People use CBD to address a wide array of health problems and glaucoma is one of them. In fact, the relationship between glaucoma and cannabis plants has become a common subject in popular culture. In movies and TV shows we often see people using glaucoma as an excuse to get a prescription for medicinal marijuana. However, did you ever ask yourself whether CBD is really effective in the management of glaucoma? This post focuses on whether glaucoma patients can, indeed, experience improvements with best CBD oil.
What is glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a disease of the eye indicated by a buildup of pressure that causes damage to the optic nerve. The disease occurs when fluid accumulates in the frontal part of the eye and increases the pressure that could lead to blindness. In fact, glaucoma is the leading cause of blindness across the globe.
Glaucoma cases are divided into two groups: primary glaucoma whose cause is unknown and secondary glaucoma which occurs due to diabetes, tumor, inflammation, advanced cataracts, and other causes. Everyone can develop glaucoma, but major risk factors include:
- Advancing age
- Eye surgery
- Eye injury
- Ethnic background (African Americans, Asians, and Hispanics are at a higher risk of developing glaucoma than Caucasians)
Can CBD treat glaucoma?
When left untreated, glaucoma can lead to potentially serious complications that only emphasize the importance of timely management. The use of high-quality types of CBD oil has become popular in the treatment of glaucoma, but you’re probably wondering whether those claims are accurate. Scientific evidence on this subject is limited and more studies are needed to elucidate the relationship between CBD and this eye disease.
The Journal of Glaucoma published an interesting study where scientists assessed the effects of CBD and THC on intraocular pressure (IOP) and the safety of administration of these cannabinoids. While findings showed that THC can decrease intraocular pressure, CBD can’t. Researchers also found that CBD dosages higher than 40mg increased IOP about 4 hours after administration. Other studies had different results.
The American Journal of Pathology published a research where scientists tested the hypothesis that glutamate causes apoptosis (cell death) of retinal neurons via excessive formation of peroxynitrite and that THC and CBD can attenuate this formation. Unlike the above-mentioned study which found that only THC was beneficial for glaucoma, this research confirmed that CBD was also effective and the effects are mediated by the CB1 receptor. Scientists concluded the study explaining that CBD poses as a novel topical therapy for treatment of glaucoma.
CBD oil could aid treatment of glaucoma through endocannabinoid system (ECS), a biological system composed of cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2), endocannabinoid enzymes, and their metabolic enzymes. The ECS has a role to maintain homeostasis or balance in your body. It plays a modulatory role in the function of the brain, endocrine, and immune tissues. A potential mechanism behind the efficacy of different types of CBD oil in the treatment of glaucoma could be through activation of cannabinoid receptors, as shown in the above-mentioned study.
Almost all aspects of your health are dependent on the function of the ECS including pain modulation, inflammation, neuroprotection, and the immune response. It is the role of ECS in inflammation and neuroprotection that could play a role in the management of glaucoma after administration of CBD oil. That is because cannabinoid receptors are also found in ocular tissues that are responsible for regulation of IOP. Studies reveal that two cannabinoid antagonists, anandamide and WIN 55212-2, and other cannabinoids including CBG (cannabigerol) and CBD are viable candidates for the development of therapeutic agents for topical use in the treatment of glaucoma. Plus, oxidative stress plays a role in development and severity of glaucoma and CBD is well-known for its antioxidant effects.
Should you use CBD oil for glaucoma?
Although more studies on this subject are necessary, it’s obvious that CBD oil has tremendous potential for treatment of this serious eye disease. That being said, whether you should use CBD oil or not is a major decision. While it’s easy to buy CBD oil and CBD-based products today, you should still consult your doctor or an ophthalmologist before you make a purchase. Think thoroughly, weight out all the risks and benefits first.
Glaucoma is a serious eye disease and the leading cause of blindness across the world. The use of THC and CBD has proven to be effective in the management of glaucoma through activation of CB receptors. If you decide to go for this approach to manage glaucoma, make sure you buy the best CBD oil for maximum effects.