Is Cannabis Beneficial for Bipolar Disorder?

Medical marijuana has an effect on the endocannabinoid system – commonly known as a homeostatic regulator that is present in all of us. What research also suggests is that THC and CBD, cannabinoids that are found in marijuana, have properties that can stabilize moods for those afflicted with bipolar disorder.

bipolar-symptoms

In particular, THC can work wonders for patients who are suffering from cancer, multiple sclerosis and pain, due to its hypnotic, antianxiety and antidepressant effects. This helps by improving one’s mood and overall well-being in normal subjects too. Alternatively, CBD will counter the psychoactive effects that are produced by large doses of THC and which also possess hypnotic, antianxiety and anticonvulsant properties too.

What researchers have also recently uncovered is a connection between marijuana use as well as cognitive improvements in those suffering from schizophrenia. It’s also the reason why evidence has been found of similar improvements in patients suffering from bipolar disorder. Of course, research was then conducted on the effects of marijuana on bipolar disorder and some of the findings have been thought-provoking if anything at all.

The first study was conducted by researchers at the University of Oslo where the results of the study that was conducted on 133 bipolar patients show that those who used cannabis regularly were found to perform better than those who did not when tested for verbal fluency and learning. Of course, the improvements measured weren’t as significant, statistically speaking.

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Another study conducted by researchers at the Zucker Hillside Hospital located in New York, the regular use of marijuana was connected to higher levels of attention, memory and processing speed. The study was conducted with 200 bipolar patients over a period of nine years.

Yet, while the use of cannabis had positive results for those in terms of cognitive function, another study showed that there were negative effects as well. Some of them included mania, psychosis and higher levels of illness severity. Still, the data was only collected for a period of six months.

What the study also found was that these cannabis users weren’t inclined to be in relationships and were also not as satisfied with life in general. However, they still participated in social activities compared to non-users.

That said, the use of cannabis showed no influence of the herb on independent living or work impairments either.

 

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