CBD for Autism
8 min read
CBD for Autism
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According to the World Health Organization, 1 in 160 children has an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). As a result of the escalated number of children suffering from Autism, it is essential for parents to understand ASD. To date, clinical studies have not been able to come up with an exact type of treatment for ASD. In this case, it would be advisable for parents to try CBD oil for ASD.

It’s important for parents to understand the relationship between the CBD and Autism. There is currently no published evidence to ascertain that CBD is the most suitable treatment for ASD. However, there is a number of anecdotal evidence that tends to affirm that CBD can be an effective treatment for this condition. It is important for parents to be aware of the CBD benefits when used to treat children with an Autism Disorder.

What is Autism?

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a complex developmental impairment that is characterized by a range of conditions. These conditions include challenges with social skills and development of language, lack of communication skills, and repetitive, kind of rigid behavior. The symptoms tend to vary by individuals. Each person may undergo a different ASD since they vary in different degrees.

Following the latter, ASD can be accompanied by a number of conditions which include: anxiety, sleeping disorders, phobia, and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). CBD comes in as a powerful aid, as most of these conditions can be relieved by medicinal cannabis. Moreover, the disability to communicate can be very challenging to those with ASD. This can cause certain behaviors such as self-harm, rage, anxiety, and other repetitive self-soothing behaviors. CBD can act as an important health remedy for those with autism due to its calming effects.

Why Can CBD Work For ASD?

One of the reasons why most people have preferred CBD for ASD to other medications is because the Endocannabinoid System has been acknowledged for its connection with the pathogenesis of ASD and the brain’s development as a whole. A variation which comes from certain embryonic conditions can alter the Endocannabinoid System (ECS). This may cause many of the problems associated with Autism. Researchers are not sure of the process, but they have gathered that a lack of ECS receptors may lead to a lot of anxieties which entail the ASD. As a result of the issues, CBD remains to be a perfect match to calm the anxieties of individuals with Autism.

What Are The Benefits Of Using CBD To Treat ASD?

CBD seems to be very effective in tackling the behaviors which come as a result of ASD. CBD tends to normalize some of the behaviors caused by ASD due to its calming potential. In fact, it plays an essential role in enhancing repressive brain function by elevating the level of neurons, which balance the level of inhibition in the brain. Hence, restoring this kind of balance in the brain CBD tends to reduce seizures and work positively on social behavior to become normal. This makes CBD a perfect solution to the disorders caused by autism.

What Are The Side Effects of Using CBD to Treat ASD?

While CBD is generally considered safe, some people will experience some side effects. The side effects include nausea, diarrhea, drowsiness, change of appetite, and a dry mouth. The symptoms are rare, though, and not as severe as the ones caused by the conventional drugs used to treat ASD.

The Endocannabinoid System & Autism

This is the pivot of the relation between CBD and autism. Most symptoms of autism are derived from the functions of the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) in the body. The ECS performs a number of regulatory functions in the body which include:

  • Mood variations
  • Pleasure and reward
  • Control of memory
  • Feelings of pain
  • Motor control

In fact, the body has a number of Endocannabinoid receptors in each and every cell. CBD has the effect of calming behaviors that tend to accompany autism.

CBD Dosage to Treat Autism

Following the assertion provided by the anecdotal reports and CBD experts, overdose with CBD is impossible. We recommend to CBD users to start with a low dosage and gradually increase it with time because the effects will vary from individual to individual. This is an effective method to understand which amount of CBD is right for each individual. The more you understand about the type of disorder you have,  the easier it will be to know the kind of dosage that is best for you.

For further details on dosing see our article on CBD Dosing, however we generally recommend the Step Up method.

Step-Up Method

We recommend the Step-Up method to find out the ideal dosage.

  1. First decide between a micro or standard dosage. In their book “CBD: A patient’s guide to Medical Cannabis” Leinow & Birnbaum recommend to start with a microdose to treat autism (see table). Cautiously, the dosage can be increased to a standard dosage. In some cases even a Macro dosage could be useful.
  2. If you have chosen one of the dosage charts, search for your body weight in the left column. If it lies between two values, use the value which is more closely to your weight.
  3. Start at the lowest daily dosage during week 1. This is your starting dosage. Keep it for one week.
  4. Listen to your body and take notes if necessary. If necessary, you can then increase the dose to the next step (week 2), keep it for one week and so on. The drops do not have to be taken all at once. For larger quantities, it is advisable to divide the drops into morning, midday and evening.
  5. If you notice any negative effects, reduce the dose. It is not a question of increasing the dose steadily, but of finding the ideal dose. Due to the two-phase effect, both a too low and a too high dose are less effective.
  6. Once you have found a dose that you feel comfortable with, keep it. This will be your target dosage from now on.

To the following graphs:

The numbers represent the number of drops and the concentration of CBD oil. Example: 6 x 5 stands for six drops of 500mg CBD oil. CBD oil with different concentrations can be substituted (Example: Four drops of 1500mg CBD oil correspond to twelve drops of 500mg CBD oil).

CBD Dosage: Micro Dose
CBD Dosage: Standard Dose

What Are Studies Saying About CBD For ASD?

Studies have garnered some facts about CBD and come up with positive results to acknowledge at CBD is a good treatment option for those with Autism.

Following an article in USA Today, it has found that the largest data of anecdotal evidence for CBD and autism was derived from a clinical study on epilepsy in children conducted in Israel several years ago. However, the vital part of the information in relation to Autism was that up to 30% of the children suffering from autism also had traits of epilepsy. It was observed that 70% of the people suffering from Autism Disorder showed lower levels of anxiety as a result of CBD treatment.

Following the studies, it is clear that CBD has a great impact on acting as a relief to those suffering from ASD.

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