Crohn’s is a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). It causes inflammation of your digestive tract, which often leads to abdominal pain, severe diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss and malnutrition. Inflammation that’s caused by Crohn’s can involve different areas of the digestive tract in different people. This inflammation often spreads into the deeper layers of the bowel.
Crohn’s disease can be both painful and debilitating, and sometimes may lead to life-threatening complications. Symptoms include:
- Abdominal pain and cramping
- Blood in your stool
- Mouth sores
- Reduced appetite and weight loss
- Pain or drainage near or around the anus due to inflammation from a tunnel into the skin (fistula)
Causes of Crohn’s
We don’t yet know what the exact cause of Crohn’s disease is but research done has gotten us closer to the answer. At one point doctors and scientists believed diet and stress were the cause, but now doctors know that these factors may exacerbate the disease but not cause it. Several factors, such as heredity and a malfunctioning immune system, likely play a role in its development.
- Immune system. It’s possible that a virus or bacterium may trigger Crohn’s disease; however, scientists haven’t identified a trigger. When your immune system tries to fight off the invading microorganism, an abnormal immune response causes the immune system to attack the cells in the digestive tract as well.
- Heredity. Crohn’s is more common in people who have family members with the disease, so it’s likely that it plays a role in making people more susceptible. Most people with Crohn’s disease don’t have a family history of the disease though so this is really just a theory.
Crohn’s disease is a lifelong, chronic condition that varies widely from person to person. There’s currently no cure for the disease. Treatment for Crohn’s disease typically involves a customized program to reduce the inflammation that triggers many symptoms.
Medical Marijuana and Crohn’s
This disease cannot be cured but medical marijuana (MM) eases symptoms to give patients a better quality of life. MM helps ease the anxiety and nausea that comes along with the disease in addition to boosting the patient’s mood.
Marijuana strains that help with Crohn’s symptoms include:
- Medicine Man: This indica-dominant strain lives up to its name by delivering potent pain relief with high levels of THC.
- Hog’s Breath: This hybrid strain is 50/50, combining the best qualities of both. It is known for its potency against pain and anxiety.
- Jean Guy: This is a potent sativa has high THC content and energizing effects. A great one to start your day cramp-free.
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