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cbd brain healing

A 2011 study of mice found that endocannabinoid levels are elevated during and after a TBI, which suggests that the endocannabinoid system plays an important neuroprotective role. [3]

In 1998, researchers published the results of a study on rats that demonstrated the neuroprotective benefits of CBD and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which are two of the cannabinoids found in cannabis. [2] Although more research is required to fully understand the neuroprotective effects of CBD, recent studies have shown that CBD activates the cannabinoid receptors in your brain that are part of your body’s natural endocannabinoid system.

CBD May Offer Neuroprotective Benefits

Although CBD has shown promise for brain injury treatment in the research lab, anecdotal evidence also is strong — especially among some former professional athletes in sports with a high risk of head injuries, such as boxing and football.

When your brain is injured, it releases neurotransmitters and chemicals that cause inflammation, blood vessel injury, chemical imbalances, tissue damage, and cell death. These brain responses are called a “secondary injury cascade” and are responsible for many of the neurological problems associated with TBI.

Although further research is needed, some studies suggest that when CBD is used shortly before or within 12 hours of a brain injury, it may help to prevent or limit the damage that occurs after a TBI during the secondary injury cascade.

Where Jacobson and Nussenbaum saw their role as helping a cannabis-derived drug get F.D.A. approval, Figi focused on legislation, becoming a kind of CBD ambassador. She testified before State Legislatures and helped draft a 2017 House bill that, if it hadn’t died, would have legalized CBD nationally.

How one molecule from the cannabis plant came to be seen as a therapeutic cure-all.

Across the Atlantic, Geoffrey Guy, the founder of a company called GW Pharmaceuticals, had successfully brought one cannabis-derived medicine, called Sativex, to market in Britain and other European countries. The first such medication permitted by a government, it was approved to treat the symptoms of spasticity (as well as pain) caused by multiple sclerosis, a progressive autoimmune disease of the central nervous system. It contained both CBD and THC. Guy was intrigued when, through a mutual acquaintance, a California family seeking CBD to treat epilepsy reached out to him — Evelyn Nussenbaum and her son Sam.

Guy agreed to treat Sam. Jacobson had her extract analyzed and the results sent to Guy. In December 2012, Sam and Nussenbaum flew to London for two weeks to try a purified CBD drug that Guy had created just for him. He started with a small dose and, as it was gradually increased, his seizures faded. Before his trip, Sam was taking three conventional medications and still having dozens of seizures daily. But after he reached the highest daily dose of CBD — 250 milligrams — his seizures stopped almost entirely for a week. He became more articulate and coherent than he had been since he was 5, when his condition took a turn for the worse. He rode a zip line in Hyde Park, took the subway and did other things that Nussenbaum had always avoided for fear that he would seize and hurt himself. Nussenbaum describes that week as “Twilight Zone weird,” as if she had entered a parallel dimension.

When scientists at the French pharmaceutical company Sanofi-Aventis (now Sanofi) understood that THC could whet a user’s appetite, they created a weight-loss drug that blocked CB1 receptors, hoping to suppress appetite. Rimonabant was first released in Europe in 2006. Two years later, regulators pulled it from the marketplace because of its severe side effects, including depression and suicidal behavior. The episode seems to exemplify endocannabinoids’ importance to our sense of well-being and the difficulty of manipulating them therapeutically. Attempts to increase native cannabinoids with synthetic drugs have fared no better. In 2016, French scientists halted a study of a drug designed to boost endocannabinoids. For reasons that remain unclear, six patients who took the medicine, meant to treat pain, were hospitalized. One died.

Cannabis has been used medicinally for thousands of years in Asia, where it was probably first domesticated before traveling to, among other places, Africa. It was almost certainly introduced multiple times to the Americas, first from Africa to South America through the slave trade — in Brazil it’s still known by an African name, diamba — but also to the Caribbean. Indian indentured laborers probably brought it to Jamaica, where it’s called by an ancient Indian name, ganja.

Yet when 30 American Medical Association members were surveyed, starting in 1929, 29 disagreed with claims about the dangers posed by cannabis. One said the proposals to outlaw it were “absolute rot.” But the hysteria Anslinger helped stir up worked politically. In 1937, Congress passed the Marijuana Tax Act. High taxes made cannabis much more expensive and difficult to obtain decades before President Nixon — scientists of his era disagreed with him, too, about marijuana’s supposed dangers — signed the Controlled Substances Act of 1970. A plant that people had used medicinally for thousands of years was now driven underground.

The cannabinoids exert their anti-inflammatory effects in a few different ways, including:

Most pharmaceutical options remain ineffective — and often come with unwanted side effects.

1. Protects The Brain Cells From Damage

Primary brain injury is the damage that occurs to the brain after the initial impact. However, a cascade of events may trigger secondary injury resulting in ongoing cellular damage to the brain, which is responsible for many of the neurological issues associated with TBI.

Therefore, the importance of accurately assessing the severity of a TBI is vitally important for prognosis and management.

Of course, it’s important that you first discuss with your doctor before taking any other drugs or treatments while rehabilitating from a serious head injury.