I’ve been in psychiatry for over 10 years now, and was starting to get very frustrated with the lack of choices and treatments available to my patients. There are very few new medications being made available, while some that were working quite well have been discontinued. The majority of medications that we do prescribe are off-licence; I’m using low-dose antipsychotics or antidepressants to treat anxiety or emotional dysregulation, and both treatments come with their own potential risk profile and side effects.
We had a lot of patients that were struggling with basic things like anxiety, low mood, depression and ADHD, who were essentially having to suck it up and deal with these off-licence medications giving them side effects, which they then need further medication to counteract. Furthermore, many of these patients are not in the right frame of mind to engage in talking therapies without first receiving treatment that reduces their symptoms. I started reading about medical cannabis being used in the UK around the time it was receiving news coverage as an epilepsy treatment. I got involved in a training course and it all took off from there.