When it comes to medical marijuana programs throughout the country they can differ extremely from state to state – and New Jersey has one of the most restrictive programs in the country with only 10 qualifying conditions and a little over 6,000 registered patients since the program was implemented in 2012.
However, they may be taking a giant leap into the future of the medical marijuana industry as Assembly members Tim Eustace, L. Grace Spencer and Angelica Jimenez introduced a bill that would add dysmenorrhea (or menstrual cramping) to the list of qualifying conditions as long as the patient is not responsive to conventional medical therapy.
“By denying women in New Jersey access to a means of treating dysmenorrhea, our state fails to acknowledge the serious impact it can have on their wellness and productivity,” said Eustace (D-Bergen/Passaic). “Furthermore, from an economic standpoint, New Jersey is missing out on millions of dollars in tax revenue due to the restrictive nature of its medical marijuana law. While this will affect women directly, the financial benefit ultimately will be positive for everyone in the state.”
The bill was inspired by the recent announcement of a line of medical marijuana products for women by Whoopi Goldberg and Maya Elisabeth (owner of Om Edibles) called Whoopi and Maya. The products are set to be available by April 20th and they will feature both THC and CBD infused products aimed at helping women with symptoms associated with the menstrual cycle.
“Every month women experience pain and discomfort associated with their period. Cannabis is a wonderful remedy, and combined with other superfoods and medicinal herbs, can provide the type of relief many women need,” said Ms. Elisabeth.
Oftentimes, since surveys and polls show that more men than women use marijuana, people forget that women might be looking for a safer alternative too. There are plenty of women who use cannabis already to treat symptoms of their period, unfortunately that’s not exactly something that most women feel comfortable talking to their OB/GYN about.
“They are afraid to admit it because they’re moms and the risk is too high. They don’t want to lose their jobs or their kids.”-Alix Hadley, CEO of Craft
The truth is, there are probably many more women who do smoke marijuana, either for medicinal purposes like for PMS/PMDD or simply because they enjoy it – or hey, it might be both. The thing is, because of things like high position jobs and children, which can quickly be taken away in many states over a positive drug test for THC, keeps women from being open and honest because of that fear.
Having menstrual cramps as a listed, qualifying condition in all states with medical marijuana programs would be ideal – everyone deserves relief. Not just children with epilepsy. Not just people with cancer or chronic pain conditions like fibromyalgia or arthritis. We all deserve relief from pain – even the kinds of pain that we just don’t seem to talk about like period cramps.