Once you address any misconceptions about cannabis the patient may have, expectation management should be your next priority. You must drill down on their expectations and establish reasonable ones. As a result of misconceptions, patients may believe that cannabis is a silver bullet cure-all for every illness. Cannabis can produce some amazing results, but it is not a miracle cure. Be gentle, but clear and firm when contradicting a misconception. While a caregiver trained by Soulful Cannabis would never knowledge-shame a patient, it’s been known to happen in other settings.
Cannabis, like any other medication, has side-effects. While some folks would disagree, the “high” cannabis imparts could be considered a side-effect for some. Part of drilling down on their expectations and establishing reasonable ones is to also set expectations about potential side effects.
There is little evidence to suggest that CBD distillate on its own is an effective medication. Cannabis products with demonstrated therapeutic relief often contain a level of THC that can make one feel dizzy, light-headed, giddy, or “high” as it’s commonly referred to. While these effects can be minimized, for some who are highly sensitive to THC, they cannot be avoided altogether. Remember, a patient will develop a tolerance to the psychoactive effects of THC with time.
If for any reason your patient needs to complete a drug test to maintain some form of employment or other benefits, they need to know that medically effective cannabis products will cause them to fail a drug test. Even over the counter, CBD products boasting no THC will still contain some level of THC that can, with time, build up in a patient’s body and result in failed drug tests. Make sure to have a conversation about risks, benefits, and remind the patients to proactively start the medical cannabis conversation with employers and other authority figures prior to starting cannabis use.
At this time, cannabis products are not covered by insurance and all expenses for the patient are out-of-pocket. There are ways to maximize one’s budget. Careful and consistent dosing to keep tolerance levels low, use of RSOs and concentrates, and managing expectations about medicating vs. recreating can help minimize the impact on one’s budget.