The symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS) can manifest in many different ways, but they frequently have a big impact on a person’s quality of life. Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, is a non-psychoactive compound present in the cannabis plant that some MS patients use to treat their symptoms. Scientists are still examining the advantages of CBD for MS patients, but preliminary data suggest that CBD may help control some of the discomfort and stiffness associated with MS.
Everything you need to know about using CBD for multiple sclerosis will be covered in this article, including potential benefits, security concerns, and the recommended dosage.
Immune System and Multiple Sclerosis
A specific kind of autoimmune illness is multiple sclerosis. In other words, the disease manifests as symptoms when the immune system targets healthy cells for destruction in the same way that it targets and destroys viruses and other pathogens.
In multiple sclerosis, the myelin sheath, a protective covering that envelops nerve cells in the spinal cord and brain, is attacked by the immune system. Inflammation and damage are caused when the immune system attacks this barrier, which can impair neuronal connection, which is essential for breathing, thinking, and other bodily processes.
The severity of MS symptoms varies depending on the location of the attack and the degree of myelin sheath breakdown, but they are most frequently fatigue, stiffness or weakening of the muscles, and cognitive issues.
The immune system and cannabinoids
Cannabis plants contain a group of compounds known as cannabinoids. The two most prevalent cannabinoids are CBD and THC, the psychoactive component of marijuana (which does not have a psychoactive component).
Through cannabinoid receptors present in the brain and immune cells, cannabinoids are metabolized by the body.
All of this is a component of the endocannabinoid system, which has an impact on pain, motor control, inflammation, and other MS-related bodily functions.
It has been shown that cannabinoids can reduce inflammation and regulate the immune response.
Since CBD achieves this without making users feel high, it appeals to MS sufferers looking for symptom treatment without the “high” associated with marijuana.
The Advantages of CBD for Multiple Sclerosis
In a recent meta-analysis, researchers found that while CBD and other cannabinoids are “definitely helpful” for treating some MS symptoms, such as pain and abnormal muscle tightness (spasticity), they are “probably not useful” for treating other symptoms, such as muscle tremors or incontinence.
The further analysis supported the use of CBD for MS. The following are a few of the most significant results:
- A 2018 scientific study found that CBD administration improved mobility while reducing MS patients’ pain, fatigue, inflammation, depression, and spasticity. The authors came to the conclusion that CBD supplementation for MS patients might be helpful.
- A 2014 scientific evaluation found that Sativex (nabiximols), a CBD nasal spray, can aid MS sufferers in lessening discomfort, stiffness, and frequent urination.
- According to two distinct 2021 medical reviews, CBD regulates the immune system in animal models, which lessens the autoimmune reaction that results in MS symptoms. This may indicate that in the future, rather than just treating the symptoms of MS, cannabis-derived drugs, including CBD, may be utilized to treat the disease’s progression.