Cannabis has been used in a variety of medical uses over the course of time. Even now, if you were to google “cannabis” you would see many conditions that it claims to alleviate. However, scientists are warning patients to be careful when using cannabis for medical treatments since there seems to be a lack of scientific evidence supporting some of the claims. We, here at Puff Puff Post have compiled five facts you should know about medical cannabis in Canada.
- Medical cannabis has been legal in Canada since 2001. Under the legislation, almost 300,000 Canadians have registered for medical cannabis since that time.
- Cannabis is not yet covered under provincial health plans across Canada. Health claims are not permitted for any cannabis products in Canada and Licensed Producers who do wish to make a claim must do so under the approval of the Food and Drugs Act, which is not to be confused with the Food and Drug Administration of the US.
- Only two Health Canada approved cannabis drugs are sold in Canada: Sativex which is a buccal (oral) spray and Cesamet, also known as nabilone, used for nausea and vomiting for cancer treatment. Cannabis, although legal for medical use, is not currently approved for therapy by Health Canada.
- Health Canada maintains its position that cannabis in any form can cause a number of health complications. It warns pregnant and breastfeeding women from use since it may cause birth defects in the child. Exposure to cannabis in vitro can also affect brain function in newborns, low birth weight, memory and learning impairments, and reduced attention span. Due to the fact that brains are still developing under the age of 25, Health Canada also warns use in young people.
- Cannabis prescribing doctors are only allowed to prescribe a maximum of 5 grams a day with a maximum THC limit of thirty percent to eligible patients. Experts in the industry are unsure how these values will change after recreational legalization on Oct. 17.