The battle against addiction can be a grueling and difficult process, one that can feel like torture for those individuals tasked with overcoming their addictive behavior. Thankfully, there are many tools available for people seeking relief, specifically when it comes to the associated withdrawal symptoms which can accompany the recovery process. One such tool is CBD, a plant-based alternative which has gained popularity in recent years for a variety of conditions. Specifically, using CBD for addiction has become an important facet of treating withdrawal symptoms.
What is CBD?
CBD, or Cannabidiol, is one of 113 phytocannabinoids found in the hemp plant. Discovered in 1940, CBD has been used to treat conditions such as anxiety, cognition, epilepsy, and pain while not containing any psychoactive properties. CBD can be ingested through a variety of methods, including oral ingestion, inhalation, or even topically, depending on the type of condition it is treating.
Contrary to popular belief, CBD will not get you high and does not contain any THC. CBD can be extracted from both marijuana and hemp, though most CBD products are usually derived from hemp. CBD’s main purpose is to help alleviate inflammation, which can be a major cause of many medical conditions. The body has two receptors for cannabinoids, CB1 and CB2 receptors. Recent research suggests CBD doesn’t attach to either one of these receptors and instead appears to direct the body to use more of its own cannabinoids as a way to relieve inflammation, pain, and other related medical issues.
The Benefits of CBD for Withdrawal Symptoms
One of the most difficult parts associated with abstaining from an addictive substance is when a person experiences withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms can come in many forms, depending on the type of substances a person is withdrawing from, and can impact an individual on a physical, emotional, and psychological level. In the case of alcohol, withdrawal can range from mild to life-threatening, and can include things such as anxiety, headaches, shaky hands, and insomnia. Clearly, having a substance which can alleviate any of these symptoms is a welcome sight in the fight to achieve a lasting state of sobriety.
Using CBD for addiction has been seen to reduce the intensity of many withdrawal symptoms, making the process of quitting a substance a much more bearable act for the individual. A pilot study published by the National Institutes of Health found that CBD was effective in reducing cigarette consumption among tobacco users. Smokers who used a CBD inhaler smoked fewer cigarettes and had a reduction in the amount of cravings for nicotine. Compared with the placebo group, smokers who used a CBD inhaler smoked approximately 40% less cigarettes during the study, a positive sign that CBD is useful in treating nicotine withdrawal symptoms. The hemp plant is a special powerful plant!
CBD has also shown an incredible amount of potential in the fight to treat opioid withdrawal symptoms, as shown in another study by the National Institutes of Health. Opioids are prescribed as a remedy for chronic pain, but can quickly turn into a serious addiction for individuals who abuse these powerful narcotics. With a recent rise in overdose deaths associated with opioid use, there is a vital need for substances which can provide pain relief without the negative side-effects associated with opioids.
CBD has been shown to provide pain relief without also triggering the reward pathway which is one of the main reasons people become addicted to opioids. If a person’s reward pathways are consistently being triggered, it is increasingly likely that they will end up hooked on the substance and will make it especially difficult to abstain from usage. In order to make the withdrawal process more bearable, it’s important to stop the reward pathway from firing.
Thankfully, CBD helps to inhibit the reward-facilitating effects of opiates, nicotine, and other substances. Most addictions are fueled by the same neural pathway, making it critical to reduce this particular part of the brain from firing. A study by the NIH displayed how CBD inhibited the reward-facilitating effects of Morphine, a major win in the battle to overcome withdrawal symptoms. Using CBD for addiction has massive, untapped potential, which can provide life-saving relief to individuals suffering from this crippling condition.
Other Medical Uses for CBD
In addition to the symptoms frequently associated with opioid withdrawal and other substances, CBD has been shown to have many other medical uses. For individuals suffering from mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression, CBD has shown potential as a way to provide relief from these conditions. CBD has also shown potential as a powerful anti-pain medication, including with conditions such as arthritis, muscle pain, and even spinal cord injuries.
Another major use for CBD which has made headlines in recent years is as a possible treatment for Epilepsy and seizure disorders. One study where participants were using CBD for its anti-seizure effects showed a 36.5 percent decline in seizures for participants during a month period. CBD has also been used to treat acne, as one study found that cannabidiol prevented activity in the sebaceous glands, which are responsible for producing sebum, an excess of which can lead to acne. For individuals concerned about the legal status of CBD in Arizona, you can rest easy: CBD is legal in the state of Arizona as a medicinal treatment.
The Importance of Finding a Reputable CBD Brand
It can be tempting to become overly enthusiastic about the potential medical benefits of using CBD to treat a wide-range of medical conditions, but it’s important to find a trusted and reputable brand to receive the full benefits of this substance. Lower-quality CBD will result in a less-than-ideal outcome, as it may be watered down or diluted with other ingredients which will detract from its potency and effectiveness. If you’re seeking to use CBD as a way to help with withdrawal symptoms, you may want to consider working with a trusted rehab facility which can offer addiction services in addition to CBD.
Scottsdale Recovery has been working with clients in Arizona to assist them on their path to recovery since 2007. Our trusted counselors, doctors, and addiction specialists will help you attain the lasting sobriety you deserve through a holistic and targeted approach which addresses all of the causes of your addiction. Contact us today to begin your recovery and achieve the life you deserve.
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Talk to Someone Who’s Been There. Talk to Someone Who Can Help. Scottsdale Recovery Center holds the highest accreditation (Joint Commission) and is Arizona’s premier rehab facility since 2007. Call 866.893.6816.