More than 76.5 million Americans over 20 experience chronic pain daily, according to the American Academy of Pain Medicine. This statistic along with the proven medicinal benefits of cannabis could explain the growth in popularity in recent years.

Cannabis as a medicinal drug has been widely debated both inside and outside the medical community for decades. However, a recent study found in the Society for the Study of Addiction journal found that marijuana use has risen steeply since 2005. It also concluded that it had little to do with the steady legalization of the plant for medicinal and recreational purposes.

But with an estimated 2,254,782 state-legal cannabis patients, why is this number continuously growing over the years?

THC and CBD: The Secret Ingredients

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD) are compounds found inside cannabis and the reason for many of the benefits associated with the plant. Since our ancestors have been using marijuana for at least 3,000 years, it’s been a constant factor in our society that’s warranted further study. These studies have been fruitful over the years.

The recently published studies emphasizing the benefits may be the contributing factor to the use of cannabis. Although the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not yet approved marijuana safe nor effective in treating medical conditions, it has made progress in recent years. In June 2018, the CBD component in cannabis was proven as an effective treatment for specific epilepsy types.

5 Medicinal Benefits of Cannabis

Benefits supersede just epilepsy, though. There are dozens of other studies showing additional medical benefits associated with marijuana. Each continues to steer the narrative of cannabis legalization in a positive direction.

Known for Treating Chronic Pain

With over one-quarter of Americans struggling with chronic pain and millions of others suffering from acute pain, pain management has become a necessity. Cannabinoids (CBD) help combat the crippling effects of chronic pain with an estimated 12 million chronic pain sufferers using cannabis to treat it.

A study in the European Journal of Internal Medicine journal treated 2,736 patients 65 years of age and older for over two years who suffered chronic pain. Almost 94 percent of the participants reported improvement in pain symptoms (both cancer and non-cancer) and a decrease in opioid use.

This is just one of the potential other studies performed that show the benefits associated with cannabinol for chronic pain. Its growing benefits continue to show more people using it every year.

Psychological Disorders: Depression, Anxiety, Bipolar and Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome

Mental illness continues to grow, with an estimated 45 million adults in the U.S. living with one. Cannabis is commonly used for various mental illness and several studies have proven successful in showing the benefits.