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The coronavirus pandemic has hit populations hard all over the world. An alarmingly high number of deaths in many countries has led to researchers scrambling to find an effective treatment or cure for the disease.
One recent study conducted in Canada looked at whether marijuana might be an option for coronavirus treatment. So, could cannabis help treat coronavirus (COVID-19)? Read on for more information about this important study.
What’s the connection between cannabis and coronavirus?
The Canadian study examined the connection between hemp extracts high in CBD and whether they could help block proteins that allow COVID-19 to enter host cells. Their findings indicated that cannabis has the potential to reduce the virus’ entry points by up to 70%.
The researchers suggested looking at it this way: if a cell is like a building with many doors, the virus (untreated) is able to enter through so many of those doors. However, if some of those doors are blocked, the virus is less likely to be able to get through and attack the cell. This means cannabis just might offer some insight into how researchers can develop strategies for decreasing a person’s susceptibility to the disease.
There’s even the possibility that individuals who have already been diagnosed with COVID-19 might be able to use marijuana as an adjunct therapy to help them fight the virus. Thinking broadly, the study even offered that cannabis, in the future, could be used in some types of preventative treatments (such as in the form of mouthwash or throat gargle products so that the virus is even less likely to enter through the mouth).
Should you be rushing out to buy more cannabis?
It’s not a great idea to rely on marijuana for the purpose of coronavirus treatment just yet. A lot more research needs to be done on this therapy, including peer reviews and larger clinical trials, in order to get a full picture.
The Canadian study also indicates that not just any cannabis would help with COVID-19. Researchers determined that with more than 800 varieties of sativa on the market, only a few were actually useful in treating coronavirus. Additionally, the forms they studied were high in anti-inflammatory CBD but low in THC (which is what provides the patient with the cannabis high).
Basically, it won’t really do you any good to implement your own marijuana regimen as a means of preventing or treating COVID-19 at this time.
What about medical marijuana and coronavirus?
If you’re someone who already uses medical marijuana (MMJ) to treat a physical or emotional medical condition, you’re probably wondering, “Could MMJ help treat coronavirus?” The same information listed above applies – it’s just too soon to tell exactly how ingesting MMJ products could work to fight off the virus.
So, does cannabis help treat coronavirus symptoms? The study strongly suggests it might, but there’s not enough information to know exactly how you should take your MMJ products in order to avoid or treat the virus.
Should you keep using your MMJ products?
At this point, it should be fine for you to continue to use MMJ products to help with whatever symptoms you’re experiencing from other conditions. However, it’s crucial to note that some medical professionals think it could be dangerous to smoke or vape marijuana at this point.
Ingesting the product this way means your lungs could get irritated – which makes you much more susceptible to catching COVID-19 (and more likely to suffer from severe and/or dangerous symptoms). Consider using other forms such as tinctures, edibles, etc. that won’t cause any damage to your lungs, but will still allow you to get the benefits of cannabis that you need.
How can you get an MMJ card?
If you don’t currently have an MMJ card, you can still apply for one during the coronavirus lockdown. That way you can treat whatever medical condition you already have while still getting any possible benefits that might help fight off COVID-19 (even if it’s a long shot).
If your state permits MMJ cards, you can apply for one by going through the government agency that handles the state’s MMJ program. The agency can also help guide you through the application process, which typically consists of a consultation with a physician who can verify that your symptoms would be alleviated through the use of medical marijuana.
At this point, researchers are working around the clock to find a treatment, vaccine, or cure for COVID-19 in an effort to slow or stop the spread of the disease. Because of this urgency, it’s likely that a lot more studies will be done to see how helpful cannabis might be in the coronavirus pandemic.
It doesn’t hurt you to continue to use your MMJ products as directed by your doctor. And in the meantime, it’s best to wait until more definitive research has been done on cannabis and coronavirus before you take it for any other treatment purposes.
Featured image by Adam Nieścioruk on Unsplash
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