The NFL recently signed an agreement with the NFL Players Association to make further investigations into the use of marijuana for pain management.
Marijuana for pain management
Marijuana used for pain management has been an increasing trend in recent years. Over the past few years, many states have legalized marijuana. At this writing, there are only eleven out of fifty states where marijuana is totally illegal. In the remaining states, there are different stages of legal marijuana – while in some states it completely legal for any type of use, in others it requires a medical prescription. Even within certain states some areas may have different laws than others. It’s within this system that NFL players have for years been advocating marijuana for pain management, and it’s now being looked into along with a full health and wellness agreement between the NFL and the players.
A new system for NFL players
NFL players have long been seeking a new code for their health and wellness, and that includes pain management as well as mental well-being. Marijuana has never been taken off the list of banned substances, but that may change now in light of the new states codes legalizing marijuana. If it does actually become law for NFL players, another glitch to deal with might be in the states where marijuana is still banned.
As of now, the NFL has appointed a committee, including a team of doctors, to look into the pain management research and make recommendations. This includes other alternative options as well. Dr. Alan Sills, the NFL’s lead doctor, said “There are many other treatment strategies — some that are not medicine — that can be used to treat both acute and chronic pain. So we want this committee to holistically look at all of those alternatives and tell us what’s best.”
While this is certainly news, veterans of the game say that smoking weed is not. Many players already use marijuana as pain management or to cope with stress. Some players have been testes and caught and barred from playing, but most learn to avoid it before a test and continue with it afterwards. Legalizing it throughout the NFL won’t make too many practical changes in how things already go, but it will maintain the revolution in the US to fully legalize the substance.
Spokespeople are still pushing the point that nothing will take place without strong research as to the medical benefits or drawbacks of legalizing marijuana, regardless of the current conduct of players.
In any case, the results that the committee introduces are sure to advocate for alternative forms of pain management for NFL players.
At Hudson View, we promote a strong pain management program to help all of our patients feel better so they can get better. Our team will discuss all the options with each individual so he can get what he needs.