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Medical Marijuana For Pain In Elderly

A common question we receive at Releaf Medical is what is the safest pain reliever for seniors and is medical marijuana use safe for seniors? Senior citizens are one of the fastest growing demographics of cannabis users. As older adults are learning more about the benefits of medical cannabis they are realizing the significant alleviation of symptoms with medical marijuana for pain in elderly, and the relief from pain they can feel from using cannabis products. In the state of Florida, marijuana has been approved for medical use only. Though it is not recreational yet, read about Florida marijuana laws by clicking here, there are numerous qualifying conditions that will allow potential patients to receive an approval from a certified marijuana doctor and then allow patients to visit the hundreds of dispensaries located in the state of Florida. Many people come to Florida to live because of the preferred year round weather and the numerous outdoor activities they are able to participate in. With all the outdoor activities and active lifestyle Florida offers all too often It leads to temporary pains and discomfort from being so active. As the senior demographic has started to realize the taboo and stigma surrounding medical marijuana really doesn’t apply to how they would be using products. Patients express that they benefit from marijuana for conditions they might be suffering from such as pain, sleep disorders, PTSD, anxiety, cancer, etc to name a few. A list of all the qualifying conditions for a medical marijuana card in Florida can be viewed by clicking here.

Everyone’s body reacts to cannabis products differently so there should be some trial and error expected.  To find out what is the safest pain reliever for seniors patients might have to try a few products before they find the perfect solution.  Fortunately, the process of evaluating what marijuana products and delivery routes works best for you is mostly pleasant. One of the biggest tips we can give you is go slow, you can do more but cannot do less. In the event a patient might have taken too much at once and is experiencing uncomfortable feelings they can read about how to sober up from marijuana by clicking here.  Even if you have tried cannabis products before there are a lot of variables that will affect your individual experience and the products that are currently available today are much different then you might have tried before.

Seniors and Medical Marijuana

Are Edibles Safe For Seniors

At Releaf Medical marijuana doctors we commonly get asked are edibles safe for seniors because patients have read stories or heard on the news that people call emergency services on themselves when they do too much. Typically, those situations occur because the individual was not properly informed on how to dose their product or they didn’t take the advice of going slow. Edibles are known to have the longest onset time compared to the other ways of consuming marijuana/THC/cannabis but also the longest duration. The reason it takes so long to feel the effects is because it’s processed by the GI tract, metabolized by the liver (which is turn converts it to a different form of THC called 11-Hydroxy THC which has lasting effects of 4-10 hours), then enters your bloodstream and into your brain. We have numerous patients that for this very reason choose to use marijuana edible products to sleep.

Best Edibles For Seniors

The best edibles for seniors is typically dependent on each individual and what they are looking to get out of their marijuana edible. In Florida edibles are typically sold in 5-10mg serving sizes in the form of gummies, chocolates, or cookies. To increase the effects of an edible anything that you eat or drink that is high in fat taken at the same time will increase the effects because THC bonds to the fat cells before the digestion process happens (on its own THC is fat-soluble). For a senior citizen that is new to the medical marijuana program or trying marijuana through edible form for the first time we recommend trying 2.5-5mg initially. No matter your tolerance level to other delivery routes the lasting effects of an edible can be very undesirable if consuming too much.

The best edibles for seniors is very much dependent on each person’s needs. Some patients prefer the uplifting effects associated with sativas to power through the day, while others are in need of the relaxing, sedating effects associated with indicas. “Indica” and “sativa” are the most common ways to describe cannabis effects. Sativas are associated with uplifting, energizing effects, while indicas are known to provide relaxing, sedating effects. The difference in these effects is not whether the strain is indica or sativa, but instead what terpenes are present. Another common edible is “Hybrid.” Hybrids are not dominant to sativa or indicia but are kind of in the middle. Edibles also come in “ratios” and can be ratioed with CBD or CBN. The best edibles for seniors would depend on what ailments or effects the person consuming the edibles is looking for.

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What Is The Safest Pain Reliever For Seniors

The answer to the question of what is the safest pain reliever for seniors to purchase at dispensaries tend to be the products that are low in THC or topically applied. These products will provide patients with the medicinal relief of the THC (and possibly CBD) but won’t produce the extreme psychoactive or euphoric effects. Ratio products sold at dispensaries such as Surterra Wellness Center are very popular with the senior citizen crowd. Ratio products combine THC and typically another cannabinoid such as CBD or CBN. The combination can help for numerous conditions and is an easy way to transition into taking products containing THC. Most topicals containing THC won’t produce any high effect so they are probably the safest use of medical marijuana for pain in elderly patients. Topicals called thermagels have the potential to provide mild euphoric effects because they are transdermal and are absorbed into the bloodstream. The best product selection of creams, lotions, gels, and patches can be found at MUV and MedMen which carries a line of products by Mary Medicinals.

Best Strain For Seniors

The best strain for seniors depends on what desired effect they are looking for. The Sativa strain is typically better to be used during the daytime as it tends to stimulate creativity and is more uplifting and energetic. Indica strains are typically used in the evening as they tend to be sleep inducing, providing relaxation and calming effects. Hybrid strains are a combination of Sativa and Indica strains, they will have characteristics of both the Indica and Sativa strains and are said to provide “the best of both worlds”. Some options in Florida for seniors are:

Sativa strains:

Green Crack – popularized by Snoop Dogg, provides powerful uplifting and energetic effects. This strain can be found at Cannabist, Liberty Health Sciences, and Trulieve.

Durban Poison – Provides a cerebral high, euphoric, and appetite suppressant high, one of the most potent THC strains. This strain can be found at Curaleaf, Fluent, MedMen, Vidacann, and Trulieve.

Jack Herer – Provides a stimulating, euphoric, and energizing experience. This strain can be found at Cannabist, Curaleaf, Surterra, and Rise

Cannabis and Seniors

Indica strains:

9lb hammer – Extremely sedating, good for insomnia, and provides pain and stress relief. This strain can be found at Fluent, Liberty Health Sciences, MUV, and Trulieve

Grandaddy purple – Sedating, good for decompressing, can cause a couch lock effect. This strain can be found at Fluent, Liberty Health Sciences, Sanctuary, Surterra, and Trulieve

Northern Lights – Extremely sedating, can be used to help with stress and anxiety. This strain can be found at Cannabist, Fluent, Liberty Health Sciences, MUV, Rise, Sanctuary, Surterra, and Trulieve

Hybrid strains:

Blue Dream – Sativa leaning hybrid, provides pain relief and a balanced euphoric high. This strain can be found at Curaleaf, Fluent, Liberty Health Sciences, and Surterra

Gelato – 50/50 blend of Sativa/Indica, provides a euphoric head high without any couch lock effects. This strain can be found at Cannabist, Curaleaf, and Vidacann

OG Kush – 50/50 blend of Sativa/Indica, one of the most popular medical marijuana strains, provides qualities of both strains. This strain can be found at Fluent, MedMen, and Surterra

Banana OG – Indica leaning hybrid, can cause couch lock effect so ideally consumed in the evening or to induce sleep. This strain can be found can be found at Liberty Health Sciences

Girl Scout Cookies – Indica leaning hybrid, very high and potent thc strain, most effective at treating anxiety, stress, and depression. This strain can be found at Liberty Health Sciences and VidaCann

Florida Dispensaries:

A list of all the dispensaries operating in the state of Florida can be viewed by clicking here.  Locations, discounts, and all general information can be viewed by selecting the dispensary you would like to learn more about.

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