Canabis and Brain Injuries
I always start my story with " I went asleep as LeaAnn and woke up a total stranger."
On September 2014 Labor day, I suffered a bleeding stroke and brain aneurysm( acute subdura hetoma) followed by brain surgery to relieve the pressure in my brain. Due a blood infection I caught in my mechanical heart valves after some routine dental surgery. The doctors told my family that if I survived I would never be the same. After 3 months in the hospital learning to walk, talk, chew and swallow, read and write, kidney failure due to antibiotics I was on for the blood disease, the doctors were right about thing. I will never be the same.
Over 2 million visits to the ER every year are related to TBI, like concussion from auto accidents, falls and assaults. Falls account in 50 percent of TBI in children under 14 years of age and over 60 percent seniors. This is the cause of disabilities and pre- mature deaths in the world. Brain injury is just that. Damage to the brain caused by external force. Although much of this condition is often related to football players and war veterans, it affects all people of all ages.
If you would have told me that in 20 years or so I would be writing a blog about the benefits of cannabis for the damaged brain, I would have thought you just escaped from that little padded white room and your white jacket with the pretty gold buttons! But here I am, after my own little investigation into the very interesting matter, here I am doing exactly that.
Did you know that the greatest amount of brain damage occurs at the time of physical trauma? Or that for closed head injuries and cardiovascular events, the majority of damage occurs during recovery, 10 to ten minutes and even days after the brain injury? It's really this delayed response that inflicts long term damage to the brain.
Scientists are learning that the brains cannabinoid is a very powerful tool for handling a TBI, that means that cannibis could become a promising treatment for creating this debilitating condition.
I knew when I chose to write about cannibis and its benefits to the damaged brain I knew that for some, the use of cannabis can be frowned upon. I also realize that medical cannibis is still illegal in many states. I just ask that you keep an open mind, remember that everyone is different and no brain injury is the same.
In my research I heard through the brain injury grapevine rumors suggesting cannibis may help heal the brain after its been damaged, I just had to investigate of course. I found and read 5 different articles on healing The brain through cannibis basically, they all said the same thing in different ways, that the damage to the brain by initial impact, In fact, much of the damage occurs in the minutes and hours following the physical injury.
The physical trauma itself triggers a series if harmful mollecular and cellular events that lead to secondary injury which dampens the delayed response to the physical trauma improves cognitive and behavioral outcomes After a TBI.. And that's where cannibis comes in.
Those secondary injuries, they actually occur in a active process that is involved with many cellular pathways that fall into one of these main categories: 1.) Increase in excititory neurostransmitter( say that 5 times fast!)
There is this massive increase in the release of those excititory brain-signaling chemicals that they call glutamate, it is highly regulated. So because of to much glutamate kills all those brain cells, in TBI an increase in glutamate can lead to the death of brain cells.
2.) Increase in active oxygen species: You see, after TBI there's this increase in chemicals that are called reactive oxygen species, they can really wreak havoc on those brain cells by damaging your DNA, and impairing protein function, and even causing death of the cells. Have you ever of anti-oxidants which can neutralize those reactive oxygen species? But after a TBI, our brains become so overwhelmed with the reactive oxygen species. Not even wolfing down blueberries would be significant.
3.) Increase in brain inflammation: TBI TBI increases inflammatory proteins with the name Cytokines. These have a wide of effects, and they can have long term impacts on how these brain cells behave. Research is finding that by activating endogenous cannaboid system, it can reduce the damaging effects of both of these nasty consequences of having a TBI, And thereby improve these functional outcomes.
You see, there is these two primary. receptors in the back of the brain, called CB1 and CB2, they both play a pretty role in reducing the extent if injury after head trauma. Usually, there is far more CB1 receptors than CB2, however, after the injury that the amount of CB2 jumps sky high. I found a pretty recent report that revieled that by activating of these CB2 receptors reduces brain inflammation quite largely the prevention of the pro- Inflammatory cells.
