Exploring the Potential of Cannabis for Alleviating Motion Sickness

Follow Us:

I hate motion sickness. Most people don’t particularly enjoy feeling sick all the time. However, getting motion sickness while traveling by car or plane to your vacation spot can quickly ruin the experience. Luckily, the 21st century is ours. The majority of ailments, including motion sickness, now have medications created by our brightest minds. The efficacy of these products, however, differs from person to person. Researchers are investigating novel treatments for this illness, such as cannabis. 

Researchers have highlighted numerous therapeutic benefits of cannabis that could aid in treating various medical conditions. Seeking to include cannabis in your medical routine necessitates consultation with a specialized medical marijuana doctor for appropriate guidance and recommendations. 

Learn everything there is to know about motion sickness, including its causes and potential therapeutic benefits of cannabis.

What Causes Motion-Induced Sickness?

The cause of motion sickness is a confused brain. Contemplate it. Over the course of millions of years, we dealt with acceleration forces that never outpaced our capacity for walking, running, and sprinting as we evolved. Suddenly, we exposed our bodies to forces that aren’t exactly natural to us with the invention of combustion engines, fast cars, twisting roads, and jet planes.

We’re not merely discussing traveling quickly in a straight line. Many people get motion sickness when they are speeding down a winding country road, flying through turbulence, or standing on a rocking boat. The brain becomes disorganized in these circumstances. Some people get extremely queasy when this happens because the brain finds it difficult to interpret the sensory data coming from the body, ears, and eyes. 

What Triggers Motion Sickness?

Our nervous systems, which include the inner ear, eyes, and nerve endings throughout the body, are responsible for allowing our bodies to detect motion. All of these signals are coordinated when performing deliberate movements, like walking. On the other hand, during inadvertent movements, mismatches in sensory input can cause nausea, sometimes to the extent of vomiting.

Consider sitting in a boat on choppy waves. The eyes see a static image when they are fixed on the floor. On the other hand, movement in all directions is sensed by the inner ear. Motion sickness results from the brain’s confusion caused by this contrasting input.

However, the human body has defenses against various forms of environmental stress. The body triggers processes that bring us back into homeostasis, or physiological balance, in response to heat, cold, strenuous exercise, hunger, and other stressors. There are those who can withstand being tossed around on a boat without ever feeling queasy. When under this kind of stress, their bodies are probably better at returning to homeostasis.

The ECS’s Involvement in Motion Sickness

Homeostasis is primarily regulated by our endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS, sometimes referred to as our “universal regulator,” is incredibly effective at regulating mood, appetite, memory, and a host of other physiological processes. The ECS can be found everywhere in the body because of its significant function. The nervous system, immune system, skin, bones, gut, and other organs all contain the receptors, signaling molecules (endocannabinoids), and enzymes that make up the endogenous nervous system (ECS).

It appears that motion sickness is another condition in which the ECS is significant. As you can see, the molecules that our bodies produce are extremely similar to those in cannabis. Endocannabinoids are substances that attach to ECS receptors within our cells to initiate the necessary changes. While some individuals may benefit from this process by not experiencing motion sickness, others may experience nausea and vomiting in the event that this mechanism malfunctions.

While there are many endocannabinoids in our bodies, the two primary ones are anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol, or 2-AG for short. Cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) and cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2) are the two main ECS receptors that these molecules bind to.

Anandamide functions as a partial agonist, which means that it only partially binds to both receptors. Nevertheless, 2-AG is the most prevalent endocannabinoid in the brain and binds to both receptors more strongly than anandamide because it functions as a full agonist at both of them.

What Are the Signs of Motion Sickness?

Motion sickness symptoms go beyond simple nausea. They consist of:

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Sweating
  • Dizziness
  • Pallor (a pale appearance)
  • Headache
  • Drooling
  • Yawning
  • Drowsiness

Contributing Factors that Heighten the Risk of Motion Sickness

Many people are susceptible to motion sickness when they are in turbulent movement. However, a number of variables can raise the likelihood of exhibiting symptoms, such as:

  • Family history of motion sickness
  • Inner ear disorders
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Migraine
  • Menstrual periods
  • Pregnancy
  • Hormonal birth control

Can Cannabis Help With Motion Sickness? 

Do drugs aid in the treatment of motion sickness? Unfortunately, as is often the result of decades of prohibition and research barriers, there are no clinical trials to offer a definitive answer to this question. Studies on cannabis, however, provide some insight into how the drug might impact the illness.

More than 100 phytocannabinoids (phyto means “plant”) are produced by cannabis flowers. Certain phytocannabinoids can bind to ECS receptors because these molecules and our endocannabinoids have similar structures. Consider THC, a psychoactive phytocannabinoid that binds to CB1 and CB2 with great pleasure.

Recall that we previously discussed endocannabinoid deficiency? Cannabinoids are being investigated for their potential to treat the symptoms associated with this phenomenon. In theory, researchers think that THC could compensate for the absence of 2-AG and anandamide. Since it binds to the same receptors, our body may use THC (or CBD; more on that later) to catalyze changes in homeostasis when there are insufficient amounts of endocannabinoids in the body.

  • Nausea

Cannabis’s potential to reduce nausea has long been studied. These discoveries led to the development of Dronabinol, a synthetic form of THC that is prescribed in the US to treat nausea and vomiting brought on by chemotherapy. Research on the function of phytocannabinoids in reducing nausea and vomiting, as well as how they affect the ECS to achieve this, is still ongoing. The cannabinoid acids THCA and CBDA, as well as the cannabinoids THC and CBD, are the molecules of interest.

  • Headache

Motion sickness frequently manifests as headache, and it turns out that the endocannabinoid system may be involved in this illness. Currently, researchers are looking into the potential benefits of cannabis for treating and preventing headaches. There is data indicating that a possible cause of headaches could be an insufficiency of endocannabinoids.

  • Anxiety

People may feel anxious and apprehensive as motion sickness sets in, which exacerbates the already dire situation. Cannabis may help reduce these emotions and improve the tolerability of the situation. A few human studies have demonstrated the effects of CBD on brain regions linked to anxiety, and ongoing research is examining the effects of THC and CBD on anxiety.

Medication or Cannabis: Which Is Best for Motion Sickness?

It varies. Different people respond differently to cannabis and conventional motion sickness medications. When taking drugs like scopolamine, some people react very well to them, while others have adverse effects. While some people might benefit from cannabis, others might not react well to it. But as research develops, we might find combinations of phytochemicals, terpenes, and other cannabinoids that are more potent than medications that are currently on the market. We will have to wait and find out!

Obtaining a medical marijuana card is crucial for those looking to use cannabis in Long Beach. Accessible options include contacting a local medical marijuana doctor or applying conveniently for the medical marijuana card online to comply with legal regulations and gain authorization for cannabis use.

Also Read: Exploring the Impact of Cannabis on Your Five Senses:A Comprehensive Guide



Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Get updates and learn from the best

Scroll to Top

Hire Us To Spread Your Content

Fill this form and we will call you.