ADHD is a mental disorder dealing with attention, concentration, and activity levels that can interfere with one’s ability to function throughout their lives. It’s one of the most common mental disorders affecting children, although people of all ages can suffer from the condition. Millions and millions of people are diagnosed with ADHD each year, showing just how prevalent this condition is in our society. [Source]
There are various treatments for those who have ADHD, and more medications are available for it than ever before. But, for those who want to incorporate plant-based solutions into their treatment plan, CBD might be worth considering.
What is ADHD?
ADHD is a mental disorder that stands for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder. While ADD (attention deficit disorder) revolves around a difficulty concentrating, ADHD has the additional symptom of hyperactivity, both physically and mentally, which makes it difficult for a person to remain still and focused for a long period of time.
ADHD typically develops during early childhood, and for most, the symptoms persist into adulthood, though they may not be as severe. Of course, such a disorder comes with a host of complications relating to one’s ability to lead a healthy and happy life. For one thing, ADHD sufferers have a tendency to struggle in school as the conventional classroom environment is a challenge to them. This can lead to a compromised education that can lead to issues later in life when the time comes to seek higher education and employment. Further, ADHD is often accompanied by impulsive behavior, anger management issues, low self-esteem, issues with relationships and mood fluctuations.
Further, ADHD sufferers may struggle with planning, time management, multitasking, prioritizing, and organizing, which can all interfere with both personal and professional life.
What Causes ADHD?
As of now, there is no known cause for ADHD. The condition is still fairly recent in terms of its diagnostic capabilities, meaning that research remains limited. ADHD is not a “new” disorder, and it’s extremely likely that large portions of the population were never properly diagnosed up until recently, when we became aware of it.
It’s believed that there are genetic factors that can lead to ADHD. Also, it might be possible that there is some sort of dysfunction within the central nervous system among ADHD sufferers. Further, scientists suspect that certain environmental factors can trigger the development of ADHD, including traumatic events in early childhood and conditions at home that can cause developmental issues.
How is ADHD Treated?
Before a person receives treatment for ADHD, they must be diagnosed by a licensed medical professional. There is no test specifically for ADHD, but a doctor will assess the patient based on a number of factors to see if he or she meets the criteria. First, they will rule out other potential conditions.
ADHD is most commonly treated with drugs. Most ADHD drugs are stimulants which improve the ability to concentrate in ADHD patients. Other classes of drugs exist for the condition but are not as popular. It’s also likely that a doctor will refer a patient to some form of talk therapy, which can help them manage the mood-related impacts of the condition, while helping them develop constructive skills that can improve focus and other cognitive functions.
Can CBD Play a Role in ADHD and Improving Focus?
CBD is cannabidiol, which is the dominant compound found in the hemp plant. Being a cannabinoid, which is a class of compounds unique to cannabis, it supports the endocannabinoid system which maintains homeostasis throughout the body through regulatory actions pertaining to every major bodily system. It does this by sending CBD and other cannabinoids to cannabinoid receptors throughout the body, which causes chemical reactions to take place that regulate functions including cognition, neurological health, immune function, mood and more.
We know that cannabinoid receptors in the brain help regulate cognitive functions including focus, memory, and motivation, as well as mood-related functions including anger, stress and pleasure. In a particular study, it was determined that CBD has the potential to improve both mood and cognition through regulatory actions, helping a person manage stress and anxiety while improving their ability to concentrate.
In fact, one clinical trial showed promising results pertaining to CBD as a potential aid for those with ADHD specifically. Thanks to the specific mechanisms touched upon earlier, CBD may be uniquely useful to those struggling with both attention and hyperactivity.
How Can CBD Be Used Properly for ADHD and Other Attention-Related Issues?
CBD is nontoxic, legal in all 50 states and okay to take in large doses daily. But, what about the specific aspects of beginning a cannabidiol routine for ADHD and other attention-related ailments?
If you’re looking to start a CBD regimen, it’s imperative that you speak with your doctor beforehand. They must be fully aware of your medical history, symptoms, and current medications in order to determine whether or not you should take CBD. If you have a child struggling with ADHD, you absolutely must talk to their pediatrician before administering it, especially if they are currently taking ADHD medications.
One thing that we know about CBD is that it is the most effective when it’s taken on a daily basis, as this allows the body to maintain the right level of cannabidiol to use it to its fullest advantage. CBD is available in a wide variety of milligram strengths, and we recommend choosing one based on the severity of your unique situation. Also, select a delivery method that provides more long-lasting effectiveness in the system, like a capsule, edible or tincture.
ADHD is a Lifelong Condition for Most Sufferers, but Treatment is Available
Hence, cannabidiol has the potential to offer something to those who struggle with this condition. Speak to your doctor about adding hemp to your routine if you want to take a holistic approach to your mental wellbeing.