There’s been much hype over the positive effects of marijuana in the past few years and for good reason. Aside from being a relatively mild source of recreation, plenty of previous research points to the confounding benefits of the plant, specifically its chemical component called CBD or cannabidiol.
Essentially, cannabidiol is a compound found in cannabis that science has found to have significant potential in treating a shocking variety of ailments, including chronic pain, inflammation, seizures, psychosis, anxiety, and a lot of other neurological diseases.
Given that society is now slowly becoming more open to discussions on mental health, many are slowly retreating from the stigmatized associations with the drug and warming up to its potential as a promising source of relief—if not, cure to a wide array of anxiety disorders.
In the US alone, anxiety disorders affect 18.1 percent of the population or 40 million American adults. It’s also uncommon for someone diagnosed with an anxiety disorder to be depressed. Additionally, around 44.7 million suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These alarming figures prompt the search for substances like CBD and other therapies and medical interventions that can help ease the suffering of millions.
But before you consider CBD as the panacea to mental illness, it’s important to know just how exactly does this drug affects the body.
What Is CBD?
Primarily, cannabidiol, or CBD, is a type of cannabinoid, a class of diverse chemical compounds. These compounds exist naturally in the human body and in plants such as cannabis. When these cannabinoids bind with cannabinoid receptors present in the membrane of cells, they influence the workings of the cells directly or indirectly.
Various studies have probed into the effects of such indirect influence on the mechanisms of the cell and found the following effects.
CBD Helps Protect Neurons from Degenerating
In different laboratory-controlled settings, cannabidiol has shown the capacity to protect neurons, or your brain cells, from degeneration. Neural degeneration is one of the leading causes of dreaded illnesses such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. CBD does this by supporting normal cellular function and supporting your body’s natural immune response. Additionally, it has also been shown to promote the repair of cells and help assist with healthy ageing.
CBD Helps Relieve Pain
The analgesic effect of cannabidiol is perhaps one of the most talked-about benefits of marijuana. A big part of this phenomenon can be attributed to the opioid crisis or the rapid increase in the use of prescription and nonprescription opioid drugs in the US in the past few decades.
Opioids have been widely used to treat chronic pain, but the vastly documented harmful effects of opioid use have urged many patients to seek non-addictive alternatives. CBD filled this gap. Due to CBD oil showing great promise in the lab, patients on chronic pain medications are now asking their doctors about the possibility of acquiring it as pain medication. Unlike THC, cannabis’s psychoactive counterpart, CBD, does not cause a high.
CBD works by interacting with your immune system and brain receptors. When your brain receptors react with CBD, they form anti-inflammatory effects that reduce pain. The good thing about CBD oil is that you can keep taking it but not build a tolerance for it. This solves the addiction problem that was the primary issue with opioids.
CBD Helps Prevent Tumors
Over the years, plenty of research efforts have been dedicated to the anticancer potential of THC and CBD. Today, cannabinoid treatments on human patients are in their early stages, but even in their initial phase, there has been a demonstrated significant success in both substances’ abilities to mitigate the growth and metastasis of cancer cells.
CBD, especially, has shown great promise in slowing down or even stopping the spreading of cancer cells while THC has been shown to aid the shrinking of existing tumours.
CBD Shows Potential for Treating Anxiety
Chemical interactions of CBD and the human brain have been proven to be productive for treating symptoms of anxiety. The neurological impact on patients with PTSD has also been explored, with positive results. Although much work is yet to be done to validate the initial outcomes, many people have started to seek marijuana, especially the pure CBD form, for their mental health issues.
Advice on Using CBD Oil
All these benefits show much promise to the many wonders of cannabidiol, but also consider the caveat. A lot of anecdotes and stories have been going around without substantial medical evidence to the claim. Here are some tips you can follow when considering CBD for you or your loved one.
- When looking for CBD information, be sure to target researches that focus on CBD oil alone instead of cannabis in general.
- Always investigate the source of information on CBD and if it is reliable.
- Buying CBD oil online can be risky. You are not always sure if what you’re getting is really pure.
- Ask your doctor first for this option.
CBD Oil and Workplace Considerations
Workplace policies may still not allow marijuana use among employees, especially if you live in states where marijuana is not yet legal. Fortunately, urine tests are not designed to detect CBD but rather THC, its psychoactive counterpart. Therefore, there is no need to worry. However, if you’d rather be safe than sorry, there are steps you can take to pass strict drug tests, including proven detox processes and synthetic urine options.
CBD oil is a promising treatment option for a vast array of medical afflictions. But because the medical aspect of marijuana treatment in the US is still in its baby stage, it’s still best to question your options.
Risks are not fully eliminated, and there is always the doubt of authenticity when it comes to the source of this form of medication. So seek professional advice before anything else, and proceed with a probing mind when acquiring your own CBD substance.
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