Bipolar Disorder & Medical Marijuana

Bipolar Disorder or manic depression, is characterized by abnormal and disturbing mood swings, from euphoria to serious depression.   Individuals with Bipolar disorder often are in denial and rationalize their destructive and psychotic behavior as normal.  On the bright side, people with manic depression can be great achievers and are exceptionally creative and productive in their upswing periods.  

Overwhelming research evidence shows that Cannabinoids, components of Medical Marijuana, can modulate defective brain receptor function, offering treatment, if not a cure,  for behavioral conditions such as Bipolar Disorder or Manic Depression.


"Researchers cited in an surveys found that 27% of Medical Marijuana patients in California were prescribed the drug for various mood disorders, including bipolar disorder."  


Mania features over-happiness, hyper-energy with shocking and sudden irritability.  Depression features, crying, poor eye contact and a negative outlook, no matter the situation.  Sufferers often make decisions without appropriate thought and regard to consequences.  As a result, people with Bipolar disorders introduce constant of emotional turmoil to their lives and relationships.  Chronic suffers too often turn to suicide as a way to escape a chaotic world that does not understand them.  In most cases, what sufferers are really trying to escape is their own unfortunate mental condition.

MMJDOCTORONLINE Note:  It is important that a licensed Medical Marijuana Doctor be consulted before taking any medication.  THC should not be indicated for everyone with Bipolar disorder.  It is also very important to take the right dose of the right form of Medical Cannabis.  For more information, contact one of our Medical Marijuana doctors for a Cannabis Consultation.

Facts and Figures -Bipolar Disorder

  • risk of suicide is > 6% over 20 years
  • self harm occurs in 30–40% of cases
  • substance-use disorder is a often a companion condition


" The ever quickening advances of science made possible by the success of the Human Genome Project will also soon let us see the essences of mental disease. Only after we understand them at the genetic level can we rationally seek out appropriate therapies for such illnesses as schizophrenia and bipolar disease."

-- James Dewey Watson  -  American molecular biologist, geneticist, Nobel prize winner as co-discoverers of the structure of DNA.

"Data suggests that Cannabis use may have a beneficial effect on cognitive functioning in patients with severe psychiatric disorders."

-- Raphael J. Braga, MD

Research Breakthroughs

Today, there is a lot of interest in Cannabinoids and their effects on mood disorders.  Major medical organizations are beginning to cooperate and contribute to the literature and medical practice.  None other than a Harvard Medical School doctor chimes in to report on the efficacy of Medical Cannabis in psychological disorders (below) .

 Bipolar Disorder Patients feel Better about Marijuana than Conventional Drugs

"The Use of Cannabis as a Mood Stabilizer in Bipolar Disorder: Anecdotal Evidence and the Need for Clinical Research"

--  Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, Harvard Medical School, Lester Grinspoon, MD, et. al.

Summary Findings

  •  many patients found  that medical Cannabis is effective in the treatment of their bipolar disorder
  • patients used Cannabis to treat mania, depression
  • many thought Cannabis was more effective than conventional drugs they tried in the past
  • side effects were less than conventional drugs
  • users reported a decline in manic rages
  • medical Marijuana was used a reduced dose of lithium with good results

MMJDOCTORONLINE Notes:  The above findings, in combination with other research suggest efficacy and medication strategy. Clients are strongly advised to consult a California Licensed Medical Cannabis Doctor before attempting medication. Our Physicians can provide 420 evaluations and Recommendations online quickly and easily to Bipolar sufferers.

Case Study

Effects of Cannabis use on age at onset in Schizophrenia and Bipolar disorder

-- Journal of Schizophrenia, 2009

766 patients, 16 to 65?years, were diagnosed for substance abuse/use. 676 subjects were diagnosed as Schizophrenic and 90 subjects were deemed bipolar. The effect of Cannabis use on condition onset in Schizophrenia and Bipolar disorder sets was examined.


Cannabis use may decrease the age onset in both schizophrenia and bipolar disorders and reduce the effect of diagnosis. These findings are consistent with the notion that Medicinal Cannabis may reveal a pre-existing genetic defect shared, in part , between patients with Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder.

Further Reading

Cannabinoids promote hippocampal neurogenesis and produce anxiolytic- and antidepressant activity

Decreased depression in Marijuana users

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