How Do You Get a Medical Marijuana License?

by Bridey Hicks

How do you get a medical marijuana license?

So, you’ve learned that cannabis can help you, welcome to the club – we’re so happy you’ve made it here. That may be the easiest part, because obtaining a medical marijuana license can be a little tricky.

Ultimately, you can seek out a medical marijuana license for a variety of reasons. Pain, anxiety, illness – you name it. While the official guidelines vary state by state, luckily, most states where medical marijuana is legal go by roughly the same rules. However, it’s important to check with the state you live in to see if you qualify.

Which states allow for medical marijuana?

States that currently don’t need a medical marijuana license to light up are Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Arizona, Montana, Colorado, South Dakota, Illinois, Michigan, District of Columbia, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Vermont, Maine, and Alaska. If you live in one of those states, just google the nearest dispensary and you’ll be set. 

However, if you live in Idaho, Wyoming, Kansas, Tennessee, Alabama, and South Carolina – you’re out of luck. For now, those states have marked marijuana fully illegal with no decriminalization. If you’re caught smoking the reefer under any circumstances, (medicinal or not) you’re in big trouble. 

If you’re in Nebraska or North Carolina, it’s still illegal, but they do decriminalize. Keep an eye out for any changes, as legalizing medical marijuana is slowly but surely making its way across the states. 

If you live in any of the states not mentioned above, congrats – your state allows medical marijuana.

Now, let’s dive into everything you need to know about getting a medical marijuana card.

What is medical marijuana?

At the heart, medical and recreational marijuana are the same. Think of medical marijuana as a badge someone can hold, rather than the type of plant it is.

However, for people with chronic illness, getting a medical marijuana card has its perks over recreational. The biggest perks? How much you can get, how potent it can be, and – in some states – how much it costs. 

Medical marijuana cardholders have access to higher potency strains at a much lower cost. Why? Well, if someone consistently needs a higher-potency strain to help aid with pain, nausea, etc – the cost can add up fast, and people who need marijuana must have affordable access to it. 

What is a medical marijuana license?

In short, this license is certified by a medical professional, which in turn allows qualified people access to marijuana from state-sanctioned dispensaries.

TLDR; It gives you a legal pass to get high. 

What are the qualifications to getting a medical marijuana license? 

Qualification varies from state to state, although some of the most common are:

  • Agitation of Alzheimer’s disease
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Anxiety
  • Anorexia nervosa
  • Autism
  • Arnold-Chiari malformation
  • Cachexia/Wasting syndrome
  • Cancer
  • Causalgia
  • Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP)
  • Chronic pain
  • Crohn’s disease
  • CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome Type II)
  • Depression
  • Dystonia
  • Ehlers-Danlos syndrome
  • Fibrous dysplasia
  • Glaucoma
  • Hepatitis C
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Hydromyelia
  • Interstitial cystitis
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Lupus
  • Migraines
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Myasthenia gravis
  • Myoclonus
  • Nail-patella syndrome
  • Neuro-Behcet’s autoimmune disease
  • Neurofibromatosis
  • Neuropathy
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Polycystic kidney disease
  • Post-concussion syndrome
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Reflex sympathetic dystrophy
  • Residual limb pain
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Seizures
  • Severe fibromyalgia
  • Sjogren’s syndrome
  • Spinal cord disease 
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Spinocerebellar ataxia
  • Superior canal dehiscence syndrome.
  • Syringomyelia
  • Tarlov cysts
  • Tourette syndrome
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Ulcerative colitis

How do you get a medical marijuana card? 

Step one: Check to see if you qualify for a medical marijuana card

Look at the qualifying factors in your state. If you have any of them, you’re most likely on the road to getting a card.

Step two: Obtain the medical marijuana card

Locate a doctor that is permitted to prescribe cannabis. If yours isn’t qualified, ask them to refer you to a doctor that is. Once a valid doctor prescribes you a medical card, you have the green light to go to the dispensary. *Horray*

Step three: Go to the dispensary 

With your medical card in hand, the dispensary is your oyster. 

It’s normal (and even encouraged) to go up to someone who works at the dispensary and discuss your personal needs. They work there for a reason and will know the perfect strains to help with what you need. 

We know, obtaining a medical marijuana card can seem daunting at first, but remember that by putting in this effort, you’ll be able to have access to a plant that has some of the best healing capabilities out there. And really, once you have your card, all you gotta do is sit back and enjoy the ride.

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