Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a severe anxiety disorder which can occur after you have been through a traumatic event. A traumatic event is something terrible and scary that you see, hear about, or that happens to you, like:
- Combat exposure
- Child sexual or physical abuse
- Terrorist attack
- Sexual or physical assault
- Serious accidents, like car wreck
- Natural disasters like fire, tornado, hurricane, flood or earthquake
During a traumatic event, you think that your life or others lives are in danger. You may feel afraid or feel that you have no control over what is happening around you. Most people have stress-related reactions after a traumatic event; but not everyone gets PTSD. If your reactions don’t go away over time and they disrupt your life, you may have PTSD.
(Source: National Center for PTSD, US Department of Veterans Affairs)
According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), about 7.7 million adult Americans suffer from PTSD. It is a horrible disorder to endure and many people are currently being prescribed addictive drugs to treat the symptoms. While these drugs work for some, others become addicted and the drugs are affecting their lives and well-being. The prevalence of substance abuse among veterans increased substantially and it is for this reason that veterans are turning to cannabis more and more to deal with the crippling symptoms of PTSD.
PTSD and cannabis have been linked with one another for some time. In order to investigate the relationship between tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and PTSD, a team of researchers including Dr. Raphael Mechoulam recruited 10 people on stable medication for chronic PTSD. According to the results, THC was associated with global symptom severity, sleep quality, frequency of nightmares, and PTSD hyper-arousal symptoms. This led the research tem to conclude that the following: “Orally absorbable A9-THC was safe and well tolerated by patients with chonic PTSD.
There had been previous clinical study suggesting a link between cannabis and PTSD. While results like the one conducted in the Israeli PTSD pilot study is promising, it should be noted that the sample size was far too small. More research will be needed in the future to determine the ideal dosages of THC to reliably help treat PTSD in humans.