Tag Archives: THC

brain-therapies

Successful Strategies for Deep Healing of Trauma and Pain

Using Mind-Body Connection for Deep Healing

The average medical marijuana cardholder in California is a 32-year-old male who uses it for chronic pain.  If so many young people have so much chronic pain, it’s tempting to think medical marijuana is for “anyone who can fake an ache.”*

Another part of the equation is that physical pain often develops as a result of stressful events lodged in the body.  It’s also possible that many ‘patients,’ including those who are veterans, actually suffer from deep emotional pain and trauma.  (Read Part 1 for the Mind-Body Connection to trauma and pain.)

Two young women who wrote to Parents Opposed to Pot explained their need for medical marijuana to deal with traumatic childhoods. One said it was because her mother had committed suicide, while the other said she had experienced traumatizing sexual abuse.

Using marijuana in order to numb painful feelings, or for getting high, will only mask the underlying emotional pain. In all cases of psychological issues, including PTSD, marijuana works against true healing, no matter how much temporary relief it provides.

21st Century Strategies for Healing

Since pain or disease (dis  ease) is imbalance, the body which created the disease can also be the body which heals the disease.

Dr. Libby Stuyt, a professional advisor to Parents Opposed to Pot uses Brain Synchronization Therapy to heal trauma in the body and
bad memories. The neuroplasticity of the brain means that even post-traumatic experiences can be weakened or discarded. At the same time, the brain can relearn forgotten neural pathways.

Dr. Libby Stuyt is Medical Director for the Circle Program at the Colorado Mental Health Institute

Besides Brain Synchronization Therapy, Dr. Stuyt recommends both EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Recovery) and Biofeedback based on heart rate variability.

Neurofeedback is another therapy which can heal trauma, PTSD and ADHD without drugs.  Even the Washington Post describes very positive outcomes from Neurofeedback for healing additional problems such as depression and severe pain.

Some therapists have found a newer technique, Brainspotting, to be  even more effective than EMDR.   The theory is that Brainspotting taps into the body’s innate self-scanning capacity to process and release focused areas that are maladaptive.  Brainspotting can often reduce and eliminate body pain and tension associated with physical conditions.

Listen to Dr. Libby Stuyt’s video about why marijuana is not an effective treatment for PTSD.

Another technique, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy provides healing in which the victim need not remember or relive the painful experiences.   This therapy changes the brain’s reactions to events to change how legacy of trauma affects the victim.  Sensorimotor therapy treats the effects of events as they recur in response to reminders of the trauma.

Treating Root Causes Rather than Just the Symptoms

The good news is that there are ways to treat PTSD and chronic pain that don’t involve drugs, ways that treat the root causes rather than symptoms.  “Medical” marijuana does not provide deep healing.

Medical marijuana is an addiction-for-profit industry which needs new users and promotes long-term use.   Habitual users run the risk of becoming psychotic.  Like continuous opiate users, they may also develop addiction.

At the Alternative Wellness Club, published in Oregonlive, 2014, patients were introduced to “dabbing.” Some of these  users  claimed to have bipolar disorder which may in fact be related to trauma–or triggered by marijuana. Dabbing increases the risk for addiction and psychosis.

The recent report from National Academy of Science found marijuana can give moderate relief to three medical conditions, pain being one of the conditions.  Although the human body has cannabinoid receptors, marijuana’s cannabinoids are foreign to our bodies.  They’re not endo-cannabinoids, the body’s natural occurring chemicals, but exo-cannabinoids.  With marijuana use over time, THC will replace the cannabinoids associated with joy and happiness.

Therefore, it’s hard to claim THC is truly “natural” for humans.

Mind-body healing solutions are the “natural” solutions, and they cannot be addictive.  They offer help for chronic suffering in ways “medical” marijuana and pharmaceutical medicines cannot help.

Read Parts 3 and 4 to find out more about Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and drug policy.

*Quote is from Professor Jonathan Caulkins of Carnegie Mellon.

date-rape

USC Athlete Rape Incident is a Warning Against Marijuana Edibles

Marijuana Cookie Used in Alleged Rape Crime

Osa Masina, a USC football player who was suspended, is going to be tried for an alleged rape.  The trial is set to begin June 25.

The 19-year-old met up with a former classmate last summer, on July 25.   The Salt Lake Tribune describes the incident:

There, a night of partying — Bacardi rum, Mike’s Hard Lemonade and half of a marijuana cookie — left her feeling so intoxicated she says could not get out of a car on her own that night when she went with Masina and a group of his friends to get fast food, and she said she cannot recall how she got back inside the house.

