Menopause is a normal part of life, but it can bring unpleasant symptoms that interfere with daily life. There are available remedies for menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes and mood swings. Some of these options include lifestyle changes, holistic therapies, and hormonal treatments.
But for a large and growing number of women, cannabis is seen as an all-natural and effective alternative for managing many of the symptoms of menopause. Luckily, if you're a resident of Illinois, you can choose from a long list of innovative cannabis products for the relief of menopause symptoms.
Menopause: A Natural but Uncomfortable Transition
Menopause marks the end of menstrual periods, and it's formally defined as 12 months after experiencing the last period. Menopause is a natural life transition, but it can come with a list of troubling symptoms that range from mild to severely disruptive.
Menopause symptoms include the famous hot flashes, mood swings, insomnia and fatigue, brain fog, night sweats, anxiety, depression, and even digestive upsets. These and other symptoms, such as libido changes and vaginal dryness, can begin in perimenopause, which are the years leading up to menopause. Some of these symptoms can even continue into postmenopause – the time after menopause occurs.
For the lucky few, menopause can also occur without any symptoms. But for most women, it disrupts life on multiple levels. Hot flashes and anxiety can disrupt sleep, and hormone fluctuations can cause anxiety and mood changes that affect relationships, work, and daily living.
Treatments for menopause symptoms range from herbal teas and lifestyle changes to medications such as anti-anxiety drugs and hormone replacement therapy (HRT), which can have side effects such as prolonged vaginal bleeding.
But cannabis in all its forms may relieve menopause symptoms for some women safely, naturally – and effectively.
Cannabis: A Natural Alternative for Menopause Symptoms
The benefits of cannabis for relieving menopause symptoms arise from the interactions between the hormone estrogen, compounds found in cannabis, and the endocannabinoid system, or ECS. This system is a network of cell receptors that respond both to natural cannabinoid chemicals produced by the body and cannabinoids from cannabis. The endocannabinoid system plays a vital role in maintaining homeostasis or balance among many subsystems, including temperature regulation, pain signaling, and mood.
During menopause, levels of hormones, including estrogen, can fluctuate dramatically, and some research suggests that these changes can affect the functioning of the endocannabinoid system. Estrogen helps to regulate the production of a fatty acid called FAAH (fatty acid amide hydrolase), which breaks down natural cannabinoids. This disruption explains menopause symptoms such as depression, anxiety, insomnia, and hot flashes, as mechanisms for temperature regulation are disrupted.
Standard treatments for menopause symptoms target symptoms, with pain relief, anxiety, or depression medications. Hormone replacement therapy aims to stabilize estrogen levels and maintain them at pre-menopause levels, which staves off symptoms. But estrogen therapy raises the risk of stroke and blood clots, and it isn't recommended for long-term use.
Cannabis can't replace lost estrogen or alter the menopause process. But compounds such as THC (delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol) can activate endocannabinoid receptors in subsystems that contribute to menopause symptoms such as mood swings, hot flashesand disrupted sleep. This is why many people are turning to cannabis for safer, more natural relief without the considerable side effects of hormones or pharmaceuticals.
The 5 Best Medical Marijuana Products for Menopause Symptoms
In Illinois, cannabis is legally available to anyone over 21 for both recreational and medical purposes, and the state's many dispensaries carry a variety of premium products for relieving the discomforts of menopause.
Here's a look at five of the best options.
Black Raspberry Road 1:1 CBN Tincture from Avexia
CBN is formed from the breakdown of THC, and this lesser-known cannabis compound has mild sedative effects for better sleep and relief of pain. Avexia's Black Raspberry Road 1:1 CBN tincture may help relieve insomnia and the physical discomforts that come with menopause.
2:1 Comfort Tablets from Avexia
Avexia’s 2:1 Comfort Tablets contain 100mg (2.5 mg per tablet) of CBD to 50 mg (1.25 mg per tablet) of THC. This high-CBD product delivers reliable dosing for long-lasting relief of pain and anxiety that can interfere with sleep.
Counting Sheep Black Cherry Gummies with CBN from Good News
With 100 mg THC and 50 mg CBN, Counting Sheep Black Cherry Gummies with CBN from Good News is an Indica strain designed to deliver quiet nights and relief from the anxiety and insomnia that often occur during menopause.
Face Mints Flower from Cresco
For those who prefer smoking, Cresco's Face Mints Flower is an Indica strain that's high in THCA. This non-psychoactive cannabinoid is the precursor to THC that helps to reduce inflammation and gastric distress. Fast-acting Face Mints have strong sedative effects for relaxation and relief from anxiety.
Ice Cream Cake Flower from Aeriz
With a high THC (22.5 percent) to CBD (0.15 percent), Ice Cream Cake premium flower from Aeriz offers relief from stress, anxiety, insomnia, and pain. This Indica strain also contains several soothing terpenes, including limonene, beta-caryophyllene, linalool, and alpha-humulene.
Get a Medical Marijuana Card Online
It's easy to get your medical marijuana document with the online Telehealth service HelloMD. Register, pay, and receive an online medical consultation with a licensed practitioner and purchase medical cannabis today. You don't pay unless you're approved!