Your Guide To Medical Cannabis
bottle of CBD oil

Cannabis use for medicinal purposes dates back at least 3,000 years when humans used it for analgesic, sedative, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic and anticonvulsant effects.

Sadly plant-based cannabinoids are not part of our everyday modern diet. The researchers show that the endocannabinoid system is one of the most important regulatory systems in the human body. The therapeutic value of cannabinoids is too high to be put aside.

Endocannabinoid system was first discovered in the late 1980’s, this system regulates the body’s homeostasis, or general state of balance, impacting such functions as your mood, sleep, appetite, hormone regulation, and pain and immune response. The endocannabinoid system “corrects” by mediating our body’s reaction to keep us in balance.

This complicated system is made up of millions of cannabinoid receptor sites located primarily throughout the brain, central nervous system, and immune system. The human body makes its own cannabinoids called Anandamide and 2-AG, their function is similar to the plant-based cannabinoid called CBD. Your organism creates those cannabinoids to control communication between cells, mediating your body’s functions.

Cannabis plant contains cannabinoids like THC - tetrahydrocannabinol; this is the part of cannabis is known for its psychoactive side effect, the part that makes you ‘high.' Another significant cannabinoid that usually gets extracted from the cannabis plant is called CBD (Cannabidiol ), CBD does not produce any psychoactive effects, it’s purpose is to purely interact with the body through the endogenous cannabinoid system or endocannabinoid system.

Cannabis oil is one of the most potent ways to use cannabinoid-based medicine. Cannabis oil is a thick, sticky substance made up of cannabinoids. There are more than 80 cannabinoids in hemp and marijuana plants, but the two best-known ones for medicinal purposes are THC and CBD.

There are different types of oil available, like hemp oil, CBD oil, THC oil. CBD and hemp oil contain a minimal amount of THC, those oils don’t give any high and are legally available in many countries.

Cannabis oil comes in many types and tastes. CBD can come in capsules, E-Liquid, creams, paste, eatables, etc. Your doctor can prescribe products that contain less than % of THC. Everything over 2% of THC is schedule 8 drug, and your doctor also needs a special approval to prescribe this type of oil.

Cannabis-based oils are widely beneficial; researchers are finding more and more links between cannabis medicine and improved medical conditions. Here are some of our top reasons of why you should add cannabis oil medicine to your treatment plan.

Anxiety and Stress Relief

Treating stress is one of the most well-known uses of cannabis medicine. Cannabis naturally reduces stress and restores body's balance, as it contains natural compounds that relax the mind, give pleasure and calm the nervous system.

If you have been suffering from chronic stress, you know how it affects the quality of your life. Using medicinal cannabis oil can change this reality for you. Chemical components in cannabis plant work the same way as natural cannabinoids in our own body, they activate the communication in our central nervous bringing the balance and reduce stress.

The cannabinoid treatment after a traumatic experience can minimise the stress receptors in our brain, preventing further sensory and emotional damage. Cannabis oil can help you to deal with life issue or even with PTSD; it allows people to cope and to have a better life quality.

Pain management

If you are suffering from chronic or excruciating pain, cannabis oil can be something for you.

There is evidence that cannabinoids can stop the neuronal transmission in pain pathways. Cannabis oil relieves pain and inflammation, fitting well with fibromyalgia treatment.

People used cannabis to help with pain management already thousands of years ago. A single dose of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) cannabis oil three times daily for five days can dramatically reduce the intensity of pain.

Sleep management

You can’t sleep at night; you feel restless, your sleep is disturbed? Cannabis oil might be the solution for you.

Cannabis oil helps to lower your energy levels and heart rate so it will be easier to fall asleep.

Cannabis oil has a calming effect, helping with restlessness and thought processes, switching on your pleasure center. Cannabis oil is widely used to help veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder, as it helps with controlling anxiety and fear in the brain and body.

Regulates your appetite

Cannabis is well known for enhancing appetite. Cannabis oil regulates your appetite and switches on your digestive system, making you feel hungry. So if you need to gain some weight cannabis oil can help. Cannabis switches on hormones that help you to feel hungry.

Cannabis oil can also suppress appetite, depending on what hormones are switched on. So it can also help if you are concerned about your weight. Cannabis oil works well with chemotherapy and AIDS treatments, helping patients to recover.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

The THC and CBD interact with the body, switching on the immune system in the gut. Cannabis oil can be added to your treatment plan if you’re suffering from ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

It is not the cure but can help with the symptoms, some people even saying that cannabinoid therapy is the most effective one.

