Medical Marijuana and HYPERTENSION

Medical Marijuana For Hypertension

Medical Marijuana and Hypertension Treatment

High blood pressure, or hypertension, is caused by a wide variety of issues and affects around 85 million people in the United States – nearly one-third of the adults in the country.  Many of the causes of hypertension are related to diet and lifestyle. The most common causes are obesity, physical inactivity, alcohol and tobacco use, excess salt intake, consuming a diet rich in processed and high-fat foods, and poor stress management.  However a family history of high blood pressure as well as age, gender and ethnicity are sometimes also contributing factors. In this segment, we discuss the types of hypertension and how you can use medical marijuana for hypertension treatment.   

There are two types of hypertension – primary hypertension, which is hypertension that is not caused by another disease, disorder or condition; and secondary hypertension, which is essentially a symptom of another disease.  Some of the diseases which cause hypertension are diabetes, kidney disease, Cushing’s syndrome (which, in turn, is often caused by long term steroid use to treat yet another condition), cancer of the adrenal gland, hyperthyroidism, and sleep apnea.  

Symptoms of Hypertension

Hypertension often does not cause any noticeable symptoms.  This makes it particularly dangerous because if it is not detected and treated, it can lead to kidney damage, heart damage, and clogged arteries.  It is important to have your blood pressure checked regularly and, if it is found to be high, take steps to lower it.

The symptoms which might present themselves include headache, blurred vision, chest pain, dizziness and shortness of breath. The symptoms of hypertension are very similar to the symptoms of a heart attack, and many individuals who have these symptoms go into the emergency room mistakenly thinking they are experiencing a heart attack.

Symptoms of Hypertension

What Else It Could Be

Chest pain and shortness of breath are often present in patients prone to anxiety attacks, and can also be signs of poorly managed stress.  These symptoms can also present themselves following strenuous exercise and exertion, particularly in individuals not accustomed to vigorous physical activity.  In either case, the symptoms typically resolve themselves quickly once the cause is removed. In other words, you feel better shortly after you stop exercising or remove yourself from a stressful or anxiety-producing situation.

Headache and blurred vision present without any other symptoms could also be signs of stress.  However, they could also be signs of glaucoma, or something as simple as allergies or eye strain.  If these symptoms appear, it is a good idea to have your eyes checked. Your symptoms may be resolved with something as simple as a new eyeglass prescription, or your doctor could find that you have a disorder requiring treatment.

Because hypertension is often “silent”, or present without any noticeable symptoms, it cannot be stressed enough the importance of having your blood pressure checked regularly, and immediately seeking treatment if it is found to be outside the normal limits.

How Medical Marijuana Can Help Treat Hypertension

The human body produces a chemical called anandamide, which is a naturally occurring version of THC.  This chemical relaxes blood vessels and allows blood to flow more freely, thereby lowering blood pressure.  Medical marijuana mimics this natural process, giving a boost to the work your body is already trying to do to lower your blood pressure.

Why Medical Marijuana Treats Asthma Better Than Alternative Treatments

Typically, one or more different drugs are employed to treat hypertension.  Diuretics help your kidneys remove some of the salt from your body, which allows your blood vessels to carry less fluid, which in turn causes your blood pressure to go down.  Beta-blockers make the heartbeat slower and less forcefully. ACE inhibitors and Calcium Channel Blockers relax your blood vessels to allow blood to flow more freely, thereby lowering your blood pressure.

These traditional medications have numerous side effects.  Among them, cough, diarrhea or constipation, dizziness, nervousness, lack of energy or generalized weakness, headache, nausea, unintended weight loss or gain, skin rash, and erectile dysfunction.  The side effects of blood pressure medicines may make a patient who wasn’t really experiencing any symptoms from the disease discontinue taking them because they feel worse on the medicine than they did before they started taking it!

Medical marijuana relaxes and dilates blood vessels to cause a lowering of blood pressure. In addition, medical marijuana inhibits atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) which is one of the causes of hypertension.  It has also been shown to have a diuretic effect. And it does all of this without the side effects of traditional medical therapies.

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How to Get Medical Marijuana to Treat Hypertension

There are currently many states that have legalized the use of medical marijuana. Once a patient has been diagnosed with a medical condition that is treatable with medical marijuana, the patient may purchase cannabis to use in a treatment regimen.  Hypertension has been accepted by many states as a condition that may be treated using this regimen.

Once you have been diagnosed with a condition treatable with medical marijuana, you may obtain a state-issued ID medical marijuana card by visiting a medical marijuana doctor.  The ID card is required in order to purchase medical marijuana. This can be done in person or online. A board-certified physician will help you complete your application for a medical marijuana ID card which can then be used to purchase medical marijuana from an approved dispensary. The application process is not lengthy, and in fact, a completed application is generally approved within minutes, depending on the state of your residency. Once you have the ID card, you can make your purchase from any approved dispensary in your state.   You may also grow marijuana in your home for your own personal medical use if you live in a state that allows that.

If you or a friend or family member has hypertension and you would like to try medical cannabis as a potential treatment, please contact our Medical Marijuana Doctors for help. Visit us in Florida, California, or New York.   We would be happy to discuss your condition and provide you with options for treatment.  This process is 100% legal and your privacy is assured. You can also apply for a medical marijuana card at or call us at 1-888-578-6704.

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