5 ways real Eaze customers use cannabis for managing pain

Josh Dickey
Sep 17, 2018

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article by Eaze and Eaze customers are published for educational and informational purposes only, and are not intended to serve as or substitute for a diagnosis, treatment or medical advice. Please consult a local physician or other health care professional for your specific health care and/or medical needs or concerns.

In the fight against pain, this much we know: Cannabis can help.

The rest, like what strains and consumption methods work best, is more of a mystery. Though cannabis has been used for pain relief for centuries, almost no study has been done to map strains, products or dosages to particular indications – we’re not yet at the point of what pioneering medical marijuana researcher Dr. Sue Sisley calls “precision medicine.”

That will change. Federal legalization would open the floodgates for research, like Sisley’s groundbreaking study of cannabis for military veterans that Eaze is supporting during Pain Awareness Month.

But until then, we have to rely on our own experimentation – and the openness of others.

[SEE ALSO: Microdosing: With cannabis therapies, less can really be more]

To get an idea of how they’re using cannabis to treat chronic pain, we reached out to dozens of Eaze customers willing to share their stories. We’ve compiled their most compelling testimonials below and grouped them by use-case – headaches/migraines, joint pain, back pain, menstrual cramps and other ailments for browsing ease.

1. HEADACHES AND MIGRAINES

Holly Byerly, 38, works in skincare at a Bay Area medical spa:

Pain type: “I’m bent and hunched over during the day, and have a lot of neck pain … but I mostly use it for migraines, which I was getting up to 15 times a month.”

Why cannabis?: “I’ve been participating in a migraine study for [about a year] and during this time started consistently using [50/50 CBD/THC] drops every evening, three to four drops per night. The next time I went in, they said ‘You’ve only had two migraines in the past two months!'”

Preferred method: “Before I was just smoking flower here and there, using the vape pens three or four days a week. The drops just got me into a nightly routine.”

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Michael K., 57, Master-at-arms, U.S. Navy (ret.), from San Diego:

Pain type: “I originally signed up for a medical recommendation because of migraine and back pain. I have also got some arthritis in one of my hips and my knees. So I use it for basically everything.”

Why cannabis?: “I was seeing so many articles about it, and was tired of taking prescription pills … and it’s cheaper than a couple hundred bucks every few weeks for migraine medicine.”

Preferred method: “I get headaches almost every single day, but it’s the really bad migraines that wipe me out … cannabis, especially CBD, seems to help. I’ll take an edible first, then I’ll vape some CBD/THC until the edibles kick in. It doesn’t make the migraines go away compeletey, but it keeps them from getting worse and shortens the duration. It basically stops it in its tracks.”

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[SEE ALSO: Cannabis for migraines: Can medical marijuana help headaches?]

Anthony H., 23, marketer from San Francisco:

Pain type: “I have a jaw-alignment issue, so I get TMJ headaches. When I open my mouth really wide, the bottom socket kind of pops out … the jaw asymmetry gives me a lot of migraines, and sharp headache pain behind my ear. I’m doing work for it, but sometimes the pain flares up bad enough that I can’t even think.”

Why cannabis?: “I’ve done it recreationally here and there, but never considered it for medicinal until I watched The Secret Plant … I looked into it and thought I’d give it a try.”

Preferred method: “My first option was [non-psychoactive CBD]. But for me that didn’t work as well. After doing some research, they said adding a little bit of THC gives it a synergistic effect. The Ritual Anytime [1:1 CBD/THC ratio tincture] felt a lot better than taking just THC.”

2. JOINT PAIN

Ryan H., 42, a machine operator from Antioch:

Pain type: “I have arthritis in my hands, I work with my hands a lot, turning tools all the time. I also have a knee injury that I have from skateboarding when I was younger, and back and shoulder pain.”

Why cannabis?: “When I first used it [as a teenager] it was just for fun. When I was about 30, I quit altogether for almost 10 years. I just started again when I came back to California. When they legalized it for medical, I thought ‘Well, I’ll try it.’ Every time I go to the doctor, I was given ibuprofen, or muscle relaxers. But I wanted to get to the root of the problem. I don’t want to take these pills all the time.”

Preferred method: “I might smoke some flower, like a bowl when I get home from work, and before bed I might eat an edible. But lately I’ve been using the vape cartridges, because you know how much you can handle, it’s more of a precise dose. … It doesn’t cure your pain, it just turns the volume down. I don’t use it throughout the day, and I work around machinery, not a good mix. I use it mainly when I come home from work, just a little bit to alleviate the pain. I can go to bed, I wake up feeling a lot better.”

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Kaitlin S., 39, executive director of a political organization in Northern California:

Pain type: “I have rheumatoid arthritis. Pain in my hands, hips and feet; sometimes in my knees.”

Why cannabis?: “I have friends who have used it and recommended it to me, and I never really enjoyed being high. Initially I tried just spray CBD products and that didn’t really help. But I started experimenting more when I found out my diet makes a difference with my pain. I can’t really take ibuprofen anymore, so I revisited the cannabis option.”

Preferred method: “I prefer edibles. That was sort of helpful to discover. I hadn’t really tried them before. I don’t enjoy smoking it or how that feels in my lungs. I also have tried, and am still experimenting with, vaping some, too. Edibles are just hard to dial them in and not be too strong, and I stll ned to be able to work. On weekends or evenings that’s fine, I’ll just go to bed early, or be really productive and cleaning my kitchen (laughs). Vaping just a little in the morning and a little more in the afternoon seems to work. I have to put up with being a little high for it to work; the more I have in my system the better it is later on.”

