Whether or not you’re a cannabis aficionado, there’s no denying the fact that there are many health benefits when it comes to smoking the green. Cannabis has often been used informally to treat problems such as anxiety and physical pain.

Now that medical cannabis is legal in many states throughout the US, these treatments are becoming more popular, and have started to be considered as an alternative to traditional medicine by many doctors.

When it comes to mental health benefits, there’s no denying that cannabis has some very positive effects on the human mind. That’s one of the reasons why Dr. Gregg Henriques, a blogger for Psychology Today, believes that cannabis should be legalized. After all, mental health is tremendously important for a functioning society—and cannabis makes a big difference.

1. Cannabis helps with psychological disorders

When it comes to psychological disorders such as depression and anxiety, cannabis use can make a huge difference. A team of researchers in Canada and the US published an article in the Clinical Psychology Review in which they said they “found evidence that cannabis can likely benefit people dealing with depression, social anxiety and PTSD, though it may not be ideal for people with bipolar disorder … for which there appears to be more negative side effects than positive ones.”

This means that cannabis may eventually be used as a drug to alleviate some of these mental issues, in the same way that drugs such as Zoloft are currently being used. As medical cannabis becomes legalized in more and more states, there will be more room for this kind of research in actual medical cases.

2. Cannabis helps with addiction problems

Because cannabis is a mild drug—unlike drugs such as cocaine or crystal meth, which have no chance of being legalized—it is considered by many to be helpful in trying to wean addicts off hard drugs. For someone who is struggling with an addiction to a hard drug, cannabis can serve as a useful alternative. According to a 2014 study, “States with medical cannabis laws experienced a 25 percent decrease in opioid overdose deaths.”

Cannabis itself is not addictive, despite the claims of some opponents who argue that it is. According to Scientific American, “91 percent of those who try it do not get hooked. Furthermore, cannabis is less addictive than many other legal and illegal drugs.”

So, in addition to being useful for helping addicts get over other drugs, ordinary cannabis users shouldn’t be worried about getting addicted. Which is quite impressive, considering that alcohol and cigarettes, which are already legal, are much more addictive.

3. Other benefits

Cannabis use also has a number of other benefits, according to Harvard Health Publishing. These include solutions for problems such as pain relief (particularly nerve pain), appetite stimulation for people who have AIDS, and control of chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting.

All of these illnesses can have devastating effects on the psyche, and using cannabis to offset these problems can make a big difference for a patient, easing side effects such as anxiety and depression.

It’s important to remember that there are many different strains of cannabis.

This means that, depending on how much you take and what kind you prefer, the effects may vary slightly from person to person. After all, if you take the wrong kind, it can actually exacerbate problems such as paranoia, so it’s wise to start slowly, experiment with different kinds, and find which strain and amount gives you the results you’re looking for.

This is another reason why it’s so important that cannabis use—and especially medical cannabis use—is being legalized throughout the country. As cannabis becomes a societal norm, more research will be conducted, and more users will understand what works best for them.

One exciting place to learn more about cannabis use and lifestyle is 420TV.com, a company committed to creating a network that’s dedicated to the cannabis lifestyle, both counterculture and mainstream.

As you can see, there are many mental health benefits to using cannabis.

This is why it’s so important to understand its use and know how it can best benefit you. As cannabis use becomes more popular, we’ll learn even more about its benefits, and will get more out of this wonderful substance.

Are you a regular or medical cannabis user? What strains do you prefer, and what are the benefits you’ve discovered?