Baby Boomers Smoking Weed? Yes, Your Dad Probably Consumes Marijuana
It’s much more common than one would think.
There was a point in time when parents were thought of as marijuana’s biggest enemy, but times have changed. As society’s elders become increasingly afflicted with ailments, new approaches to relief have become integral to a functioning life. Because of this, senior citizens are consuming cannabis at a fairly rapid rate.
Demographically, persons 55 years old and up are the fastest growing market of marijuana consumers in recent years. As reported by both CNN and CBS last year, the most recent statistics show a 53 percent increase in the number of baby boomers turning to cannabis for its healing properties from 2013-2014. With seniors only making up about 14 percent of the population, this growth serves as proof of the powerful attributes of cannabis.
Side effects v. Positive effects
Marijuana’s medicinal effects haven’t been lost on doctors, scientists and long time users, especially when compared to the cons of typical prescription painkillers. Senior citizens make up 30 percent of prescription pill patients, many of those with incredibly addictive opioid-based ingredients.
Side effects associated with prescription painkiller usage other than addiction include nausea, vomiting, digestive issues like bloating and constipation, and liver damage. Marijuana has been known to prevent and combat all of these symptoms, also acting as a suppressant to many other common illnesses of the elderly. In fact, some of the most documented ailments experienced by senior citizens have been proven manageable by the curative effects of both tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD).
Studies have shown that cannabis has positive effects on preventing and treating existing glaucoma, restricting the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, alleviating inflammation and pain associated with arthritis and Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and substantially scaling down painful tremors that come with Parkinson’s disease.
Neuroprotective properties of cannabis have also been shown in its ability to help protect the brain from damage associated with strokes and concussions, also proving effective in suppressing negative reactions in veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder.
It’s all in their head
Apprehension felt by seniors towards the medical use of marijuana has been steadily quelled by education, on the part of both the elderly and dispensary workers. Stigmas surrounding cannabis use, like intake methods or whether to consider it a legitimate medicine, have played into the old school mindset many seniors still have in modern times.
Knowing that marijuana can be ingested in ways other than smoking it (in pill form, edible and topical form) can calm worries. Budtenders’ knowledge of best intake methods and strains for specific treatments, along with a willingness and patience to work with the elderly, also helps.
If you find mother or father’s stash, don’t think they’re necessarily grasping at last efforts of youth – they’re opening their minds to an alternative and effective method to medicine. Continuing to educate, engage and participate with seniors citizens when it comes to marijuana will only prove more beneficial in the end for all parties involved.