The cannabis plant has been used for centuries in medicine, but only recently has the FDA placed its stamp of approval on certain medicinal uses. As more states legalize the use of cannabis in medicine, cannabidiol can become a natural alternative for treatments of many common diseases. Cannabidiol is extracted from the hemp variation of the cannabis plant, and CBD manufacturing processes are regulated to ensure quality control of the compound before it can be used in supplements or prescriptions. Read on to learn more about cannabidiol and its medicinal benefits.
What is Cannabidiol?
Cannabidiol, also referred to as CBD, is one of many compounds found in the cannabis plant. While cannabis is typically associated with marijuana, CBD is a completely different compound than THC, which is associated with the addictive and mind-altering side effects of the cannabis plant. CBD is extracted from the hemp plant and diluted with an oil that is used to carry the drug. Depending on how the drug is planned to be used, it can be prescribed in a variety of way. The methods of delivery can include oral sprays, inhalers, ointments, capsules and liquids that can be placed directly in the food. Since CBD medications must have less than 0.3% THC, these medications can be used as a natural alternative without concern that a patient will experience changes in the mood or behavior.
The Medical Benefits of Cannabidiol
Researchers have performed studies that show CBD can perform similarly to over-the-counter and prescription medications. The following are some of the conditions that CBD has been shown to help treat.
- Epilepsy Treatment – In 2018, the FDA approved a drug called Epidolex which can help treat two epileptic conditions in young children, Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome and Dravet Syndrome.
- Chronic Pain Relief – Studies have shown that CBD works to ease the pain associated with chronic inflammation, providing a natural alternative to opioid use for pain control.
- Anxiety Disorders – Research has shown that unlike prescribed medications that can cause undesirable side effects for patients, CBD can decrease symptoms related to Social Anxiety Disorder, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
- Addiction Treatment – Studies have shown that smokers that use an inhaler of CBD when feeling nicotine cravings are less likely to relapse into their smoking habit.
As more studies are performed, CBD can become an alternative for those who would prefer to treat certain symptoms and conditions in a more natural way.