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Alzheimer’s Disease and CBD Oil: Can It Help Dementia?

The use of CBD oil for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia is on the rise—and for good reason.

Alzheimer’s disease impacts an estimated 1 in 10 people over 65. It is a cruel illness, progressively disrupting the neural pathways which control memory, speech, and movement, sometimes causing instances of aggression and agitation in the sufferer.

With no current medical treatments for combating the illness, many sufferers of Alzheimer’s-related dementia and their caregivers are looking to alternatives like CBD oil to potentially provide a better quality of life.

Benefits of Using CBD Oil for Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

There is currently no cure for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, although researchers are constantly looking for new pathways to explore, and CBD oil may provide the next breakthrough.

Current treatment options include talk therapy and person-centered care to reduce some of the stress, anxiety, and agitation associated with dementia. In addition, cholinesterase inhibitors are often prescribed to improve memory and cognition. Some cholinesterase inhibitors are metabolized via CYP450, so there could be an interaction with CBD.

Unfortunately, these cholinesterase inhibitors come with a range of negative side effects, including a loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, which, when experienced in patients who are elderly or infirm, can lead to serious health complications.

CBD oil, on the other hand, does not produce these side effects. In fact, The World Health Organization (WHO) states that “no public health problems… have been associated with the use of pure CBD [oil].”

This means CBD oil may be a viable treatment option for someone struggling to beat or avoid the side effects of conventional Alzheimer’s disease and dementia medications.

The decision to take CBD oil is a personal one and should be made having conducted full research on the subject. Many doctors and physicians are now aware of the potential benefits of CBD oil, and are well positioned to advise on how it may work as part of your own treatment plan. If you’re seriously considering CBD oil as a treatment option, speak to your doctor first, as CBD has been known to interact with certain medications (e.g. antidepressants, antihistamines, and even aspirin).  

If, however, you find that your doctor is not able to provide satisfactory information, you may wish to consult a naturopathic doctor who has an in-depth understanding of CBD oil for medicinal use.

Effectiveness of Using CBD Oil in Treating Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a phytocannabinoid that interacts with the body’s own endocannabinoid system to produce a variety of health benefits. Unlike the THC cannabinoid, CBD has no intoxicating properties and therefore does not elicit the “high” associated with marijuana use. Instead, patients report a wealth of improvements to health, with hundreds of studies currently underway to explore its potential uses.

There are three main ways CBD oil has been found to improve the health of those suffering from dementia: reducing oxygenation (CBD can increase blood flow and reduce oxidative damage), reducing inflammation, and stimulating and protecting the brain. CBD oil is also believed to reduce the anxiety and stress that may trigger episodes of aggression.

When the brain’s immune cells are unable to clear blockages, which are common in dementia, an inflammatory reaction is triggered. This inflammation has been shown to worsen symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. Inflammation is one of the main afflictions CBD oil has been shown to reduce, with a 2017 study reporting that “CBD may be a promising candidate for AD [Alzheimer’s disease] therapy by inhibiting oxidative stress and neuroinflammation”.

The inflammation that occurs in the brain due to Alzheimer’s disease also provokes a release of oxygen. As the oxygen levels within the brain cells rise, functions such as memory decrease. As CBD oil is also an antioxidant, it’s been shown to reduce this effect, as reported in a 2010 study on CBD oil and its effect on oxidative stress.

The brain cell count in Alzheimer’s patients is often shown to undergo a steady decline, reducing cognitive function and leaving destroyed pathways in their wake. CBD oil has been shown in numerous studies to not only prevent the destruction of brain cells, but promote regrowth, or neurogenesis.

At the end of the day, you should know that there seem to be no clinical trials assessing the efficiency of CBD in Alzheimer's patients. It is not possible to say how animal and in-vivo studies translate to humans.

How to Use CBD Oil for Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia

There are many ways to take CBD oil for dementia, with the decision ultimately coming down to personal preference. While drops, edibles, inhalants, and gummies are all common options, many people using CBD oil for Alzheimer’s and dementia may prefer to take it in capsule form. A daily capsule can easily be combined with other medications so it’s not easily forgotten. It is also an easy method of consumption for those with limited mobility, who may find the fine motor skills involved in using a dropper more difficult.

When deciding how much CBD oil to take, consult the instructions and recommendation on the product you purchased.

If you’re having trouble determining a starting dosage, we here at CBD Oil Review have analyzed hundreds of products and come up with a standard serving suggestion:

The CBD Oil Review Serving Standard is 25mg of CBD, taken twice daily.

If you are not getting your desired results from this amount, we recommend increasing the serving size by 25mg every 3-4 weeks until you find relief.

Remember, when it comes to dosage, there is no standard for CBD oil. Because all people are different, there will be some variation in the amount needed to find relief. For more detailed information about CBD dosing, you can check out our dosing page.

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