Please note: the use of cannabis for medial or recreational purposes may be illegal in your country. Healthiack.com does not encourage the use of this substance.
CBD For Epilepsy: Does It Really Work?
Cannabidiol or CBD for short has gotten a lot of press lately. A mixed bag of praise from people, like the Figi family, who use CBD to treat their daughters’ seizures to scorn from those who think it’s the start of reefer madness again.
Many sources seem to treat CBD as a new discovery when, in fact, it was discovered in 1940. It’s also used in the treatment of anxiety, mood disorders and movement impairing disorders. So what is the truth behind the use of CBD for epilepsy? What is the link, if any, between marijuana and seizures?
Exactly how does CBD stop seizures and can it? Let’s explore.
CBD For Epilepsy: What Do Experts Say?
CBD and marijuana are not one and the same, just to clarify. On a genetic level, they would be akin to cousins. CBD is actually derived from the hemp plant. In December of 2018, hemp was reclassified as an agricultural commodity instead of a schedule 1 drug. Many doctors and scientists studying CBD have varying opinions of its effect. In May of 2017, the New England journal of medicine released a study, based on extensive research about marijuana and seizures, that showed people with Dravet syndrome epilepsy had fewer compulsive seizures when administered CBD on a regular basis.
This would be huge for the millions of patients that suffer from epilepsy in America alone. Companies like Vaporizer Chief offer many variations of CBD products that could help these patients.
CBD Based Epidiolex Has Passed FDA Approval
A new drug, Epidiolex has finally been approved by the FDA after extensive clinical trials and much speculation. The drug was tested in an evaluative study amongst 516 patients with Lennox-Gravet syndrome or Dravet syndrome. The results proved that using Epidiolex was more effective in decreasing the frequency of seizures more than the placebo. This drug is more effective and stronger than using cannabis oil for seizures and shows there is a positive link between marijuana and epilepsy if used properly.
The Positive Effects Of Cannabis Oil Are Long Lasting In Most Cases
A study conducted in Israel found that roughly one-third of the users of CBD concentrates and oils built up a tolerance or immunity to its effects. Ninety-two subjects, both young adults and children, who suffered from treatment-resistant seizures used CBD for nineteen points eight months. Of those in the study, it was found that thirty-two point six percent built up immunity to the treatment of cannabis oil for seizures.
In all fairness, most anti-epileptic drugs do fade from effectiveness over time due to the body becoming accustomed to the way the molecules travel to various receptors. So the fact that one-third of the subjects or patients using CBD build up an immunity to it isn’t that much of a detriment to the fact that it helps overall. Let’s move on to the science behind cannabis oil and seizures.
How Does CBD Oil Stop Seizures?
A seizure is any kind of stoppage or disruption of one’s regular flow of electrical impulses through the brain. Electrical signals travel through neural synaptic relays and find different receptors in the brain. These receptors then trigger different responses from different parts of the body. Everything from thoughts to fingernail growth is controlled by these electrical impulses. THC has psychoactive properties that make it less desirable than CBD for epilepsy treatment.
So again, how does CBD stop seizures? CBD is shown to coat or protect the frontal lobe increasing the ability for signals to be relayed without interference. It also has chemicals in its makeup that are anticonvulsant whereas THC has pro and anticonvulsant properties. The exact reason CBD has anti convulsant properties is currently unknown. That is to say, they do not inhibit the cannabinoid receptors. It is, however, clear that marijuana and seizures have a definitive link.
Marijuana and Epilepsy: Potential Side Effects
Possible Memory Loss
In 2015, the CDC released its findings that concluded one point two percent of the population of the United States suffered from epilepsy. With such a huge percentage of people afflicted, three million adults and four hundred and seventy thousand children, it must be pointed out that different physiological reactions can occur and using CBD for epilepsy treatment is not for everyone. One side effect is possible memory loss. Although CBD is an antioxidant and is being tested to treat Alzheimer’s, constant, prolonged use of any marijuana product can lead to brain cells being slowed to the point of memory loss.
Negative Neurological Side Effects In Children
While not as negative as THC, it should be noted that there can be and have been reports of negative neurological effects in some cases with children using CBD for epilepsy treatment. This can include sleep disorders, diarrhea, mood disorders and loss of appetite. Again, although rare, it should still be mentioned so that all facts are known about marijuana and seizures.
Important: Consult A Physician Before Using Cannabis Oil For Seizures
Treat CBD and medical marijuana as medicine. As such, consult a physician and know all you can about CBD and epilepsy before starting to self-medicating. Dosage control, concentration percentage and dosage scheduling are just some of the things that a medical professional should help you figure out before using CBD to treat epilepsy.
CBD No Longer Means “Clueless By Default”
So now you have been given enough information to no longer be in the dark about the good, the bad and the ugly about marijuana and epilepsy. There are also many forms of ingestion from edibles to tinctures that you should research as well. Many companies such as Vaporizer Chief offer everything from low dose droplet form CBD for epilepsy to easy to inhale vaporizer forms.
The responsible use of CBD and marijuana for epilepsy brings peace and well being to so many. Hopefully, after reading this article, some stigma has been removed and many more can benefit from its use.