What is considered Medical Cannabis in Canada? (Treatment, History)

By: Updated: October 5, 2021

You might be familiar with recreational cannabis, but have you found yourself wondering what is medical cannabis and what's the big difference? You're not alone!

Plenty of people are unfamiliar with exactly what prescription cannabis is and why so many people have it. The good news is that it's actually fairly easy to understand. 


What Is Medical Cannabis and What Does Medical Cannabis Treat?

Medical cannabis is simply cannabis that is used to treat medical conditions. These are typically psychological conditions, such as anxiety, depression, or other mental health disorders

It can also be used to treat anorexia, pain, and memory diseases. Speaking with your doctor can help you determine if your condition may warrant the medical use of cannabinoids. 


How Long Has Medical Cannabis Been Around?

The history of medical cannabis is fairly complex. And, it's certainly not new to the medical world. 

In fact, the first recorded instances of medical marijuana occurred way back in 400 AD! In the ancient world, it was used to treat pain and illness and was one of many herbal remedies that doctors used. 

In 2001, Canada became the first country to authorize the use of medical marijuana. This was a huge step forward in the medical world and has since led to the opening of many dispensaries around the country.


What Do Cannabinoids Do?

Cannabinoids are chemicals that affect a few different parts of the body. They mostly target the parts of the brain associated with memory, pain, appetite, and movement.  

Because of the areas of the brain that cannabinoids work on, they can help: 

  • Relieve pain
  • Lower anxiety levels and relieve mental health issues
  • Reduce or eliminate inflammation
  • Assist in vomiting and nausea following chemotherapy
  • Destroy cancer and prevent the growth of tumors
  • Assist in muscle relaxation
  • Improve weight gain and appetite in people with AIDS, anorexia, and cancer

These are just a few of the ways that cannabinoids work on the body. There are still many other ways that people have benefited from taking medical cannabis.  


How Can I Get My Medical Cannabis Card?

If you feel that medical cannabis may help you with a physical disease or psychiatric condition, it may be time to get your medical cannabis card. This is actually a fairly straightforward process. 

To get started, you'll need to visit your doctor or healthcare provider. There are special clinics that specialize in medical marijuana that you can visit, too. 

At your healthcare visit, a doctor or nurse practitioner will conduct a physical or psychological exam. They will then verify a qualifying reason for you to receive your medical marijuana card. 

From there, all you need to do is apply for your card. You'll place your order from a licensed, online provider and submit your doctor's note. From there, your card will be approved (typically on the same day) and then mailed to you. 


How to write off 100% of your medical expenses

Are you an incorporated business owner with no employees? Learn how to use a Health Spending Account to pay for your medical expenses through your corporation: 

Download the HSA Guide for Incorporated Individuals

Do you own a corporation with employees? Discover a tax deductible health and dental plan that has no premiums:

Download the HSA Guide for a Business with Staff

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