Cannabis Relieves Fibromyalgia Pain Better Than Opioids In 4 Fascinating Ways is available in both audio and print. Listen in or continue reading.
The first time I tried medical marijuana for fibromyalgia pain was in 2012. I experienced relief that pharmaceutical pain medications had failed to produce since receiving my diagnosis in 2003.
There are many differences in the type of relief that cannabis and prescription opioids provide. From the level of relief, symptoms relieved, and how I felt between dosages, it became clear that there really was no comparison.
By no comparison, I mean that they are not the same. Cannabis should not be lumped under the term pain reliever because it does so much more. Here are four fascinating ways that cannabis relieves fibromyalgia pain that opioids cannot.
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Cannabis Versus Opioids For Muscle Pain
Opioids never relieved my musculoskeletal pain. They blocked my brain from sensing the pain. Basically numbing my mind to the agony my body was in. While I enjoyed not feeling the pain for a few hours, not realizing it was still there created more problems. Instead of allowing my muscles to rest, I created more pain by doing more. Whether I rested or not, my pain level was always worse after my dosage wore off.
The relief marijuana provides is more like a muscle relaxer. I experience deep muscle relaxation. The best description would be the state of relaxation one feels after a deep tissue massage.
Although cannabis relaxes my muscles, I still feel pain if I attempt to do something they are not ready for. For example, when treating fibromyalgia pain with opioids, I could paint a room in my house. (And yes, I did!) Unfortunately, my pain was 100 times worse the next day. Marijuana, on the other hand, does not hide my pain. It forces my muscles to rest. The result is a lower pain level in the morning.
Marijuana Relieves Fibromyalgia Pain By Slowing My Body Down
Opioids had one of two effects on my body. They either knocked me out or energized my body, and I moved like a superhero on speed.
With cannabis, my body is relaxed. I do not get the urge to clean the house from top to bottom. It slows my mind down too, but to the point of concentrating on what is important. Basically, medical marijuana helps me keep a pace that doesn’t increase pain or trigger an unwanted flare.
MMJ Promotes Restorative Sleep
The ability to sleep is something that fibromyalgia stole from me right away. There was always some type of pain keeping me awake. When I did sleep, it was only because I had passed out from exhaustion.
Lack of sleep, most importantly the lack of restorative sleep, creates new problems. It may increase your risk of heart disease, stroke, sensitivity to pain, inflammation, depression, and anxiety. Those are just a few examples.
After a decade of not sleeping more than 2-4 hours per night, I finally experienced the best sleep of my life. And it was all thanks to cannabis.
The form of MMJ (medical marijuana) that helps the most for sleep depends on the type and severity of the pain I am currently experiencing. For example, when my pain level is below a 5, dry vaping a bowl before bedtime is all I need. When dealing with higher levels of pain, edibles provide the long-lasting relief needed to sleep.
With opioids, my muscles would be rock hard when I woke up. Whereas with cannabis, my body wakes up feeling relaxed and refreshed.
Cannabis Reduces Inflammation
Marijuana is an inflammation buster!
My body was totally inflamed by the time I began medicating with cannabis. But I had no clue as to the severity until after a few weeks. Suddenly, I began seeing bones that I hadn’t before. My fingers no longer looked like sausages, and my feet no longer puffy. After 10 years of not being able to make a fist, I could! I honestly had no idea how debilitating inflammation could be until it was reduced by cannabis.
Tips For Trying Cannabis For Fibromyalgia Pain
Start with small doses and work your way up. When consuming edibles, wait 3 hours before upping your dosage. This is because MMJ edibles can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 3 hours to take effect.
Understand that no two brands of edibles are the same. The effect an edible has depends on the strains they were made with. That is why I prefer making my own.
The same is true for the flower itself. Each strain is different and will not provide the same experience. With that said, I suggest researching strains on Weedmaps or Leafly. There you find reviews from others regarding symptoms relieved and more.
I personally recommend hybrid strains for fibromyalgia pain. Indica strains are great for muscle relaxation, whereas Sativa strains are fabulous for nerve pain. You can choose an Indica or Sativa dominant strain with hybrids depending on which form of relief is needed more.
Using cannabis to relieve fibromyalgia pain is not for everyone but should be an option for anyone who wants it or has not achieved relief through traditional routes.