CBD has taken over the health supplement market and consumers have been using it for almost every ailment they can think of. It definitely works to help certain conditions while other times people are just using it as a cure-all, regardless of the research that has been done to prove it’s effectiveness for their specific issue. There is so much hype around CBD right now that it can be hard to determine what you can actually use it for and what is just rumor and hearsay. There has been plenty of research showing that CBD can help to treat anxiety, sleep disorders, pain relief, and PTSD, but what about ADHD? People are certainly trying it as a way to treat their ADHD, but can it actually help?
What is ADHD?
ADHD is a neurological condition that affects inhibition, impulsivity, attentiveness, memory, and emotional health. Symptoms are often more prevalent in children but it can affect adults as well. ADHD can be hereditary or may be caused from exposure to toxic substances such as nicotine, alcohol, and lead. Individuals who are affected by ADHD often have lower levels of dopamine and norepinephrine, both of which are neurotransmitters that can play a large role in the executive functions that are impaired by ADHD.
Studies Using CBD to Treat ADHD
Because lower levels of dopamine and norepinephrine play a role in the effects ADHD it makes sense that increasing these neurotransmitters may help to alleviate the symptoms. This study shows that CBD can act as a dopamine agonist, which would increase overall levels of dopamine in the system. This abstract states that CBD inhibits uptake and stimulates the release of both dopamine and norepinephrine.
In this preclinical trial, researchers tested the effects of CBD and clozapine on rats that had been given a drug which induces hyperactivity. Their results showed that both compounds were effective in inhibiting the drug-induced hyperactivity.
A randomised-controlled trial involving 30 adults with ADHD was conducted using Sativex Oromucosal Spray. Results showed a “nominally significant improvement in hyperactivity/impulsivity” and a “trend towards improvement for inattention”.
Whether or not CBD can be used to treat ADHD directly, there is potential that it can also help to manage certain symptoms, such as anxiety. This case report discusses the use of CBD to treat pediatric anxiety and insomnia and the results provided clinical data supporting CBD as a safe treatment option for reducing anxiety.
These studies may not show irrefutable evidence that CBD can be used to treat ADHD but they certainly show promising results that merit further research. With CBD now legal at the federal level, more and more studies are being conducted all the time. Slowly, we’re seeing theory and speculation being solidified into hard fact and we’re getting a better idea of exactly what CBD can really do and what is just a myth.
Is CBD Safe?
A massive concern when discussing a substance that could potentially be used to treat ADHD, especially for treating children, is whether or not it’s safe. This critical review report from the World Health Organization states that CBD has a good safety profile and there is no evidence of health related problems associated with CBD. They state that adverse side effects may be a result of drug interaction with a patient’s existing medications.
CBD is considered to be safe, non-toxic, non-intoxicating, shows no potential for abuse, and has no fatal dosage level. CBD has actually been found to help with addiction issues involving other substances. With all of that being said, it’s still very important to consult with your doctor before using CBD to treat ADHD, especially if you’re considering treating your child. CBD may interact with other existing medications, potentially causing unwanted side effects. There is also very little information on how CBD can affect the hormonal system which could be a concern for children and teenagers who are still developing.
Research and Treatment Potential
From the studies that have been conducted with CBD to treat various conditions, we can see there is great potential for the treatment of many different ailments, maladies, and issues. There is just so much that CBD has can affect within the body, it seems to some like it’s a kind of miracle drug. With so many positive results, it’s important to keep in mind that plenty of research still needs to be done involving CBD so we can see what it can actually do, understand the potential side effects, and observe the possible long-term effects.
Because CBD was considered to be a controlled substance for so long and has only be federally legal for a short time, researchers need time to catch up to all of the anecdotal claims individuals have been sharing. CBD does seem to have the potential to treat a wide variety of issues and that certainly includes ADHD. With its favorable safety profile, CBD is an attractive alternative to many of the other pharmaceuticals that are on the market. Plenty of people prefer to try this natural compound and avoid taking other prescription medications, even when the research is only preliminary.
Purchasing Quality CBD Products
One very important thing to mention when it comes to using CBD to treat any condition is that CBD is largely unregulated and producers can pretty much slap a label on anything and claim that it’s potent, high quality CBD. To ensure you’re actually getting a quality product, it’s a good idea to shop only from the most reputable brands and always look for third party lab reports so you can know exactly what you’re buying. Educate yourself on what to look for when shopping for CBD and you’ll have no problem finding the best and safest product to treat your ADHD or any other condition you may be using it for.