My story is likely very similar to many of you. After experiencing some unusual symptoms that I ignored for too long I went to the doctor. I explained that I was having migraines, inability to sleep and abnormal muscle spasms. A few emergency room visits, ten doctors and several tests later, I finally had my diagnosis. I had Fibromyalgia. My rheumatologist prescribed lots of different medications. Of course, they only help with the symptoms but do not get to the root cause of my illness. These medications have awful side effects. I remember being so nauseated that I could barely walk from Gabapentin. It’s when this happened that I started researching other ways to get relief.
My husband had been doing his research and told me about how medical marijuana has been helping lots of people with chronic illness. Considering that our state only offers MMJ for those with epilepsy and cancer, that wasn’t an option. We did more research and found CBD. It has been a godsend.
CBD stands for cannabidiol. This chemical can be found naturally in our bodies and cannabis and hemp. These two plants are close cousins with a pretty big legal difference in the US. Industrial hemp is legal in all 50 states with varying degrees of restrictions based on the state. Cannabis laws are much more strict with very few states with favorable laws for marijuana users. Many states are working towards developing laws for decriminalizing cannabis and making it more easily accessible for those who use it to treat chronic illness.
Benefits of CBD
There have not been many studies of CBD in the US but with recent changes in federal law, this is likely to change. Many people with migraines, sleep disorders, chronic pain, inflammation, and anxiety have expressed that CBD has improved their quality of life. I can attest that it has helped me. As I mentioned earlier, before CBD I had days in which I could barely stand or walk. I had regular flare-ups from completing the simplest tasks around the house. After regularly taking CBD I have seen a significant improvement. I can complete chores around the house, my flare-ups and migraines are much less frequent, I sleep better, my appetite is back, I no longer get nauseated from Gabapentin, and I have less pain and inflammation.
The most common side effects of CBD are fatigue and irritability. CBD is not a good choice for those with hepatitis, liver damage, or are sensitive to medications. Depending on the products you use, you may fail a THC drug test. However, many vendors offer THC-free products for those who would like to try CBD but are regularly drug tested.
Types of CBD Products for Chronic Illness
There’s a variety of ways to take CBD and products to choose from. There are gummies, salves, vape cartridges, tinctures, oils, and more. Some of my favorite products are Daddy Burt’s peppermint CBD oil and Cascadia Bloom’s Special Sauce. CBD oil has been the best thing I’ve ever taken for migraines and nausea. Both of these companies have high-quality products made with hemp from their own farms. It’s important to choose an established and reputable company that can provide lab reports for their products.
Benefits of Talking to Your Doctor
You should always consult your doctor before adding any supplement to your treatment plan. My doctors told me that they have many patients who use CBD and approved of my usage. CBD may interact with some medications and your doctor may tell you to proceed with caution until more studies are done.
Common Questions about CBD
Does CBD get you high?
No. THC is the chemical in marijuana that gets you high. CBD from legal hemp has very little THC and it’s not enough to cause the psychoactive effects associated with cannabis.
Is CBD Legal?
Yes, industrial hemp is federally legal based on the 2018 Farm Bill.
Can CBD cause anxiety?
It’s unlikely for CBD to cause you anxiety. THC is the chemical that typically causes anxiety. As stated above, there is not enough THC to cause psychoactive effects. If you have a sensitivity to THC you may feel some anxiety.
How much CBD should I take?
It depends on the product you are using. Reputable vendors will provide you with dosing information.
Does CBD really work?
It works for me and many others. It may take a while to determine the right products and dosage for you to experience the benefits. If you are suffering from very low quality of life due to chronic illness and your doctor gives you the green light to try CBD, you have nothing to lose.
Amanda Jordan experiences regular migraines as a symptom of Fibromyalgia. She has extensive experience with CBD as a treatment for managing symptoms related to chronic illness.