CBD Oil for ADHD [Exploring the Science]

July 9, 2018

Of all the mental or behavioural disorders diagnosable, there are few better known than Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.

Made infamous due to a reclassification of the disorder last decade – resulting in a new mass of diagnoses – ADHD is known as the “catch-all” disorder that’s often attributed to unruly students who just won’t sit still.

However, just because it’s often undiagnosed doesn’t mean it isn’t real.

ADHD affects either 1-2%, or 5-7%, of all children, depending on the specific criteria you use to diagnose it. Regardless of the preferred choice of classification, ADHD still affects millions of children and adults throughout the world.

It affects concentration, mood and general attitude, and it is ridiculously under-studied.

Could we be using CBD oil to help those with ADHD?

What is ADHD?

ADHD, or Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, is a behavioural disorder that, as the name implies, causes systematic inattentiveness, hyperactivity and, to the bane of teachers everywhere, impulsiveness.

This is most significant to children still in school, as the inability to focus on their teachers often results in excessive punishment and being left behind. This can even affect, in extreme cases, a child’s ability to focus on biological tasks like eating and sleeping.

Biologically, ADHD is believed to be caused by poor performance of the dopamine and norepinephrine functions in the brain, which is responsible for executive function and thus, tasks that require attention, focus and organization. This means that people with ADHD struggle with any kind of task that requires any sort of executive function, such as heavy focus or organization.

This makes ADHD the enemy of teachers everywhere, but can also serve as a serious issue for adults everywhere when trying to focus on their tasks.

How is ADHD Commonly Treated?

ADHD is commonly treated using a combination of a variety of medications and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. The actual medications for ADHD are the famous Ritalin and Adderall.

Both Ritalin and Adderall seek to combat the symptoms of ADHD by allowing you to focus normally and divert your energy towards more specific tasks.

Both drugs work by affecting the system that releases Dopamine and allows for your brain to focus on individual objectives. They also, however, contribute to cognition enhancements, lending users an increased memory capacity, inhibitory control, and a compulsiveness to be active and doing something.

While that sounds great at first, it’s important to remember that these drugs are targeted to dampen the vagaries of ADHD, so are thus incredibly strong and effective at doing their job.

Were you to use Ritalin or Adderall without having ADHD, or simply take too much even if it was prescribed to you, you could enter manic bursts of activity and that could severely damage your brain development and mood.

While it may sound nice to be focused and organized, it is no fun to be fervently cleaning your apartment at 3am because it’s all you can focus on right now.

Safe to say, Adderall and Ritalin are certainly effective at treating ADHD, but they are drugs you are forced to take constantly and eternally, meaning you are essentially never your normal self. Your mood, your focus and temperament will always be based on what medication you’re using.

While not exactly ideal, it is by far the best method we know of to treat ADHD.

CBD Oil & Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

First of all, it’s important to know that there has been startlingly little scientific study into the benefits of CBD or general cannabis use for the purpose of treating ADHD.

This is due to two factors: firstly, cannabis as a medicine is still a hotly debated topic, thanks to the classification of marijuana as a serious narcotic in many western countries. However, this taboo is being slowly lifted, both in Europe and in various states in the USA, so hopefully this can be made better in the near future.

Secondly, there exists a hesitation in administering cannabis of any form to someone with ADHD because of ignorance. A common perception of people using cannabis is exhibiting laziness and an inability to pay attention, symptoms often attributed to ADHD itself.

This is obviously ignorant, especially because CBD, the non-psychoactive component of cannabis, does not tend to give users these symptoms.

Additionally, studies such as one completed by the University of Washington* state that the use of marijuana when diagnosed with ADHD results in a lower quality of life and an increase in the rate of being diagnosed with other conditions. This, again, has no bearing whatsoever on CBD.

