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Curing with Cannabis: How Marijuana Helps Veterans With PTSD | MERRY JANE News

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When U.S. combat veterans finish their tours of duty and return stateside, many of them aren’t able to leave the war behind.

The experience of being placed in extreme situations have led to increased rates of PTSD among veterans—and this is true for those who have seen combat, and those who have not. Symptoms for PTSD include irritability, anxiety, depression, mistrust, nightmares, and flashbacks. When veterans seek treatment for the symptoms, doctors may offer them a variety of antidepressants and antianxiety medications, which all have side effects and the potential for abuse. But that’s when they even seek treatment: among male veterans, there is a stigma that experiencing PTSD shows weakness, and a fear of this leads them to forgo treatment. While there is still debate about whether PTSD increases the risk of suicide in veterans, a study by the Department of Veterans Affairs found that about 20 veterans died by suicide per day.

Research has shown that marijuana may help treat PTSD symptoms, and may serve as a complement or alternative to powerful prescription drugs. Check out the video above to learn more about how certain cannabis strains may help with symptoms like insomnia and mood swings, and the roadblocks that may keep veterans from getting access to marijuana as medicine.

Vets should talk to their doctor before making any drastic changes in their treatment. Counseling, yoga, and meditation may offer relief for symptoms as well.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255

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