"Is CBD Right for My Child"?
Every day, parents are faced with the crushing reality that their children are plagued with sickness, infirmities and chronic illnesses. Keeping their child(ren) safe, healthy and pain free is a delicate balance. Families want, need and deserve to be given every possible resource available. Parents should be given the option to medicate their children with CBD, it is different from THC, can reduce or alleviate symptoms/pain and the body naturally produces it and uses it for normal functions keeping our body in working condition.
Many people become nervous when it comes to CBD, and especially when children are involved. They immediately relate it to "drugging" children or getting them "high". But, is that the case? Is CBD and THC different and what is CBD really? Cannabidiol (CBD), is a remedy that is natural and used as a remedy to treat ailments, aches, pains and more. CBD is exacted from the hemp or Cannabis Sativa plant. It is then added to another oil called a carrier, such as coconut or hemp oil. CBD is only one out of one hundred thirteen isolated compounds of cannabinoids. Both Tetrahydrocannabidol (THC), and CBD are known as phytocannabinoids. CBD was isolated first in 1940, and THC was later isolated in 1964, by Raphael Mechoulam. They differ because of their physiological effects. CBD is non psychotropic and THC is a psychotropic, effecting a persons mental state. They also have different molecular structures. Where THC has a cyclic ring, CBD has a hydroxy group. Because of this difference the two compounds have totally different pharmacological properties.
Often, we as parents cannot remove the illness but we can do our best to take the pain away or make it better. The worst feeling is seeing our children hurting, it is a common thread among all parents. According the CDC and the Journal of the American Medical Association, illness in children continue to increase. In fact, according to charts and records, chronic illness has doubled from 12.8% in 1994 to 26.6% in 2006. Injury from bicycles alone claims 254,000 children annually according to standfrodchildrens.org. In 2014, over 15,000 children were diagnosed with cancer, one out of sixty-eight (1/68) have autism, one out of twenty (1/20) are plagued with epilepsy or suffer with seizures, and one out of ten (1/10) children have been diagnosed with ADHD. With increasing illnesses and disease among children, it is no wonder that CBD began to be used and studied. Research shows that children benefit greatly from the medicinal use of CBD. It is even being used by pediatricians to treat two of the rarest forms of epilepsy in children, Lennox Gastraut Syndrome and Dravet Syndrome. The drug named Epidiolex, places cannabidiol along the brand name on its official web site. It also states that "it significantly reduced seizures in people living with LGS, Dravet Syndrome or TSC for whom multiple previous seizure medicines did not work". Studies have also shown it to be beneficial in lessening or treating the symptoms of ADHD, auto immune disease, Cancer, cerebral palsy, arthritis, insomnia as well as others.
Reports and studies are documented of children over a six-month trial and had marked improvement over the first month, with continued improvement throughout the completion of the half year trial. Even with the common thread of praise, studies are still considered to be in their infancy and parents are reminded to always seek the advice of their child's pediatrician before administering any medication to your child. Joy, Smith. Wrote an article entitled, The 3 Things Parents Should Know Before Using CBD on Kids. She shares her personal journey as a mother and grandmother, titles that mean much more to her than author, speaker, mentor, entrepreneur, business owner... In the article she spoke of how she found CBD to be much more effective and beneficial without the unsatisfactory side effects. Smith, stated that she had tried many things but none of them worked like CBD. The only thing that she was unimpressed with was some of the impureness of some of the CBD she had purchased. The mother and grandmother decided to do something about it. She and her family would grow, process and sale their own CBD. Smith believes in CBD so much so that along with her family, she has created her very own website dedicated to making sure that other families are able to purchase CBD in a "purer" form and it will be readily available.
