With researchers finding new uses for cannabidiol each day, many adult users who have experienced the compound’s benefits want to know if they can use it on their kids as well. CBD is one of the numerous compounds that occur naturally in hemp. It is non-toxic and does not lead to dependence or induce any adverse side effects.
However, due to the legal restrictions and stigma associated with the cannabis plant, information on the pros and cons of CBD are limited. It is even harder to find information relating to cannabidiol for children.
That said, a 2017 review reports on several clinical trials confirming that CBD is indeed safe for use by kids who have been diagnosed with epilepsy, ADHD, and related medical conditions. The focus of one of the studies was on epileptic patients. Four patients were given small doses of CBD each day for three months; two of them didn’t experience any more seizures, while one saw a significant improvement in symptoms.
Safe to say, anyone, including children, can use CBD, but the measures you take when purchasing your own CBD product should apply when seeking kids’ CBD too.
What to consider when buying CBD products for kids
CBD oil production is a multistep process that begins in the soil where the hemp was grown. Botanicam offers information about each of their products to help buyers make more guided decisions. These factors should help you spend your money on quality products:
- The source of the hemp
Hemp falls under a category of plants known as bioaccumulation, meaning it absorbs more from the soil than the average plant. So, basically, hemp will make better use of fertilizers and other natural elements in the soil, but it will also take up contaminants and heavy metals.
It is thus advisable that you buy your CBD from someone who can provide information on the source of their hemp. The best CBD is sourced from organically cultivated hemp.
- Extraction method
Extraction is the second and most critical phase of CBD production. It has the most sway on the quality of CBD produced. Many manufacturers use toxic ingredients such as butane and propane to cut back on the cost of production. You want to ensure your kids don’t feed on these toxic residues.
CO₂ and ethanol extraction are the only two extraction techniques that yield high-quality CBD without leaving hazardous substances behind. Most brands indicate the method of extraction in the product label. If it is not indicated, ask the seller about it.
- Type of extract
CBD isolate, full-spectrum CBD, and broad-spectrum CBD are the three main types of CBD extracts. Full-spectrum CBD contains all flavonoids, terpenes, essential oils, and cannabinoids, including THC. Broad-spectrum CBD has all the said phytonutrients except THC. CBD isolate, on the other hand, contains only cannabidiol.
While CBD isolates offer relatively high doses of cannabidiol per serving, they do not produce the popular entourage effect, which is a product of all the various CBD products working in synergy to produce enhanced therapeutic results. Broad-spectrum CBD generates the entourage effect too, but one that is not as strong as what full-spectrum CBD produces.
That said, broad-spectrum CBD may be the best option for your kids as it is highly potent and doesn’t contain the psychoactive THC.
Once a product is complete, the manufacturer can submit it to a third party for safety and chemical content testing. Testing results should be consistent with what is on the product label.
If a CBD product doesn’t provide this information, you should think twice about purchasing it, regardless of who you are getting it for – yourself, your children, or even your pet. A reputable company should be willing to let you in on their lab results.
CBD for kids should be moderately potent unless you are targeting a specific issue such as pain or anxiety, in which case you should seek the guidance of a pediatrician.
Common uses of CBD in children
The FDA has approved the use of CBD in treating a select type of epilepsy in children, but the cannabinoid has also been shown to alleviate less severe physical and mental conditions. Here are some of the common ones:
Research on cannabidiol as a potential remedy for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is limited. Most of the available information focuses on cannabis as a whole and not CBD or any specific cannabinoid.
However, there is plenty of evidence from individuals who treat their kids with CBD oil that cannabidiol actually helps manage hyperactivity. Additionally, a 2014 study shows that CBD can promote daytime alertness if administered in low doses. ADHD is associated with daytime sleepiness, a symptom CBD can help improve.
Anxiety alleviation is one of the oldest uses of CBD oil. According to research, CBD alters with serotonin reuptake, increasing the neurotransmitter’s availability to the body. The end product of this is stabilized mood and reduced anxiety.
The second anxiety-related benefit of CBD oil has something to do with the cannabinoid’s ability to stimulate the human endocannabinoid system to secrete more of the body’s natural cannabinoids, including the fear-, euphoria-, and bliss-regulating anandamide.
In one study, 60 children with autism were given CBD oil for seven months, after which their parents were asked to report on the children’s behavioral changes. Eighty percent of the parents said their kids’ problematic behaviors had declined, with 62 percent reporting significant positive changes. 40 percent believed their children’s anxiety had reduced drastically over the period of the study.
Currently, ADHD has no cure. However, virtually all of its major symptoms can be managed separately using distinctive techniques. CBD comes as a one-size-fits-all treatment for anxiety, mood swings, seizures, and a range of other symptoms and side effects of medication.
CBD is perfectly safe for use by children as it is non-psychoactive and does not lead to dependence. Its effects also recede after some time, so there is little to no risk of permanent physical or mental harm. If your child has autism, ADHD, anxiety, epilepsy, or insomnia, check with a doctor before introducing them to CBD. If you are not targeting any specific health issue, follow the manufacturer’s instructions on dosage and administration.