Strengthens your heart

Cannabis oil improves your heart health by strengthening the cardiovascular system and getting rid of cholesterol. Cannabinoids stimulate antioxidant processes in the body, also causing blood vessels to relax and widen, giving your heart an extra health boost.

Adding cannabis oil to your treatment plan can help to prevent heart attacks, stroke, hypertension and other cardiovascular conditions. Cannabis medicine can lower blood pressure and improve circulation.

Glaucoma and eye health

As you age, your eyes will age. In worst cases, aging can result in vision loss and blindness. One way to help yourself is to take cannabis oil to keep your eyes healthy. Cannabis oil helps with macular degeneration, and it reduces glaucoma.

Cannabis oil benefits by lowering the intraocular pressure in the eye, this pressure when not treated can permanently damage your vision. Although cannabis works only for a short time, it is still a most natural way to keep the pressure down.

Skin and acne treatments

Cannabinoids help with lipid production, regulating skin moisture and acne. Cannabis oil-based products could be a smart addition to your skin treatment plan, as they promote skin cell renewal. Cannabis is also high in antioxidants, therefore helping your skin fight with free radicals, which cause skin aging.

Cancer treatment

Researchers show that cannabis has anti-cancer properties. Tests have shown that THC can cause cancer cells to die while leaving healthy cells untouched. This is a remarkable discovery. It can help stop the tumor growth and assist in pain and appetite management.

Although cannabis oil is not yet officially approved anticancer medicine in Australia, it might be something that could still help you with your current cancer treatment, as cannabis works well with other procedures like chemotherapy.

Epilepsy and seizures

Cannabinoid CBD has been established a safe and effective epilepsy treatment with only mild side effects. Cannabis has been used centuries for seizure treatment, but only now it has been more closely examined and tested for all its possibilities in treating people with epilepsy.

Cannabis oil helps with tremors, muscle spasms

Cannabinoids help with pain management and relaxation, slowing down tremors and helping restore motor skills. Cannabis oil medicine can improve Parkinson’s disease symptoms. THC can attach itself to receptors in your nerves controlling relaxation and relieving pain and spasms. Cannabis-based medicine works well with multiple sclerosis treatments.

Dementia and Alzheimer’s

Cannabis medicine can help people with dementia controlling their aggression and mood. Also, it's a potential treatment for Alzheimer's disease. Some studies have shown that THC appears to remove the Alzheimer's hallmark amyloid plague improving learning in laboratory mice.

After stroke care

Cannabis can protect your brain by reducing the affected area after the traumatic event.  Cannabinoids are neuroprotectant that switch on the growth of brain cells in areas of damage or disease. CBD is a beneficial antioxidant helping with cognitive functioning and regulating inflammation and improving the blood flow.

Arthritis management

People with arthritis find help in cannabis oil medicine as it promotes relaxation, reduces pain and inflammations, therefore restoring the quality of life. For example, studies have shown that taking cannabis oil does not just lower the pain in the brain but also does the work in the joint itself; it's a useful medicine for people in need.

There are many ways cannabis oil can help you, but how do you pick the right one?

It’s critical to do your research as all cannabinoids have medicinal properties, but some are better for some conditions than others. It’s essential to know how much THC or CBD a cannabis-based oil has, as this gives different effects to what you want to achieve with your treatment.

Also, different oils have different side effects, and they are made from different strains of cannabis. It’s always best to go through a company that has a reputable background and has a big clients base, as this means they know what they are doing and has patients to back it up.

It would be better not to try to make the oil yourself or buy it from a street dealer, as you will not know what exactly is in this medicine, what are the health benefits and side effects of this kind of oil. Best is to be safe and go with a trusted suppliers, who can give you the quality you need.

Also, it is smart to know where the plant material, used for the production of cannabis oil, is grown, where it’s sourced. You want to make sure the medicine comes from a pure plant that has grown without pesticides or herbicides, as you don’t want any other contaminants in your cannabis oil.

You would want to pick a medicine that has been produced with minimal processing as possible, to make sure you will access the full benefits of a cannabis plant.

If you are looking to buy cannabis oil, then there are usually three types available - THC, CBD and 1:1 extract oils.

