Treating Addiction With CBD: What Do the Studies Say?

Heroin and prescription opioid use continue to rise in America and has done so for the past decade. As a result, more people today suffer from opioid addiction. Sadly, few treatments remain available for this disorder, but there appears to be hope on the horizon. Researchers examined the effects of cannabidiol on opioid addiction and found that its use would reduce a person’s craving for these drugs while reducing their anxiety. The effects lasted for approximately seven days following the administration of the CBD medication. 

The Purpose of This Study

Researchers recognized the effects of opioid addiction on the individual, their loved ones, and society. In fact, over 300,000 men and women have lost their lives to this addiction. While certain medications used to treat opioid disorders help, they remain underutilized in many areas. This treatment gap must be addressed, and CBD may fill it. Furthermore, the CBD becomes of great help to those patients who wish to avoid agonist treatments. 

Medical professionals worry certain individuals will misuse or divert the opioid disorder medications because they produce euphoria in many individuals. For this reason, they would like to see alternatives that don’t provide psychoactive properties. That’s where CBD comes in and why many people choose to purchase buy quality CBD hemp oil to treat various disorders. They don’t want the high that accompanies THC. 

The Study

Researchers carried out a randomized clinical trial. Forty-two individuals took part in the study and received one of two medications. One group received a CBD medication known as EPIDIOLEX for three days, while they gave the other group a placebo. They divided the CBD group into two, with half receiving a high dose of CBD and the other half receiving a low dose. At various times in the study, they exposed the participants to drug-related or neutral clues to determine whether the CBD reduced their anxiety and cravings. The researchers also monitored the participants’ vital signs, emotions, and salivary cortisol levels. 

The Findings

Participants taking the CBD medication experienced fewer cravings than the group receiving the placebo. The effects lasted a minimum of seven days following administration of the CBD. Patients who received a high dose saw the longest relief from the cravings. Furthermore, those patients receiving CBD reported less anxiety after seeing the drug cue, and this held for both CBD groups taking part in the study. CBD, however, appeared to have no effect on cognitive measures monitored by the researchers. 

What This Means

The opioid epidemic continues to rage across the country. As a result, medical professionals must find new ways to curb this addiction. This includes doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists, and more. Cannabis use may help these individuals kick their opioid habit or replace pharmaceutical opioids with pain management techniques that come with less risk. While researchers have yet to show CBD can be used to treat other addictions, they do feel it may help with cravings and anxiety in those men and women trying to break their addiction to heroin. The rigorous approach in this study becomes of great benefit in that it can serve as a model for future research in this area. 

Men and women struggling with heroin or opioid addiction should speak to their doctor to determine the best course of action in overcoming the disease. CBD serves as only one tool available to them, and there are countless others. Those who succeed in this goal find their future looks brighter and they can control the cravings and anxiety without worrying about becoming addicted to another substance. This is of great importance to those who want to break the addiction cycle for good.