What is a Medical Marijuana Card?

Half the States in the USA have now made it legal to grow, process, sell and consume marijuana and marijuana products. This has seen this one illegal industry boom with business. People from all walks of life are now taking more weed products for either leisure or medical reasons.

Marijuana has proven to have some medicinal benefits which has gotten more people get interested in using it to relieve their ailments. The one area it’s flourishing is pain relief which other conventional medications have in recent years proven ineffective. It’s yet to be legalized under federal law which means doctors are not allowed to prescribe it but that doesn’t stop users from using it for medical purposes.

There is still more research to be done when it comes to the health benefits of consuming cannabis. With increased legalization and consumption, this is being done by many institutions. This will shed more light on this topic in the coming years.

A Medical Cannabis/Marijuana Card is available to people who have recommendations from health practitioners to grow or buy weed for medicinal use. Its state-issued and you must have a valid reason to apply for one. This card is issued even though marijuana is still illegal under federal law.

There is a need for regulation of growing and use of cannabis especially with the increase in the number of consumers. This has necessitated certain measures like issuing of this card. You have to apply for it and can only be obtained in a state that recognizes medical marijuana. The card is not free of charge. You have to pay the state a fee to get one issued to you.

Many states have a renewal policy for the card. It’s only valid for one year after which you have to apply for a new one. This means you have to get checked out by your doctor after the year is up to see if you need another card issued to you. After the check-up, you pay a smaller fee this time to get re-issued with the card.

Conditions Treated by Medical Marijuana

There are certain ailments that medical cannabis has proven effective in treating. The reason most people are looking to weed is after conventional medicine proved ineffective.

1. MS (Multiple Sclerosis)

This is a condition that is known to affect a patient’s brain function and spinal cord. You get different symptoms that range from severe pain, poor eyesight, loss of balance, and body spasms. Many cardholders with this ailment use the weed to treat severe pain and body spasms which can be very limiting. You can’t be able to perform any tasks effectively and even moving is out of the question.

2. Insomnia

Many more people suffering from crippling insomnia are finding relief in cannabis. This works best especially if you have disturbed sleeping patterns that leave you restless and tired as a result. By consuming cannabis products, you experience improved sleep and are relaxed for the better part of the day. This even boosts your productivity at the end of the day. Users have reported being less fatigued because they can now sleep much better due to the sedative quality of cannabis.

3. Arthritis

This is an inflammation of the joint that makes it very hard to function due to crippling pain. There are so many types of arthritis that affect people from all walks of life. The most common types that affect the majority of patients include osteoarthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis. The main symptom that patients use weed to relieve is the pain in inflamed joints. Many patients are getting medical marijuana cards to help them because conventional medicine no longer works for them.

4. Epilepsy

Epilepsy is a medical condition that is largely characterized by seizures that can range from mild to extreme. Many patients are now turning to cannabis to help with these seizures for its known to reduce the rate at which they occur. Some studies show weed can even stop these seizures altogether.

5. Nausea Relief While Undergoing Chemotherapy

One of the side effects of undergoing chemotherapy for treatment is extreme levels of nausea which means you can’t keep anything down. This can be very limiting for your recovery since you need to retain the food you eat to get more energy to withstand the treatment. You can use weed to get relief from crippling nausea as it acts as a form of anti-nausea medication. It’s, however, recommended you consult your physician due to the effects of consuming weed including dizziness and sedation.

Benefits of Having a Cannabis Card

a) Better Quality

Many weed dispensaries have a variety of products available depending on the purpose of your purchase. They sell less potent cannabis products for recreational users. Those with cannabis cards are sold more potent products that deliver a better hit. This benefits the user by relieving their ailments quicker especially for pain relief.

As a cardholder, you are also permitted to buy higher dosages than those who are buying for leisure. There is, however, some concerns as some states are now reducing the amount of THC on cannabis products which makes them less effective.

b) Legal Protection

Not all the states that have legalized marijuana allow it for recreational consumption. Some states have only accepted the use of weed for medicinal purposes. You must, therefore, have a cannabis card with you when in possession of marijuana.

You must apply for a card if you want to avoid any felony charges for possessing the drug without proper documentation. The card protects you from being charged with a Class A Misdemeanor.

c) License to Grow

You might prefer to grow your product rather than keep buying from the local dispensary. In some states, having the Medical Marijuana Card (MMC) allows you to grow weed in your backyard. This is not the case in all the states that have allowed the use of weed for medicinal purposes.

It’s important to learn what is allowed and what is not in your state before you venture into full weed gardening.

d) Reduced Costs

Weed dispensaries tend to give discounts more to users with medical cannabis cards than to those who use it only for recreational purposes. Having this card can save you a lot of money while getting you premium quality products.

This works out very well to individuals with serious medical conditions that require them to use the products regularly for it can get quite expensive. You come to release that medicinal weed can be even cheaper than most prescription drugs.

Legal Consumption Age

The legal age of getting a medical marijuana card and even consuming weed is 21. This means if you are under this age, you have to get a specialized medical card to grant you access the cannabis products. This is, however, very strict to medicinal use only. Flaunting of this rule can land you in hot soup. Many young cancer patients or those suffering from epilepsy can benefit greatly from using weed products hence the availability of special cards for minors.

The Downside of Owning a Cannabis Card

a) Relinquish Owning a Gun

When you decide to get a Medical Cannabis Card, know that is the last time you can legally own a firearm. You can’t have both of them, you have to let go of one. That is the law. When you get a cannabis card, you’re required to fill in some state-mandated forms which are fed into the system. This is to help implement such regulations because it’s not wise to mix a gun and weed.

This measure may be effective for new cardholders who want to purchase a firearm but has proven difficult to implement on people who already own firearms.

b) No Government Employment

Technically growing and consuming weed is still illegal under federal law so as a cardholder it’s best to forget getting employed by the same government. You can even lose your job if you start consuming medical marijuana while employed no matter the reason for using it. There have even been reports of random drug testing being held for public employees.

This boils down also to other companies not associated with the government but also has the same type of zero tolerance towards the use of cannabis for their employees. This is in accordance with the regulation that all workplaces be drug-free.

c) No Commercial Driver’s License

As stated earlier, under federal law, marijuana is still classified as a drug and its use if illegal. This means the Department of Transportation can’t issue you with a commercial license if you have a cannabis card. It’s hard to lie if you have one because you must register with the state to acquire one. This helps in a great way because a stoned driver is very dangerous out on the road.

d) Annual Renewal

You have to re-apply for the card every year after undergoing a medical check-up. This means your doctor has to give you the recommendation to renew it. You must then pay renewal fees to be issued with a new card.

Conclusion

The cannabis card has become increasingly important among marijuana users who suffer from different conditions. There are benefits to having the card but it can be limiting as well. It’s best to weigh the two before you opt to apply for one.