cannabis neurodegenerative disease

How Cannabis Helps Treat Neurodegenerative Diseases

With the widespread legalization and increasing acceptance throughout the world – cannabis is emerging as an effective way to treat many health disorders. As a result, an increasing amount of patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases find a ray of hope in the medicinal plant. But is it useful in bringing relief to the patients? 

What Are Neurodegenerative Disorders?

The mere mention of neurodegenerative suggests that it relates to the brain – and that is correct. The human brain is a very complex organ, made up of billions of cells that determine how you function every second of your life. Some of these more essential cells are known as neurons; electrically excitable cells that help your brain interact and perform basic tasks. This includes the management of pain, but also your ability to move or breathe.

Neurodegenerative comes from two words, neuro and degenerative. While neuro pertains to the brain, degenerative implies dying or breaking down. Neurodegenerative thus refers to the condition where the brain starts decaying, resulting in the death of neurons. It leads to miscommunication between the cells in your brain and hinders it from performing basic tasks.

Symptoms

This miscommunication can be the cause of many ailments. It may affect your speech, intelligence, memory, and even movement. Our body can neither produce nor replace the damaged neurons naturally. Which implies that neurodegenerative disorders are chronic and incurable.

neurodegenerative disease cannabis
As the name suggests, neurodegenerative diseases affect the human brain and nervous system.

The most common disorders are:

  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Spinal Muscle Atrophy
  • Prion Disease
  • Spinocerebellar Disease
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
  • Huntington’s Disease
  • Motor Neuron Diseases

Neurodegenerative Symptoms

Since the human brain is unexplored territory, the verdict is still out on what causes these disorders. Though researchers have come up with a few possible factors. From environmental factors like pesticides to brain injury, genetic mutations, and even age can lead to brain disorders. The symptoms usually show up with increasing age and can be severe, sometimes also becoming the cause of death. Some of the prominent symptoms are:

  • Paralysis
  • Weakness
  • Spasticity
  • Memory Impairment
  • Trouble in Breathing
  • Problem with Movement
  • Rigidity in Muscles
  • Impairment of Heart Function

What Is Cannabis?

The cannabis Sativa plant has been in use for centuries, with people resorting to it as a remedy for common ailments. While we have always known the therapeutic benefits of cannabis, it is only recently that people are opening up to its use. Cannabis contains a wide range of chemicals called cannabinoids, out of which THC and CBD are the most common.

THC is the element that induces the high, or psychoactive effects of cannabis. THC helps to alleviate stress and relaxes your body and mind. Though the cannabinoid CBD, on the other hand, has medicinal value to it – without these psychoactive traits. It not only nourishes you from within – but also counters the psychoactive effects and less desired consequences of THC use. From fighting debilitating pain to anxiety and even chronic health troubles, cannabis can help you combat it all.  

cannabis buds on a scale Amsterdam Genetics coffeeshop
Cannabis is used both recreational and medicinal, in this case to battle neurodegenerative disorders.

Endocannabinoid System (ECS)

Are you wondering how cannabis can be so helpful? Well, cannabis is known to promote psychological and physical well-being through the chemicals known as cannabinoids. The human body has an endocannabinoid system that produces receptors or neurotransmitters that control the hormones, organs, and even cells. The cannabinoids present in cannabis are very identical to the neurotransmitters that the endocannabinoid system produces.

To interact with the body, these transmitters attach themselves to the receptors which are present in various organs. There are two types of receptors, popularly known as CB1 and CB2. It was only with the discovery of CB1 receptors that we got to know about the endocannabinoid system. The system is responsible for altering the memory, emotions, immune system, appetite, metabolism, and even pain.

How Cannabis Works

When you use cannabis, it’s all about ingesting the cannabinoids present in it. Just like the natural cannabinoids, they stick to the CB1 and CB2 receptors and alter the physical and mental state. Our body uses the neurotransmitters to communicate or to function, and cannabinoids either increase or decrease the amount of certain neurotransmitters in the body. While the CB1 receptors are majorly present in the central nervous system, you can find high concentrations of CB2 receptors in the immune cells; which are a part of the peripheral nervous system.

endocannabinoid system ecs
The endocannabinoid system helps regulate all important processes in the human body [Image: encore labs]

When we talk about how cannabis works on the human body and helps combat many diseases, the endocannabinoid system holds much value. Cannabis or medicinal marijuana may act as a remedy for various ailments, due to the presence of two cannabinoids, CBD and THC. One should incorporate CBD products to their daily diet to reap the benefits. One can buy CBD Supplements or CBD Dominant Cannabis Seeds to cultivate at home through various online platforms easily. Make sure you compare and review it before buying and always choose a trusted source.