Enhancing The activity of anti-inflammatory cells, then, by further activating CB2 receptors, then it reduces the amount of the death of brain cells following a traumatic brain injury. I really wasn't a surprised When I found that by activating these CB2 receptors improves so many behavioral outcomes After a TBI, like balance, coordination and managing anxiety. Now, CB2 protective receptors, they are largely reached with reducing inflammation in the brain.
One report I read said that CB1 receptor activation also protects the brain from any further injury by reducing the excititory transmitters release, therefore, preventing that cascade of events that will lead to cell death, by activating the CB1 it also blocks expression of those pro-inflammatory genes and it reduces the reactive-oxygen species all together all together, these effects to make these brain cells much more resilient in the myriad of post trauma and cellular events.
I myself started using medicinal marijuana after my horse threw right off the back of my deck, fracturing my tailbone in two places. I had so pain my brother law insisted I try it. I got my medical marijuana card immediately. CBD as gotten me through the much worse pain after my open heart surgery, and helps me in so many ways since my stroke and brain aneurysm. It has become my nighttime, insomnia, depression, anxiety, pain, heart rate, pulmonary hypertension, blood pressure and my diabetes medication!
How cannibis could be of help: In a brain that is healthy, the general function of endogenous mechanisms and on-demand manner. They are used in an injured brain, but things can always get out of whack.
This was very interesting to me, Cannibis could actually protect the brain from injury activating the CB1 CB2 receptors by by supplementing those endogenous canniboids we discussed earlier, such as those that are found. Numerous NFL players have come forward singing the praise of the benefits with brain injury and pain.
Although there is more research needed to substantiate such anecdotal evidence, the accounts from athletes is quite promising.
Canniboidal CBD, is prevalent non- psyoactive canniboid in cannibis, it might also have protective benefits without inducing tolerance. One study I discovered was looking at the protective benefits of CBD and THC they found that CBD had a much stronger protective effect. Without inducing the tolerance that is associated with the use of THC. Also, they found that CBD as a potential anti- oxidant, which did reduce the amount of damaging reactive oxygen species.
The long term consequences of Traumatic brain injury: As we as survivors know the damage to our brains caused by TBI is on-going its, seems as these is no end long after the physical injury. TBI increases our risk for a number of devastating conditions such as stroke, cancer, dementia and Alzheimer's disease. These are conditions that cannibis (especially CBD) could treat according to recent studies.
CBD has been known reduce inflammation and the damage to brain cells. That provide support, and maintain homeostasis in our brains. CBD can also promote neuron growth and development in what they call hippocampus, a pretty important brain region that's for learning and memory. Also, the hippocampus is one of the very first regions to show impairment in Alzheimer's disease, and its also often impaired in dementia, which indicates an additional mechanism in which CBD may provide beneficial effects.
Scientists continue to look into this by unraveling the mechanisms by which TBI leads us to neurodegenerative disease later on in life. But given the popularity of sports and the prevalence in TBI and other walks of life, don't be to surprised when cannibis gets an increasing amount of attention 2018 and beyond.
Cannibis has been at the center of one if the most exciting and much unreported developments in most recent research in modern day science. Reasreah on marijuanas effects led directly to the discovery of unknown bio-chemical communication system.
Benefits of CBD oil. Helps manage anxiety treats seizures disorders Helps you quit smoking Helps manage diabetes Prevents cancer cell growth Could reverse Alzheimer's disease Has ant-aging affects Helps with arthritis pain Helps with the pain from a migraine Could reduce multiple sclerosis symptoms
So there you have it. I hope you read this blog, and read it with an open mind. If anyone has more information or opinions, thoughts I love hearing what you have to say or add, kindly please. I very much understand that no two brain injuries are the same. What works for me not work for you. As soon as it because legal here in Washington, I have used cannibis oil medicinally for my pulmonary conditions, heart rate medications, my pulmonary hypertension, stroke pain, memory, anxiety and depression. I can't sleep with out it.