10 popular medical cannabis strains for PTSD relief

Emily Gray Brosious

10 medical cannabis strains for PTSD reliefA budtender pours marijuana from a jar at Perennial Holistic Wellness Center medical marijuana dispensary, which opened in 2006, on July 25, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo credit: David McNew/Getty Images)


Post-traumatic stress disorder is a psychiatric disorder that affects some people who experience or witness a traumatic event such as military combat, natural disasters, terrorist incidents, or physical or sexual abuse. Most trauma survivors return to normal after a period of time, but others have lasting stress reactions that may get worse over time, leading to the potential development of PTSD.

Patients suffering from PTSD often relive traumatic experiences through nightmares and flashbacks. The disorder can cause trouble sleeping, feelings of detachment and estrangement, and more severe behavioral symptoms that can significantly impair a person’s life.

An estimated 7.8 percent of Americans will experience PTSD at some time in their lives, according to the Nebraska Department of Veterans Affairs. About 3.6 percent of U.S. adults between the ages of 18 and 54 (5.2 million people) will have PTSD during the course of a given year in the country.

Eighteen states across the country now allow patients with post-traumatic stress disorder to access medical cannabis, and it looks like Colorado might soon be the 19th state to add the condition to its list of medical marijuana qualifiers.

Cannabis can help PTSD patients through a process known as memory extinction. This can help reduce the psychological associations between certain external stimuli, such as loud noises or stressful situations, and past traumatic experiences in people suffering with PTSD.

Indica and hybrid strains are recommended for PTSD patients because they help reduce anxiety and stress, which can trigger panic attacks and depression. However, patients suffering from clinical depression as their primary PTSD symptom should also experiment with sativa strains, according to Whaxy.

Explore the following gallery to learn about 10 popular strains for PTSD patients seeking symptom relief.

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