She said the next thing she remembered after passing out was waking up with Masina raping her.

“It hurt. It was very painful,” she said, and though she said she felt “scared and helpless,” she tried to move her legs to stop him.

“Did you consent in any way to the sexual contact you’ve been describing?” the prosecutor asked.

“No,” the woman said.

The woman testified she passed out and awoke several more times throughout the night, each time to a different horror: She awoke to Masina forcing her to engage in oral sex so rough she could not breathe; she awoke unable to move from a couch and unable to reach someone to come help her; she awoke, wearing only a bra and a blanket, on the lawn of a neighboring home where she saw Masina’s car still parked outside and “that fear came over me again because I knew he was still in the house.”

Guys, as well as gals, should consider that marijuana use may lead to unwanted sex

Calling Out the Role of Marijuana is not “Victim Shaming”

The description of the rape is horrible.  The evidence suggests that the football player and the woman were abusing substances before the sexual activity occurred.  The law should not excuse this behavior towards a woman who has passed out.

Nine days earlier, Masina, her high school friend, had invited the victim to Los Angeles for a long weekend.   At that time, Masina, the woman and another football player, Max Hill, partied hard.  The victim took marijuana, two Xanax pills along with alcohol   The woman alleges that both Masina and Don Hill raped her.   Masina and Hill were suspended from the team, but a lawsuit filed in Los Angeles has been dismissed.

Alcohol can produce some pretty outrageous behaviors, but when alcohol mixes with marijuana or other drugs, extremes happen.    This case, the Stanford swimmer’s case and many others exemplify why we need to educate against intoxication.  It is not “victim shaming” to explain that the 19-year-old would not have passed out if she had did not eat half a marijuana cookie.  The effects of marijuana cookies happen about two hours after ingestion.

In 2014, the Vote No on 2 campaign in Florida warned about marijuana cookies and date rape.  This recent rape case involving a college football player should scrutinize the role of the marijuana -laced cookie .

Half of a cookie from Colorado, Washington or California could have as much as 50 milligrams of marijuana.  Levy Thamba jumped off a building to his death after eating a marijuana-laced cookie.  A few weeks later, Richard Kirk shot his wife after eating a marijuana candy and going crazy.

The marijuana industry in Colorado prevented a ballot supported by 80 % of the state which would have capped the strength of edibles.  (Failure to warn of the psychotic effects from these edibles is a disservice to both the victim and the accused.  Both were 19, below the legal age to buy marijuana cookies in any state.)

There is no mention of how and when Masina or the woman obtained the cookies.   Who bought or provided the cookie?  Was interstate drug trafficking involved?  Calling out substance abuse as a factor doesn’t excuse rape, but it warns of the conditions in which rape is most likely to occur.

No on 2 Predicted Correctly

In 2014, the Florida Vote No on 2 Campaign forecast that marijuana would become the new date-rape drug.  Journalists, respectable blogs and the marijuana industry laughed at the idea.  No on 2’s prediction was correct.  Let’s hope the prosecutor explores the role of the pot-laced cookie during the trial.  It should serve as a warning against this type of impairment.

States should pass laws to clarify consent for sexual activity in order to guard against rape and unwanted sex.  Equally important, educators need to inform about the role of substance abuse in domestic violence and rape.  Pedophiles often give marijuana to their victims.

Even groups concerned with violence against women remain in the dark.   Colleges don’t do enough to warn against drugs to avoid unwanted sex.  In fact, the United States is quite backwards compared to other countries in failing to see the connection.  Those who blame alcohol only, and not other drugs, are complicit in the denial.

date-rape
The incident happened off campus during the summer, but the defendant was suspended from his team last fall.  A sophomore, he was slated to be a starting linebacker for USC’s varsity team.

Distinguish CBD from Substances Sold by Pot Promoters

Why is there no compassion for the families whose children began a descent into mental illness that began with marijuana?

There is tremendous compassion for those children with seizures who try cannabidiol (CBD).  For example, Alexis, an 11-year-old girl who speaks on behalf of an extract she uses to treat seizures, is a superstar.  It is heart-warming to know that she has been helped.  Alexis has a wonderful heart and is charming.  More recently she has been working with a group that insists the inclusion of THC for seizure medication.

The marijuana industry hopes for political gains by promoting Alexis’ story.  The public needs to give equal consideration to the  families whose children died because of marijuana.  Some have told their stories on blogs such as MomsStrong.org and Parents Opposed to Pot.

