using your own, consider the following:
Remember that you’re not doing anything illegal: You’re not asking your doctor for meth; you’re asking them for a legal substance (assuming that you live in a medically legal state). Thus, be confident in your approach: be open and honest and explain your needs. Your doctor may agree that medical cannabis is worth a shot or they may have other options in mind.
Remember that not all doctors are up to speed on cannabis: In our society, we grow up believing that doctors know everything – they’re omnipotent beings incapable of making mistakes. Then we learn that doctors are human and they all have limitations. Odds are every doctor in the world has been wrong on more than one occasion. Some doctors are wrong on what cannabis can and cannot do simply because they haven’t kept up with the times.
If your doctor isn’t against medical cannabis but admits to a lack of knowledge on the subject, share what you know. And bring in literature to back it up.
Detail your experience: Doctors can only do so much with limited information; it’s up to you to provide as much detail as possible so they can treat you as well as possible. And this goes for medicinal pot too. If you’re inquiring about cannabis, share your symptoms specifics and be honest as to what you’ve tried so far. Did a certain Lemon Kush work better for you than Tangie? Is CBD more effective than THC? Does the route of consumption make a difference? The more your doctor knows about your situation, the more comfortable they’ll feel in their decision-making process.
Ask questions: If you have a doctor who is well-versed in marijuana, take advantage of your time together by asking questions. Ask if they suggest a certain strain or a route of ingestion. Ask if marijuana will interact with your other medications or if they know of studies related to your condition. Ask about side effects and what to do about them. Some doctors are strong advocates for medicinal pot – if yours is, fire away. Your doctor might know a lot….and yes, they’re more accurate than Google.
Move on when you need to: If you know that medical cannabis is something that can help you and your doctor isn’t biting, move on. There are other fish in the sea so go find a new one. Just look for the trout wearing a stethoscope.