If you live with a chronic or debilitating medical condition and have yet to find satisfactory relief with prescription medication, medical cannabis may be a worthwhile alternative.
Thankfully, a growing number of US states have legalized medical cannabis for the treatment of a wide range of medical conditions. However, talking to your doctor about medical cannabis isn’t always easy. But don’t let doubts or reservations around how to talk to your doctor about medical cannabis prevent you from gaining access to a treatment that could improve your quality of life! Here are a few tips that can give you a better idea of how to talk to your doctor about medical cannabis.
How to Approach your Certified Provider:
Many patients tend to be shy and reserved when it comes to honestly expressing their desire to incorporate cannabis into their treatment plan. Being honest and direct about your medical condition, your understanding of medical cannabis, and your desire to try it is always best.
There are many different ways to kick off an honest and productive conversation about medical cannabis with your doctor. Mentioning that you were recommended medical marijuana by a friend, a book, or a video, can be just as effective as directly expressing your personal desire to try it. Remember that doctors are well-accustomed to having open and honest conversations with their patients about possible treatment plans.
Be Prepared To Talk To Your Doctor About Medical Cannabis
If you’re discussing the possibility of medical cannabis with a doctor that is not familiar with you or your medical history, you may need to consider how to talk to your doctor about medical cannabis more carefully.
Your first step should be to collect and present any medical documentation that may support your condition or your need for medical cannabis. Make sure to bring any past medical paperwork related to your condition or the treatment of it to your appointment. This may help to convince your physician of your need for an alternative treatment.
Additionally, take some time to understand your state’s requirements for obtaining medical cannabis, and make sure you have the proper paperwork ready.
It may be helpful to approach the topic with your regular physician or someone who is familiar with your medical history. Being familiar with you may make a doctor more understanding of your situation, and more likely to grant your request. Otherwise, seeing a physician that specializes in medical cannabis may be a good idea to streamline the process and save yourself some time and effort. You can often find a list of such physicians on your state’s medical cannabis website.
Do Your Homework
It helps to educate yourself on the topic of medical cannabis (and how it relates to your condition) before talking to a certified provider. Demonstrate a clear understanding of your condition, the symptoms it causes, how medical cannabis can treat them, and the risks of medical cannabis (both short term side effects and long-term risks.
You shouldn’t expect every doctor to be well-versed or fully educated on the topic of medical cannabis. Bringing some documentation to explain the science behind cannabis and your condition, or merely pressing them to do their own research, may work to your benefit. Make sure your provider is a certified provider by finding their name on the DOH website.
If all else fails, don’t hesitate to make your life easier by seeking out a physician that specializes in medical cannabis!