Dr. Gupta’s specials on marijuana on CNN changed political discussion about THE WEED. Now it’s time for him to present the other side of the story, the mental illness links.

Dark Side of the Miracle Cure

Furthermore, there a dark side to this “miracle” drug cure.

Some of the children who initially get help from CBD have bad luck later.  Lita Pawliw’s daughter died on February 3, 2017.  It’s heartbreaking.  In 2015, the province of Alberta relented in letting her little girl use the CBD instead of the prescribed pharmaceutical drugs.  While pharmaceutical medicines made her dull and lifeless, her family discovered that CBD made her lively and fun.  The online petition to pay for funeral expenses did not explain how she died.

The fact that CBD treatments for seizures sometimes backfire is a message that needs to get out to the public.   Whenever you use the term “medical marijuana,” teens think the marijuana that gets you high is harmless.   For the subset who goes into marijuana psychosis, marijuana can be lethal. Those making money from selling CBD aren’t required to give the warnings that pharmaceutical companies must give.  Their treatment is a fad and hasn’t met the long-term test of time.  Do people realize that the  Ketogenic Diet has a higher success rate than CBD?

Point Out the Dangers of High-THC Pot

The product that helps Alexis’ seizures should not be called marijuana.  It is predominately cannabidiol  (CBD), one of more than 60 cannabinoids in the marijuana plant.  The extract she takes is suspended in olive oil.  It is derived from marijuana, but it’s not “just a plant.”

Alexis takes a mixture that has 15 parts CBD to one part THC.  Today, most marijuana sold in dispensaries and in the black market is just the opposite.  THC, which produces the high in marijuana, is manipulated to produce the high potency pot of today.   In California, when doctors give recommendations for medical marijuana, they typically don’t specify any particular proportion of CBD and THC.  This neglect has damaged many minds, minds of young people who had previously functioned at a very high level.

The potent marijuana of today frequently triggers episodes of psychosis, and which can lead to permanent mental illness.  “Medical marijuana” continues to destroy the brains of  young people, some of whom have been treated by quack doctors.   Doctors in New York report episodes of young people who suffered from psychosis after using marijuana just once or twice.

Back in the ’70s, when there were equal parts THC and CBD, people were less likely to develop psychosis.  (A landmark study on low-THC marijuana from Sweden determined a person could use 50 times before they were at risk for psychosis. )  With most high-THC marijuana of today, the risk is higher.  The public doesn’t understand the difference between the pot of the ’70s and the pot of today.  It’s time for television doctors, such Dr. Phil, Dr. Gupta, Dr. Drew and Dr. Oz, to expose the truth about THC.

With edibles and dabbing done today, marijuana is far more dangerous than it was in the ’70s.  This is why it essential that the public stop confusing CBD with marijuana.   It is also important that people know that not every type of epilepsy is helped by CBD.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Dr. Oz are celebrity physicians who can sway public perceptions on health issues. Let’s hope they can educate on  the connection between marijuana use and mental illness.

CBD Oil is Available Throughout USA

Alexis’ seizures began at age 7.  Although Alexis and her family moved from Texas to Colorado, CBD sold as “hemp oil” is available throughout the country.  “Charlotte’s Web,” which was featured on a CNN show by Dr. Sanjay Gupta, is available throughout the country because it’s considered Hemp Oil.  Charlotte’s Web and Haleigh’s Hope — which Alexis uses —  is CBD, not “a plant.”

Doctors with The Epilepsy Foundation of Colorado can explain the challenge of giving any THC to children.  They also explain the difference between cannabidiol and whole marijuana.   Why can’t those who bring Alexis’ story to the public explain it properly?  They argue that CBD only, such as the Epidiolex offered by GW Pharmaceuticals out of Great Britain, is not enough.   We caution that any THC in a minor could be brain damaging.

The public has a right to know that some children have died after the parents believed it was a miracle drug.

We challenge the marijuana investors and industry to stop calling CBD oil “medical” marijuana.  We also challenge them to submit their products through the FDA approval process, and to stop lying about “patients” going to jail.

People are basically uneducated on the differences between CBD and most marijuana,  despite Dr. Gupta’s explanations in his TV special.  Since celebrity doctors have promoted the upside of CBD, it’s time to explain the downside of marijuana.  It’s time for celebrity doctors  to educate the public about how THC can damage the brain.