This significant lack of research into CBD and ADHD means that a great deal of evidence to support its use is mainly anecdotal. Indeed, a great deal of the research done so far into CBD and ADHD is in fact to do with the opinions of others through anecdotal evidence, as demonstrated in one study* by John T. Mitchell et al., which looks at a variety of forum discussions on the internet to do with cannabis or CBD use among those diagnosed with ADHD.

In the study, Mitchell et al. looked through 268 separate forum threads that discussed cannabis and ADHD and found that, in the majority of the forum posts, people expressed that cannabis helped their ADHD, in comparison to only 8% that found it harmful.

While this study is hardly a double-blind clinical trial using scientific parameters, it still demonstrates the potential for CBD to help those with ADHD.

Most of the ways that CBD seems to be able to help with ADHD is that it can combat the many other conditions and disorders that crop up as a result of being diagnosed with ADHD.

ADHD is frequently accompanied by other conditions, due to the intense focus and fixation that ADHD grants its sufferers. This can range from a variety of different anxieties, all the way to serious drug addiction.

This latter one is one of the most serious risks of ADHD, as it is well known that those with ADHD tend to more frequently abuse other substances. A study conducted by Silva N. Jr et al. found that, among subjects that both had ADHD and substance use disorders, people exhibited a lower density of striatal dopamine transporters (DAT), which can affect mood, attitude, and executive function.

This means that users of ADHD can experience low moods, which may cause them to turn to drugs to try and treat these symptoms. Sadly, many drugs themselves also contribute to a lower DAT density, thus making them feel worse, beginning a cycle of addiction.

CBD has been demonstrated to help combat addiction in innumerable studies, for example a study by Neuropsychopharmacology in 2018* that found that CBD helped patients avoid a relapse by combating the parts of your brain that cause the intense desire to return to bad habits.

CBD acts in a positive way in the Endocannabinoid system to target the parts of the body that deal with the cycle of addiction, primarily the release of serotonin and dopamine – the regulated control of these brain chemicals allows a person to more easily get through addiction.

Alongside this, people with ADHD frequently suffer from anxiety; CBD has been demonstrated in a number of studies to help control and deal with many different forms of anxiety. CBD helps due to its anxiolytic-like effects, which allow a patient to combat the malignant release of serotonin that causes a chain of anxious thoughts.

Final Thoughts On CBD For ADHD

ADHD is a serious, life-altering condition. It is frequently misdiagnosed, often resulting in poor medicinal applications for patients by the over-prescription of Adderall and Ritalin.

The amount of research conducted into finding out whether or not CBD helps with ADHD is woefully, depressingly limited. As time goes on, more and more scientists and governments will begin experimenting into the benefits of CBD for ADHD.

For now, though, we don’t know anything for sure with regards to its direct effect on ADHD.

What we do know, however, is that CBD can help patients deal with a variety of other conditions that often go hand in hand with ADHD.

By treating that myriad of other conditions, as well as allowing a more controlled release of Serotonin, sufferers of ADHD can live an easier life when using CBD as a supplement to their regular medication.

We don’t yet know whether or not CBD can act as a principle medication for ADHD, but we certainly know that it can, at the very least, make your life a bit easier.

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Getting Started with CBD Oil

If you suffer from anxiety (like me), depression or pain and are looking to get started with CBD oil, you need information on how to buy CBD oil, or you’re simply looking to learn more about CBD products, you’ve arrived at the right place.

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol, aka CBD, is a compound found in the cannabis plant that has significant medical benefits. CBD can be extracted from two different species of the Cannabis Sativa L plant, which include Cannabis and Hemp. Unlike its rival THC, CBD does not make people feel “stoned” and can actually counteract the psychoactivity of THC.

One of the main advantages of CBD is its non-psychoactive affect making it a great option for people looking for relief from inflammation, anxiety, insomnia, seizures, spasms, and other conditions.
As I mentioned above the primary distinction between Hemp and CBD oil is the part of the plant they are derived from and what parts of the plant are used to create the oil. Hemp oil is typically made from pressing cannabis seeds to extract the fatty oil from within, while some that have mastered the CBD extraction process also use the flowers as they contain high percentages of CBD. CBD oil, on the other hand, is usually made from the flowers of cannabis plant through various extraction methods.

