Cannabis shock: 1.4million Britons are treating their illnesses with illegal cannabis – News 247

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For any copyright, please send me a message.  As many as 2.8 percent of the adult population are self-medicating with street cannabis to manage the symptoms of conditions such as arthritis (230,000 people), cancer (100,000) and multiple sclerosis (50,000). A startling 650,000 people in the UK are using cannabis for depression, 590,000 for anxiety, 327,000 for chronic pain, 180,000 for insomnia and 180,000 for post traumatic stress disorder. People with Huntington’s disease are most likely to take cannabis to manage their condition, with more than two fifths of patients saying they do. Nearly a third of people with Parkinson’s disease and a fifth of people with MS say they also use the drug illegally to alleviate symptoms. Over half of all self-medicators use cannabis on a daily basis to treat their condition and the average spend is £163 every month.  Medical cannabis was legalised in 2018, but strict conditions mean only a few dozen patients have been able to obtain a prescription on the NHS. Patients who can afford to pay for a consultation and a private prescription are able to do so without restrictions, but the extremely high costs rule this out for most people.  Because most patients cannot access medical cannabis on the NHS or privately, huge numbers are instead turning to illegal street cannabis to plug the gap.  This can lead to a variety of adverse effects for patients including financial strain, contact with criminal gangs, risk of getting caught and the legal implications of this, and the fact that they often have to smoke cannabis instead of using an oil, spray, balm or capsule, which may be preferable.  The data comes from a YouGov survey of 10,602 adults published in a new report Left Behind – the Scale of Illegal Cannabis Use for Medicinal Intent, a report by the Centre for Medicinal Cannabis (CMC). CMC, an organisation representing medical cannabis and CBD manufacturers, wrote in the report: “The monetary, ethical and social cost to individuals using cannabis to relieve their symptoms is high, and unnecessarily exposes them to significant personal risk.” The study found that people across Britain from all age groups, social classes, family groups and genders are using cannabis in this way, with almost half spending over £100 per month on it.  As a group, patients are spending more than £2.6billion a year on black market cannabis. CMC has called on the Government to urgently review the policy relating to medical cannabis access. The organisation’s founder Steve Moore said: “These shocking figures quantify what we long suspected.   “Almost three percent of the UK adult population are choosing to use cannabis rather than traditional pharmaceutical products to treat their chronic medical conditions

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