Cannabidiol (CBD) research is growing in support of the potential of CBD as an effective method for treating cocaine abuse and may help reduce cravings, restore brain function and prevent relapse.
Cocaine “works” by increasing levels of the natural chemical messenger dopamine in the brain circuits. Dopamine is related to the control of movement and reward in our brains.
In a normal brain, dopamine recycles back into the cell that released it, shutting off the signal between nerve cells after a period of stimulation.
For the user, cocaine prevents dopamine from being recycled. This causes large amounts of dopamine to build up in the space between two nerve cells, thus stopping their normal communication.
This flood of dopamine in the brain’s reward circuit strongly reinforces drug-taking behaviors. As the reward circuit adapts over time to the excess amounts of dopamine caused by cocaine use it becomes less sensitive to it. The result of this is that the user takes stronger and more frequent doses chasing after that same high, and to obtain relief from cocaine withdrawal symptoms.
According to the US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), in 2016 2.2 million people used cocaine at least once in the month prior to the survey, plus an additional 473,000 who smoked crack cocaine. NIDA reports that an estimated 14,500 plus Americans died from a cocaine overdose in 2017.
SAMSA also reports that 637,000 people received treatment for cocaine addiction in 2017, the number needing treatment, but didn’t receive it for one reason or another is estimated at least twice that number.
There is compelling scientific evidence revealing that effects of Cannabidiol CBD oil may be an effective method in the aid of treating some substance abuse related symptoms, including those related to cocaine abuse.
Just like most chronic illnesses, cocaine addiction is a disease that often has periods of relapse and remission. The benefits of CBD is that it is non-addictive, and non-psychoactive and may serve as a panacea in the pursuit of reducing cravings for cocaine and the anxiety attached to the addiction.
Compelling scientific evidence has revealed that CBD oil may be an effective method for treating some substance abuse related symptoms.
As with most chronic illnesses, addiction is a disease that may have episodes of relapse and remission after a period of abstinence. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reported that in 2014, 21.5 million Americans were in need of therapeutic treatment for addiction.
CBD’s ability to regulate the body’s dopamine receptors through the human body’s naturally occurring Endocannabinoid System, a system that regulates homeostasis (blood pressure, mood, sleep cycles, etc.) through the nervous system, is the reason it may be effective in providing relief for withdrawal symptoms with minimal side effects such as:
- Sleep Issues
- Excessive hunger
- Cold and sweaty outbreaks
- Muscle pain
- Disorientation and mental confusion
- Agitation and mood swings
Another recent CBD study conducted by the Scripps Research Institute in San Diego discovered that CBD ignites the brain’s serotonin receptors. This interaction with serotonin receptors was determined to be directly related to a reduction in drug-seeking behavior by the user. In this study, CBD oil was administered to rats after they were basically dependent upon alcohol and cocaine. What the research results indicated is that even five months after CBD had left their systems, the rats did not return to their normal drug-seeking behavior.
Australian researchers published a study shedding light on various facets of addiction, specifically focusing on some of the neurological mechanisms of various facets of addiction, as well as how CBD may limit addictive behaviors in some neurological mechanisms. One of the study’s focus was on how CBD modulates serotonin directly and the endogenous cannabinoid and opioid systems indirectly. This serotonin modulation appears to have a positive impact on how drug users recall their drug-related experiences.
CBD diminishes the intensity of the user’s cravings and limits the neurological effects of chronic drug addiction.
Another interesting study published in August of 2018 studied how Cannabidiol disrupts the reconsolidation of contextual drug-associated memories. Memories are recalled related to situations both pleasurable and painful by the brain and influence our decision making process. Memories related to a drug experience for addicts frequently induce craving and relapse when recalled.
Several studies have shown that drug-related memories, when the addict is exposed to environmental cues (triggers), may undergo a rebuilding essentially strengthening those drug memories.
The study showed that “CBD impaired the reconsolidation of preference for the environment previously paired with both morphine and cocaine.” In other words, the study showed that CBD reduces the effect of drug related memories reducing cravings and may help to prevent relapse. The study highlights the effectiveness of CBD’s therapeutic potential in reducing cravings and the risk of relapse.
In terms of crack-cocaine few evidence-based treatments exist and are available to users. There have been numerous investigations into pharmacological treatments for crack-cocaine addiction, but the results have been disappointing for the most part.
A recent resurgence in interest in the varied possible therapeutic solution for different neurological diseases of cannabinoids has been deemed worthy of increased study by a consortium of international research departments.
These researchers have determined there are distinct potential therapeutic benefits for crack-cocaine users and adverse symptoms that are related (withdrawal for example) which may come specifically from cannabidiol (CBD). As CBD with its potential ability to benefit sleep and appetite problems, as well as its anti-psychotic, anxiolytic, and anticonvulsant effects.
Researchers believe that CBD might have possible therapeutic prospects towards dealing with crack-cocaine related issues such as cravings, withdrawals, paranoia and impulsive behavior.
In conclusion, recent and ongoing studies show that CBD has potential to produce positive outcomes when used as part of a crack-cocaine treatment program.
When choosing a CBD producer, make sure they have available a recent Certificate of Analysis available. This will help, not only in ensuring quality, but also in determining the appropriate dosage level. It’s always a good idea to begin with a minimum does and gradually increase to find your best level once you know how the CBD product affects you as an individual.
Remember, although CBD may help with addiction or other health issues, it is no substitute for proper medical care. If you are suffering from addiction we encourage you to get treatment.