Cannabis is a commonly used drug with significant adverse effects and potential for abuse and dependence. Its therapeutic use for specific medical conditions – including neuropathic pain, spasticity in multiple sclerosis, analgesia in cancer patients and prevention of chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting – has been approved by Health Canada. Considering the recent legislative changes for the non-medical use of cannabis, it is expected that its use, adverse effects and risks will become more frequent. Therefore, it is important for healthcare professionals to increase awareness of the organization of the endocannabinoid system, cannabinoid exposure and implications for systemic and oral health.
In this presentation Dr. Lança will discuss: (1) the organization of the endocannabinoid system; (2) the mechanisms of action of cannabinoids in medical cannabinoids and in cannabis; (3) the adverse effects of cannabis smoking and ingesting on oral health (e.g., xerostomia, periodontal disease, caries, stomatitis and gingival hyperplasia); (4) the legal framework of non-medical cannabis use; (5) the clinically relevant interactions between cannabis and other compounds, including alcohol, opioids and sympathomimetics; (6) recommendations for prevention and management of non-medical use of cannabis.