First Graders Possess Medical Marijuana Cards

Medical marijuana card

An example of an Oregon State medical marijuana card.

Written by: Jason Garoutte

No. That’s not a typo. Parents with children diagnosed with disorders and diseases like autism or leukemia are becoming more open to non-traditional treatments such as medical marijuana. There are currently 58 children in the state of Oregon who are covered under the state medical marijuana law which allows them use of the so called “gateway drug.”

All of us have probably heard the terms leukemia and autism before, but do we fully understand what challenges parents are faced with day in and day out with such disorders? Autism is a brain disorder that often makes it difficult to communicate with and relate to others. With autism, the different areas of the brain fail to work together. This leads to anti-social behavior, repeated types of behavior like body rocking, and becoming upset when routines change.

With one in every 88 children diagnosed with autism in the United States, more parents are searching for answers and treatments that work. One problem with autism is that there is no typical case. People can have many different types of behavior, from mild to severe. In nearly one in three cases, children with autism experience seizures or seizure disorders such as epilepsy.

Although marijuana is not currently considered a treatment for autism by the medical profession, it is considered a treatment for seizures and mood altering behavior. So, what makes medical marijuana a safe treatment for children over the more traditional treatments?

The active chemical in marijuana is called THC(Tetrahydrocannabinol.) This is what gives marijuana its medical properties. In essence, the human body produces receptors that bind with THC, interfering with the brains neurotransmitter systems. This allows the recipient to feel various effects, such as reducing pain, limiting seizures, and lowering anxiety. In cancer patients, marijuana has been shown to reduce nausea and increase appetite, after receiving chemotherapy,

“The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends the use of scientifically validated treatments. The use of medical marijuana to treat autism has not been tested and could be dangerous for children,” says Susan Martin, director of media relations at the American Academy of Pediatrics. Although long term effects from marijuana have yet to be determined, using marijuana at such a young age may be detrimental to the child’s brain growth and development.

Traditional treatments for autism include special behavior training, speech therapy, physical therapy, and FDA approved drugs. Melatonin and Chelation are widely used, legal treatments for autism, where medical marijuana is only legal in 18 states.

There are many traditional treatments available to parents for children with these disorders that are safe, legal, and readily available across the nation. However, as a parent when you are faced with the challenges of raising a child with special needs, you may find yourself weighing the possible long term effects against the apparent short term benefits of non-traditional treatment, even if it involves allowing your child access to a medical marijuana card.

Anxiety Disorders Rated The Most Common Mental Illness in USA

Don't let this become you

Written by: Jill Heagerty

The most common type of mental illness are anxiety disorders, affecting 18 percent of Americans. We all experience anxiety occasionally from high levels of stress, but it is important to recognize the dangers of letting it go too far. There are three forms of this disorder: generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and phobic disorder.

Generalized anxiety disorder is a long-lasting, consistent feeling of being overwhelmed. This is the trickiest one to spot because anyone can fee anxiety for extended periods For diagnosis, doctors typically say if the feeling lasts for 6 months tIt can be a symptom of substance abuse, something chronic marijuana users should watch out for who think their choice of drug comes with little consequences.

Sufferers of panic disorder have short attacks of intense apprehension, frequently known as panic attacks, that include shaking, nausea, and trouble breathing. The scariest part about this anxiety disorder is it can escalate into agoraphobia, a fear of getting into situations that are challenging to escape. Sufferers can become so afraid of triggering another attack from these stressful situations that they don’t want to leave the comfort of their own homes, and what kind of life can these poor people lead if they are terrified of walking out the front door?

Phobic disorders are triggered be a specific situation or item. Many common phobias are arachnophobia (fear of spiders), ophidiophobia (fear of snakes), acrophobia (fear of heights), and astraphobia (fear of thunder and lightening). Most people have a fear of something, but a phobic disorder is extreme and can freak people out to the point that a simple experience or object sends them into a tearful tantrum. A few years ago a video of a girl who was a guest on Maury spread all over the Internet, as her extreme phobia of pickles was either pitied or mocked by viewers everywhere. The girl would cry and run away whenever she saw a pickle, an object that does not distress many at all, but she is the perfect example of how a daily item can cause severe stress from those with that phobic disorder.

The importance of this issue is that everyone suffers from anxiety, but if you have an extreme case that lasts for months at a time, seek help. There are medications and therapies that can cure you so it does not get to the point that you live in constant fear. I especially urge anyone with a phobic disorder to conquer it immediately. Never let something run your life, always keep control of your mind and body.

Washington Pot Initiative Future Looking Grim

Marijuana sensibilities

Washington state’s latest marijuana legalization initiative is in jeopardy of not making the November ballot and the effort’s leader is blaming Democrats and other ordinarily pot-friendly organizations such as the ACLU.

To make the ballot, I-1068 supporters need to turn in nearly 242,000 valid signatures by June 30, but so far they have nowhere near that many. In a June 7 press release, a clearly upset I-1068 campaign director Philip Dawdy charges weak-kneed “armchair liberals” with not following through with financial support for the signature collection effort. Dawdy says people and organizations that should be pro pot legalization are keeping their distance in order to limit their political exposure.

The ACLU earlier this year issued a statement that it supports decriminalization of marijuana, but does not support I-1068. The initiative would make pot legal, but provides no real regulation of the drug, the ACLU says, and it would be unrealistic to regulate pot less than tobacco or alcohol. Marijuana, the rights group says, should be taxed and controlled like these other substances.