Considering Smiths, article and wanting to have research of my own, I decided to investigate and get some personal data. I have 8 children, 2 grown daughters and 6 sons, 17yrs - 4yrs. My 17 yr. old son is 270 lbs., 5'10.5" and has been diagnosed with dyslexia since he was very young. He also, has a brain that will not turn off. At one point they thought it was ADHD, but he is not hyper. He thinks all day, constantly looks up facts, sings, writes poems, plays instruments, football, basketball, talks to us constantly, but emotional because he is sensitive. He has been placed on medication but hated it because it made him "feel weird, not me, sleepy". He was lethargic and could not stay awake in school, when he was awake, he had no personality and seemed uninterested in anything and unhappy. I also am concerned about my 14 yr. old son, 175 lbs. 5'11.5". He has migraines consistently, like me, it is hereditary. He is to the point where he takes Ibuprofen 800mg daily. This is a problem and can create more issues and health risks. I decided to try CBD with these two very different problems and see if there were any changes. I began giving my sons CBD gummies 3000 mg every night, beginning August 4, 2020. I also gave my eldest son CBD oil, a little under his tongue, since he is larger. I would like to say that I could tell the difference the next day, but I don't want to seem overly excited. I can say with confidence that within two days, my 17 yr. old was calm, able to be concentrate on school, less aggravated and able to rest. Even better, it did not seem to change his personality or make him tired, groggy and "not me". As for my 14 yr. old. I only gave him an Ibuprofen once since the beginning of this trial. He has not complained, it has not interrupted his sleep cycle and no subjective side effects or any I have observed. Based on the results of CBD on my family this month, I would feel comfortable medicating them with CBD, and probably feel more comfortable with CBD than some of the pharmaceutical medications that are written per Rx and have many unpleasant side effects.
Our bodies want, need and use Cannabis. We have a specialized system called endocannabinoid system (ECS). It helps regulate a variety of functions in the human body such as sleep, appetite, pain, the immune system and more. Keeping these systems regulated allows our bodies to stay in homeostasis. We have cannabinoid receptors throughout our body. They are a class of cell membrane receptors in the G protein (- coupled receptor superfamily). Out of the two cannabinoid receptors, CB1 receptors are mainly present in the nervous system, connective tissues, glands, gonads and organs. CB2 receptors are mainly found in the immune system and are associated with structures. You may think that this is enough to prove that CBD is necessary, important, valuable to the human body and therefore favorable in the healthcare and treatment of all people including children. But what if I told you there is more?
Cannabinoids are also in the food that we eat. I am not talking about poppy seeds, or foods that we have been hearing about for years that will make your drug tests positive. I am referring to foods that may have never crossed your mind, because they never crossed mine. Scientists have recently found cannabinoids in clove, black pepper, Echinacea, broccoli, ginseng, carrots, cinnamon, Rue, kale and sprouts, Helichrysum and Liverworts (used for oils and Some people use liverwort for treating varicose veins, lowering cholesterol, stimulating blood circulation, and "purifying" blood. Women use liverwort for relieving symptoms of menopause. Other uses include strengthening nerves, stimulating metabolism, promoting relaxation, and as a general tonic). Knowing that our bodies have a specialized endocannabinoid system (ECS), and it is used to keep our bodies important functions in working condition. Learning that the food we take into our bodies, not the processed food, but food that is grown from the earth and that scientists are just now learning about these important properties. We have been living this way, using this system and eating these foods since we were created. From this information, it seems that CBD may be the natural way to go. Since our children already have these same mechanisms, would it be appropriate to say that CBD is right for our children too?
"All parents set out with expectations, hopes and dreams for their child. When a child is diagnosed with a health problem, these aspirations are altered. While one parent is hoping to see their child graduate from university, another is praying that they can live pain free". (Dempsey,S.) Just as people's resolves are different, so are their difficulties, backgrounds, social and economic status, traditions, means, beliefs, opportunities and situation. Because of this fact each parent or guardian is in a different position or predicament when dealing with a sick or infirmed child. Each parent must ask themselves "Is CBD Right for My Kids"? Each is deserving of prevalent, correct, current, information, pros and cons, allowed to make a decision based on that information and given respect for their decision. Parents are repeatedly encouraged to speak with your child's pediatrician ask questions and make the right decision for your family. All options should be offered. CBD is an option, ask yourself, what is it CBD, is it good for our bodies, what does it do, will it help/treat and with what if any side effects? You have the right to make the best-informed decision, including "Is CBD Right for My Kids"?