In recent years, the use of cannabidiol (CBD) and premium hemp has become widely accepted for both medicinal and therapeutic reasons. While there’s been numerous studies on the benefits of CBD, the FDA still needs more research to prove such claims.
How does CBD work?
Individuals don’t always have to take CBD or premium hemp products for cannabinoids to be present in the body. In fact, the human body has an endocannabinoid system that produces cannabinoids on its own. It is believed that cannabinoids work by attaching to the receptors (CB1 and CB2) in the body’s Endocannabinoid System or ECS.
CB1 receptors are present throughout the human body, but most of them are found in the brain. These receptors are responsible for regulating appetite, coordination and movement, emotions, memories, mood, thinking, pain, etc. CB2 receptors on the other hand are usually found in the immune system. They’re mainly responsible for dealing with pain and inflammation.
In the past, there’s been researched data published that claims CBD attaches to these receptors once they are induced by the body. However, more recent studies show that CBD seems to direct the human body to use more of its own cannabinoids.
Can CBD help prevent seizures?
Changes in the electrical activity in the brain can cause seizures. There’s different types of seizures and each is treated differently based on what caused the seizure to occur.
One of the reasons why CBD has become popular is its benefits for those who experience certain types of epileptic seizures. In fact, the FDA approved the use of Epidiolex in 2018. It’s a CBD oral solution used to treat rare types of epileptic seizures caused by Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome and Dravet Syndrome — both are rare forms of epilepsy in children under 2 years old.
Research is still ongoing to test the ability of CBD oil and Delta-8 products to treat other types of seizures. Even after Epidiolex was approved, clinical trials continued to test its effectiveness for treating Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. Tests are also being conducted to determine how it affects those who experience epileptic seizures resulting from Dravet syndrome as patients who have this condition usually don’t respond well to medication.
How to use CBD for seizures?
Just like when taking other medications and supplements, it is highly recommended that you consult a medical specialist before trying or purchasing CBD products. This is crucial, especially if they are currently on medication to treat another medical condition. Even if you’re only trying uplifting edible sour worms, knowing how their contents can affect your body along with the existing medication can help make sure that they won’t negatively interfere with the intended effect of your current medications.
Patients who are advised to use Epidiolex are often instructed to take a starting dose of 2.5mg/kg twice a day. The dose can be increased up to 5 mg/kg per day after a week. It can be increased up to 10 mg/kg twice per week, depending on how the body responds to the medicine and the oil. If you’re instructed or wish to stop taking CBD oil to prevent seizures, don’t stop taking it abruptly. If you have no intentions to continue, consult with a medical specialist on how the dosage can be reduced without increasing seizure activity.
For other types of epileptic seizures, patients are advised not to take CBD oil in lieu of traditional medications. In some cases, doctors do not allow patients to take CBD oil and medication together as CBD can potentially interact with the ingredients in medications used to control seizures.
Are there any known side effects of taking CBD for seizures?
Just like anything you eat or drink, taking CBD with other medication may have some side effects. Some of the most common side effects of CBD when taken with other medication include diarrhea, drowsiness, sleepiness, and loss of appetite. For this reason, patients are always asked to seek medical advice when the side effects are neither life-threatening nor severe that they manage to affect the patient’s day-to-day lives.
Is it legal to use CBD oil?
The use of CBD is technically legal, but regulations can get confusing when other varieties are involved.
The US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) used to classify all varieties as Schedule 1 substances – meaning “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse”. However, the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 or Farm bill changed this as it legalized “hemp”. The legislation states that “hemp” is cannabis that contains. 0.3% THC. It’s considered “marijuana” if the cannabis contains more than the indicated amount.
Individuals, especially those with existing medical conditions (including epileptic seizures) are advised to only purchase from their trusted brands and those that are known for producing quality CBD products. While it’s not always guaranteed, it’s one way of making sure that you are purchasing products that are compliant with the allowable amount of THC.
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