Can CBD Help Treat a Mild Concussion?
A concussion is a potentially dangerous traumatic brain injury that’s very difficult to diagnose and often more difficult to treat. As doctors continue struggling to find ways to help patients who have suffered a recent blow to the head, new research is coming out to demonstrate how the hemp plant may be able to provide relief to concussion patients.
In order to understand how CBD might be able to help with a mild concussion, it’s important to grasp exactly what a concussion is and how it affects the brain. CBD, the main cannabinoid found in the hemp plant, boasts extremely unique chemical properties that might give the brain exactly what it needs in order to heal while potentially reversing the damage caused by the injury.
What is a Concussion?
Classified as a type of traumatic brain injury that typically occurs due to a blow to the head. This can happen when a person falls to the ground, gets punched or gets into a car accident that causes their head to jolt suddenly. A concussion results from the brain rocking back and forth within the skull. This action can damage brain cells while causing sudden, drastic changes in neurotransmitters in the brain.
The brain is vulnerable to concussions because its tissue is extremely soft and surrounded by spinal fluid. While the skull is there to protect the brain, sudden blows to the head cause the brain inside the skull to move around against the skull’s wall.
Concussions are often linked to sports due to the fact that these physical activities can put the player at risk of falling or getting hit in the head. The CDC recently determined that between 2001 and 2009, almost 175,000 people below the age of 19 were treated for a concussion due to a sports-related injury.
What are the Signs of a Concussion?
If you’ve recently experienced a blow to the head, it’s very important that you watch out for the symptoms that are associated with a concussion. Symptoms include dizziness, confusion, slurred speech, headache pain, blurred vision, light sensitivity, vomiting, ringing in ears, behavioral changes, difficulties with balance and difficulty concentrating.
Now, if any of these symptoms occur following a head injury, seek medical attention immediately. In fact, it is strongly recommended that you seek medical attention immediately following a head injury regardless of whether or not you’re experiencing any symptoms. That’s because of the fact that many people don’t experience concussion symptoms until days or even weeks after the head injury has occurred.
The reason why these symptoms occur is because the brain controls behavior, many nervous system functions and cognition. Damaging brain cells can lead to impairment in these areas.
How is a Concussion Diagnosed?
A concussion cannot be seen on a scan, making it difficult to diagnose. But, if you’ve recently injured your head, your doctor will diagnose a concussion based on the symptoms that you are experiencing. Your doctor will likely ask you a series of questions in order to test your brain function. He or she may decide to order an MRI or CT scan to make sure that your brain is not bleeding.
How is a Concussion Treated?
Typically, a concussion is treated based on its severity. If the doctor suspects that the brain injury is severe, he or she may ask you to stay in a hospital so that they can observe any symptoms as they unfold. This will help them determine whether or not you need further medical treatment.
The problem is that there really aren’t any treatments solely intended for treating a concussion. It’s widely believed that once brain damage has occurred, it’s not possible to reverse. However, because concussions can cause headache pain as the head recovers, the doctor will likely prescribe a pain-relieving medication that’s determined based on the severity of the pain.
Now Comes the Question: What Can CBD Do?
New research suggests that CBD might be able to help with a concussion. CBD has been widely studied over the last few years for its various potential therapeutic benefits. It’s believed that CBD can help with a wide range of health issues because of the way in which it supports the body’s endocannabinoid system that’s in charge of regulating processes throughout the body such as immune function and neurological function.
CBD is a compound that’s extracted from the hemp plant and turned into an oil that can be used for therapeutic purposes. It’s legal in the United States and does not require a prescription, although you should absolutely tell your doctor if you intend to use it to treat a mild concussion.
What the Research Says
Research suggests that CBD has neuroprotective properties. In other words, it may be capable of protecting the neurons in the brain from damage. This has to do with the fact that the endocannabinoid system attaches the cannabinoid to cannabinoid receptors that exist in the brain. CBD may also be able to stimulate neurogenesis, a process in which neurons regenerate as they become damaged with age or injury.
Because of CBD’s potential neuroprotective properties, the cannabinoid is believed by many medical experts to have the potential to treat epilepsy. The FDA has actually approved a drug containing CBD for epileptic children. CBD may also have the ability to treat symptoms of dementia because of the way in which it improves the health of the neurological system.
CBD has also been studied for its effects on the pain that results from a traumatic brain injury. Researchers found that patients who experienced a concussion experienced relief from this type of headache pain after being given CBD.
Another study found that CBD may be able to treat inflammation in the brain, allowing the neuropathways to heal after an injury. If a concussion causes inflammation in the brain that manifests itself in the form of many symptoms, CBD might be able to reduce the swelling that damages the neurons after an injury.
How to Use CBD to Try to Treat a Mild Concussion
If you’re healing from a mild concussion and wish to use CBD as a form of treatment, speak with your doctor as he or she can help you decide how to take it properly for the most positive results. Remember that in order to try to successfully treat a concussion with CBD, you must invest in a high-quality product that is as potent as possible. Look for a product that’s made by a company that’s respected within the CBD community.
A trustworthy CBD company will provide you with third-party lab results on their website so that you can verify that the product is high in quality. Look through these lab results to ensure that the product has a high enough concentration of CBD to provide you with its many potential benefits. Also, make sure that the product isn’t watered down by filler ingredients as that will decrease its effectiveness.
Look for a CBD product that is consumed internally such as a CBD vape oil, oral tincture or edible. We suggest taking it once a day, starting with a low dose and increasing it as needed. Before doing all this though, make sure to consult with your doctor first.
CBD: A Promising Treatment for Mild Concussions
With so many amazing studies showing the potential benefits that CBD has on the neurological system, it’s possible that this cannabinoid could hold the key to treating traumatic brain injuries.