Some women have so many problems because of their periods that they are waiting for these days with terror. Mood swings, headaches, wasting, and cramps can make a usual day into a nightmare.
If you do not want to use any pharmaceutical remedies, cannabis can become a real savior. Besides being a strong painkiller, it can also help manage the other symptoms of PMS. So, there is no need to eat one chocolate bar after another; there is a much better way to brighten your days (with zero calories!).
When people hear about PMS (premenstrual syndrome), they think about problems with health and, in most cases, about bad cramps. But there are much more symptoms that may annoy women, including breast pain, headaches, mood swings, wasting, and bloating in hands, feet, face, or stomach.
Even though these symptoms are not nice, PMS is a normal thing and may happen to any woman. Some women have very light PMS; others suffer so hard that it interferes with their work and relationships.
Cannabis has been used for a long time for easing women's pain and other difficulties associated with periods and childbirth. Some sources indicate that cannabis was a popular remedy for women even at 2000 BCE, and in 16th century cannabis flowers were a usual remedy for treating painful cramping in China.
Maybe, you also heard the story about Queen Victoria's treatment: she received Cannabis indica to relieve severe cramps during her periods.
So, as you can see, the history of using cannabis for treating women's menstrual health is not something that was invented recently. Yet, we still lack scientific data on how exactly this herb interacts with woman's body. On the other hand, cannabis benefits are so obvious that women sometimes decide to use it at their own risk, even when they are pregnant (for instance, to manage debilitating symptoms such as vomiting or nausea).
So, let us have a closer look at the ways cannabis can come in handy with PMS.
The pain in lower back, stomach pain, and breast tenderness are probably the most common symptoms of PMS. The pain can be localized only in one part of the body or hit all three places at the same time. The cannabis compound called cannabidiol (CBD) can come in handy in this situation. CBD is not psychoactive and is famous for its analgesic properties.
In fact, CBD is so effective that it is even used for treating cancer pain. If it manages to help with such serious pain, period pain does not have a single chance to resist.
As mentioned above, period cramps can cause women significant problems: sometimes, these cramps are so severe, that they feel like smaller-scale labor contractions. But even if they are not too strong, cramps in lower belly and back (they often come together with pain in hips and inner thighs) can annoy a woman for several days before the period and during it.
The cramps happen because hormones trigger muscles in the uterus. These muscles may contract in such a way that they suppress the blood vessels nearby, which in its turn cuts off the supply of oxygen and causes pain and cramping.
A research paper published in 2000 shows that THC compound of cannabis helps human muscles relax. The effects of cannabis are the same, no matter the consumption method. However, vaporization is considered to be preferable to smoking as it is a healthier way of consuming marijuana. Topical application of cannabis-infused products, such as creams or patches, is also a viable option. Some companies even sell cannabis-infused suppositories, so that THC, which is psychoactive in its nature, could work only locally.
This symptom is one of the most frequently-occurring during PMS, since it is caused by the hormonal shifts at the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle. During this stage, progesterone level becomes significantly higher; this, in turn, leads to emotional ups and downs.
Many studies show that cannabidiol has an anti-depressant effect, so it can lend a hand during those moments when you need to lighten your mood. CBD compound is not psychoactive, so in many cases, it can be used during the daytime with no risk.
Another symptom of PMS is a headache. It can be a mild, slightly annoying feeling or can be a harsh experience called “menstrual migraines.” Cannabis can help with any of them, as the cannabinoids affect the serotonin level in the central nervous system and, therefore, produce a therapeutic effect.
A Colorado study, published last year in Pharmacotherapy, shows that cannabis can significantly reduce the number of monthly migraines. The study included 121 adult patients who suffered from migraine headaches. During the cannabis therapy (from January 2010 until September 2014) the number of bouts of the condition on average changed from 10.4 to 4.6. Even though this study is not directly related to menstrual migraines, it shows the healing effects of cannabis in patients who suffer from headaches.
While this symptom of PMS is rarely discussed, it may cause big problems for some women during their periods. For those who do not want to spend half of the day near a toilet, cannabis may be of use due to its muscle relaxant and potent anti-inflammatory effects. Cannabis can reduce intestinal mobility and spasms. As such, marijuana can be used in the treatment of a number of gastrointestinal diseases, including diarrhea during the menstruation.