What are the benefits of CBD oil for glaucoma? In recent times, many people have turned to natural products and herbs to treat or alleviate a wide variety of conditions. Hence, many individuals have included medicinal herbs and foods in their daily lives to prevent getting sick or to keep overall good health. There are lots of natural herbs and substances that can help us achieve this. Who hasn’t heard of valerian root to get better sleep or chamomile tea for stomach pain? But there are other less popular substances in the market that may have amazing properties in our health. One of them is CBD oil.
Recently, CBD oil has gained popularity amongst many people, thanks to its many benefits and effects, including anti-anxiety, anti-inflammatory, pain reliever. But CBD oil has many other properties. Recent studies show promising effects of CBD oil for glaucoma and intraocular pressure. In this article, we’ll explore how CBD oil for glaucoma works.
What is Glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a condition caused by the increase in intraocular pressure. This is a degenerative condition that can end up in a total loss of vision. In fact, glaucoma is the second cause of blindness after cataracts. Nevertheless, early diagnose could prevent sight-loss caused by glaucoma in 95% of the cases.
There are various types of glaucoma:
- Open-angle glaucoma: This is the most common type. It causes progressive vision loss and eye pressure.
- Angle-closure glaucoma: It produces eye redness, eye pain, and In some cases, it can provoke nausea and vomit.
Glaucoma can also be:
- Primary glaucoma: It is another name for open-angle In this case, the cause is unknown.
- Secondary glaucoma: this type of glaucoma has a known cause, such as diabetes or the use of certain medications.
Depending on the moment when glaucoma has been originated, it can be:
- Congenital glaucoma: it’s present at birth
- Infantile glaucoma: it affects children from 1-24 months of age
- Juvenile glaucoma: it affects children, adolescents, and young adults
- Adult glaucoma
Glaucoma: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment
Although this is a common condition, it is not clear what is the cause of glaucoma. But, on occasion, it affects various members of the same family. That’s why it is important to check your eyes regularly if there are cases of the condition in the family. Also, it is a general recommendation to check your eyes at least every two years to prevent any problems.
Regarding glaucoma, there are some risk factors that you must consider:
- Age 60 and older (or 40 and older for African Americans and East Asian ethnicities)
- Family history
- High myopia
- Thin cornea
- High blood pressure
- Use of corticosteroids
- Eye injury
- Eye surgery
On the other hand, in the early stages, the increase of intraocular pressure has no symptoms. Later it can produce a gradual loss of peripheral vision, halos around lights, eye pain, and headaches. In advanced stages, it can provoke tunnel vision.
Although glaucoma has no cure, there are various treatments that can alleviate its symptoms. Typically, this condition is treated with topical medication and laser surgery. Sometimes, treatment requires the implantation of a valve to help eye drainage.
What is CBD?
CBD is a cannabinoid derived from the Cannabis sativa plant. Although this is the same plant as the marihuana plant, CBD is not a drug. Cannabis sativa has many varieties and strains, including hemp and marihuana. Most of the CBD oil that we can find in the market is derived from hemp, which is a totally legal plant. The main difference between hemp and marihuana is cannabinoid content. Whilst marihuana has high levels of THC and low levels of CBD, hemp contains very high levels of CBD and little to no THC content. THC is what gives marihuana its psychoactive properties. On the other hand, CBD has no psychoactive effects. Whilst hemp-derived CBD is completely legal, this is not so clear with marihuana derived CBD.
CBD has many properties and effects in our system, including:
- Pain reliever
- Muscle relaxant
Thanks to these and more effects, many studies have been conducted on CBD in recent times. And most of them show very promising results.
CBD Oil for Glaucoma
The CBD products that are sold in the market today, have not been yet proven effective for the treatment of glaucoma. At the moment, there is only evidence of THC’s positive effects on this condition, but it also carries some problems. In order for THC to be effective on glaucoma, the individual should take it every 4-6 hours. This could also have adverse effects such as developing THC dependence.
Nevertheless, it has been demonstrated that cannabinoids can protect neurons from glutamate induced-death. Moreover, a glutamate increase is the main responsible for retinal ganglion cell death. According to research conducted by the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology from Georgia’s Medical College, a combination of THC and CBD was able to protect retinal neurotoxicity by attenuating peroxynitrite. This study concludes that CBD has great potential as a topical therapy for glaucoma.
So, the positive results of CBD oil for glaucoma suggest that there is a base to develop new medicines containing CBD to treat this condition.