Although using cannabidiol (CBD) to treat addiction – both withdrawal symptoms and relapse prevention – has become increasingly mainstream in recent years, it still remains fairly controversial.
Regardless of the stigma surrounding cannabis use, studies show that even a short-term CBD regime can help prevent relapse in recovering addicts. Despite this being a relatively new area of research, the evidence is mounting in favor of medical cannabis, CBD in particular.
In a study that was just published March of this year, neuroscientists from Scripps Research Institute in Southern California ran a series of tests to see if they could help recovering addicts stay sober by using transdermal CBD. The experiment was performed on mice that were determined to have developed addictions to either cocaine or alcohol. The subjects were given their dose of CBD once every 24 hours for only 1 week – exactly 7 days – and researchers were pleasantly surprised by the results.
Not only did were the mice’s symptoms (anxiety, tension, impulsivity) diminished, but none of the subjects relapsed for 5 months after treatment. This, despite the fact that the CBD was completely out of the animals’ systems within 3 days. According to lead researcher for the study, Friedbert Weiss, “This is proof of principle supporting the potential of CBD in relapse prevention.”
So far, medical cannabis for addiction treatment has been centered around the ongoing opioid epidemic. It’s true that CBD is proven to be effective for people trying to wean themselves off of drugs like heroin and oxycontin. Plus, research indicates that in states where there is a comprehensive medical cannabis program in places, doctors are less inclined to prescribe opioids and mood stabilizing medication.
However, CBD can also work for many other types of addicts as well. According to a 2015 study that reviewed 14 previous cases, “cannabidiol may have therapeutic properties on opioid, cocaine, and psychostimulant addiction and some preliminary data suggest that it may be beneficial in cannabis and tobacco addiction in humans.”
To summarize, everything from tobacco and nicotine dependency all the way to heroin and cocaine addictions could potentially benefit from cannabidiol treatment. The sooner more research is conducted, the faster we can combat addiction in a safe and natural way.[Image Credit: Pixabay]