I'm glad a few people, including our guest expert, mentioned this herb. I think it has therapeutic value and it's a plant, so I would call it herbal medicine.
This was my go to herb when I lived in the states(legal in my state), but I didn't feel comfortable continuing it's use while pregnant and breastfeeding. Now in Japan, it's not available; I'll leave it at that.
As was mentioned in other replies, this herb works for some and not others. It also depends heavily on the strain and quality used, which is why it was nice to go to a regulated facility, discuss what effects you are looking for and get a regulated, tested strain matching your symptoms.
For me, I found that it worked best at the end of the day when everything is done and I'm just relaxing before sleep. Then I would have a break from my loud mindscape and sleep really well. I would wake up refreshed and have a lingering feeling of well-being and calm throughout the next day. I felt friendly and positive about upcoming social interactions, like we are all part of one human family, so no need to worry or feel anxious. ...sigh...now I kinda bummed myself out that it's unavailable to me now....
Oh well, it's the only disagreement I have with Japan really.
Has Japan changed their stance toward the hemp (non THC) derived substances? I know some people who swear by the high cbd preparations for general anxiety and stress. And I have started to hear whispers about the cbg stuff, although so far only heard that it is helping some people get better sleep.
Japan is still rigidly following the Cannabis Control Act established in 1947 with the strong oversight of occupying USA. This essentially squashed traditional food and fiber uses that were coon in Japan.
Anybody who understands Japan wont be surprised by the continued rigid stance on this seemingly outdated law.
There is still very strict control for imports -- no THC products are allowed. CBD products can be allowed, but only with lab testing that shows 0.00% or "Not Detectable" levels of THC.
I'm very interested in what you told here, because I had never thought that Cannabis actually has a useful medicinal value!
[I had always dismissed it as "a drug"].
This might be a bit off-topic (sorry if it is) but as I don't really suffer from social anxiety, but I do suffer from other kinds of stress reactions (very similar, IMHO)
I thought I'd add my two cents anyway
I have found that a pillow made with natural linen fibre (the cover) and filled with sheep wool (from local sheep, not my own as I only have goats )
works incredibly well in removing stress and relaxing me, when I go to bed. I fall asleep like a baby now, even though I was just suffering from stress a few minutes earlier. You know, normal life stress like getting the kids to bed on time etc. Oh and also other stresses that may not be so "normal" but hey, stress is stress and anxiety is the result, no matter what the root cause, that's what I think.
[Disclaimer: I am not an expert nor a therapist. Please do take anything I say with a pinch of salt, or what was it that was the correct expression in English ]
"But if it's true that the only person over whom I have control of actions is myself, then it does matter what I do. It may not matter a jot to the world at large, but it matters to me." - John Seymour
Cannabis can actually be effective for a number of conditions, though its recent historical status (the past century or so) has ensured that not much science has been done until much more recently.
Recently, the receptor (if I remember correctly, AP-2) upon which some combination of terpenes works to interrupt the stress-to-anxiety reaction has been identified. There is still work to be done on the subject, as from what I have read, different ratios of terpenes can produce wildly different effects, such as increasing anxiety rather than alleviating it.
This is why different strains affect people in different ways, though the effects are usually consistent from person to person with the correct dosage relative to the individual based on things like body weight, gender, and tolerance.
Cannabis has been positively linked to female sexual performance, and some would say health, as the two are hard to separate. Many people, myself included, rely upon it not only for anxiety, but also for pain management in situations where otherwise liver-, kidney-, and heart-damaging levels of standard NSAIDs would be required for the same effect.
In addition to all this, and this is by no means an exhaustive list, professional athletes and creative professionals of all kinds are combining cannabis consumption with caffeine and physical activity to put themselves into what is known as a "flow state" of consciousness, a mental state that purportedly increases creative and other mental potentials that can last a week or more after attaining that state.
I can tell you, in no uncertain terms, that this can actually be achieved, after an experiment with some edibles, a thermos of coffee, and my first-ever experience cross-country skiing. I did it without thinking, drinking my coffee on the way and popping an edible at the same time; I figured when I fell (and boy did I fall, without injury, thankfully), it might help prophylactically with the pain. I had no idea it would alter my mental state to the extent it did for over a week.
To be clear, this wasn't intoxication. It was an extremely clear, coherent, creative state. A week after, I found myself, in a moment of pique while writing, jotting down two-and-a-half pages, point-form, of a non-fiction permacultural futurism skeleton roadmap thingie, which I hope to turn into my first non-fiction permaculture book, and it's got so much potential, I can't wait to get the research and bibliography done so I can write it properly.
My cognition at work was also positively affected. And the great thing is, for those who don't take it all the time, that it's sufficient to plan a good workout for the weekend and dose onesself then, with coffee, and the benefits will stay with you throughout the work week.
I was busy wondering at the cognitive benefits of the flow state, but I also noticed, at a recent games night with work friends of my much-better-half, where I normally would feel quite inhibited and anxious, that I felt quite comfortable. I normally wouldn't have been, as I knew one person there other than my much-better-half, and that one not well.
I would love for Sharol to expound upon cannabis as medicine. I have heard, for instance, that some strains have anti-inflammatory properties, for instance, and that it also can affect the potency and effect of medicines taken with it. I would love to find out that my canna-bulletproof coffee with a bit of turmeric is an anti-inflammatory powerhouse, for instance, in addition to being delicious.
Does anyone else have medical/therapeutic cannabis anecdotes?
Thank you, Amy, for branching this thread off.
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
-Robert A. Heinlein
Surfs up space ponies, I'm making gravy without this lumpy, tiny ad: