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does cbd oil really work

Does cbd oil really work

When it comes to CBD products, the FDA is still trying to get its arms around the issue. The agency is just starting the process of hashing out some rules regarding CBD sales. Officials recently formed a working group to create guidelines that could allow companies to legally market CBD products. Currently, CBD products are considered supplements, which aren’t FDA-regulated, and it is illegal for companies to make health or therapeutic claims about the products in their marketing. In announcing its effort to set CBD marketing rules, the FDA also signaled that it is cracking down on CBD companies that are using “egregious and unfounded claims” to market their products to “vulnerable populations.”

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Where should you purchase CBD products?

Evidence regarding CBD is still building. Now that some states have legalized recreational and medical use of marijuana products, including CBD, scientists are finding it easier to conduct research. More will be known in the next 5 to 10 years, including whether there are yet undiscovered problems associated with long-term use.

Also, keep in mind that CBD products aren’t standardized and will vary. It helps to keep a journal recording what type of CBD product you took, how much, and your response to it. This will help you track what works and what doesn’t for your condition.

CBD and other medications: Proceed with caution

If you are interested in trying a CBD product, it’s best to seek one through a dispensary, which is an establishment legally licensed to sell marijuana, if they are available in your state. Dispensary products must be labeled so you can see exactly how much CBD is in the product and whether it also contains THC. A small amount of THC in a CBD product isn’t typically problematic. But larger amounts could cause a “high” and may present a risk if you are going to drive.

Does cbd oil really work

Many soldiers return home haunted by war and PTSD and often avoid certain activities, places or people associated with their traumatic events. The Department of Veterans Affairs is funding its first study on CBD, pairing it with psychotherapy.

A few drops of CBD oil in a mocha or smoothie are not likely to do anything, researchers contend. Doctors say another force may also be at play in people feeling good: the placebo effect. That’s when someone believes a drug is working and symptoms seem to improve.

Last year, the F.D.A. approved Epidiolex, a purified CBD extract, to treat rare seizure disorders in patients 2 years or older after three randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled clinical trials with 516 patients that showed the drug, taken along with other medications, helped to reduce seizures. These types of studies are the gold standard in medicine, in which participants are divided by chance, and neither the subject nor the investigator knows which group is taking the placebo or the medication.

CBD is advertised as providing relief for anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. It is also marketed to promote sleep. Part of CBD’s popularity is that it purports to be “nonpsychoactive,” and that consumers can reap health benefits from the plant without the high (or the midnight pizza munchies).

Does CBD work?

A recent chart review of 72 psychiatric patients treated with CBD found that anxiety improved, but not sleep. “Over all, we did not find that it panned out as a useful treatment for sleep,” said Dr. Scott Shannon, assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Colorado, Denver and the lead author of the review in The Permanente Journal.

This year, 1,090 people have contacted poison control centers about CBD, according to the American Association of Poison Control Centers. Over a third are estimated to have received medical attention, and 46 were admitted into a critical care unit, possibly because of exposure to other products, or drug interactions. In addition, concern over 318 animals poured into the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ Animal Poison Control Center.

Cannabis containing 0.3 percent or less of THC is hemp. Although last year’s Farm Bill legalized hemp under federal law, it also preserved the Food and Drug Administration’s oversight of products derived from cannabis.

Is CBD harmful?

While there is hope for treating other conditions with the plant extract, Epidiolex remains the only CBD-derived drug approved by the F.D.A. Most of the research on cannabidiol has been in animals, and its current popularity has outpaced science. “We don’t have the 101 course on CBD quite figured out yet,” said Ryan Vandrey, an associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

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That’s why — if you do decide to experiment with CBD — it’s imperative that you tell your doctor. “It’s better to do it under some supervision than none,” says Hill. “If you are taking CBD and are on five other medications, I need to know that.”

But the lack of knowledge surrounding CBD — even among the medical community — can lead to misinformation and misuse. Take the claim that CBD oil can ease pain. “If you rub it on your skin, topical CBD is not going to be absorbed in the bloodstream,” says Hill. “It’s going to treat local inflammation as much as products like Bengay or Icy Hot — but will be much more expensive. People are being taken advantage of, and that concerns me.”

So far, though, the FDA has only approved a version of CBD for two pediatric epilepsy conditions, making the CBD market a “wild, wild west,” according to Hill. The lack of regulation means most of the CBD purchased online is not approved. “You’re not really sure what you’re getting,” he says, adding that a recent study showed only about 30 percent of commercial CBD products are accurately labeled.

“It’s an extremely promising compound and there are a lot of studies that show its potential,” says Dr. Kevin Hill, addiction psychiatrist and Director of the Division of Addiction Psychiatry at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. “But while pre-clinical or animal studies show CBD may have anti-anxiety properties and may be antipsychotic, for the majority of uses, there is not a lot of evidence.”

Another tip: Buy it in a state where recreational or medical cannabis is legal. Theoretically the products in a brick-and-mortar store should be tested in laboratories, says Hill, allowing you to feel more confident about your purchase than than if you were to buy it online.

Still, it’s important to proceed cautiously until more randomized controlled trials are underway. The rate and scale of research has not kept pace with the interest, says Hill, who believes there is little motivation to invest in studies because people are buying the products regardless.

So is there any truth to the hype?