Migraines affect an estimated 20 percent of the population, and though the treatments are as diverse as the population that suffers from migraines, many are not appealing. The potential side effects from many prescription drugs can be far more severe than any migraine. On top of that, the long-term effects of these drugs are largely unknown. Many who do not like the Western approach to medicine have a number of alternative treatments available. Biofeedback, stress management, acupuncture, and massage have all been used as non-traditional migraine treatments with varying degrees of effectiveness. However, there is another less popular and somewhat taboo therapy in migraine headaches treatments: medical marijuana.
Marijuana is legal for medical use in thirteen states already, and has been approved for use in the treatment of migraines. The idea of medical marijuana is not new: many pharmaceutical companies have been using THC in their drugs for years. These drugs have been used to treat headaches, nausea, and migraines. One of the upsides of medical marijuana is that the effect is much faster than that of traditional drugs. Because the drug is inhaled, it enters the bloodstream faster. The effect is felt within minutes rather than hours. Aside from migraines, marijuana has been used to treat other conditions that cause acute and chronic pain, including terminally ill cancer patients.
There are downsides to medical marijuana as a form of migraine therapy. In order to be effective, marijuana should be smoked. The inhalation of smoke can actually cause migraines in some cases. In addition, the smoke can contain tar and carcinogens. There is equipment that simply heats the marijuana to the point where it releases THC in the form of a vapor. It is believed that this method contains less harmful chemicals and is safer for the patient. However, the fact that marijuana has been illegal for so long means that virtually no research has been conducted. The recent movement for the legalization of medical marijuana hopefully means that more can be found out about the drug. As of now, the testimonials from those who have used medical marijuana to treat migraines have been positive.