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  • by Nicola Boulton September 03, 2022 5 min read

    CBD and Parkinson’s Effects and Management

    Parkinson's disease is a very common disorder ranked second among age-related brain diseases. Experts estimate that it affects at least 1% of adults aged above 60. Individuals with the disorder explore and test alternatives besides therapies to help with the symptoms. Many people settle for medical cannabis finding it useful. Medical cannabis has two major compounds; tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Both help alleviates Parkinson's symptoms, but THC brings a feeling of highness and is addictive. CBD is vice versa and is non-psychoactive, and its medical product is best suited to soothe Parkinson's effects. Additively, CBD has few side effects compared to other prescribed medications.

    What is CBD?

    Moltkle et al. (2021) stated that CBD is among the active chemical compound found in cannabis plants. It is highly famous since it has unlimited benefits in the health sector. It interacts with the patient's endocannabinoid system, which helps regulate body processes. In addition, it is a non-addictive compound, making it a product used by many starting from the cooking area to treating Parkinson's disease. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recognizes the compound's benefits but notes that more research is required to verify its side effects. Companies that manufacture CBD products use different methods of extraction, resulting in three different types of CBD;

    • Full-spectrum CBD. It retains all components of the cannabis plant, including a small amount of THC. Most experts say the effects of CBD are more efficient when used together with THC.
    • Broad spectrum CBD. This type has all components of the cannabis plant apart from THC.
    • CBD isolate. It is the purest and tasteless form of CBD. Its medical products are highly used in treating Parkinson’s disease.

    What is Parkinson’s disease? Symptoms and Causes

    Seppi et al. (2019) noted that it is a mental disorder that makes part of the brain to deteriorate, causing negative effects on muscle control, balance and movement. If chronic, it causes a wide range of other effects on the patient senses, thinking ability, and mental issues. The risk of developing the disease naturally increases with age. Since it affects muscles and thinking, the symptoms are divided into two:

    • Motor-related symptoms;
    • Slow movements
    • Joint and bones stiffness
    • Muscle tremor(shaking)
    • Lack of balance or unstable posture
    • Blinking less often than usual
    • Trouble swallowing foods or drugs
    • Soft speaking voice.

    Non-motor symptoms aren’t connected to movement and muscle control. Sometimes they act as warning signs of the disorder.

    • Depression
    • Sleeping problems
    • Loss of sense of smell
    • Hypotension and sexual dysfunctions
    • Trouble thinking and focusing

    People believe chemicals such as pesticides or herbicides can cause the disease, but experts confirm that the cause of Parkinson's is genetic.

    How to Administer CBD to Parkinson's Patients?

    There are various forms of CBD in the hearth market, from CBD oil and topicals to pills or capsules. Parkinson's patients may have a problem swallowing pills. Therefore, the most used form of the compound is CBD oil. It contains other organic-based materials, such as hemp seed oil or coconut oil, which play an important role in the patient's body. There are two effective ways to administer CBD oil to Parkinson's patients;

    1. CBD oil is placed under the tongue for a few seconds using a dropper and then swallowed. It is effective since the dropper help to regulate the amount of CBD dosage one takes.
    2. CBD oil is infused in beverages and food. It is effective for Parkinson's patients who don't want to taste the CBD's oily flavor.

    How Does CBD React to the Body of a Parkinson's Patient?

    Rieder & Carlos (2020) noted that the human brain controls the movement and thinking capacity of an individual. Since Parkinson's disease deteriorates some areas of the brain that control muscles and thinking, it causes the patient to lose control of processes. Under normal circumstances, the human brain uses dopamine neurotransmitters to control body movement. However, Parkinson's patients have fewer neurotransmitters which slows brain signaling, causing patients to be slow. CBD interacts with dopamine transmitters when administered, increasing t brain signaling to patient muscles. The interactions also cause the nervous system to increase the production of dopamine. In addition, CBD is neuroprotective; it reduces the degrading of these neurons (brain cells).

    The disease in later stages causes effects such as depression and sleeping problems. CBD helps to control these symptoms by interacting with body receptors in the endocannabinoid system responsible for regulating sleep and emotions.

    Benefits of CBD to Parkinson’s Management

    Crippa et al. (2019) stated that CBD has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties making it well suited to managing Parkinson's symptoms.

    CBD has Neuroprotective Properties

    The disease mostly affects brain signaling by affecting the body's nervous system. It makes the brain unable to signal the body muscles and joints to coordinate during movement. CBD's ability to act on the ECS system and brain signaling improve body movement and balance.

    Reduction of Anxiety and Depression

    Parkinson's patients are characterized by depression and anxiety. It is due to the inability to move or low production of the hormone serotonin, which helps reduce negative thoughts in people. The interaction between CBD and CB2 receptors responsible for moderating moods helps the patients to overcome these symptoms.

    Improve Sleep Quality

    One non-motor symptom of Parkinson's is insomnia, characterized by low sleeping quality due to depression and anxiety. CBD has calming effects, bringing a sensation of relaxation to patients, and resulting in good sleep.

    Reduces High Blood Pressure

    Hypertension is a symptom of Parkinson's disease associated with high blood pressure. CBD lowers the blood pressure to the optimum by providing good interior surrounding to the patients, such as regulated mood, good sleep, and reduced inflammations.

    Bone Health

    Patients with the disease can have difficulty walking due to bone stiffness, low calcium levels, and bone cell death. CBD induces intracellular calcium increase and also helps in the production of new bone cells.

    Side Effects of CBD in Parkinson’s Management

    • Stomach issues
    • Drowsiness
    • Weight loss
    • Loss of appetite

    Conclusion

    Parkinson’s is a progressive disease that affects the brain and gradually damages body movement and muscle control. It can also lead to mental issues such as anxiety and depression. There is no cure for the disease therapies and medications can work for a short period. However, it has adverse side effects. CBD helps in regulating and alleviating some of the symptoms of Parkinson thus helping in controlling and managing its effects. It proved better than other methods since it is not addictive and has unnoticeable side effects.

    References

    Moltke, J., & Hindocha, C. (2021). Reasons for cannabidiol use: a cross-sectional study of CBD users, focusing on self-perceived stress, anxiety, and sleep problems. Journal of cannabis research, 3(1), 1-12.

    Seppi, K., Ray Chaudhuri, K., Coelho, M., Fox, S. H., Katzenschlager, R., Perez Lloret, S., ... & Djamshidian‐Tehrani, A. (2019). Update on treatments for nonmotor symptoms of Parkinson's disease—an evidence‐based medicine review. Movement Disorders, 34(2), 180-198.

    Rieder, C. R. (2020). Cannabidiol in Parkinson’s disease. Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry, 42, 126-127.

    Crippa, J. A. S., Hallak, J. E., Zuardi, A. W., Guimarães, F. S., Tumas, V., & Dos Santos, R. G. (2019). Is cannabidiol the ideal drug to treat non-motor Parkinson’s disease symptoms?. European archives of psychiatry and clinical neuroscience, 269(1), 121-133.

    Nicola Boulton
    Nicola Boulton


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