Parkinson's Disease and Cannabis in Florida

Medical Marijuana Doctor Issuing Recommendations for Patients Near Tampa, St. Petersburg and All of Florida

Parkinson's disease is one of the qualifying conditions listed in Florida's medical marijuana law. You must be certified by a physician before you can purchase marijuana products in our state. At Access Marijuana RX, our experienced doctors can determine your candidacy and discuss all aspects of using cannabis. To learn more, please call us in St. Petersburg at 727-209-5470. If for some reason you do not qualify under the state's law, the cost of your evaluation with us is waived.

What is Parkinson's and How Might Cannabis Help?

In Parkinson's disease, nerve cell damage leads to reduction of the chemical called dopamine. The result is altered brain activity, causing Parkinson's symptoms. Although the disease itself is not considered fatal (however, an accident caused by symptoms could be fatal), it deeply affects a person's life. The disease often manifests as:

  • Woman rubbing her hands because of pain and shaking caused by Parkinson's DiseaseTremors and shaking, which often begins with the hands, limbs and fingers
  • Muscle rigidity
  • Slowed physical movement
  • Changes in how you speak
  • Changes in how you write
  • Poor posture
  • Loss of certain movements and expressions that used to be automatic, such as blinking or swinging your arms as you walk

Research is limited, but cannabis can help a person live more compatibly with the effects of Parkinson's. While there is not currently evidence showing that marijuana can be an effective treatment for the disease, there is promising research and a wealth of anecdotal evidence that it can ease the symptoms of Parkinson's, such as:

  • Insomnia/sleeplessness
  • Poor appetite
  • Pain
  • Depression
  • Weight loss
  • Nausea
  • Anxiety

Research is ongoing. Some scientists have published findings showing that marijuana has a neuro-protective effect, protecting some nerve cells from dying. Mixed findings have indicated that marijuana may reduce tremors and shaking for some people, some of the time. Discuss with our experienced physicians whether marijuana will work for you. We help you weigh the benefits against the possible side effects.

What Forms of Cannabis Are Available for Parkinson's?

If you are approved to purchase cannabis in our state, there are several methods of taking the medication that are legal:

  • Oils
  • Tinctures
  • Vaporizers
  • Pills
  • Creams

These products and others are sold at dispensaries across Florida. Products can be chosen to contain THC, which is the component in marijuana that causes a euphoric high, or CBD, which is not associated with a high. All of the products will have similar benefits for sleeplessness, anxiety, nausea and other symptoms, but our doctors can make recommendations based on the exact symptoms you are experiencing and what you want to feel like.

What Method of Taking Cannabis Is Best For Parkinson's?

Medical marijuana is available in several delivery methods. Our physicians can help determine which of these methods will work best for you. 

Know that you might need to try different options to find your perfect match. Because the products all have similar benefits, it largely comes down to personal preference. 

Say you cannot tolerate inhaled smoke. In that case, alternatives such as tinctures or edibles might be a great fit. Marijuana oils rich in cannabidiol (CBD) are another popular choice. Meanwhile, topical balms could work well if you are looking for localized pain relief. 

What Are the Potential Health Risks a Person With Parkinson's May Face When Using Medical Marijuana?

Medical marijuana may have a range of health effects on the body and brain. Research to understand these effects is still ongoing. There is some evidence that it may cause memory problems, impaired judgment, and mood changes, among other things.

If you are interested in using medical marijuana for Parkinson’s, it is important to weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks. Our state-licensed physicians will help you do just that. 

What Questions Should You Ask Your Doctor When Seeking Cannabis To Help With Parkinson's?

We understand that medical marijuana can be intimidating to first-time users. Our physicians will make sure you walk away from your evaluation appointment feeling well-informed and empowered to make decisions about your treatment. 

You can count on us to steer this visit. However, it is a good idea to come prepared with some questions that you want to ask, such as:

  • How should I consume marijuana? 
  • Will medical marijuana interfere with my current medications?
  • What dosage do you recommend? 
  • Are there any activities I should avoid while using medical marijuana? 

How Commonly Is Medical Marijuana Used for Parkinson's?

Millions of Americans use medical marijuana to relieve chronic pain and other symptoms. In the state of Florida alone, there are over 400,000 patients with active medical marijuana ID cards. A percentage of these patients use cannabis for Parkinson's disease. The exact number is unknown.  

You are not alone if you are interested in medical marijuana for Parkinson’s. Our physicians have helped people living with this disease improve their quality of life.

Which Strain of Cannabis Is Best For Parkinson's?

Finding the right strain for your needs can be challenging. It may involve some trial and error. Usually, the staff at your local MMTC will be able to help you with this process. They may recommend an uplifting sativa strain, a relaxing indica strain, or a hybrid.  

How Do I Know If I'm Eligible For Medical Marijuana in Florida?

The experienced, caring physicians at Access Marijuana RX can determine your eligibility. During a visit to our St. Petersburg practice, you can discuss your diagnosis and your goals with the physician. If they determine you are qualified to purchase Florida medical cannabis, they will discuss with you all of the potential benefits, potential side effects, methods of use and other issues. To arrange your appointment, please call us at 727-209-5470.