Have we already found the missing piece for treating Parkinson’s Disease (PD)?

Parkinson’s Disease is a progressive, neurological and degenerative disease which occurs rather gradually but its effects are chronic and permanent. Its victims lose their ability to talk, to execute fine and complicated motor movements, even losing their senses.

It is characterized by these typical symptoms: slurred speech, muscle rigidity, a decline of autonomic functions over a period of time. Aside from pain and stiffness in the muscles, there is also a profound feeling of depression.

As the disease progresses and more dopamine-carrying brain cells die, the patient with PD loses more control of her/his bodily functions. Thus, the patient becomes more dependent on other people, and loses dopamine, the neurotransmitter chemical that enables brain cells to communicate with each other – causing lasting and permanent brain damage.

Obviously a horrible disease. But lately, some scientists supposedly have found an important piece of the puzzle to treat Parkinson’s Disease.

Medical Marijuana and its Effects on Parkinson’s Disease

It is reported that medical marijuana, either consumed in edible form or smoked in a pipe when inhaled through a marijuana vaporizer can reduce the severity of PD’s symptoms.

Dopamine is supposed to be a naturally occurring chemical produced by our brain and affects the body’s movements, emotional management, feelings of pleasure and pain, sleep, and cognitive abilities. If we use medical marijuana, the patient’s ability to function well in the world will be enhanced and perhaps, return to normal.

How can medical marijuana help?

Marijuana has been established in countless peer-reviewed studies to be an excellent dopamine booster, which means it may help ease the painful symptoms of PD, including alleviating depression. Cannabinoids (CBD) have also been proven in clinical studies to reduce psychotic symptoms of PD, as well as help in improving sleep among PD patients.

How does medical marijuana do it? Cannabinoids are reported to link with a neuroreceptor that helps in movements, and when that happens, the dopamine levels in the brain go up and the symptoms disappear, hopefully all.

It has also been discovered that THC, another chemical found in other forms of marijuana, have been tested to help ease and alleviate movement dysfunctions, including assisting to lower patient pain and enhance their ability to enjoy quality sleep.

Although we seem to have found the golden key to unlocking the mysteries of Parkinson’s Disease, few doctors are trained to use medical marijuana and apply it, nor even prescribe it.

So where do we go from here?

Now that we have a natural and pain-free way of treating Parkinson’s Disease, we should conduct more research to “fine-tune” the method. Definitely, from many accounts of patients using medical marijuana and being relieved of pain symptoms, this medical marijuana should be explored more for alleviating the degenerative effects of Parkinson’s Disease.

Likewise, the recent announcement of the World Health Organization in saying that medical marijuana does not pose serious or grave threats to users is a boon to PD sufferers. There is no reason to hold back medical marijuana now to treat PD patients.

How about you – what is your opinion on medical marijuana to treat PD patients? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Image by Lode Van de Velde / CC0 1.0