Medical Cannabis for ADHD – Is It A Success Or Mere A Hype?
ADHD affects millions of children in the USA alone. According to a survey, almost 6.1 million children are affected by ADHD. Several cases are left undiagnosed if the symptoms aren’t severe enough to be figured out. ADHD or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder lies among the most common neurological diseases.
Studies suggest that using medical cannabis for ADHD may help patients lead a normal life, which is hardly possible with conventional medications. Is it all true or just hype? Let’s figure out exactly how the healing potentials of the cannabis plant help with reducing the most excruciating symptoms of ADHD in patients.
What Is ADHD?
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, more commonly known as ADHD, is one of the most commonly occurring neurological disorders worldwide. It ranks among the few neurological disorders typically affecting children. Surveys suggest that it generally begins in childhood and prevails even in adulthood.
Surprisingly, girls aren’t affected by ADHD as much as young boys. Even if the girls get affected, the symptoms aren’t as severe as they may be in boys. This clearly explains that gender is a crucial factor to be considered. Stick around to learn more about ADHD symptoms, causes, and risk factors.
Symptoms of ADHD
Studies reveal that gender greatly influences the kinds of symptoms experienced by the patients. The pattern of symptoms varies among girls and boys of the same age groups, which is why gender is to be critically considered while diagnosing the condition in patients.
To understand the symptoms better, experts classify them into two broad classes of behavioral issues. It must be noted that the symptoms of ADHD may or may not fall in these categories. Certain rare cases involve symptoms that aren’t related to these types.
The following symptoms fall under these two categories:
1. Lack of focus
- Patients report having a hard time focusing for a long period of time. Getting easily distracted is a common sign of the said disease.
- Children tend to act pretty carelessly. Even the tiniest of tasks show several mistakes.
- The disease leads to other major symptoms as a result of forgetfulness. Losing stuff is a common problem among patients.
- Time-consuming tasks appear daunting.
- Understanding instructions and following them seems hard at times.
- Organizing multiple tasks seems to be complicated.
Symptoms may vary in adults and children. The symptoms typically observed in adults are as follows:
2. Impulsive and hyperactive behavior
- Constant fidgeting is quite a common symptom.
- Even in a calm surrounding, the patients have difficulty sitting still.
- ADHD causes the patients to move and talk excessively.
- If the patients have to wait For their turn somewhere, it seems like a never-ending waiting period, making them extraordinarily impatient and irritated.
- An impulsive attitude towards the daily routine tasks
- Any sense of danger or risk hardly binds patients with ADHD as they are extremely fearless and tend to make impulsive decisions without considering the consequences.
Different Types of ADHD:
Considering various factors, the experts classify the condition into various types. This way, it’s easier to analyze the patient’s condition. Also, the patients can easily figure out exactly what they’re going through.
a) Combined ADHD
It is the most commonly occurring type of ADHD in patients. Depending on the type of symptoms reported by the patients, experts categorize this type as the one involving both classes of symptoms. Patients have to deal with both:
- Hyperactive and impulsive behavior
- Distracted behavior
b) Hyperactive Type:
A rarely occurring type of ADHD, hyperactive ADHD, causes the patients to be extremely hyperactive. Most symptoms in such patients are related to hyperactive and impulsive behaviors. This makes them vulnerable to mistakes and poor decision-making. Patients can’t wait for their turns in public places, which makes several daily tasks hard for the patients and other people in the surrounding.
c) Distractible type:
This type involves a condition characterized by symptoms that greatly affect the ability to focus on daily tasks. Patients get easily distracted, which affects their ability to perform tasks effectively. There are no signs of hyperactivity in this type.
What are the causes of ADHD?
Well, the exact factors that cause ADHD aren’t yet unleashed by the experts. An ongoing process of studies and research is solely dedicated to determining the exact causes. However, the studies bring forth certain factors that are likely to be substantially important in developing the condition. The following factors are believed to cause ADHD directly or indirectly.
