Unfortunately, scientific research has not yet discovered any cure from narcolepsy but there are several useful stimulants that can help to deal with this disorder such as caffeine and also CBD. Multiple pieces of research have shown that people who suffer from narcolepsy can benefit from the use of cannabis oil. Cannabidiol or CBD is known for help in relieving a number of health issues: anxiety, depression, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, epilepsy, chronic pain and many more. And the reason why CBD is so helpful is that CBD work with the receptors that are present in the Endocannabinoid System in our body. CBD has proven to be miraculous for relieving the symptoms of many sleep-related disorders such as sleep apnea, REM behaviour, insomnia, as well as narcolepsy. The most common symptom of narcolepsy of cataplexy, which leads to a brief loss of muscle movement and usually arises due to sudden emotions such as anger, surprise etc. This condition can disrupt the normal sleep pattern, which leads to narcolepsy.
This condition can also involve sleep paralysis as well as hallucinations and a condition which is known as cataplexy. This latest condition is a severe sleep disorder which results in a situation where patients actually experience a partial or complete loss of control over their muscles. This can be brought about by emotions such as sadness or laughter. It can make its presence known very early on such as in childhood or adolescence. People can be greatly afflicted by this condition for many years.
Narcolepsy is a chronic condition for which, as we know, there is no cure. It is a sleep disorder, which can be characterized by overwhelming drowsiness during the day and sudden attacks of sleep. Could CBD, an extract from cannabis, be the treatment that can help to deal with it? But how can CBD help with this condition and does it actually work? Let’s find out.
Does CBD help narcolepsy?
In Cannabis, Cannabinoids, and Sleep: a Review of the Literature published on 2017 is stated that initial basic research has suggested that medium-/high-dose CBD can be associated with an increase in the percentage of total sleep. This is supported by a pilot study in humans showing that high-dose CBD was associated with improved sleep.
CBD oil has proven to be a great product. In many pieces of research there has been found that CBD is able to calm people and make them feel relaxed. And at the same time, it is able to keep people alert and awake.
Recently, CBD products have hit the market offering sleep relief with less side effects than other treatments used for sleeping disorders. The question that immediately pops into my mind is: “Is CBD good for falling asleep?” And the answer to this is yes. Recent studies have shown that CBD interacts with receptors in endocannabinoid system and those receptors affect our body’s sleep/wake cycle. So then there is another interesting question: “Does CBD oil make you sleepy during the day?” And fortunately, the answer is no. People who use CBD recommend taking it before going to bed, but it’s not because CBD makes you tired, it reduces anxiety and pain that may be the reason why you can’t fall asleep. And if you take CBD during the day, you will get the same effect without feeling drowsiness.
Since every person’s body is different, a right dosage can be determined only through trial and error method. According to the studies conducted, the dose of CBD ranges from 10 micrograms to 25mg. The right dosage can be determined only by using the smallest dose at first and then increasing it gradually until it produces a wanted effect. However, It is always better to talk to a health physician before using CBD in order to avoid any side effects or interactions with other medications.
It’s important to note, narcolepsy is an umbrella term that describes a disorder that comes in two distinct types. (Type 1, with cataplexy, and type 2, without cataplexy). For reference, the Mayo Clinic defines cataplexy as a sudden, uncontrollable loss of muscle tone. It may be triggered by intense positive or negative emotions. If you have type 2 narcolepsy, you may only experience one or two cataplexy episodes in a year. But you could experience several daily episodes. Each person’s experience is unique.
This has to do with chromosome 12 in the human body and it directly affects your ability to sleep. If something is off in this regard, you are more likely to have a longer-term battle against narcoleptic episodes.
Understanding the Symptoms of Narcolepsy
On the other hand, other causes are inherent according to medical professionals. For example, some individuals are going to be born with a specific genetic code that causes them to be predisposed to narcoleptic episodes.
Narcolepsy is a neurological disorder which impacts a person’s ability to regulate their sleep cycles. For example, an individual with narcolepsy may suddenly feel tired in the middle of the day. This can happen at any time of the day and it can be quite difficult to regulate. It can even occur when the individual has taken the time to sleep for 8-10 hours during the night. These attacks can have a disturbing impact on a person’s quality of life and make it difficult to function and stay healthy.
Since CBD products (from the right source) are 100% organic, this makes it easier for individuals to use them without hesitation. Pharmaceutical medications can have dangerous side effects and may not be worth taking because of the impact they can have on your health. CBD is a straightforward supplement that may help control symptoms associated with narcolepsy. It is easy to use and has many other potential benefits for your body and mind.
I grew up watching That 70s Show, where that the majority of cannabis users are depicted as young, dumb, and healthy. As a disabled adult, these expectations have since flown out the window. I’ve met a plethora of different people who utilize medical cannabis. Some of these people you might never have guessed, especially if you grew up in a post-‘war-on-drugs’-world, like me.
On the other hand, cannabis “indica” strains help me achieve deeper sleep. If I were to smoke an “indica” strain during the day, I would find myself napping too much. I use “indica” strains at night. These strains are also higher in CBD, which is a moderate sleep aid.
How medical cannabis affects my narcolepsy symptoms
I’ve also found that different strains help me with different narcolepsy symptoms. For example, cannabis “sativa” strains help give me energy usually. These can be used as a last resort defense against sleep attacks. When it works, it works well.
There is still a heavy stigma attached to the use of medical cannabis, despite it being legal in the U.S. in 36 states. 1
Cannabis also helps with my anxiety. I have severe anxiety that is treated with pharmaceuticals. By integrating medical cannabis into my treatment plan, I’ve been able to reduce the amount of pharmaceuticals that I take to treat my anxiety. Since there are often worse side effects from pharmaceuticals than cannabis, I take that as a win.