Bipolar Disorder is a condition that causes unusual shifts in moods, usually from abnormally elevated to abnormally depressed states, in a way that interferes with a person’s ability to perform day-to-day functions. Also known as manic depression or Bipolar Affective Disorder, diagnosing bipolar disorder can be difficult even for a mental health professional as the symptoms may differ from one person to another.
Common symptoms of a depressive episode include periods of sadness, hopelessness, fatigue, and loss of interest in activities once enjoyed. Manic episodes, on the other hand, are constituted by a long period of an overly happy state, being overly restless, and extreme irritability. Possible causes of this disorder include genetics, brain structure and functioning, environmental factors, and neurological conditions or injury.
Despite several guidelines or consensus statements, the treatment of Bipolar Disorder has remained problematic due to the combination of drugs prescribed to patients having adverse side effects or disadvantages. The clear need to explore new ways to treat or manage the disorder has resulted in a recent research on the use of cannabinoids (active compounds found in cannabis, also called phyto-cannabinoids) as a form of treatment.
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Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of the most abundant constituents of Cannabis, next only to delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol or THC. This compound typically represents up to 40% of hemp extracts. There are currently no documented studies that show undesirable effects from CBD and it is generally accepted that it is a safer compound compared to THC. CBD oil can be derived from both medical marijuana and industrial hemp oil.
The pharmacological profile of Cannabidiol shares several characteristics with drugs used to benefit people suffering from bipolar disorder, which led to the hypothesis that it may have therapeutic properties beneficial to people with the disorder. Scientific research and testing indicate that CBD has anti-psychotic properties and its use created clinical improvements in patients. Currently, the scientific community has been experimenting with phyto-cannabinoids and its potential medical application or remedy on a wide scope of conditions including epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, anxiety disorder, spasms, nausea, convulsions, and many other conditions including cancer.
While the beneficial effects of CBD on the treatment of Bipolar Disorder are largely anecdotal, many researchers who have examined the relationship between Bipolar Disorder and phyto-cannabinoids feel that patients could benefit from the proper use of CBD. The use of Cannabidiol for therapeutic purposes is supported by significant preliminary research. So far, it has the highest prospect for therapeutic use among cannabis compounds.
Cannabidiol Research: Bipolar Disorder
- Cannabinoids in bipolar affective disorder: A review and discussion of their therapeutic potential
- Cannabidiol was ineffective for manic episode of bipolar affective disorder
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