When the drugs fail, it is time to look for alternatives, and recent developments have presented a rather interesting one – cannabis.
Certain compounds in the plant have been shown to have the same effects as a prescribed drug but without the side effects. As a matter of fact, compounds in cannabis are able to treat even some of those side effects such as insomnia, nausea, and vomiting caused by pharmaceutical drugs.
Supporters of medical cannabis often cite that it is a completely safe drug that has no established side effects. With more research being completed every day about the medical benefits of cannabis, it is now clear that cannabis is a valuable alternative for managing a variety of mental health conditions as well as pain
In order to get rid of the “high” effect usually associated with cannabis, companies such as Green Flower Botanicals extract the Cannabidiol from specially cultivated cannabis hemp plants that are less than <.3% THC. They extract the main cannabinoid, cannabidiol (CBD) as well as minor compounds such as terpenes and other trace cannabinoids that have been shown to have positive medical effects. As a result, they end up with a full-spectrum, whole-plant CBD oil derived from hemp that is safe and non-euphoric. Relaxation without intoxication. This is a huge factor especially when it comes to administering CBD to children.
Currently in the U.S., despite the growing popularity and research of CBD as a support for many neurological and mental health functions, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not recognize, nor has it approved CBD as a treatment or cure for any disease state. It is important to note that while the FDA does not officially recognize the many benefits of cannabidiol, interestingly enough, the US Government holds a patent on cannabidiol as an antioxidant and neuroprotectant.
What is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is an extract (or concentrate) of the marijuana plant. Extracts are usually produced through a process called CO2 extraction, but other methods of extraction include:
- Ice Water Extraction
- Butane extraction
- Alcohol extraction
- Ethanol extraction
Regardless of which method you choose, the end result is the same: the solvent (e.g., CO2, butane, alcohol) strips all the chemical compounds off the cannabis plant and holds them in solution. At the end of the process, the solvent is forced to evaporate, leaving behind an oily substance that is chocked full of marijuana goodness. The extraction process can be performed on any cannabis strain (indica, sativa, ruderalis), but when a high-CBD variety is used, the results are CBD oil.
Does CBD Oil Get You High?
There’s good news for those of you worried about taking CBD oil for ADHD: you won’t have to contend with couch lock, altered perceptions, lethargy, and the other “negative” effects of high-THC strains. That’s because CBD—and CBD oil—doesn’t get you high.
CBD products will not cause psychedelic effects because they have been produced in such a way so as to minimize THC count. In fact, CBD itself is what’s known as an antagonist to THC, which means that CBD reduces just how high you can get. That leads us to the next important question: how does CBD oil work?
How Does CBD Oil Work?
The CBD in CBD oil works like a key in a lock. In this case, the locks are the millions of receptors in your brain. When the locks are closed, the receptors are inactive. But when the locks are open, the receptors are active. For ADHD, it’s these active receptors that we’re most concerned about because they are the source of the problem.
More specifically, we’re concerned about the adenosine receptors that are largely responsible for reducing anxiety
. For those without ADHD, the body does a pretty good job of controlling anxiety. But sometimes, the receptors don’t fire on all cylinders, so to speak, or your brain doesn’t produce enough of the chemical “keys” to keep the receptors active. When that happens, you can start to feel anxious, paranoid, and depressed
—all major components of ADHD.
The interesting characteristic of CBD is that it can act as the key that opens the lock to the adenosine receptors. When CBD is present, it stimulates activity within your brain and has a twofold effect on your behavior:
- CBD decreases many of the negative symptoms of ADHD.
- CBD increases your ability to concentrate and focus on one specific task.
That’s excellent news for those who suffer from ADHD and other anxiety disorders. But it also leads us to our next question important question.
The endocannabinoid system and how CBD oil works to Treat ADHD
Everyone has what is known as the endocannabinoid system that has receptors everywhere in the body and brain. These receptors play a huge role in controlling some crucial processes such as memory, attention, mood, appetite and even pain. We make endocannabinoids naturally, to activate the receptors, however, other plant-based cannabinoids such as CBD can also affect this system. By activating some of the receptors, you can influence how the body reacts to inflammation, pain, temperature, etc.
CBD activates anti-anxiety
, and anti-inflammatory
receptors to manage the many of the symptoms of patients with ADD. It also minimizes the activation of receptors caused by THC, hence countering its “high” effects.
Based on a study carried out in 2013 and published in the Journal of Substance Use and Misuse, a lot of patients have resorted to self-medication in order to treat the impulsiveness, hyperactivity and other symptoms caused by ADD. Another German study in 2015 also considered the effect of CBD on 28 male and 2 female ADD patients that could not respond to prescribed medication such as Ritalin. Most of the subjects showed signs of improvement especially in terms of sleep, concentration, and reduction in hyperactivity and impulsivity.
Most systematic studies investigating the use of CBD for treating ADD/ADHD have focused on managing substance abuse rather than curing these mental conditions. However, there is undeniable anecdotal as well as clinical evidence suggesting that cannabis, more specifically CBD, has neurological properties that can help treat symptoms caused by ADHD which causes many patients to self-medicate.
How Do You Use CBD Oil For ADHD?
You take CBD oil like a tincture: simply administer a few drops under your tongue and hold them there without swallowing. Honestly, this is probably the easiest way to take a cannabis product. It’s very discreet and very quick.
The CBD oil is absorbed into your bloodstream through the sublingual artery in your lower jaw. From there, it travels quickly to your brain. Because of the speed with which this all occurs, you can feel the effects of CBD oil almost immediately.
Even though there are no major side effects of CBD oil for ADHD, we still recommend starting small with one or two drops and increasing slowly until you find the right dose.
Every day, new evidence is trickling in, especially from animal studies, helping researchers to understand more and more of how CBD works in our brains. The huge number of patients citing improvement after using CBD have also validated its use as a significant alternative. Considering the amount of money spent to treat ADD and other mental health conditions without much result, CBD oil, especially full-spectrum CBD oil may prove to be a game-changer.
If you were interested in trying some high-quality CBD oil and products, Country Naturals offers a variety of products in their 'Full Spectrum' line of CBD products. Shop here.
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