Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is one of the major cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. It was discovered in the 1960’s by Raphael Mechoulam and it is probably one of the most well-known cannabinoids in the world, along with CBD.
People have been medicating themselves with medical cannabis for over 3000 years. However since the 1920’s it became restricted in many countries. Some governments claim that cannabis is a gateway drug that will lead to the consumer experimenting with more harmful substances, although research has proven that cannabis is a lot less harmful to the body than alcohol.
Therapeutic benefits of THC
One of the most well-known characteristics of THC is that is a psychoactive component of cannabis. Nevertheless, tetrahydrocannabinol has many therapeutic properties.
- Relieves pain: the analgesic effects of THC is one of its main therapeutic properties.
- Relieves nausea and vomiting: since the 1980’s there have been pills that have been prescribed to cancer patients that contain THC, they help to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy such as nausea and vomiting.
- Increases appetite: One of the most common therapeutic effects of THC. It is able to stimulate the appetite of those with eating disorders such as anorexia or with diseases such as cancer and HIV.
- Aids sleep: THC is primarily responsible for the sleep inducing effects of medical cannabis. In fact, several studies in the 1970’s proved that THC is able to help those who suffer from sleeping disorders, such as insomnia.
- Post-traumatic stress disorder: THC causes interference between the interaction and processing of information within the hippocampus, (the site in our brain where memories are formed). This effect helps to reduce the amount of flashbacks PTSD sufferers have.
Evidence regarding the therapeutic benefits of THC has led the FDA to officially approve some of the medications containing tetrahydrocannabinol to treat, for example, nausea and to stimulate appetite. Despite the stigma surrounding the use of medical cannabis, THC has a large amount of medical benefits.