CBD and Seniors – Not Your Cheech and Chong delves into what CBD is, the types of products available, and my own personal story of the first time I used CBD.
Do you remember the comedy duo Cheech and Chong? If not, they were the epitome of the drug culture, especially their love of cannabis (weed, grass, MaryJane, marijuana) in the 1970s and beyond. But a big misnomer today is that CBD is the same as cannabis. Though derived from the same plant, CBD Oil is not the same as cannabis and will not give you the same “high” effect depicted by Cheech and Chong.
Before going too much further with the topic of CBD Oil, let me give you the following disclosure: The US Food and Drug Administration has not approved CBD Oil; thus, it is not being regulated – a reason you want to be sure the company you purchase from is selling a legitimate, pure product. Clinical trials can take many years to complete and for products to be approved. Until approval from the FDA, a manufacturer cannot claim any health benefits of CBD Oil.
Before using CBD, you should talk with your doctor to discuss any reasons you should not use CBD. Though it is thought to be a very safe product, like so many products, everyone is different, and the effects may be different for you than for someone else.
CBD – What is it? aka CBD 101
CBD stands for cannabidiol and is a type of cannabinoid. This type of cannabinoid comes from the cannabis plant. This is where a lot of the misunderstanding of CBD containing all the same properties as marijuana and the hemp plant begin.
Though derived from the same cannabis plant, marijuana contains a substance called THC. THC is what gives a person the “high” when marijuana is ingested. CBD Oil may have a minimal amount of THC but not enough to experience the high. For CBD oil to be sold legally, it must contain less than .03% THC.
Though a few states have legalized marijuana, it is still considered a drug and is illegal in most states where you need a prescription to purchase it legally. Because CBD Oil contains less than .03% THC, it is legal in all 50 states and can be bought without a prescription.
Types Of CBD Products
CBD comes in many forms. You may find some more effective than others or more comfortable for you to use. There are even CBD treats for dogs.
CBD Oil Tinctures
- A liquid form of CBD.
- This form comes in a glass vial with an eyedropper.
- You squirt the CBD into your mouth.
- Usually it is suggested to put the liquid under your tongue and leaving it there for 90 seconds.
- Before swallowing, swish it around in your mouth.
CBD Vape Pen
- Used to inhale CBD.
- When you use a vape pen, you attach a vial that contains CBD to the vape pen.
CBD Soft Gels
- Similar to the type of gel caps you see in some types of medicine.
- Said to be easier to swallow than pills.
- A chewy gummy texture that you chew and swallow much like the candy.
- With this type of CBD product you rub it on where you are feeling pain.
- More for muscle and joint pain.
CBD Energy Drink
- As the name implies, you drink this for an increase in energy.
- Many times, it comes in a powder form that you mix with water.
CBD for Pets
- It is not recommended to give pets CBD Oil that is purchased for human consumption.
- They do make specialty CBD products for dogs.
Many studies of the possible health benefits of CBD have been done. However, much of the research has been done with animals (rats etc) there is still much more research that needs to be done especially with humans.
Though these studies are ongoing there does seem to be some indication that CBD can be beneficial with some conditions such as:
- Anxiety Disorders
- Chronic Pain
- Sleep Disorders
Due Diligence Is Needed
CBD and Risks
Because most CBD products do not enter the bloodstream there doesn’t seem to be significant risks for users.
Though the risks may be low there are some side effects that could be experienced by some users. These side effects include:
- Change In Appetite
- Change in Weight
There is a potential for CBD to interact with other drugs. These drugs include:
- Dietary Supplements
- Prescription Drugs
- Some Over-The-Counter Drugs
Also, another interaction you need to be cautious about is any supplements or medications being taken that contain a grapefruit warning. The reason for this is that both CBD and grapefruit interfere with certain enzymes that are essential for drug metabolism.
Another risk is like many drugs and dietary supplements there is an increased risk of liver toxicity.
CBD – Good or Bad?
Although some physicians think CBD is harmless for seniors, others worry that the available evidence is inadequate but believe it to be “probably safe.” There are no direct reported cases of CBD overdoses.
Whether CBD oil is good or bad, beneficial or not is something you will need to decide for yourself. I have tried most forms of CBD shown above, and for me, I found some beneficial and some not. I suspect you will find the same, some you will like and some not so much.
Does CBD Oil Work? – My Story
I want to reiterate you should seek advice from your doctor before using CBD oil. Because the FDA hasn’t approved CBD oil, manufacturers cannot make any claims to its health benefits.
