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Treating Menstrual Cramps and PMDD with Medical Marijuana

 According to research, a modern-day woman will experience an average of 450 menstrual cycles or “periods” in her lifetime.  Some women suffer from dysmenorrhea or “menstrual cramps,” which makes this number to seem more like thousands because some women experience pains that originate in the lower abdomen/pelvic area during this time that can be both physically and emotionally draining to cope with.

Are menstrual cramps common for all women?

It should be noted that menstrual cycles are unique to the individual.  While some women experience no harsh symptoms, others can experience a combination of painful symptoms such as nausea, loose stools/diarrhea, headache, dizziness, and cramps.

A research headed by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner and conducted by by the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals (ARHP),  revealed that a large percentage of women experience the same symptoms including:  bloating, moodiness, fatigue, and cramps. Astonishingly, approximately 63% of women studied revealed their symptoms as being “severe.”

It should be noted that it is common for women to experience menstrual cramps just before and during the menstrual cycle and these cramps vary in intensity from slightly annoying to debilitating. pre-menstrual dysphoric disorder or “PMDD  can occur in women suffering from a more severe and disabling extension of PMS which is usually accompanied by the throbbing pain in the abdomen which  can radiate to the lower back and thighs, interfering with school, work, and social activities.

Marijuana -Based Treatments for Menstrual Symptoms

Marijuana has been used for long as a medicine, and recent clinical studies shows that marijuana extracts may represent an efficacious and safe alternative for treatment of a wide range of conditions in women such as dysmenorrhea, dysuria, hyperemesis gravidarum, and menopausal symptoms.

 

 According to an article published by Dr. Ethan Russo in  an online review of marijuana treatments for women in 2008  entitled: Cannabis Treatments in Obstetrics and Gynecology: A Historical Review, he revealed clearly that marijuana  has had a long ancient tradition of being used as a medicine, especially in obstetrics and gynecology as patent medicines containing marijuana  were very common in the latter 1800s through the turn of the 19th century with  over 350 such options existing  in the United States for  the treatment of all sorts of ailments from as early as 1850 until the prohibition of marijuana in the 1940s.

One such cannabis based medicine is Dysmenine from Keysall Chemical which contained marijuana with a variety of other herbal tinctures and was used as treatement for dysmenorrhea, menstrual colic, and cramps. Another component of Dysmenine was an extract of capsicum (commonly known as peppers) which consists of many species and varieties of peppers, a majority containing the lipophilic chemical that produces a burning sensation in the mouth known as capsaicin. Medical research suggest that capsaicin stimulates the natural production of anandamide in the body. Anandamide is an endogenous analogue of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) that with incredible healing capabilities.

Many women who are regular users of marijuana report that using marijuana in some form helps them relieve the aggravating symptoms that come with menstruation. Many cannabis infused suppositories, medicated bath soaks, body balms, and various other products sourced from the marijuana plant have been reported to help relieve period pain and improve overall mood during this menstruation. However, more research studies and vast anecdotal evidence is still needed to be done on this aspect   both by government and educational institutions.

Warnings and Caution

The information in this article is in no way a substitute for consultation with a medical practician. It should not be forgotten that other identifiable problems, such as endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), cervical stenosis or uterine fibroids can trigger menstrual cramps. If menstrual cramps are disruptive to your lifestyle, if symptoms progressively worsen after using conventional medicines, then its advisable to try marijuana.