The buzz compound, CBD, has been celebrated by many as a miracle compound packed with a great number of health benefits. Patients have reported health benefits such as pain relief, sleep improvement, stress relief and many more. In this article, we will take a look at the impact that CBD has on ADHD. CBD is short for Cannabidiol. As we have herein mentioned, CBD has been found to provide a variety of health benefits. However, its effects on behavioral and neurological conditions are still being studied.
It is not absolutely clear what CBD does for ADHD, but there are some indicators that it may be helpful in managing ADHD. Before we discuss the potential benefits of CBD for ADHD, let us establish exactly what ADHD is.
What is ADHD?
ADHD stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. It refers to a mental health disorder that causes more than normal hyperactivity and impulsive patterns of behavior. Individuals struggling with ADHD also tend to have a hard time focusing on a single task at a time or remaining seated in on place for an extended period of time. There are instances of ADHD in children and adults. It is a disorder recognized by the American Psychiatric Association.
The symptoms of ADHD include:
– having difficulty focusing or concentrating on tasks
– having a challenge remembering tasks to be completed
– being easily distracted even when handling important tasks
– having a challenge sitting still for a prolonged period of time
– a tendency to interrupt people while they are speaking
the presence of some or all of these symptoms could very well mean that you have ADHD. Symptoms will vary based on the type of ADHDD that you have. There are three types of ADHD. These are predominantly inattentive, predominantly hyperactive-impulsive type and combined hyperactive-impulsive and inattentive type.
CBD for ADHD
Studies have been conducted that can help us in understanding the impact of using CBD for ADHD via forms such as CBD oil, water-soluble CBD, or other forms. One study conducted in 2013 on ADHD subtypes and cannabis use revealed some thought-provoking results. 2,811 current cannabis users were tested. The researchers discovered that cannabis users who face ADHD have reported symptoms of hyperactivity-impulsivity when they are not using cannabis.
Of course, more research is needed to categorically say that CBD or compounds from cannabis can be helpful in treating ADHD. Another study was done in 2018 and was published in the ‘Frontiers of Pharmacology’. Researchers shared that parents of children administered oral CBD oil to their children who struggle with ADHD. A group of 53 children and young adults were treated with CBD for a median of 66 days. The ages range from 4 to 22. The researchers found that self-injury and rage improved in 68 percent of the participants. However, it worsened in 9 percent of the sample. Hyperactivity was reduced in 68 percent of the participants; 29 percent had no changes while hyperactivity increased in 3 percent of the participants. Anxiety also decreased in 47 percent of the children but increased in 24 percent of the children. The study saw adverse effects inclusive of mild sleeplessness and a mild change in appetite.
Another study published in the ‘Frontiers in Pharmacology’ in 2019 studied the impact of CBD on mice. You might be wondering how this connects to ADHD in humans. Well, the mice were suitable because they were deficient in the AMPA receptor which is located in the central nervous system. This disability in mice is a suitable model for hyperactivity disorders such as ADHD. Those who conducted the study discovered that CBD infused in the hippocampus caused a reduction in hyperactivity in a new environment. The hippocampus is the area of the brain in charge of spatial learning and adaptation. This study gives some amount of evidence that CBD may lessen the hyperactive wiring in the hippocampus and other areas in the brain.
Feedback from Patients
An adult ADHD patient by the name of Brett Bartel started taking hemp-derived, full-spectrum CBD oil in April 2019. He reports that he has had improvement in his symptoms. He shares that it calms his mind in the later portions of the day and assists him in falling asleep. He also shares that when he is awake, he feels more alert and more focused during the day. Eva Romano Olive has been administering CBD oil to her son after receiving a diagnosis of ADHD and oppositional defiant disorder, sensory processing disorder and social pragmatic language disorder. This is similar to Asperger syndrome. CBD has proven to be helpful for Olive’s son. Olive shared that when she saw that CBD helped, she cried tears of joy.
The Response of an Expert
James Polston, who serves as the Chief Science Officer at Helius Therapeutics in New Zealand has noticed that there exists significant anecdotal evidence that would suggest that CBD oil can be helpful in the management of the symptoms that are associated with ADHD. He notes, however, that there are not enough clinical studies that investigate CBD oil or water-soluble CBD as a treatment for ADHD. Poslton mentioned though that scientific interests continue to hover over the use of CBD oil in the management of the symptoms of ADHD. The studies of CBD’s impact on animals are suggesting that CBD oil could help to manage certain symptoms that are associated with ADHD. These include hyperactivity and anxiety. Reports stand in support of the benefits of CBD oil and water-soluble CBD. Nevertheless, until a more substantial and thorough investigation is carried out on CBD for ADHD, the benefits remain uncertain.