CBD and Alzheimer’s: What You Need to Know
Cannabidiol (CBD) has become a popular treatment for a variety of health issues, including everything from general aches and pains to seizures, and even Alzheimer’s disease.
Now, some studies suggest CBD can provide relief from some of the symptoms of dementia by boosting the immune system and aiding brain cell communication.
While there’s no cure for dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, these promising studies open the door for additional treatments to soothe those suffering from memory loss.
Learn the causes of Alzheimer’s, how CBD could be a treatment for its symptoms, and how The Kensington Sierra Madre incorporates CBD into our care.
What are the Causes of Alzheimer’s Disease?
Alzheimer’s disease still isn’t fully understood, but here’s what we know: The brain proteins in a person with Alzheimer’s are not functioning normally. This, in turn, disrupts and damages brain cell connections.
Plaques and Tangles
Experts focus on two proteins causing this damage in the brain: beta-amyloid plaques and tau protein tangles.
These clusters and tangles are toxic to brain cells, interrupting communication and eventually resulting in cell death.
Lifestyle Risk Factors and Genetics
Researchers and scientists believe that a combination of lifestyle factors, environmental factors, and genetics play a role in the development of Alzheimer’s and these malfunctioning proteins.
Factors that increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s include age, sex, head trauma, air pollution, poor sleep, heart health, and social engagement.
The older we get, the higher our risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
Women are more likely than men to develop Alzheimer’s, and the same factors associated with heart disease often appear to contribute to Alzheimer’s.
Behavioral and Psychological Symptoms
The damage usually starts in the parts of the brain that control memory, which is why memory loss and cognitive decline is a major symptom of Alzheimer’s.
Other symptoms in everyday brain functions include:
- Difficulty thinking and concentrating
- Trouble making judgements and decisions
- Struggling to plan and perform basic, daily tasks
- Changes in behavior and personality
There is no known cure for Alzheimer’s, but there are several treatments available to help manage symptoms and preserve quality of life.
Since the changes in brain health that lead to Alzheimer’s begin several years before symptoms appear, experts recommend making lifestyle changes such as a healthy diet, regular exercise, and better sleep to support the brain.
Again, there is no cure, but the above changes to your lifestyle while you’re still young could help prevent Alzheimer’s disease.
Treatments also include a healthy diet and regular movement, as well as various herbs, vitamins, and supplements to promote better overall health and wellness.
CBD for Alzheimer’s is a promising treatment that may be able to boost brain function, according to studies.
CBD and Alzheimers: Can it Treat Symptoms?
It may be strange to consider Cannabis and Alzheimer’s together but many research projects have indicated that CBD could help ease symptoms of Alzheimer’s and dementia.
CBD is one of many active compounds found in the cannabis plant. It doesn’t contain any tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), so it won’t give users a “high” feeling.
It comes in many forms, including oils, capsules, or patches. CBD-infused creams or lotions can be used topically on skin to soothe, and oils or sprays can be placed under the tongue for direct absorption into the bloodstream.
Does CBD oil help treat dementia?
Research suggests CBD oil could help manage some of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and dementia. This includes the potential to reduce anxiety and agitation.
It may potentially aid with sleep and has anti inflammatory properties. CBD oil can help reduce inflammation in the brain, and it is also a known antioxidant that protects cells.
Potential for improved learning
A clinical study with mice revealed improved learning and less evidence of amyloid clumps after the use of both CBD and THC.
These studies contained specific amounts of CBD in combination with THC, and they have yet to be performed on humans. However, the research is promising, and current use of CBD in Alzheimer’s for managing other symptoms can still be helpful.
At The Kensington Sierra Madre, our team works with expert consultants to explore the benefits of CBD oil and CBD with THC-A, a type of oil where the THC is kept cold to remove the hallucinogen effect of the cannabis.
The Kensington team has already noticed benefits. CBD treatment has helped residents with the most severe cases of dementia. We’ve seen residents calm down as a result, as well as report less pain and an increase in appetite.
CBD treatments have allowed the team to reduce the amount of antipsychotic medication previously given to these residents. Residents with Lewy Body Dementia have been found to conflict with antipsychotic medication. The use of CBD has allowed The Kensington Sierra Madre to care for even the toughest cases of dementia among residents.
Other instances found that CBD eases joint pain in those with arthritis.
CBD is a safe, non-habit forming treatment that can assist with pain, discomfort, and inflammation.
Though they continue their research and compile more data, The Kensington Sierra Madre team feels that Cannabis and CBD are safe methods to help people with dementia. For those with dementia, CBD still allows them to be themselves and live their best lives.
What Can a Memory Care Community Do for Your Family?
If you’re curious about trying CBD to soothe a loved one’s Alzheimer’s symptoms, consult with their doctor. While CBD is safe on its own, it could interact with some medications and potentially lessen their efficacy.
Signs Your Loved One Needs More Support
If you are having physical, emotional, or financial difficulties caring for a loved one, it may be time to consider moving them to a community that offers a full spectrum of loving, supportive care options.
The Kensington Sierra Madre team Promises to love and care for your family as we do our own. We offer two memory care neighborhoods — Connections and Haven — to expertly address the level of care your loved one needs.
Contact us today to meet our team and learn more about the full scope of wellness and treatment options we can provide to your loved one.