you or someone you love has been diagnosed with any form of epilepsy, you may wonder which treatment route to take. Medical experts say that most persons with epilepsy can live seizure free with the right prescribed medication. If you are taking such a medicine today, don’t stop taking it without the advice of your doctor. That said, there’s a lot you can learn about medical marijuana, CBD treatment, and other alternative epilepsy therapies.
What epilepsy is
First, it’s imperative to understand that there is more than one kind of epilepsy. Upon initial diagnosis, the neurological disorder is classified as generalized or focal. Once that distinction is made, generalized epilepsy is further classified by the manner in which it affects the body.
Tonic-clonic, or grand mal epileptic seizures are the ones that most people imagine when they hear the term epilepsy. During the ‘tonic’ phase of this kind of epileptic seizure, the patient suddenly tenses and temporarily loses consciousness. Immediately thereafter, the patient may alternate between twitching and going completely limp. In the wake of a clonic-tonic seizure, the patient may feel confused. Many patients remain unaware that a seizure happened if nobody else witnessed the event.
Petit mal, or absence seizure disorder, presents as a sudden impairment of consciousness. The patient may stop speaking mid-sentence and ‘freeze’ in place for up to one minute. Petit mal seizures do not typically result in amnesia or confusion. Myoclonic epilepsy is characterized by wholly involuntary jerking contractions followed by relaxation. Typically, myoclonic epilepsy occurs simultaneously in multiple body areas. Atonic epilepsy, or atonic seizures, involve brief failures in muscle tone and are associated with a high fall risk.
Alternative and complementary medical modalities
Although several anti-seizure medications are known to alleviate typical symptoms of epilepsy, there are a number of alternative therapies the patient may wish try with the permission of their personal physician. Some people find acupuncture at specific points on the body quite useful. Others add thiamine, or B1, and vitamins D and E to their daily diet. A high fat, low carbohydrate diet reduces seizures in some patients. Each of these modalities may be of benefit in conjunction with cannabinoid therapy.
Animal studies indicate that CBD has anticonvulsant properties that may be of benefit to human epilepsy patients. In most people, cannabinoids are well tolerated with few if any side effects. No adverse reactions are seen in the vast majority of persons who avail themselves of cannabinoid CBD medical marijuana therapy.
Cannabis as medical therapy
Clinical studies and anecdotal reports strongly suggest that a non-psychoactive substance called cannabidiol may offer seizure-controlling properties, explains The Epilepsy Foundation. The foundation also notes that in states which allow medical cannabis, CBD and cannabidiol therapy may alleviate signs and symptoms of epilepsy as well as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), anorexia associated with HIV/AIDS, Crohn’s disease and multiple sclerosis, or MS. Chronic pain, severe muscle spasms, Tourette syndrome, and seizure disorders may also be treated with CBD and medical marijuana, notes WebMD.
Things to remember when considering CBD therapy
Mayo Clinic reminds readers that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not place strict quality regulations on herbal supplements. For this reason, the USDA does not currently guarantee the purity or strength of CBD products. If you have been diagnosed with epilepsy, do not fail to speak with a qualified medical professional before starting CBD or another alternative therapy. If you experience any sort of adverse side effects from cannabis use, consult your healthcare provider without hesitation.
If you buy CBD online, be sure to order from a vendor who offers carefully manufactured, full-strength cannabis products. Be sure to work with a vendor who makes products from high-CBD cultivated industrial hemp. Look also for products that are made primarily from the flowers of the hemp plant. Bred to be high in seizure relieving CBD and terpenes, industrial hemp contains virtually no intoxicating THC and is not illegal in any of the 50 states.If you can find a seller of CBD products that uses only American grown organic hemp, even better. When it comes to pain relief and seizure alleviation, the higher quality the hemp, the better the medicine made from it.
These days, a wealth of info is available on the Internet. Please don’t trust all of it. Turn to reliable medical experts and consult your own physician prior to trying any of the alternative treatments outlined above.
Amelie Bell is a holistic health practitioner who enjoys finding ways to make others feel better. When she finds them, she likes to share on various health and wellness websites.