Does CBD oil help in muscular dystrophy?

CBD Oil

The 2018 Farm Bill led to the growth in CBD-derived products such as oils, capsules, gummies, and topicals. These products are believed to have different health and wellness benefits, such as relieving pain, inflammation, anxiety, and depression. People born with muscular dystrophy undergo pain, and they may need to use painkillers frequently, which can be addictive. For this reason, most people with muscular dystrophy have been looking for the best alternative that can alleviate pain without using defective over-the-counter prescriptions. Others have also shown interest in CBD-based products; hence, this article will focus on how CBD oil helps in muscular dystrophy by exploring muscular dystrophy, its causes, and common symptoms.


Understanding Cannabidiol (CBD)

Cannabidiol or CBD is a vital compound extracted from a hemp plant to make various CBD products. The compound is extracted by either solvent or supercritical CO2 methods. The solvent method includes the use of alcohol such as ethanol which is added to dried hemp stems, leaves, or flowers as a solvent for extraction. The alcohol later evaporates, leaving a crude CBD oil.

On the other hand, supercritical CO2 extraction is the most used method that yields the purest and most effective CBD. In this method, heated CO2 gas is pumped into a chamber with a dry hemp plant extracting the CBD. Another CO2 gas is also pumped into another chamber for later use. The crude CBD is then filtered through distillation and taken for formulation.

The extracted CBD is processed into three different forms, full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and isolate CBD. The difference between these forms is what they contain. For instance, the full-spectrum CBD products contain all the hemp plant compounds, including terpenes, THC, and other phytocannabinoids. The broad spectrum contains all the terpenes but lacks THC. Lastly, isolate is purely CBD with no other hemp compounds.

The full-spectrum CBD is the strongest form since it contains all the hemp elements. However, both full- and broad-spectrums have a bitter grassy taste because of the plant terpenes. Also, even though hemp is a cannabis plant, its THC compound is not high enough to induce an intoxicating effect similar to that of the marijuana plant. Therefore, the acceptable amount of THC in CBD products should be maintained below 0.3%. Hence, any full-spectrum product with THC levels above the limit is considered illegal, which explains why marijuana is illegal in most states.


What Is Muscular Dystrophy?

Muscular dystrophy is the progressive weakening or loss of muscle mass, which results from abnormal genes or mutations that interfere with the production of proteins responsible for muscle health. Different types of muscular dystrophy are Duchenne, Becker, myotonic, Facioscapulohumeral (FSHD), limp-girdle, and congenital. These conditions have no cure, but medications and therapy can help reduce the death rate.

Common muscular dystrophy symptoms are most visible from a young age in boys, while others are not visible until adulthood. These symptoms include large calf muscle, delayed growth, learning disabilities, trouble running and jumping, and difficulties in standing or rising. The Becker muscular dystrophy has milder symptoms in the teen years or much later in the 20s. The myotonic, on the other hand, is characterized by failure to relax muscles after contractions.

FSHD occurs mostly in the teen years and weakens the face, hip, and shoulders. The limp-girdle affects the shoulder and hip muscle; people with this problem have difficulty lifting the frontal part of the foot. Muscular dystrophy mostly affects boys, but congenital can affect both boys and girls at age two. The condition can progress slowly or rapidly but causes severe impairment.

Individuals from families with a history of muscular dystrophy are at risk of contracting the disease or passing it to their children. When muscular dystrophy advances, it leads to trouble walking and using arms, breathing problems, shortening of muscles, difficulties in swallowing, heart problems, and scoliosis.


CBD Oil and Muscular Dystrophy

The human body has an endocannabinoid system (ECS) with CB1 and CB2 receptors that regulate body functions like sensitivity to pain or inflammation. The endocannabinoid system releases endocannabinoids to protect damaged tissues. For example, when in pain, the ECS produces anandamide to reduce the effect of pain or inflammation. CBD does not attach to the CB1 or CB2 receptors. However, it helps retain anandamide by preventing fatty acids from breaking it down into tiny particles (a normal ECS function) and maintaining high levels of anandamide. As a result, anandamide controls the pain response and inflammation by controlling the number of immune cells in the affected area.

CBD oil is also used as a supplement and substitute for painkillers such as opioids that can put users at risk of dependency. Also, CBD oil has been claimed to relieve pain and inflammation by binding with ECS receptors responsible for body functions like pain, mood, sleep, and immune systems.


How to Take CBD Oil for Muscular Dystrophy

People suffering from muscular dystrophy can place a few drops of CBD tincture under their tongues for a few seconds to allow the oil to be absorbed into the bloodstream. CBD oil is also available in CBD-infused capsules, gummies, and topicals meant for eternal use.


Conclusion

Muscle weakening is a big challenge that can lead to psychical disability and related effects such as immobility and pain. Although most people rely on painkillers to ease the pain caused by muscular dystrophy, these prescriptions are said to be addictive and defective. Therefore, experts suggest that using hemp extracts such as CBD oil as a substitute is a good idea because the plant has numerous compounds that can offer natural pain relief. However, before using CBD oil, it is advised to check with a medical professional because most CBD products are not FDA-approved and have pending questions about THC levels. Buyers should also choose high-quality CBD oil by reading user reviews, checking product labels, and confirming lab test results.




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