A new study from the American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse shows that veterans prefer pot over pills and booze and frequently substitute the latter with the former. Pardon me while I topple over in shock. A research team from Harvard, Palo Alto University, and Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia asked 93 American vets about their cannabis use.
The findings were pretty unsurprising; 80 percent of respondents said that they used cannabis to treat physical and mental health conditions. 69 percent of those 80 said that they used cannabis to treat chronic pain, while 60 percent reported using cannabis to relieve anxiety. Lastly 59 and 56 percent used it to treat PTSD and depression respectively.
Researchers also looked at vets’ preference in illicit substances. Results showed that 60 percent of the group preferred using cannabis over any other illicit substance, including alcohol. Considering the high rate of vet homelessness and suicide, a lot of which has to do with alcohol use, perhaps it might be better for our veterans to be prescribed cannabis for chronic pain and PTSD so they’re not driven to the drink? Just a thought.
These results should not surprise us; we’ve seen similar results in similar studies as more and more states have legalized cannabis for medical and recreational use. These new (sort of) results just add more fuel to the flame. As more results like these come out will we see more pushback from the booze and pharmaceutical industries? I expect that we will from big Pharma, but big Booze seems to have accepted its fate as the second string, and is instead adopting a “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” attitude”, a wise move in my opinion. Vets love weed. Pain patients love weed. Seniors love weed. Seems now pretty much everyone prefers pot over pills and booze. One thing seems to be certain: you can’t beat weed.
Are you a vet who has used cannabis to improve your overall quality of life? Tell us about your experiences in the comments below!