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does cbd oil help adhd

In an article published in the New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), points out many of the potential negative side effects of marijuana use.   Among these are impaired attention and memory, problems that can be long-term and become worse with chronic cannabis use.

A 2020 study found that higher doses of medical cannabis were associated with a decreased use of ADHD medication in adults.   The products containing a higher dosage of CBD were associated with lower ADHD scores.

It is important to be aware that much of this research is still in the early stages. More work needs to be done to explore the effects of CBD, what conditions it may treat, and what doses may be the most effective.

Potential Side Effects

Some research has found that CBD may play a role in counteracting some of the negative side effects associated with THC.  

Verywell / Alex Dos Diaz

While some proponents have made a number of claims, the truth is that research on the use of CBD as a treatment for ADHD is extremely limited. Most of what researchers already know stems from research on the use of smoked or ingested marijuana and not directly on the effects of CBD oil or other CBD products.

CBD oil is derived from the marijuana plant. CBD is extracted from the cannabis plant and mixed with a carrier oil such as hemp seed oil, grapeseed oil, olive oil, or sunflower oil. Studies suggest that it appears to be relatively safe and well-tolerated, although further research is needed to look at the possible long-term effects.

Harvard Health Publishing: “Cannabidiol (CBD) — what we know and what we don’t.”

CBD, or cannabidiol, is gaining widespread popularity. A 2019 Gallup poll found that 14% of Americans use CBD for issues such as sleep, anxiety, and pain. A medicine that contains CBD, Epidiolex, is used in children with a certain kind of epilepsy. CBD is being promoted as an alternative treatment for ADHD. You may be wondering if it’s a safe and effective treatment for your child with ADHD.

CBD is a component of cannabis and medical marijuana, but it’s derived from the hemp plant, a cousin of the marijuana plant. CBD by itself won’t get you high. It doesn’t contain THC, which is the chemical in marijuana that causes you to get high.

Is CBD Safe for Children?

In addition to possible side effects and unproven medical claims, there are some other safety concerns with CBD oil including:

There is no scientific proof that CBD works or is safe for children. Until there is some proof that CBD is safe or effective to treat ADD, stimulant medicines such as Adderall are still a better option. There is some evidence that CBD oil may help with anxiety, which some kids with ADHD also have. A 2018 study done on 60 children with autism showed that anxiety improved in 39% of the children.

Another study that was done in 2020 found that adults who took higher doses of medical cannabis took fewer ADHD medicines and reported lower ADHD scores.

Problems with Unproven Medical Claims