Can Psoriasis Be Helped by Cannabis?
Studies suggest cannabis may treat the symptoms of psoriasis, including depression and anxiety.
Psoriasis is a persistent and painful skin condition that results in raised, inflamed lesions that can also be extremely itchy. Recent studies show that cannabis actively combats psoriasis by reducing discomfort and treating all symptoms. As an anti-inflammatory, pain reliever, and skin cell growth reducer, cannabis is an important aid in stopping psoriasis in its tracks.
What is Psoriasis?
While to those on the outside, psoriasis may just look like a severe form of eczema, this condition is a more all-encompassing than that. In fact, unchecked psoriasis can lead to joint damage. In addition, those suffering, have a 39% higher likelihood of depression and 31% increase in the risk of developing clinical anxiety over those that do not have psoriasis.
Psoriasis occurs when the body produces new skin cells too quickly. These cells appear as scaly red patches, and cause the patient pain, itchiness, and discomfort. It’s a chronic autoimmune condition that affects the mind and body, as studies have repeatedly shown.
Skin Cell Growth Reduction
If something could slow the production of new skin cells, psoriasis would be effectively combated. Luckily, some believe something can: cannabis. A 2013 study demonstrated that signaling through the CB1 receptor can effectively slow the production of the body’s most common skin cell type – the epidermal keratinocytes.
Cannabinoids, such as THC, bind to the CB1 receptor, leading to the body response of reduced skin cell growth and thus the prevention of outbreaks.
Anti-inflammatory Properties of Cannabis
Psoriasis sufferers understand inflammation. Fortunately, so does cannabis. Cannabis has been proven time and time again to reduce inflammation. The anti-inflammatory properties of cannabis can be used to treat redness and itchiness caused by psoriasis, and therefore significantly reduce the discomfort of patients.
Cannabis users have long known about the pain relieving qualities of cannabis, and have used it for a variety of painful conditions in order to improve daily function. It makes sense, then, that cannabis can be used to reduce the pain of psoriasis. The cannabinoids in cannabis interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system, triggering its CB1 and CB2 receptors to manage and regulate pain throughout the body.
Treatment for Depression and Anxiety
Finally, cannabis is widely reported to have great anti-depressant and anti-anxiety properties. For years, those struggling with mental health have turned to cannabis to help them where pharmaceuticals have failed.
Mental health effects everything from general mood, to appetite, even the ability to sleep at night. It can cause muscle tension, pain, and even contribute to migraines. That’s why taking care of your mental wellbeing is crucial to living a healthy lifestyle, but similarly, that’s why it can be so difficult.
Cannabis may treat each one of the physical symptoms individually, while also helping to relieve anxiety and reduce depression. Cannabis is a true holistic medicine. It can treat your mind while treating your body to ensure overall improvement in mood, physical symptoms, and quality of life.
So far, it would appear that the most effective form of cannabis here is topical cream. This makes sense – directly target the area that is causing the most discomfort. Topicals are very good at providing quick relief from itching and inflammation. Some patients also benefit from consuming a cannabis oil. Your physician can help you determine the proper strain and ratio for you.