Initiative 1068 isn’t completely dead yet, although the signature deadline is mere days away. Sensible Washington, the group pushing the initiative, earlier this week paid to have petitions inserted into 80,000 copies of one of Seattle’s alternative weeklies, The Stranger. And Dawdy said in his press release that thousands of petitions still haven’t been returned. Maybe the signature gatherers have enough names but, aided by a bit of their cause, have procrastinated in turning in their homework.

Oregon Pharmacy Board: Marijuana Is Medicine

To some, marijuana is dope, to others, it is medicine. And of course, to many, medicine can be pretty good dope. Whatever the case, the Oregon Board of Pharmacy recently voted 4 -1 to re-categorized marijuana from a straight up recreational drug to one with pharmaceutical value.

Thirteen other states have made this reclassification, but none in years, according to a June 16 press release from Americans for Safe Access. Most states defer to the federal designation, ASA says, which ranks marijuana as a Schedule I substance — in other words, dope. While Oregon is already a medical marijuana state, the ASA says these kinds of official classification changes help push the federal government to come into the 21st Century with regard to its view of pot.

The Obama Administration has already directed federal law enforcement to relax on its rousting of medical marijuana practitioners, but the ASA is campaigning for more meaningful and permanent changes from the President. The California State Assembly Committee on Health recently passed a resolution urging Obama to do just that. The measure appeals to the feds to create a medical marijuana policy that not only reflects the growing view of pot as medicine, but ensures patients’ ability to get it safely if they would “benefit from it.”

Pot Poll: Forget The “Medical,” Just Give Us The Marijuana

Too hippie?

Cannabis Science, Inc., a biotech company focused on creating marijuana based medicinal products, is pretty pleased with current events in California, even after the city of Los Angeles announced it will be closing about 400 medical dope dispensaries. That’s because polls are showing 49 percent of the populace there supports full pot legalization, with just 41 percent against it. And those same citizens will likely be voting on that very question come November.

What’s more, the ranks of those in favor of full legalization, Cannabis Science believes, is bound to increase as outraged patients react to Los Angeles’ curious move.

If pot is fully legalized, it will make moot most of the challenges that medical marijuana businesses currently face — at least in the state of California. Cannabis Science, in particular, is trying to develop marijuana based pharmaceuticals for approval by the Federal Drug Administration. In a June 8 press release touting the poll numbers, company CFO Richard Cowan said the only way to protect patients is to fully legalize marijuana. It looks like the people of California agree.

The November ballot measure would legalize growing and consuming pot. The poll was conducted by the Los Angeles Times and University of Southern California. The sample size was 1,500 and the margin of error is 2.6 percent.

Cigarettes Are The Freshest Facet of Jamaican Drug Smuggling

He was caught puffin' illicit cigarettes

Typically, the mention of Jamaican drug smugglers crops up one word – marijuana; however, a recent transition may surprise some as the joints and narcotics once exported from the island-nation are replaced by something far less sinister, and considerably more legal: Cigarettes. Authorities speculate that the trend is driven by the typical drug lord’s desire to evade harsh narcotics-related penalties; but, they apparently forgot that a breach of the Trade Marks Act can also garner immense fines, and serious jail time. In other words, smuggling cigarettes is also very illegal.

What'd you expect them to be smuggling - drugs?

Nevertheless, the industry is shifting gears from wacky-tobacky back down to just regular old tobacco. Yep, just last week, $300-million worth of illegal Craven A cigarettes were discovered; a marked increase from last month, when over 400 cases of illicit cigarettes (valued at $120 million) were seized by the Jamaica Customs Contraband Enforcement Team.

According to the director of corporate and regulatory affairs at British American Tobacco (BAT), Michael Prideaux, the estimated global market for illicit cigarettes is around 390 billions sticks a year ( which translates to 6 percent of this planet’s cigarette consumption). A rough estimate suggests that 44-50 million of these cancer-sticks find their illicit way to Jamaica.

And that’s only the beginning as more international drug kingpins try for their share of this lucrative business.

Drug Dogs Continue to Sniff Out Pot-Heads on Boston High-School Campuses

Police dogs are highly trained K-9 officers reserved for the most dangerous high-schoolers

Police dogs are highly trained K-9 officers reserved for the most dangerous high-schoolers

“As I stated at the beginning of this year,” began an email from the principal of Lincoln-Sudbury Regional High School, “if the possession, use, and distribution on campus didn’t change, I would bring drug-sniffing dogs onto campus. Today is that day.” Scott Carpenter, who is also the superintendent for the district, wasn’t kidding around when he sent the fiery e-mail out to parents, informing them about the 16 K-9 units scheduled to inspect their child’s school for illicit drugs today, Friday, April 9th. As a result of the first police raid of the high-school campus, two students were successfully apprehended and slapped with a civil violation and a $100 fine for the possession of less than an ounce of marijuana.

As expected, parents have chosen one of two sides on the issue: where one found the announcement encouraging, stating the importance of “young people” understanding

The newest frontier in the "War on Drugs:" High School

boundaries, another wondered if the majority of non-drug users could be significantly affected by such barbaric police-raids. Dean Holden, father of two Lincoln-Sudbury high-schoolers, was one of the dissenters, claiming that he supported the school’s zero-tolerance drug policy, but not the involvement of drug-sniffing dogs. For the most part, however,Lincoln-Sudbury parents supported Carpenter and the inspection.

Perhaps it’s because this isn’t really an isolated occurrence; after all, the Middlesex Sheriff, James Dipaola, said that he’d been performing school drug searches for the past decade, which turned up illegal substances 10 to 15 percent of the time. With the growing trend of incidents – especially distribution incidents – it doesn’t see like Sheriff DiPaola is in it for the long haul.