1. THC full extract oils are highly psychoactive, as they are made from a high-level THC plant. This oil suits you well if you have cancer, severe pain, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, depression, arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, gastrointestinal disorders, AIDS, and inflammation.

2. CBD oils are high in CBD and low in THC; these oils are not psychoactive, it means they will not make you “high,” instead this oil helps to calm the nervous system and keep you focused. CBD oils are getting more popular, as people are getting full benefits of the cannabis medicine without any psychoactive side effect. CBD oils are widely used for epilepsy, anxiety, depression, pain management, sleep disorders, Alzheimer's disease, cancer, etc.

There are also 1-1 cannabis oils available; those oils are made from a plant that has quite even THC and CBD ratio. Research has shown that THC and CBD work very well together, giving a medicine that targets your conditions from both sides. A lot of people start with 1:1 oils, as it’s effective with a small psychoactive feel. 1: 1 ratio cannabis oils can help if you are suffering from stress, spasms, headaches, anxiety, chronic pain, gastrointestinal disorders, fibromyalgia, etc.

There is also a full raw extract cannabis oil option, this is more rare, as this oil is made without using heat. Raw cannabis oil is not psychoactive; the active ingredients exist in their acid form. This oil is used by people who want to get the anti-inflammatory effect without getting high. This oil is usually very high quality.

Here are some of the questions you’ll want to ask yourself before buying your medicine :

How many milligrams of cannabis oil will I need?

Dosing medical cannabis can be quite tricky, as our bodies are different and therefore our tolerance levels. If you have been consuming cannabis medicine before it might be that your tolerance level is higher. If you are starting out it would be recommended to start with smaller amounts and work your way up as your tolerance levels increase. It would be better to ask your doctor while putting place the treatment plan.

Here are some starting points that can help you understand what dosage fits the best with your individual needs and tolerance level:

Full extract Cannabis oil is highly concentrated meaning its effect is potent. Patients who are starting out usually take a small amount of oil size of a grain of rice three to four times a day. As some patients have used medical cannabis oil for a more extended period, the doses can be up to 1 full gram of medicine per day. This is a large amount and should be only consumed when under the supervision of your doctor.

CBD oils standard dose is 10mg. Depending on your condition it can be also smaller like 2.5 to 5 milligram, or you can work your way up if the treatment of your disease demands more significant dosage.

Cannabis oil products should have recommended dosage on their packaging, so make sure you are familiar with your product and its effect on the purchase. You can always contact the manufactures for more information. It’s highly recommended to do your research before committing to a specific product.

Do I want my cannabis oil to be flavored or unflavored?

Cannabis oil has a specific taste, it can be a little bit bitter and has an earthy flavor. Some people find it okay but some people will get used to it taste over time, as they work through the treatment process. Usually, people who have been using cannabis oil for a while finding no difficulties to take the oil.

There are some producers out there that add other flavors to the medicine, but always do your research, you want to make sure that whatever is added to your oil is natural.

If you are worried about the flavor then test it, if the taste is off-putting then try something less intense, let your taste buds get used to the medicine and move to something stronger as the time goes. If you want to pick flavored cannabis oil do your research and make sure that the integrity of the medicine is not changed by add-ons.

Can I use cannabis oil at home or can I use it while on the go?

Pure CBD oil does not have a psychoactive effect, meaning it will not cause any impairment but as our organism are different it can create a feeling of tiredness, so it would be wise always consult with your doctor to determine how and when you should take your medicine.

Some people find it no problems to go on with their day, feeling relaxed and focused, some people are more susceptible to the cannabis oil side effects.

THC oils are very psychoactive, so it is recommended not to drive or operate any heavy machinery while taking medicine. It would be best to stay relaxed and let the cannabis oil to do the work. Always ask your doctor if unsure how to proceed with your daily doings.

What’s more critical – strength or price?

This is a tough one as cannabis oil availability is in baby steps in Australia, it means you have to order it from overseas or you only really have few cannabis medicine options that your doctor can now access in Australia.

The prices are high, and we sincerely hope it all will change as Australian doctors are starting to do more research about different options out there.

You would want something that is strong and comes with a reasonable price of course, so we say go with the quality, always.

The best way to know the quality is to contact the supplier, ask to see the information about the lab tests and proof of a consistency of the product. If the supplier will not give you info that you need don’t waste your time and keep searching as you don’t want to buy an expensive medicine that will not have an effect promised. The best way is to check what other patients have to say about the product. If the drug works, no price is high.

