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Medicinal Cannabis and its Impact on the well-being and quality of life carers

Medicinal Cannabis and its Impact on the well-being and quality of life carers

December 11, 2019

Stress and physical and emotional strain on caregivers of patients with chronic and degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's is a public health problem and a challenging experience in many cases. Despite this, the vast majority of physical and mental health programs are aimed at treating patients rather than caring for caregivers; and those that exist about caregivers have focused on the negative consequences of the activity of caring for others.

New studies from the framework of positive psychology and social and affective neurosciences show that positive feelings of compassion, empathy, altruism, gratitude and hope can be predictive variables of psychological well-being and quality of life because they trigger positive attitudes and feelings of happiness, motivation, calmness, sense of agency, self-efficacy and optimism.

Today it is known that these feelings have been associated with the release of substances in the brain and bloodstream, known as neurotransmitters and hormones, respectively. Serotonin, Oxytocin, Dopamine and endorphins are responsible for feelings of well-being and the promotion of healthy social interactions that increase the enjoyment of activities that include social contact. Adequate release of these substances may benefit from the use of medicinal cannabis. It therefore seems to be a good idea today to include medicinal cannabis in the treatment alternatives for carers.

Some forms of medicinal cannabis induce states of relaxation and serenity, which in turn can boost resilience and improve coping strategies that promote personal resources to generate adaptive actions that cultivate positive emotions and facilitate recognition of the value of caring for others. It is through the use of medicinal cannabis, helping caregivers with increasing their sense of physical and mental well-being, improving their quality of sleep, regulating appetite, inducing a sense of calm and increasing positive emotions, in order to recover more quickly from the stresses associated with care.