Neuropathy is the name for a group of disorders that cause pain, numbness and other abnormal feelings. With a range of painful and uncomfortable symptoms, living with neuropathy can be unsettling. Luckily, the state of Florida recognizes neuropathy as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana, which may significantly reduce its symptoms and help you regain your quality of life.
Symptoms of Neuropathy
Neuropathy is an incredibly uncomfortable and often painful condition. With various forms of neuropathy, this condition comes with a range of symptoms that can include:
- Pins and needles sensation
- Extreme sensitivity to touch
- Burning sensation
- Sharp pain
- Difficulty with balance
- Muscle weakness
- Muscle paralysis
- Excessive sweating
- Trouble controlling bowels
- Increased heart rate
Types of Neuropathy
There are countless types of neuropathy that can affect a person. They are often associated with underlying conditions, such as cancer or diabetes, but neuropathy can also occur due to injury. Common forms of neuropathy include:
Mononeuropathy is a form of neuropathy that affects only one or a few nerves in a group. Although this sort of neuropathy is typically caused by physical trauma or injury, it can also be caused by prolonged nerve pressure resulting from too much time spent sitting in a chair or sleeping.
Polyneuropathy describes neuropathy that affects multiple nerves and nerve types, causing widespread dysfunction across your peripheral nervous system. This condition usually occurs when an underlying health problem (i.e. cancer, diabetes or multiple sclerosis) causes many different peripheral nerves to malfunction at the same time.
Traditional Treatments for Neuropathy
Treatments for neuropathy center around maintaining nerve health and providing symptomatic pain relief. Lifestyle changes such as exercising, avoiding alcohol, and maintaining a healthy weight can help prevent further nerve damage. Bracing may also help alleviate pressure on the affected nerves.
Certain medications, such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and antidepressants may help relieve painful symptoms. However, not every patient feels comfortable with these medications or responds to them in a positive way.
What is Medical Cannabis?
Medical cannabis, also known as medical marijuana, is used to treat various types of illnesses. Cannabis contains a number of pharmacological compounds called cannabinoids. These naturally occurring pharmacological agents interact with specific receptors in the body to produce a therapeutic effect on your system, which can be used for medical treatment of chronic pain and other debilitating conditions.
Medical cannabis is prescribed with the goal of improving the quality of life for patients. While there are still side effects associated with medical marijuana, many patients find the symptoms to be less severe than those associated with traditional prescription medications.
Medical Marijuana for Treating Neuropathy
Cannabis has been found helpful in treating neuropathic pain associated with many different diseases such as multiple sclerosis, cancer and diabetes. The endocannabinoid system plays a role in regulating many of the body’s most basic functions, including pain sensation, appetite, moods and memory.
Cannabis works by binding to cannabinoid receptors, which are located throughout your central nervous system, as well as various other parts of your body, such as muscles, connective tissues, glands and organs. This binding action triggers the release of neurotransmitters, which reduce pain sensation by limiting the amount of pain signals transmitted to your brain.
Treat Neuropathy with Medical Marijuana in Florida
Florida medical marijuana laws allow any patient suffering from a qualifying chronic or debilitating disease to receive a prescription for cannabis medicine through a qualified doctor.
If you suffer from neuropathy, the Medical Marijuana Treatment Clinics of Florida (MMTCFL) can find out if you are eligible to use medical marijuana in your treatment plan. With MMTCFL, you can see if you qualify for a medical marijuana registration card. To take the first step, take our online eligibility survey.