Over 1,000 strains of cannabis have emerged in the past few decades. Therefore, patients need to understand the different benefits associated with medicinal cannabis. Certain cannabis varieties are more suitable for specific ailments and diseases, while others are not. Choosing the right strain is essential to ensure the best treatment for the patient.
Cannabis is a flowering herb species that consist of three distinct subspecies: Sativa, Indica, and Ruderalis. Ruderalis plants yield little medicine since they are small and are not pleasing to patients. Due to this fact, Ruderalis strains are not crucial to cultivators and breeders; the main focus of medicinal cannabis is around Sativa and Indica strains.
Sativa and Indica plants are not only different in their physiological functions but also in appearance. Indica plants are stocky and short, with broad and thick leaves. On the other hand, the Sativa plant is usually thinner and taller and can even have an elongated appearance, with pointed and narrow leaves. Indica vs. Sativa strains are also different in their medicinal values, as discussed below.
Medical Usefulness of Indica or Sativa strains
However, the main difference between these two cannabis subspecies lies in their medicinal properties and their impact on energy levels and productivity. Indicas can lower energy levels and are appropriate at night or in the evening after the day’s activities and work are over.
Effective Indica strains can induce what is known as the “couchlock.” in some patients, a state in which they relax so much that they hardly feel like getting up from the couch.
On the other hand, Sativa is cerebral and uplifting, which can increase productivity and creativity. Indicas give “body high”, whereas Sativas provide “mind high”. Unfortunately, compared to Indica plants, Sativa plants take more time to grow and produce fewer flowers (medicine); this is why the Indica strains are top on the black market supply chain where patients’ demand is not a priority.
When it comes to specific medical conditions, Sativa strains are usually more suitable for mental disorders such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and anxiety. Indicas are commonly best for relieving inflammation and pain and are advantageous to patients with fibromyalgia, cancer, and arthritis. Since many diseases come with side effects, such as insomnia and depression, patients should consider treating their underlying conditions as well as their daily symptoms. Finally, every patient will prefer several strains that may belong to the Indica, hybrid, and Sativa categories.
Hybrids of Indica vs. Sativa strains
Hybrids are unique and new strains obtained from parents of different species. A hybrid supposedly possesses many of the valuable medicinal qualities of both parents. Cultivators can cross-breed two strains of their choice to develop a different strain that provides the best potential therapeutic efficacy, sometimes for specific diseases such as epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, and lupus.
Patients who have to take the medicine cannabis during the day, mainly because of pain and nausea, usually prefer a Sativa-dom hybrid, but switch to Indica dominant hybrid at night to maximize pain relief.
How to Determine Indica or Sativa
When determining the presence of Sativa, Indica or any other cannabinoid in a given volume, the terpene percentage helps a lot.
The commonly known cannabis terpene is myrcene. It helps patients suffering from insomnia And anxiety sleep. A strain qualifies as Indica if myrcene is more than 0.5% in volume, while as Sativa if it is below 0.5%.
You have seen that Indica vs. Sativa strains offer various medicinal benefits. Therefore, patients should try to look for the most suitable strain for their specific conditions or diseases and their symptoms, together with the therapy or drugs’ side effects. The research is gradual and may take a long time of hard work.
Patients are motivated to constantly experiment with different strains to discover higher potency or better cannabinoid profiles to offer better relief.
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