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Tue, Dec. 10

Dear Rhonda & Dr. Cheri: Is CBD oil the same as marijuana?

Rhonda Orr and Dr. Cheri L. McDonald, PhD, LMFT

Rhonda Orr and Dr. Cheri L. McDonald, PhD, LMFT

Dear Rhonda and Dr. Cheri,

“CBD” stores are everywhere. My husband decided they are the cure-all for his anxiety, pain, insomnia and arthritis.

He showed me advertising saying CBD calms you down. How? I thought CBD wasn’t a narcotic?

He’s a retired Marine and quit smoking marijuana years ago, but he’s hanging out with people who use CBD and smoke weed. He said it’s a vitamin supplement and to stop nagging him. He said CBD comes from hemp plants, not marijuana.

He’s very irritable around our kids and me. I think he’s using marijuana again, along with CBD oils.

What’s the story?

Signed,

Worried Mom

Dear Mom,

We understand your concerns regarding Cannabidiol (CBD) products, which are sold “everywhere,” even in department stores.

However, our biggest concern is that your husband may be distancing himself from you, your children and his responsibilities to his family. Counseling for you both would be appropriate. Please encourage him to return to addiction and recovery programs. Your husband can also receive help from medical professionals for all his physical and mental ailments.

You can also benefit from guidance. It’s important to focus on him and creating healthy relationships for you, your family, and friends.

The following can help to inform you on CBD:

• As botanist Walther Otto Müller discovered, marijuana plants have higher amounts of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the chemical responsible for pot’s “high” and the reason it’s labeled a drug. The federal government put CBD in the same class as marijuana (legalizing CBD with restrictions). Marijuana has low levels of CBD, but high THC concentrations of 0.3 percent, up to 30 percent.

• Müller found hemp plants have higher levels of CBD, but the THC concentration is 0.3 percent or lower.

• Labels can be inaccurate: according to a 2017 Journal of the American Medical Association research study of 84 products sold online in 2016 as containing CBD, only 26 were labeled accurately (containing CBD within 10 percent of the claimed amount); 36 of the products had more CBD than their labels said; and 22 products had less. The researchers also found THC in 18 of the 84 samples.

• CBD has been promoted for a wide variety of health issues, but, Peter Grinspoon, MD, said, the strongest scientific evidence is for the first medicine originating from cannabis — Food and Drug Administration approved Epidiolex, which helps treat childhood epilepsy and contains CBD.

• Some of CBD’s known side effects include nausea, fatigue and especially irritability.

There’s much to learn about CBD oil, whether it comes from hemp or marijuana; however, we feel this is a relationship and addiction issue more than a CBD issue.

Signed,

Rhonda and Dr. Cheri

Rhonda Orr is the president and founder of Rhonda’s STOP BULLYING Foundation. Dr. Cheri L. McDonald, PhD, LMFT, is a crime-victim specialist. Send questions to rhonda@BullyingLifeAndStuff.com, and listen to Rhonda’s podcast at BullyingLifeAndStuff.com.

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