CBD and THC
There are two main active compounds in Marijuana, CBD and THC. People often confuse CBD with THC, when in reality they couldn’t be further from the same thing. THC is the psychoactive part of Marijuana which binds to the CB1 and CB2 receptors in your brain which creates interference with signals being sent to and from areas including the cerebellum, hippocampus, and cerebral cortex. CBD is non-psychoactive, unlike THC’s effects which produce a “high” CBD’s effects are much more mitigated due to the lesser binding capabilities of the chemical. The good thing is you don’t have to smoke Marijuana or experience the effects of THC at all to have the helping effects of CBD. Nowadays you can pick up CBD oil at any drugstore (though it does carry a hefty price tag) which can be used either to drop in a vaporizer to be inhaled or it can be ingested by putting drops under your tongue to absorb it.
The Body and CBD
The question of whether CBD is harmful or not is an interesting one, really because on some level the human body is constantly supplying itself with natural cannabinoids every day. And really, there is confusion around what CBD oil actually does to your body. In reality, when you ingest any level of CBD oil, it triggers the body to use more of the cannabinoids that you produce organically. You’re never really using much, if any at all, of the CBD you ingest. As for the side effects that come as a result of CBD, they’re really minimal. Most of the side effects are actually the effects that help; reduced anxiety, increased appetite, improvement in mood, reduced nausea. The negative side effects are a small list including lightheadedness, drowsiness, and sometimes diarrhea, but all things considered, this list is no bigger than the side effects of other more commonly used antiepileptic drugs.
Of course, due to the stigma that cannabis has garnered over the decades, there haven’t been many, if any at all, conclusive studies on the effects of CBD oil on children. But that doesn’t mean that there haven’t been some success stories being shared around the internet. In online studies from both 2013 and 2015, parents of children with epilepsy answered polls on how CBD oil affected their child and if it helped at all with seizures. In both studies, the results were positive, with 16 out of 19 parents in 2013 and 100 out of 117 parents in 2015 reporting a significant reduction in the frequency and severity of seizures, as well as reports of improved alertness, sleep, and mood with regular CBD use. Even when CBD shows negative effects like in a study published in 2016 where a part of the study population withdrew from CBD oil treatment because it aggravated the seizures in their children rather than suppressing them. Of course, a majority (66/74) did show signs of improvement so it’s another point for CBD. Something to keep in mind, however, these studies should be taken with a grain of salt until real studies are done in the future with a far greater population, but it’s a nod in the direction of medicinal CBD.