Getting older comes with many changes. For women, those changes include menopause or the cessation of the menstrual cycle. In most cases, it’s a natural transition that consists of three stages — perimenopause, menopause, and postmenopause. The average age of onset is 52, although some women experience early menopause beginning in their forties.
During perimenopause, the stage leading up to actual menopause, estrogen levels begin to drop. Although it’s a perfectly normal part of the transition, those changes in your hormones can lead to uncomfortable side effects. Many women experience mood swings, pain, fatigue, low libido, and more, all of which can last seven to 14 years.
No matter how long menopause symptoms last, they can be unbearable, marring an otherwise beautiful transition into the next stage of your life. Fortunately, there are treatments available that can help, including medical cannabis.
A Menopause Alternative Treatment: How Cannabis Can Help
Traditional treatments for menopause depend on your specific symptoms and their severity. Common options include:
- Hormone replacement therapy
- Prescription medications
While these treatments may alleviate some symptoms, they may come with significant side effects. They can also raise your risk of developing other health issues.
Cannabis offers an alternative, providing symptom relief with fewer side effects. But how does it work? There’s a link between your estrogen levels and your endocannabinoid system (ECS). This is a biological system responsible for regulating and balancing various functions, including mood, sleep, appetite, the immune system, and the reproductive system. Estrogen regulates fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), a compound that breaks down the endocannabinoid anandamide. Decreasing estrogen levels allow FAAH to break down more endocannabinoids, causing an imbalance in your ECS.
Cannabis contains cannabinoids, which function like your naturally produced endocannabinoids. In essence, these cannabinoids supplement your lower endocannabinoid levels, helping to restore balance within your ECS and alleviating menopause symptoms.
Menopause Symptoms Cannabis May Help With
Let’s take a closer look at some of the specific menopause symptoms cannabis may help to treat:
Mood Swings, Anxiety, and Depression
Several studies have found that cannabis may help to lift your mood, easing anxiety and depression systems. There’s also evidence that your endocannabinoid system plays a role in mood regulation. Restoring balance to your ECS with the help of cannabis could help to curb or prevent the mood swings commonly associated with menopause.
Sleep disturbances are common during menopause, affecting 35% to 60% of women. The relaxing effects of some cannabis strains can make it easier to fall asleep. Cannabis may also help you stay asleep longer. Additionally, it doesn’t have the same side effects as many conventional sleep aids.
Hormonal changes can lead to all kinds of pain, including breast tenderness, joint pain, and migraine headaches. Pain relief is one of the best-known benefits of medical cannabis. Several strains can ease your discomfort, helping you to get back on your feet (or making it easier to get some much-needed restful sleep).
Hot flashes are one of the first things people think of when they hear “menopause symptoms.” As it turns out, anandamide helps to regulate body temperature. Decreases in estrogen levels lead to a decrease in this natural endocannabinoid, making internal temperature regulation a challenge.
Restoring balance within your ECS could be the key. Supplementing with plant-derived cannabinoids could give your ECS the boost it needs to improve temperature regulation and prevent hot flashes.
Let’s face it: Decreased sex drive is common during menopause. And whether it’s issues like less interest in intimacy, vaginal dryness, pain during intercourse, or trouble having orgasms, low libido can be incredibly frustrating. A growing body of research and anecdotal evidence shows that cannabis may help increase sexual desire, lubrication, and orgasm intensity.
Tips for Choosing the Right Menopause Weed Strain
With so many weed strains out there, knowing which one to choose for managing menopause symptoms might seem impossible. The following tips can help you narrow your options and make your decision easier:
- Know your goals. What menopause symptoms do you want to treat?
- Consider when you’ll take it. Some strains promote energy and productivity, while others can leave you pleasantly relaxed and sleepy.
- Keep your personal preferences in mind. CBD:THC ratios vary between strains. Some are high in THC with little to no CBD, some have equal amounts, and others are high in CBD with little to no THC. High-THC strains are more likely to cause psychoactive or mind-altering effects, while those high in CBD will have fewer and more mild effects. Terpene profiles vary, too, meaning each strain has a different flavor.
- Speak with a budtender. A knowledgeable dispensary employee can offer recommendations based on your needs and goals.
- Experiment. The best strain for one person’s symptoms may not provide you with the same results. Experimenting with different ones can help you find what works best for you.
A Few Strains To Try
If you still aren’t quite sure where to start, we have a few recommendations that you can find at VidaCann’s Florida dispensaries:
- Super Lemon Haze: A cross between Lemon Skunk and Super Silver Haze (another strain beneficial for menopause symptoms), this tart, sweet strain can boost energy and help stabilize mood.
- Durban Poison: This pure Sativa strain energizes and uplifts, helping to get — and keep — you going.
- Avikedel: If you’re looking for low-THC options, Avikedel is a great option. It’s an Indica-dominant high-CBD strain ideal for easing migraines and inflammatory pain.
- King Dosi: This potent Indica-dominant strain is best for nighttime use. It can be quite effective in easing physical pain and helping insomnia sufferers fall asleep.
- Sour Diesel: A highly popular strain, Sour Diesel is a fast-acting Sativa that boosts energy and leaves you feeling confident and relaxed. It can also heighten your sense of touch. All of these qualities make it a good choice for combating low libido.
Manage Menopause Symptoms With Cannabis Products From VidaCann
With the right menopause weed strain, you can manage your symptoms and actually enjoy the positive things that come with getting older. If you’re interested in trying it out, speak with your healthcare provider first. Then visit VidaCann, where you’ll find a vast array of high-quality cannabis products, including strains ideal for easing uncomfortable, unwanted menopause symptoms. Feel free to browse our product offerings online or visit your nearest Florida dispensary today.