Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Pot or Not

WHAT??? This image strikes fear in the heart of parents everywhere. This is a topic most people would rather not discuss. Marijuana is a drug..and it's illegal for crying out loud! Yes and yes, but what if it stopped your child's severe seizures and gave them a chance to have a better quality of life? What if it helped your child's neurological disorder? Recently CNN ran an article about the use of cannabis to treat a child's severe seizures. Read it Here. Now you may already have a vision in your head of a small child sitting in their booster seat smoking a joint. Not so, the oil is used from the cannabis plant, which is high in CBD or cannabidiol, which has medicinal properties but no psychoactivity. It is also low in THC, tetrahydrocannabinol, the compound in marijuana that is psychoactive. It is typically added to food and absorbed into the bloodstream that way.
      After each of my three cesarean sections I was given a drug called Oxycodone, for the pain. It impaired my ability to function, it made me feel really strange. It was also formulated in a pharmaceutical  laboratory with who knows what else in it and multiple side effects. It is also a drug that can be abused like any other drug that gets into the hands of humans. I fail to see how it is any safer than say...cannabis. I'm not pro or con on this issue...I'm just trying to gather more information because some of the results coming from the research and use of cannabis oil are very interesting to me.
     While at the AT (ataxia-telangiectasia) clinic at Johns Hopkins, the neurologist told us a story. He told us of a mom who went to pick up her son at a friends house. Her son has AT. Once he was loaded in the car, she began to ask him about his day and what he did and etc etc... Well, much to the surprise of the mother her son was answering in clear, concise sentences. She was so surprised and shocked she knew something had to have happened to make such a drastic difference. Come to find out, the young man had been smoking marijuana with his friends. The neurologist indicated that it effects a certain area of the brain that could cause speech to become clearer and to cease tremors and involuntary movements. This is very intriguing because my two sons have AT. If at some time down the road, research shows that the use of cannabis oil will drastically improve the quality of life for someone with AT, would I give it to my children? Hmmmm... My 5 year old had cancer..he's been pumped up with drugs that are meant to practically kill you..he was on 13 different medications when he left the hospital after transplant...he was on medications to treat the side effects of his medications. It just doesn't make sense to me why this is okay, but giving cannabis oil to a child to treat severe seizures is not.
    I'm not claiming to be at all educated about all the details surrounding the controversy of medicinal marijuana use. I grew up in California..I know pot people! I've seen it grown in dorm rooms in college, smoked openly in parks and beaches. I had pot smoking hippie parents. I may have even tried it myself...ha no...like Clinton, I never inhaled! I think more research needs to be done, but I'm not close minded on the topic. I think it will be very interesting to see how it all plays out. I'm curious about your opinion, what do you think?
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