How Does CBD Affect Your Body?

The way marijuana affects your body varies from person to person as it will often depend on genetics, tolerance to the cannabinoids, medical health, DNA, and more. It also depends on the way you consume the CBD, for example, the effects of vaping CBD are far different to smoking it in the form of high-CBD cannabis strains. 

CBD and the way it affects us is still of somewhat a mystery to researchers they still try to figure out how it effects the EndoCannabinoid system. During the previous century, it was discovered that our bodies have receptors within the brain and central nervous system. Specific cannabinoids such as CBD bind to those receptors and activate the EndoCannabinoid System (ECS). This then provides a wide range of psychological and physical benefits helping the body.

Without going into specifics, cannabinoids signal to the body to create endocannabinoids and build more receptors. This helps the body to limit things associated with pain and inflammation, repairs cells and provides a wide range of other health benefits. Unlike other cannabinoids, CBD is thought to be the ultimate anti-inflammatory cannabinoid.

Want to learn more about how CBD works read: How Long Does it Take CBD to Work

Medical Benefits of CBD

There is a misconception as to whether CBD can help treat patients, similar to pharmaceutical medicine, but thanks to the internet and a few different medical studies patients and researchers have been exposing their findings on how CBD oil is helping to cure a wide range of medical conditions.

The most popular story was the one of Charlotte Figi. At the time Charlotte was only 6 years old. As a little girl, she was experiencing over 300 epileptic seizures per week until she was successfully treated by a CBD-rich strain oil, later named Charlotte’s Web.

The high-quality CBD oil, changed her life, helping her to overcome a 6-year battle. Since her story hit the news, CBD and other cannabinoids of the cannabis plant are constantly being researched to understand how they can help to treat different medical conditions. As a matter of fact, CBD has been thought to help treat over 170 medical conditions, among them severe conditions such as Anorexia, Cancer, Arthritis, Depression, Anxiety, Chronic Pain, Insomnia, Glaucoma, multiple sclerosis and PTSD.

Recent studies have even shown that CBD, may cure life-threatening diseases by altering genes. Other studies have proven that it might even be an effective treatment for osteoarthritis and chronic pain.

The way that CBD works is that it interacts with receptors located in different parts of the central nervous system. These receptors are called CB1 and CB2. Both reflect the areas of the brain they interact with such as the limbic system. When taking CBD, this cannabinoid locks in on these receptors and affects the body in different ways. For example, it can help to block the pain caused by specific medical conditions.

While numerous studies have shown promising results, it is important to understand that CBD research is still at premature stages. A 2011 study that researched CBD for fibromyalgia showed extremely promising results. 56 of 112 participants who took CBD in the form of oil saw a great reduction in their symptoms and pain, while those using traditional methods didn’t see hardly any improvement.

Can you Buy CBD if you live in an illegal state?

The process is not cut-&-dry, and but thanks to the Farm Bill of 2014, forms of CBD can now be delivered to your doorstep. Those that live in recreational states can purchase CBD cannabis oil which is high in potency and extremely effective for helping to treat severe medical conditions, while those that live in other states that are not medical or recreational can benefit from CBD hemp oil. CBD Hemp oil is perfect for helping to treat a wide range of conditions including anxiety, depression and acute pain. 

Who is NaturalWellNessCBDOil?

My name is Jonathan, and I’ve created this loving resource that is packed with information about CBD oil. I am growing a community on Facebook and are constantly engaging with different people to help them make more informed decisions. I review products on a daily basis and provide unbiased reviews about some of the top CBD oil manufacturers. All the information on the site is FREE; I only ask that you help to share the information you find on the site with other people that are suffering. 

To your health and happiness.