I want to tell you about my experience with CBD Oil and the results I had. Recently, I had back surgery to remove a tumor. As it turned out, the tumor was benign, which I’m very thankful for. From the time I first experienced my back pain until I had surgery was a few months. During this time, I was in an extreme amount of pain. I’m not a fan of taking drugs – I don’t like the feeling of being out of control and having that drugged feeling. Also, I work and can’t take a lot of the medicines out there that would help with my pain.
After consulting with numerous doctors without a diagnosis, I visited a chiropractor to who I was referred to by a health professional. With all the bad rap that chiropractors can get, I have to say it was this chiropractor that got me diagnosed correctly and referred me to my neurosurgeon.
This particular chiropractor carried CBD products for sale in his office. One day I was in such unrelenting pain I went in and bought a Vape Pen and Cartridge. A vape pen is one way of ingesting CBD oil. I didn’t have a clue what I was doing, so looking back now, the visual makes me laugh. Remember, CBD doesn’t have the same effect on the body as marijuana, so using it is legal, but I felt like I was doing something illegal. Before the drive home, being in extreme pain, I decided to give it a try.
I waited until I got in my car. That particular day it was cold outside; thus, I didn’t have the car windows down. I eagerly and yet nervously took the vape pen and cartridge out of the package, and I took a puff and thought okay, I’ve got this.
I waited maybe 15 minutes and was still in pain, so I took a more extended puff. This time when I exhaled the car filled with the vapor – smoke-like in appearance.
In a frantic motion, I opened all the windows, trying to get the vapor out. Thinking back on this, it still makes me smile, and I can see it in a comedy movie – maybe one with Cheech and Chong lol.
I continued to wait in my car for my daughter to finish her shopping so she could drive us home.
Once I got home, I decided to give the vape pen another try. I thought now that I was in the comfort of my home and was more relaxed, I would have better results.
For me, I didn’t feel any relief from the pain when using the Vape Pen. Why was this? Maybe my head wasn’t in it, or perhaps the product itself was not the best quality. Another issue I had was when I was younger, I smoked, and since quitting many, many years ago, I worried about the effects smoking had on my lungs. Because of this, I didn’t feel comfortable inhaling.
I don’t know which it was, but I was disappointed in the results. However, don’t let me discourage you; this is just my experience. Does this mean you won’t find it a possible source of relieving pain? Not necessarily – everyone’s body is different and can have a different experience – you may love it.
Now for another testimonial about my use of CBD Oil. A few months after the vape pen experience, I had my surgery. I thought I was prepared with the prescriptions and medications I would need.
All went well – that is until I had an allergic reaction to the pain medication – Percocet. This didn’t come as a big surprise, as in the past, I’ve had allergic reactions to other drugs.
So how did it happen that I tried CBD again? Well, I called the doctor’s office in the morning and was told I should have called a different day because the doctor and nurse didn’t work on Fridays – what happened to doctors not working on Wednesdays, lol.
Believe me had I known I was going to react to the medication, I would have called on a different day. If I had pushed the issue more, I’m sure someone was on call that could have prescribed me something else, but I didn’t. However, now, I was facing the weekend with no pain medication.
It was at that time I decided to try CBD oil again. I had purchased a liquid form, which is referred to as CBD Oil Tincture. Again, I was a little apprehensive, not knowing the effect or how my body would react.
The dosage of the oil wasn’t suggested, as you would find on a regular prescription or over-the-counter medication.
After doing some research, I took a dose that corresponded to my weight. I experienced much better results this time, and within a short time, my pain had lessened.
About 5-6 hours later, I took another dose. Both times I didn’t have any adverse effects, and the pain had decreased considerably. After this, my go-to pain med was this CBD oil. Will you have the same results – it’s not known, and I honestly can’t say.
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CBD Oil is just beginning to emerge as a viable alternative to other medications. It would be nice if the US Federal Food and Drug Administration could speed up their approval of CBD as this would allow for a controlled, regulated industry which it isn’t right now. Trials can take a long time to run, so we’ll have to be patient and wait.
I would suggest before purchasing CBD to do some research. Ask yourself what is important to you in a product and find a company that meets your requirements. Do they use a 3rd party to test their product and publish their lab results? Does the company use the correct percentage of CBD to make it effective? Is being organic important to you? These are just a few questions to ask yourself.
If you do decide to give it a try, do your due diligence in researching the product and the manufacturer you are buying your CBD oil from.
CBD Oil and Seniors – Does it Work? For me, it did, but for you, I can’t say. If you do give it a try, I hope you have your desired results.
Share your story of CBD oil below in the comment section.