- Hereditary factors
While trying to figure out the exact causes of disease, experts are highly concerned about the contribution of genetics in the development of a certain disease. Most diseases are caused by hereditary factors, and ADHD is no exception. Experts reveal that ADHD may run in families as the genes can directly affect a person’s vulnerability to developing it.
- Environmental factors
The environmental factors stand as the most neglected ones. However, several studies indicate the importance of considering the environmental factors while studying a particular case. Environmental factors may vary accordingly and thus, directly relate to the development of the condition. For example, children having greater exposure to lead through any sources are at a greater risk of developing the disease.
- Developmental problems
Problems related to the development of the central nervous system in children may lead to ADHD
What are the Risk Factors for ADHD?
The following factors make you more vulnerable to developing the said condition.
- Individuals having at least one blood relative, parent, or sibling having the said condition or any other disorder directly or indirectly related to mental health are at greater risk of developing ADHD.
- If a mother consumes alcohol or other drugs, ingestible or smoked ones, the child is greatly exposed to the risk of developing ADHD.
- Environmental toxins such as lead can cause severe damage to certain parts of your nervous system that may cause ADHD later on.
- Premature births might as well lead to the development of ADHD.
How Medical Cannabis for ADHD Can Help the Patients Cope With the Symptoms?
The arena of health care isn’t new to the use of medical cannabis to seek relief from various excruciating symptoms of diseases that are generally resistant to conventional medication. The multitudinous healing abilities of the cannabis plant explain how using medical cannabis for ADHD makes sense! There’s a lot it can do to your body mechanisms through the interaction of cannabinoids with the body’s endocannabinoid system.
It reduces the risk of side effects which is generally a common threat posed by conventional medications. Although we lack formal research to support the use of cannabis to directly address ADHD, there’s a lot it can do in terms of reducing the intensity of symptoms. The ability to cope with these symptoms using cannabis helps the patients live a better life without going the extra mile. Here’s how cannabis can be your health partner to fight against the symptoms of ADHD:
- Helps calm the patient
Dopamine is the happy hormone in your body that makes you feel pleasure, thus calming you down. Several studies suggest that a lack of dopamine in the prefrontal region may play a significant role in developing symptoms such as impulsiveness and hyperactivity. Studies suggest that THC and CBD can significantly increase dopamine production to relieve such symptoms.
- Improves the focus
Most types of ADHD involve symptoms affecting a patient’s ability to focus on everyday tasks. Not being able to be attentive and focused makes even the tiniest of tasks difficult to accomplish. That’s where CBD helps you. CBD is one of the most abundant cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. It’s widely known to be capable of increasing energy levels and helping the patients focus.
Research On the Use of Medical Cannabis For ADHD
Several pieces of research and studies greatly support the use of medical cannabis for ADHD. Medical cannabis naturally possesses several essential cannabinoids and terpenes that can do wonders to help patients. Here’s a list of some studies that reveal how cannabis could help with the symptoms of ADHD:
- A recent study focuses on the dopamine-releasing action of medical cannabis. This reveals how cannabis can prove to be helpful for the maintenance of dopamine levels in the body. It is notable here that several studies suggest that a lack of dopamine may trigger ADHD symptoms in the patients and make them worse. 
- Another study from 2016 reveals the results of a clinical trial that reported positive effects of medical cannabis for treating the symptoms of ADHD. 
Now you know everything about the use of medical cannabis for ADHD. Though there’s still more room for research on whether cannabis can help treat ADHD or not; however, several studies support the potential capacities of cannabis to help deal with the most excruciating symptoms of ADHD.
Legal Disclaimer : Medical Cannabis Doctors does not provide medical services or medical advice. This information is for awareness purposes only and is NOT medical advice. Do not self diagnose or prescribe any forms of treatments based on this information or the information on this site. Always consult with a licensed physician in your state for any medical advice, treatments, prescriptions and medical services.
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