Migraine headaches cause strong, acute pain in the head that can continue for hours or even days. Most migraine sufferers have a few episodes each month, while some have chronic migraines with more than 15 headaches in the same period. Cannabis has antioxidant and pain-relieving chemicals that may help relieve stress and discomfort linked with migraines and headaches.
While doctors are unsure what causes migraines, various "triggers" kick them off in sensitive people. As a result, there is an increasing interest in medical marijuana as a therapy and management aid for migraines, particularly cluster headaches. While evidence is limited, two recent studies suggest that cannabis can be used to treat and even prevent migraines.
The Effects of Cannabis on Migraines
As previously said, new study has finally revealed the promise of medical cannabis in treating migraine sufferers, despite the challenges scientists confront owing to cannabis prohibition.
A 2016 research looked at 121 persons with migraines who took cannabis on their doctor's advice. Migraine frequency dropped significantly from 10.4 headaches per month to 4.6.
Another 2017 study discovered that cannabis usage was a good migraine prevention and acute therapy. After consuming cannabis every day for three months, patients' subjective pain evaluation decreased by 55%, according to this study.
While we don't know what causes migraines or how cannabis affects this process, we can conjecture. Cannabis has been demonstrated to reduce pain sensory perception in different pain syndromes (such as chronic pain or neurological pain) by delaying neurochemical transmission along pain pathways. We sense less pain by postponing this communication process.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is also an anti-inflammatory that may be useful in alleviating the inflammation-related components of a migraine headache. Similarly, the terpene beta-caryophyllene and atypical cannabinoid beta-caryophyllene may help relieve pain and inflammation.
Best Cannabis Uses for Migraines
Migraines develop gradually, so the sooner you recognise an attack, the sooner you can take precautions. Cannabis may be consumed quickly by smoking or vaping, as cannabinoids enter the circulation through the lungs and circulate swiftly throughout the body. The effects of inhalation begin within a few minutes and persist between two and three hours. This is very beneficial for preventing migraines or relieving symptoms when they are occurring.
If you observe signs of an imminent attack, edibles might be your best chance for therapy. They take longer to take effect but persist for several hours, which can assist assure pain relief for the duration of the episode, even if it is prolonged. Oil-based tinctures (cannaoil) may give longer-lasting comfort than eats and have a considerably faster onset of roughly 15-30 minutes.
Sleep is also one of the finest migraine treatments since it allows the brain to reset and relax throughout an attack. Cannabis can help you fall asleep faster and let sleep do its thing.
Keep in mind that much regarding marijuana's usage for migraines is yet unknown, including which strains or amounts work best. Not all cannabis strains will have a favourable impact, so contact with your doctor before using marijuana to alleviate migraines.
Best Strains for Migraines
ACDC is a CBD-rich strain that provides substantial pain relief while avoiding the euphoric effects of THC. Its high CBD levels also provide anti-inflammatory properties, which aid in the relief of migraine symptoms. Myrcene and beta-caryophyllene are the most abundant terpenes in ACDC.
Canna-Tsu is another high-CBD cultivar that can provide efficient pain treatment without creating euphoric highs. Anecdotally, the strain is said to create calm and mental clarity, and it is also said to relieve migraines and recurrent headaches. Canna-major Tsu's terpenes include myrcene, beta-caryophyllene, and limonene.
Harlequin has a CBD-to-THC ratio of about 2:1, allowing for significant pain relief from both cannabinoids while yet providing a mitigated euphoric experience. Harlequin is most effective when given at the earliest hint of migraine symptoms, allowing it to take effect before the headache intensifies. Harlequin's major terpenes include myrcene, beta-caryophyllene, pinene, and humulene.
Northern Lights is an older and well-known cannabis strain recognised for its calming and pain-relieving effects. The strain has more THC than CBD and a higher profile of myrcene, beta-caryophyllene, limonene, humulene, and terpinolene. These terpenes act together to calm patients and relieve pain symptoms before a full-fledged attack occurs.
OG Kush is a commercially accessible cultivar with strong sedative effects that quickly relieve migraine symptoms. It has a greater THC concentration, so individuals with poor tolerance just require a modest dose, but the trace quantities of CBD help with overall pain relief. Myrcene, limonene, humulene, and pinene are the major terpenes in OG Kush.
Pineapple Kush is called after its characteristic pineapple tastes, but it also provides good pain relief to its users, according to anecdotal evidence. It contains a variety of terpenes, including linalool, beta-pinene, myrcene, limonene, and caryophyllene.
Purple Kush is a highly sedative strain with a high THC concentration and compounds that induce slumber. High quantities of myrcene and linalool are extremely calming, allowing users to slip into a dreamy bliss before the worst of the migraine strikes.
Remedy is a strain that has around 15% CBD and 1% THC, making it an effective anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving choice that is unlikely to cause any THC-related psychoactivity. Myrcene and pinene are frequently found in remedies.
Questions and Answers
Is sativa or indica better for migraines?
The phrases sativa and indica refer to the growth characteristics of the cannabis plant and its subspecies. They commonly allude to whether a strain is an upper or a lower experience, however these are too simplified distinctions. The chemovar of a strain determines whether it is "up" or "down": the collection of cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and other substances that contribute to the impact of a given strain on someone's system.
What is the best migraine strain?
Our preceding list includes a few alternatives. However, there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution, and you may want to experiment with different strains and doses to see what works best for you. The first step is to visit a medical marijuana card supplier and obtain your own medical marijuana card.
Check process of getting a medical marijuana card in your state.