One of the things you should also ask yourself is how the cannabis oil is made?

To make a highly concentrated cannabis oil there has to be some solvent that is used to separate the oil from the plant material. A product of this process gives you the perfect transparent shatter or a softer see-through form called wax.

To produce a high-quality cannabis oil you have to have a high-quality plant, with appropriate cannabis genetics. To make a CBD oil, you have to pick a strain that is naturally high in CBD. To make THC oil, you have to choose a plant that is high in THC. Although you can extract THC and CBD from all cannabis plants, it is best to pick a specific genetic to make sure the medicine will be the highest quality.

One option for oil extraction is to use alcohol. This process starts with soaking the plant material in a solvent - alcohol. The liquid that will remain once the material has soaked is filled with cannabinoids. To get the end product, cannabis oil, you have to evaporate the solvent. After this, the cannabis medicine is ready for consumption.

Another option that is quite popular in cannabis oil extraction process is with CO2. This method is a little more complicated than the alcohol one. In this process, the CO2 will be forced through the plant material with temperature and pressure. This process demands more skill but will give a more precise recipe.

There is also solventless extraction available; this is a new type of cannabis concentrate extraction, where the manufacturer uses heat and pressure to extract the medicine from the plant mass. After the product is a shatter, which type can vary depending on what material has been used and curing time. Different pressure and heat can give different results. Higher temperatures provide more stable products than lower heat ones.

Another solventless option is a freeze-dried option, where the manufacturer is using sub-zero temperatures in their production. This method keeps trichomes in a perfectly suspended state, preserving valuable tepidness that any other extraction process could not do.

For full plant cannabis oil, the entire plant is used, this type of oil gives you a broader spectrum of cannabinoids when extracted. There are a variety of solvents for a full plant extraction. This oil is considered as one of the best ones, as it contains a wide spectrum of active compounds, which all work together to give you the best medicine.

You have found the medicine you like, you’ve done your homework but how do you order it in Australia?

The process of ordering your medicine depends on the state laws where your living. The first step for you to get the cannabis oil is to visit your doctor because the only way you can access medical cannabis in Australia, is via specialist or doctor who is treating you.

It’s because at the moment medical marijuana is prescribed as pharmaceutical medicine. When the doctor finds that medical cannabis oil is the right fit for your treatment plan, he will decide with you which drug to prescribe and applies for approval from Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and the Department of Health and Human Services.

If the product that you are thinking of is not yet in Australia, your doctor needs to get the approval from the Commonwealth Office of Drug Control to get it imported.

A medical professional has to know the way the product is scheduled, cannabis products are Schedule 8 drugs. Products that contain 2% or less of other cannabinoids found in cannabis are Schedule 4 drug. With Schedule 8 drug your doctor has to hold a state treatment permit.

If all this is done, you will need to wait until the medicine arrives and you are on your way to follow your treatment plan.

Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA)

1800 020 653
info@tga.gov.au

The Office of Drug Control
+61 2 6232 8740

www.odc.gov.au

Now you have ordered your medicine do you know how to take it?

Cannabis oils are taken orally not smoked like other versions of cannabis medicine. Cannabis oil comes in capsules, tinctures, vapes, sprays, topical, concentrates, etc.

You have to know how often you should take medicine and the dosage. This depends on the condition you have and of course your tolerance level. You can start with smaller amounts and move up as the tolerance grows. You can consult with your doctor to make sure you will get the most benefits from the cannabis medicine you are using.

What should you avoid while on your cannabis oil treatment plan?

If you are using high THC medicine, do not drive, operate machinery or perform hazardous activities, as the oil can cause drowsiness and impaired judgment. Also don’t mix cannabis with alcohol, as this is a dangers combination, enhancing dizziness and impaired judgment.

Contact your doctor if you are on antidepressants, pain medications, anxiety or depression treatment, seizure medicine or you are using any other type of drug. Make sure that cannabis oil is a good match with your overall treatment plan.

Do not use cannabis oil if you are pregnant as more research has to be done to determine if cannabis is safe for pregnancy and breastfeeding.

Most cannabis products on the market contain mostly THC, CBD, or a mixture of both, but there can be products out there that provide other cannabinoids for example CBG or THCV.

Cannabis oil industry is forever growing, and we are excited to see where it can go.

We hope we helped you to understand cannabis oil a little better so you can talk to your doctor and take the full advantage of this incredible medicine.