Research

A research done in the year 2009 by Cochrane initiated the conversation about the efficacy of cannabis when it comes to treating neurological disorders. While there weren’t any reliable conclusions to be trusted, due to the lack of data, it still started a wave of conversation about cannabis and neurodegenerative disorders.

This uproar led to a series of studies and clinical research around the topic. Moreover, in the last decade, cannabis is emerging as a household name and a common medicine for many health issues. Modern doctors are also recommending the patients to use cannabis for neurodegenerative disorders. But is cannabis effective?

More Research

In the year 2015, the American Academy of Neurology published a review which became a ray of hope for the people suffering from neurological disorders. The doctors conducted an extensive yet systematic experiment wherein the patients were given cannabis to treat the disorders.

medical cannabis research
Conclusive research is yet to be done, though it appears cannabis could be important in battling neurodegenerative disorders. [Image by Drew Hays on Unsplash]

The patients experienced much less pain, spasms, and even spasticity, all of which are symptoms of disorders like multiple sclerosis. The results were so groundbreaking that the researchers went on to say that medical insurance must cover the expenses of cannabis-based medications like Nabilone and Dronabinol.

The endocannabinoid system and its functioning inside the human body can also be an effective way to treat neurological issues. By this means, cannabis or the receptors present in cannabis can help alleviate the symptoms of neurodegenerative disorders. It can help combat cognitive diseases, improve motor skills, and reduce stress.  

For years, people around the globe have been speculating that regular use of cannabis can adversely impact cognitive skills. But what comes as a much ironic and shocking revelation is that cannabis can alleviate the symptoms of cognitive diseases.       

How To Use Cannabis

Do you smoke cannabis? Can you eat it too? If these are some of the things that you are thinking upon, you must know that the ways of using cannabis far exceed the list of benefits it offers. While some people prefer to smoke it, some tend to use it in the form of oil. You can find the best suited cannabis stores around you to get your hands on top quality products – or grow your own! Here are a few ways of using cannabis to get maximum effects:

Smoking: Firstly, smoking is the oldest and most effective way to use cannabis. While you can take the plant and roll it in a joint, you can even take the help of the latest vaporizers to smoke it. The vaporizers come equipped with the machinery that heats up CBD liquid or CBD straight off the plant to generate vapor for you to inhale.

Taking it orally: You can also use cannabis in the form of CBD oil. This is mostly extracted from CBD Dominant hemp plants or cannabis varieties like our Compromise CBD (v1). CBD supplements come as drops and Melt Tablets and even edible gummies. You can ingest it directly to reap in the benefits of cannabis.

cannabis oil rso rick Simpson weed oil
There are numerous ways of consuming cannabis to enjoy its medicinal or therapeutic benefits.  [Image: workwithsherpa.com]

Popular New Methods

Edibles: With the sudden acceptance that cannabis is getting, the market is flooding with cannabis-infused products. You can get the alternate version of pastry, gummies, healthy power bars, and even beverages like Hot Chocolate, infused with your favorite cannabinoids.  

Topicals: Topicals are cannabis-infused balms and creams that you can apply directly onto your skin. You can take a generous amount of cream and apply it on the affected area to get instant relief. Products like our White Choco Body & Hand Cream with CBD are perfect for daily maintenance of the skins health. While our Argan Cream and Balm are better suited to battle skin aging, inflammation, and other, more severe skin conditions.

Final Thoughts

The people suffering from neurodegenerative diseases fight a daily battle. While they are struggling to live a healthy life, the immediate family goes through an emotionally toiling journey, as well. It can be hard to see someone you love to get more sick by each passing day. If someone you love and care for is suffering from any neurodegenerative disorder, you can buy cannabis products online to make it easier for them.

Although cannabis does not guarantee to cure the disease or repair the damaged neurons, it can undoubtedly help in alleviating the symptoms. You can talk to the neurologist or any specialist, and get their recommendation before using cannabis. With the ongoing technological and medical advancement, it is safe to say that soon we will know the cause of neurological disorders and be able to cure it, hopefully with cannabis.

Also Interesting: ‘8 Amazing Facts About CBD Oil 

[Opening image by jesse orrico on Unsplash]