In 2014, COPD was the third most deadly disease in U.S.A. However, first, it is good to understand that COPD is an umbrella phrase which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis.
In U.S.A alone, COPD affects a shocking 12-14 million adults. But according to American Lung Association (ALA), the affected people may be more than that. The ALA estimates that, 24 million people may be suffering from the condition either knowingly or unknowingly.
There are numerous prescription treatments available for COPD today. However, as stigma around cannabinoids gradually fades away and more promising research on the cannabinoids emerges, many people have begun embracing the therapeutic abilities of CBD in treating COPD.
Cause of COPD
- Environmental/workplace pollutants such as fumes, dust, and
- Smoking tobacco
- Second-hand smoke
- Family genetics (Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency).
Impact of COPD on your lungs
COPD greatly affects the normal functioning of the lungs, making it more and more difficult to breathe and execute daily tasks.
When you breathe in, the air goes via the windpipe and into the lungs through the bronchi tubes. The bronchi tubes within your lungs split into bronchioles (many smaller tubes) which end in alveoli (tiny grape-like air sacks).
Due to the repeated act of breathlessness, COPD patients can experience difficulty executing their normal levels of physical activity. And this makes your lungs to weaken even further.
Without the presence of COPD, both the bronchial tubes and alveoli are always super elastic to help in the exhalation process. However, when diagnosed with COPD, the two not only loses their effectiveness (elasticity), but also expands. The expansion causes the air to remain suppressed in the lungs, even after you exhale.
Worst of all, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is progressive; therefore, symptoms will continue to worsen, particularly if left untreated.
CBD in treating COPD
The most common symptom for COPD is breathlessness due to inflammation of the airways.
CBD has shown to be potentially helpful in managing airway inflammation in COPD patients. Research has also revealed that, CBD could be used to treat severe exacerbations of shortness of breath.
CBD is known to interact with the cannabinoid receptors found in your body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). These receptors (CB-1 and CB-2) help your body maintain balance (homeostasis).
Additionally, another research showed that, CBD inhibits bronchodilatory effects. Obviously, this is handy in reducing airway resistance and allowing sufficient air to reach your lungs.
Benefits of CBD for COPD
- Inhibits bronchodilatory effects
- Reduces pain
- Reduces airway inflammation
- Reduces mucus production
- Promotes improved sleep quality
- Increases appetite
- Immune system support
Remember, if you are suffering from COPD, it is not advisable to consume CBD via a smoking medium. Your wish is to minimize the effects of COPD, right? Smoking apparently can lead to coughing, and this can further aggravate your situation.
Smoke-free CBD alternatives
As COPD is normally caused by smoking tobacco, we definitely don’t wish to further harm your lungs by smoking. So, we have come up with smoke-free alternatives COPD patients can try.
- CBD infused gummies – These flavorsome edibles are infused with CBD oil and are available in various flavors like sour and tropical.
- CBD infused tinctures – They can be used orally or incorporated into your favorite dish.
- CBD inhalers – Akin to inhalers used for managing Asthma conditions or other respiratory ailments, CBD inhalers are packed with nothing but carbon dioxide extracted from hemp-derived CBD.
- CBD capsules – You can get either oil or powdered CBD capsules
- CBD infused tropicals – This category of products include salves, creams, and lotions, which are infused with CBD oil. Topicals are applied directly to the painful areas.
- CBD crystals – CBD derived from hemp comes either as CBD isolate or full spectrum, the former comes in the form of crystals. Basically, CBD isolate crystals can be incorporated into your favorite beverages or foods.
Since studies on the effectiveness of CBD in managing COPD symptoms are still ongoing, we highly advise that you first consult your physician before begging to use CBD for treatment.
With that said, the majority of studies that have been conducted have revealed some promising results in regards to treating COPD with CBD. Hopefully, additional studies will be conducted in the future to help uncover CBD’s incredible abilities.