The legalisation of cannabis in more and more places, people are starting to want to learn more about its uses and benefits. Questions like “CBD For Children?”, “Where can I get cannabis oil/CBD?” and “What are the side-effects of taking cannabis oil/CBD?” are coming up more often.
But, one question that has been popping up recently: “Should I give my child cannabis oil/CBD?”.
What is cannabis oil/CBD?
Firstly, let’s address what is cannabis oil. For the common folk, if they hear “cannabis”, they immediately think of the recreational drug better known as “weed” and the image of someone being “high”.
That would be a misconception. There are a large variety of cannabinoids (chemical compounds found in the cannabis sativa plant) within the cannabis sativa plant but the most well-known and studied ones are CBD and THC.
Cannabis oil or CBD is a cannabinoid of the cannabis sativa plant or better known as the marijuana plant. It is the cannabinoid within the plant that does not produce a “high” effect, though it does have similar benefits to THC.
9-Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC however, is the cannabinoid within the plant that does produce the psychoactive effect or the “high”.
Does that mean you can give CBD For Children?
That is a good question. Can you?
Currently, the only legitimate type of CBD-based medicine for kids on the market is Epidiolex. The Food And Drugs Administration approved Epidiolex for the treatment of two rare and severe forms of epilepsy: Lennox – Gaustaut and Dravet Syndrome.
With that being said, the drug was not, however, marketed for any other pediatric condition besides those two. There is also little to no research or study being published regarding the long-term effects of the provision of CBD to children suffering from any other condition. Thus, the long-term effects of giving your children CBD/cannabis oil to treat problems such as anxiety, autism or attention deficit disorder are very much unknown.
Despite this, a survey conducted in the USA in April 2020 showed that out of 500 parents, 40% have given their children CBD-based medication to help with autism spectrum disorder. However, a study has shown some promise to help with treating autism. The study had 155 kids aged 18 or younger take cannabis oil for 8 months. The study noted that many of their parents reported that the kids’ adverse symptoms of autism were somewhat mitigated.
So is that a yes?
Not exactly. Everybody knows that not a single body functions the same way, one successful outcome from using CBD-based medication does not mean that someone else will have success too. Kelly Cervantes, a health activist in Chicago gave CBD to her daughter to help treat her severe spasm due to an unidentified neurodegenerative disease.
After and she was taken off CBD her daughter’s doctors noticed signs of liver failure. Furthermore, Kelly procured the medicinal CBD from an online shop rather than through her doctor.
Procurement of any CBD-based medication should be done so through a licensed doctor to prevent further adverse effects from occurring as it is near impossible to determine the ingredients found within the medication without proper testing.
For our children tough choices have to be made and we understand that as parents. But, better a well-informed choice through a certified and reliable source than an online unreliable store. It is always better to contact a doctor to discuss the possibilities. Doctors will not turn you away or judge you for bringing the topic up. They want to listen and explore the possible choices with you.
Our answer is no, you should not give your kids CBD-based medication. Unless your doctor has given you the green light to do so. Currently, there are just not enough studies and research published that details the effects of CBD-based medication on children.