There is a big CBD opioids question circling both the internet and the lives of real-life people who are dealing with intractable pain. This is no light issue to discuss. The FDA cracked down on companies advertising their CBD to treat opioid addiction without any basis for their claims just this year.
So what is the deal with people using CBD in place of opioids and is it actually a possibility?
We don’t have enough evidence to back up any claims that say CBD can treat opioid addiction. That’s why the FDA cracked down on companies making unsubstantiated claims. However, that’s not to say many people aren’t successfully using CBD to help them manage chronic pain without opioids.
Before making any changes to your prescriptions or daily routines, we recommend you discuss your condition with your doctor. It’s especially important to do so if you’re looking to stop taking opiates as doctors should be notified of such changes.
Let’s look at what the research says about CBD as a replacement for opioids.
Promising research on the CBD opioids connection
There has been promising research to back up the possibility of CBD helping users quit opiates and manage addiction. However, we cannot stress enough that these promising studies do not verify that CBD is effective. We need more definitive research to back it up. It’s still important to look at the studies, though, to get a better idea of the potential.
One study looked at the potential for CBD to treat heroin addiction. Researchers found CBD to be effective at managing the cue/craving cycle that leads users to return to heroin as well as diminish some of the pain that leads to opiate use in the first place.
Now, that’s a huge statement. Let’s break it down a little.
Participants in the study experienced a reduction in heroin cravings and anxiety, two factors that can lead users to return to the drug. The research showed that the reduction lasted about a week post-consumption. Keep in mind that the majority of participants in this study had only been abstinent from heroin use for less than a month.
Participants were shown images of needles, syringes, and other drug paraphernalia to induce cravings and anxiety. One week after the final administration, the CBD users had a two to a three-fold reduction in cravings when compared to those who took the placebo.
This is promising news for those wondering if they can use CBD to treat heroin addiction or reliance on other opiates. This is not proof, though. It was a small study and many more will need to be conducted.
“It’s not addictive. No one is diverting it. It doesn’t get you high, but it can reduce craving and anxiety,” said the lead researcher on the study.
The bottom line: the CBD opioid connection
Can CBD treat opioid addiction? We don’t know enough yet to make statements like that. If a company is making such large claims, steer clear.
That’s not to say there isn’t potential there. Many people are turning to CBD or other cannabinoids to manage hard-to-treat pain. Pain is often a leading factor in turning to opiates in the first place, so it makes sense that a compound used to manage pain and anxiety may help with the underlying driving forces as well as cravings.
Looking to try CBD to manage pain or transition from opiates? First, we highly encourage you to speak with a doctor about your options and specific lifestyle.
We also encourage you to seek pure, potent CBD that has gone through thorough CBD testing by an ISO-accredited laboratory. The Premium CBD database is on its way and will make shopping for this easy.
Learn more about CBD at the Premium CBD blog!