A review of Veterans Affairs Canada data shows a significant increase of patients who use medical marijuana from areas populated by former Canadian Forces soldiers.
UK researchers recently discovered references to veteran PTSD as far back as 3,000 years ago, with the earliest reference from the Battle of Marathon in 490 B.C. At the time, the symptoms of the disorder were thought to be the spirits of slain enemies.
Modern-day PTSD has been a recognized disorder since 1980, one year before the Reagan Administration’s war on cannabis. As a result, its historical use as a treatment for PTSD has been largely criminal.
However, Canadian studies of war vets are suggesting that cannabis is a real solution for their very real problem.
Zach Walsh, a Psychology Professor at the University of British Columbia, said that “the reason we see higher concentrations in areas where it’s promoted, is because it gives the individuals with PTSD the opportunity to find out that it works.”
Canadian veterans appear well-educated on the benefits of medical marijuana. When one member of the group treats with pot and experiences success, they tell someone else; through word of mouth more vets become enlightened to the joys of cannabis.
There is a challenge for the federal government in that medical marijuana for veterans is covered, and that price tag has been growing exponentially. The program this year will cost Canadians $25 million dollars.
The study also reveals that the ages of vets using medical marijuana are vast. Some are around 25 years old and have presumably been involved in the war in Afghanistan, but patient ages reach as high as 94.
Walsh is set to conduct the first Canadian study on the effects of cannabis on PTSD. While this takes place, veterans everywhere who have seen the horrors of war and come back with the scars to prove it, don’t need a study to know that cannabis provides relief. They are living proof.