Psoriasis by Anonymous

I am a 27 year old biology student in Bergen, Norway.  I first got in contact with marihuana when I was around 21, and at the time it was only an experiment to still my curiosity.  Later I smoked daily for periods of about two weeks at a time, then would stop for as long as six months. This way of using the drug made me aware that it had some unexpected side effects, and today I smoke just as much for therapy as for recreation.   

First of all, I suffer from psoriasis on the skin of my head and occasionally other places on my body.  I have had this condition since I was about 14 years old, and I have used Betnovat (betametason, a strong steroid) all the time.  This is, unfortunately, no cure.  The itching can still get bad. The only thing I can to is to be careful with my lifestyle (food, alcohol etc).  I also try not to use this medicine because of its side effects.  But in the last few years I have recognized a clear pattern.   When I smoke, the condition is reduced to a minimum, and comes back again when I stop smoking.  I link this to the reduced stress level in both mind and body.  This has also reduced a nervous problem, I have had for several years, which I have never dared to go to a doctor with, because I don't know how to explain it, and I don't think there is much the doctor can do...  I am haunted by periods of intense social "fear", and I have never been able to understand why, because I really don't have any social problems!!   I get days when even going to the store can be a real challenge.  But when smoking, I never experience this. 

Still I have to warn people suffering from something like this, that when it comes to smoking and skin problems, it is not so good to smoke the marihuana, as I do. Another method, such as eating it, is preferable.  When it comes to nerves, as I said, I have not been diagnosed; and the positive effects come after smoking, not while smoking.  When I am in a social context and suffering from bad nerves, it will actually make things worse to get stoned!

I have seen both good and bad sides of smoking.  For me the worst thing is to live a double life and depend upon more or less suspect ways of getting access to the drug.  I should mention that most of my family know about me at this time, and my mother has also tried smoking for her back pain,  because the morphine she get from her doctor no longer helps and she can't keep on raising the dose..  It has been positive also for her, mostly thanks to the fact that it makes her able to sleep through the night.

I hope this information will be of some interest or help to you.  I could have written a whole lot more, but this is my personal experience briefly told.  I hope that one day this will be a more legal drug, so that users don't have to become criminals to raise their quality of life!

It is also important for me to stay anonymous, because if the wrong people got to know about my habit, future jobs and friends might be lost!!