Smoking cannabis ‘may help alcoholics to quit drinking’

Andy Wells
16 November 2016

Scientists have claimed that smoking weed may actually help alcoholics kick their drinking habit for good.

Despite cannabis being regarded by anti-drugs campaigners as a ‘gateway drug’ to more addictive and harder substances, experts at the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Canada think the opposite is true.

UBC researcher Zach Walsh explained: “Research suggests that people may be using cannabis as an exit drug to reduce the use of substances that are potentially more harmful, such as opioid pain medication.

“In reviewing the limited evidence on medical cannabis, it appears that patients and others who have advocated for cannabis as a tool for harm reduction and mental health have some valid points.”

However, the team said that while cannabis can help treat symptoms of depression and anxiety, it was not recommended to help people suffering from conditions like bipolar disorder.

Walsh added: “There is not currently a lot of clear guidance on how mental health professionals can best work with people who are using cannabis for medical purposes.

“With the end of prohibition, telling people to simply stop using may no longer be as feasible an option.

“Knowing how to consider cannabis in the treatment equation will become a necessity.”

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