Dr. Gupta should also review the National Academy of Sciences Report on the health effects of cannabis and cannabinoids released in January.  It concluded marijuana may provide “modest” medical help for three conditions:  nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy, spasticity with MS and chronic pain.  Unlike the promoters of Alexis’ treatment, the report does not endorse marijuana is effective in the treatment for seizures.

Marijuana Will be Held Accountable After Mixed Election Results

Anti-Pot Movement Starts New Project After More States Vote to Legalize

After spending more  than $20 million, the deep pocketed pro-marijuana investors prevailed in California.  They also won in Nevada and Massachusetts, with the votes much closer.   Arizona fended off the attempt to legalize marijuana.    Vermont elected a governor who said he is against marijuana legalization.  Several Oregon cities rejected marijuana sales.
In Colorado, the products with a high amount of THC (the psychoactive quality that brings the high) have been responsible for most of the hospitalizations and deaths.  However,  the marijuana businesses bought out an attempt to put a ballot that would cap the THC at 16%.   So far the marijuana industry has not been held accountable for its deceptive political and marketing tactics.

SAM Project Will Make Pot Accountable

Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) and its partners are spearheading a new initiative called the Marijuana Accountability Project (MAP). Our objective is to be a credible resource for the oversight of the recreational marijuana industry as it begins to take hold in states.   There will be more ballots.  SAM hopes that some states will defeat these ballot measures, but acknowledges that some are likely to pass. Regardless of outcome, SAM and the Marijuana Accountability Project will continue pushing back against the abusive practices of the marijuana industry in the states that have already legalized marijuana.

In their announcement SAM said:  “We cannot let another industry dead-set on hooking a new generation gain an unfettered foothold in society without a watchdog at their back. We intend to launch the initiative in late 2016 with a press conference in Washington, D.C., where we will outline our objectives, year one activities, and a new research report that shows the true cost of marijuana legalization on the health of states.

MAP will include the following activities in 2017:

Congressional Outreach: SAM will boost federal lobbying efforts to stop legalization on the federal level.
State Report Card Tracking Project: Evaluate the states with legal recreational marijuana across the following metrics: Public health (incidence rates of poisonings across age and demos), public safety (car crashes, ER visits), marketing (evaluate and compare based on other legal drugs), political influence (track lobbying and spending), and economic impact (promises made on funding, promises kept?)
Community Roundtables: We anticipate holding up to five community roundtables, open to the media, in select states in the first year. At these events, we will release the results of the tracking project, and hear from citizens who have been impacted by legalization and the industry as a whole. These roundtables will serve two purposes: show the real life impact of legalization, and promote MAP as a critical oversight voice.
Public Education/PSA Campaign: SAM will launch a media campaign called “Are We Sure?” that asks localities if they really want marijuana stores in their neighborhoods. The campaign will also be used in non-legalization states, and will educate the public on today’s high THC marijuana and its impacts.
Earned Media: Earned media will be a critical component to ensure the accountability messaging and approach is well understood in our target states, and pushes the agenda forward. Our tactics will include op-eds, rapid response, editorial board visits, press conferences, and reporter briefings.
Organization of Municipalities Concerned about Marijuana (OMCM): OMCM will consist of officials from localities that have implemented strict controls on marijuana, including those that have banned marijuana stores altogether, and officials from other jurisdictions interested in promoting public health-based marijuana laws. Through OMCM, these localities will share best practices, model ordinances, and other strategies.
SAM Legal Initiative: SAM will launch an initiative to hold marijuana businesses accountable to the law of the land, and research legal compliance issues.
SAM State Legislative Caucus: The SAM State Legislative Caucus will bring together like-minded state legislators who want to stop legalization and commercialization, and share best practices on marijuana policy.
Model laws: MAP will also develop copies of model state laws and local ordinances to control the marijuana industry, incorporating best practices from existing laws and input from scientific and legal experts.   MAP needs founding partners.

Kevin Sabet, President of SAM said that we can change the trajectory of marijuana legalization.  SAM released a statement at 3 a.m. : “Tonight’s results were disappointing overall, but given how we were outspent by 15 to 1, not wholly unsurprising,” said SAM President Kevin Sabet, who also served as a White House drug advisor. “There are several bright spots: Arizona resisted legalization and their campaign will be a blueprint for other states in the future. Vermont Governor-elect Phil Scott will be replacing the most pro-legalization governor in our history (Peter Shumlin), and a pushback is starting in Oregon.  No matter what happens in Maine, we will be in a strong position when the legislature meets. We will redouble our efforts with this new Congress. And we won’t abandon the legalized states, where much work remains to be done.”

For more information, contact info@learnaboutsam.org.