3. BACK PAIN

Katherine L., 25, works at a talent agency in Los Angeles:

Pain type: “I spend all day sitting, and I’ve actually had pretty bad lower back and hip pain since childhood. I’ve been to many doctors and no one has been able to pinpoint a cause. My mom started giving me Advil when I was 10.”

Why cannabis?: “The CBD has been really amazing. I use a ton of different things. I use just straight marijuana most frequently. But I really like the pure CBD vapes, gummies and topicals. I also really like the 50/50 blends on days when I don’t have to function. … I really got into it when my aunt, who lives on the East Coast, would ask me a lot about it and wanted me to send her stuff. I started looking into what would be most helpful for her, and that’s when I found out about pure CBD cartridges. It just slowly replaced Advil for me.”

Preferred method: “I generally just use the vape when I need it. I also get the PLUS yummies. I use those most frequently, and take two when I feel like I’m really going to need it.”

Misha Garcia, 22, student and part-time security worker in Los Angeles:

Pain type: “I originally had been using it mostly for back pain. I’ve been going to a chiroprator since likle 2012, and I’ve just hd chronic neck and back pain for so long. And so I started off getting a card and then I use CBD oil for the pain, and also for sleep problems I was having.”

Why cannabis?: “I did a lot fo research before I went into the dispensary, and was talking to them about pain and insomnia issues. I tried a 3/1 CBD/THC [tincture], it was really helpful and helped me relax my muscles. I work out at night and I found it helped with all of those things.”

Preferred method: “CBD oil. Originally I only used that, especially because I was just testing the waters, and with my parents home there was a lot of stigma. If I want to use THC, I’ll use either a vaporizer cartridge, sometimes wax. Burt I’ll mostly use cartridges and flower. It depends on how I’m feeling. I’ll usually start out with something that’s more relaxing, because it’s easeier to function.”

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[SEE ALSO: KIVA | Making a leading cannabis edibles brand is all about trust]

4. MENSTRUAL CRAMPS

Amy P., 38, from San Francisco:

Pain type: “I’m in one of those midrange ages where I have a history of really bad cramps, the kind that made me very sick. During this one particular incident at Burning Man, there happened to be a local CBD professional there who said ‘rub this on your back when you’re having the cramps, and 20 minutes later do it again. And any threat of it flaring up again was over. That was an amazing, complete turnaround.”

Why cannabis?: “I don’t like taking pain medication. I don’t like taking any kind of medication!”

Preferred method: “I generally use whatever I have around when I’m having pain. I was at Outsde Lands a couple weekends ago, and on my feet all day, and there was the Lion Balm that I bought on Eaze some months back. Beforfe I went out the second day, I slathered that on my feet and was able to manage that pain and not have to sit down. I know nothigng is an end-all-be-all, but hte producs I’ve used have been great tools to keep me from getting exhausted from the pain.”

Holly Byerly: “I’ve definitely used CBD for cramps. There’s some different body soaks you can do, and again, the drops really work for me.”

Misha Garcia: “Depending on how much pain I’m in, like if I have really bad cramps, I’ll use cannabis and Advil together. Or if I’m just feeling irritable, it helps with that as well.”

5. NEUROLOGICAL & AUTOIMMUNE DISORDERS

Eva Sweeney, 35, sex educator from Los Angeles:

Pain type: “I have cerebral palsy, which for me, means my muscles are always tight. This causes not only muscle pain but joint pain because my muscles are always pulling on my joints. I use cannabis for spasticity and pain relief.”

Why cannabis?: “I tried it recreationally and then felt so much better.”

Preferred method: “Currently, I like vaping because I feel in more control of the amount of cannabis I am consuming. I usually only take one or two hits from my vape pen.”

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T.L. Lipner, 57, from Berkeley:

Pain type: “I have dermatomyositis [a rare degenerative autoimmune disease that causes muscle weakness and skin rash]. I’m at the point where it’s becoming hard to use my hands and my arms. I move better when I’m high. I can cook dinner! I can pick up pans!”

Why cannabis?: “I’ve been managing it with a lot of allopathic meds. I’m sven years in, and I don’t like opiates. They work, but I don’t want to be strung out. I’m lucky enough to have a doctor here in Berkeley, and then the industry opened up, so I use it for muscular pain. I have severe arthritis as well, and it works for joint pain. … there is such a variety of malaise that I have that it works for. Not just physical pain, but the psychic pain. The emotional pain.”

Preferred method: “I prefer to start with CBD in coconut oil form in the morning. … I use the Pax [Era vaporizer], and I do smoke flower – I didn’t for years – even though part of my disease is in my lungs. And I still vape. It’s controllable. I know what one or two hits will do. … After a muscle biopsy I have to go on opiates for a couple of days; I can come off the opiates by using weed, and it’s a beautiful transition. … I had a beautiful, healthy body, and at 50 I got sick. I have a disease that will never be cured. I have a disease I will die from. And I‘m not freaking out! I need to be in a place that supports my well-being. When our minds are in a better place, a more solid and comfortable place, our bodies can follow. When you become diseased, that’s even more important. … Weed is beautiful medicine!”

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