How Does Medical Marijuana Help With and Treat Tourette’s Syndrome?

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Tourette’s syndrome is a nervous system problem that makes it possible for people to make sudden movements or sounds known as tics that they are unable to control. For instance, it is common to see people with Tourette syndrome either blink or clear their throats over and over again. Also, some people with Tourette’s syndrome find themselves blurting the words they can’t control. It should be noted that this condition is more serious in some people than others and even though there are treatments that can control tics, people with milder symptoms don’t need this treatment.

An estimated 100,000 Americans have full blown Tourette’s syndrome. This condition typically starts from childhood and more boys are reported to be diagnosed with it than girls. In some people, the symptoms of Tourette’s syndrome improve as they grow older, whereas it completely disappears in others. Even though the cause of Tourette syndrome is yet to be known, many researchers have attributed it to genetic and environmental factors. Tourette’s syndrome is also known to have some health conditions associated with it. These conditions include behavioral issues, learning disorders, anxiety, mood stabilization issues,  and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Some of the symptoms of Tourette’s syndrome include blinking, shoulder shrugging, mouth blinking, facial distortion, sniffing, shouting, grunting, and swearing.

There is no cure for Tourette’s syndrome even though there are therapies as well as medications that can help manage the condition. It should be noted that some patients are offered no treatment at all, whereas others receive counsel on how to manage the condition. In more severe cases, doctors could prescribe medications such as Haldol, and Catapres to help control the tics that affect the life of the patient negatively.

However, most of the medications used in treating Tourette’s syndrome have negative side effects which include seizures or trouble breathing and even fainting. Therefore, in a bid to find better ways of treating Tourette’s syndrome, researchers are looking at cannabis as an alternative treatment. Researchers have noted that cannabis could be an effective treatment of Tourette’s syndrome since it is also known to be effective in treating several medical disorders of the brain. Advocates have asserted that two cannabinoids notably tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) can reduce the intensity of both vocal and motor tics, thereby providing relief for patients with Tourette’s syndrome.

It is apparent that most people suffering from Tourette’s syndrome face challenges and difficulties when it comes to completing tasks, participating in normal daily activities, as well as social interactions and that explains why researchers are hopeful that cannabis could relief patients from the tics.

Findings from a study in New Zealand’s Tauranga Hospital supported the suggestions that medical marijuana is a safe and effective treatment of Tourette’s syndrome and that it should be considered in treating resistant cases. During this study a medication known as Sativex which is reported to contain both CBD and THC was administered to test subjects. The medication was actually prescribed to reduce the frequency and intensity of both vocal and motor tics.

Another study that was published in the Journal Pharmacopsychiatry had similar findings. The objective of this study was to find out the properties of THC that makes it possible for it to reduce tics and similar behaviors like those associated with OCD. Findings from the study revealed a significant correlation between tic improvement and maximum 11-OH-THC plasma concentration. The results of the study further suggested that a single dose of treatment of Delta (9)-THC is safe and equally effective in the treatment of tics and obsessive compulsive disorder in patients with Tourette’s syndrome.

Furthermore, the findings from a 2017 study also revealed that medical marijuana was effective in the treatment of Tourette’s syndrome. Patients in the study reported a 22.2% reduction in the severity of their tics. This study actually focused on the use of another cannabis based medication known as Nabiximols.

Even though much research on this subject has focused on medications made with THC, there are also indications that CBD can be used to treat the symptoms of Tourette’s syndrome. There are insinuations that CBD oil used in conjunction with other traditional forms of cannabis may provide relief for people suffering with Tourette syndrome. For instance, the drug Sativex which has an equal dosage of both CBD and THC showed a positive result, thereby indicating that CBD plays an active role in reducing the frequency and severity of tics associated with Tourette’s syndrome.

Patients of Tourette’s syndrome have several options of consuming medical marijuana, even though the quickest result will be obtained from smoking and vaporizing. Of course, there are also edibles, pills and tinctures that are available to patients who are not willing to inhale vapor nor smoke.


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Web MD

Marijuana strains reported to help with Tourette’s Syndrome:

How To Get Medical Marijuana

If you are a resident of a legal state interested in trying medical marijuana to treat Tourette’s Syndrome or other medical conditions, you will first need to consult with a certified doctor in order to get a medical marijuana card. To get started, simply fill out the MMJ patient registration form, press submit and a physician or clinic representative will contact you as available.

Patient Registration Form

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