Last updated: May 25, 2020
Many people are turning to CBD oils and other products to relieve a wide array of symptoms. They have a legal right in their state to do so.
Medical marijuana use is exploding in our nation. To date, thirty-four states, Washington D.C., and Puerto Rico have all legalized its use to varying degrees. Moreover, several states have the matter of legalization and reform scheduled for upcoming ballots through 2020.
The varying degrees of legalization are making it tough on employers though. Employees impaired by medical marijuana pose a higher risk of accidents. It’s also proven that marijuana use causes a drop in productivity. Those two facts alone put up red flags in the workplace.
CBD vs THC
The medical marijuana category is divided into two sections.
Some states only allow legal use of CBD oils and products for medicinal purposes. They prohibit the use of marijuana as a whole. On the other hand, some states allow the use of the marijuana plant and products made with THC for medicinal use. Of course, we should mention that some states carry laws legalizing both uses.
CBD (cannabidiol) is a compound we find naturally in the cannabis plant. Both hemp and marijuana fall in the cannabis plant category. Therefore, this compound is found in marijuana and hemp.
The CBD levels are higher than THC in hemp and vice versa in marijuana.
Even though CBD has proven effects on the brain, it does not induce the same effect on the user that THC does. It is an entirely different cannabinoid. Therefore, using it yields an entirely different result.
CBD is not intoxicating, but it can cause a difference in the way the user feels. Therefore, it is used for the treatment of:
- seizure disorders
Depression and anxiety are responsible for a growing reliance on pharmaceutical drugs in our country. Doctors realize this and are looking for alternatives. Since CBD is nonintoxicating, doctors are prescribing it more often to treat these mental health disorders.
Is CBD really a cure-all?
In addition to treating mental health and seizure disorders, CBD is also used by cancer patients. Cancer patients report that it stimulates appetite, relieves pain, and eases insomnia. Data is also showing that a growing number of doctors proclaim cancer patients are benefiting from the use of CBD. In fact, CBD and THC combined reduce nausea that often accompanies chemotherapy.
Furthermore, studies in progress suggest that CBD has anti-cancer properties, as well. If these studies prove true, cancer treatment could be revolutionized!
Chronic pain relief is another huge reason people are turning to CBD products. The prescription painkiller epidemic is nothing short of frightening. Families forever ruined by addiction. People are dying in the tens of thousands every year due to overdose. It’s no wonder doctors shy away from long-term use of these drugs.
However, living a life with chronic pain is a huge cross to bear. CBD oil contains anti-inflammatory and other properties that many believe give them the relief that they seek.
According to those that use it, the wonders of CBD oil just don’t stop! Apparently, CBD oils contain properties that beautify our skin, too. We heard even wrinkles have met their match! Advocates proclaim that acne and dry skin problems disappear with the use of CBD skin-care products.
The active component in marijuana that produces a psychoactive effect on the user is THC. Growers in states that have legalized medicinal and recreational marijuana are always trying to increase the THC levels in their product. Although the claims of potency levels rising between 10-30% since the 1980s leave a wide margin for discussion, it is a known fact that the THC levels in pot are increasing.
From chronic pain relief to treating glaucoma, advocates of this drug claim widespread benefits. However, lung cancer and other respiratory disease are a concern for pot smokers. Studies are ongoing.
The euphoria effect obtained from using marijuana is due to the release of dopamine in the brain. That is to say, no matter whether the drug is being used recreationally or medically, it impairs judgment, motor skills, and reaction time.
This is a major concern for employers.
The benefits are questionable
Whether or not CBD oils and medical marijuana are as beneficial to the medical community as we are led to believe remains to be seen. Studies continue and further data is being collected on the topic every day.
In the meantime, people are turning to cannabidiol products in record numbers. Sadly, this could be to their detriment.
People may want to consider whether the amount of relief they obtain from using CBD is worth the risk of losing their job.
Employees who are using CBD oils and other products run the risk of testing positive for THC use. This is because of the THC levels found in CBD products. Currently, there are no set regulations in place monitoring the THC levels extracted along with CBD. It stands to reason that trace amounts escape through the extraction process, but with no set methods to adhere too, manufacturers have free rein.
Most of them choose to forge ahead without any testing in place at all.
This is posing a problem for employers and their employees who may never have intentionally ingested THC. Most employers are refusing to remove marijuana from the company drug test. If THC levels in CBD products are too high and the employee tests positive for marijuana use, drug-free policies in place are likely to call for termination.
Federal regulation of marijuana may be changing…
As we move further down the road of marijuana legalization and reform, the Federal Government is considering removing marijuana from all federal and DOT drug testing. State legislatures need to take a hard look at where this all fits into an employer’s perspective.
Marijuana inhibits the user. This has a negative effect on workplace safety.
Although CBD does not inhibit the user, CBD products containing levels of THC cause positive drug test results. This is unacceptable by any means.
There is a lot that remains in the dark regarding CBD and marijuana. However, shining a light on the problems at hand is the first step toward achieving the solution.