Sickle cell anemia is an inherited disease that can cause a host of severe symptoms and complications. Primarily affecting the African-American community, this disease is extremely hard to treat and quite debilitating. However, new research shows that hemp-derived CBD might be able to provide sufferers with enormous relief from their symptoms.
So, how exactly does this compound work so that it can treat the potentially crippling symptoms associated with this prevalent disease? And, how can CBD be taken for the most profound results? Plus, is CBD even safe to take daily in the first place? We’ll be helping you figure out what it is about this cannabinoid that makes it such a promising product for sufferers of sickle cell anemia. But first we need to get into the basics of the disease to understand why CBD might be such an effective treatment option.
What is Sickle Cell Anemia?
Sickle cell anemia is a genetic disease that’s lifelong. It affects the red blood cells in the body. In a healthy person, the red blood cells are round, flexible and smooth. Those who have sickle cell anemia, however, have red blood cells that are sticky, crescent-shaped and rigid. This means that they struggle to move throughout the body.
The problem is that red blood cells are responsible for carrying oxygen throughout the body. When a person has sickle cell anemia, the red blood cells don’t move adequately, meaning that oxygen is not getting carried throughout the body properly. This leads to a host of symptoms as the body requires a steady amount of oxygen to function properly.
How Many People Have Sickle Cell Anemia?
About 100,000 Americans suffer from sickle cell anemia. Around one out of every 365 African-American babies will be born with the disease. One out of every 16,300 Hispanic babies will be born with the disease.
What Causes Sickle Cell Anemia?
Sickle cell anemia is caused by a gene mutation. For a baby to be born with the condition, both parents must be carriers. This particular gene mutation causes the body to overproduce hemoglobin, the compound that makes blood red.
What Are the Symptoms of Sickle Cell Anemia?
Sickle cell anemia is a form of anemia which means that sufferers will share many symptoms with those who suffer from iron-deficiency anemia. Because the body is not getting the proper amount of oxygen, chronic fatigue is very common. Other symptoms include fever and widespread pain due to the nature of the red blood cells.
Other symptoms include:
· Painful swelling of the feet and hands
· A compromised immune system
· Issues with vision
· Stunted growth
If left untreated, sickle cell anemia can lead to potentially serious complications such as stroke, gallstones and damage to the organs.
How’s Sickle Cell Anemia Usually Treated?
Once a blood test has confirmed the presence of sickle cell anemia, the doctor will suggest a treatment based on the severity of the disease and its symptoms. Typically, sickle cell anemia is treated by managing the symptoms. Antibiotics and pain-relieving drugs are often prescribed so that the patient may deal with chronic infections and severe pain.
The only potential cure for sickle cell anemia is a bone marrow transplant, also known as a stem cell transplant. While it may be highly effective, it can only be performed on sufferers below the age of 16 as older patients are at a higher risk of complications from the procedure.
Can CBD Help with Sickle Cell Anemia?
While CBD is still a relatively new industry, there has been a lot of research on its potential therapeutic benefits. Now, new studies show that CBD may be able to tackle the condition effectively. It’s important to note that CBD is considered relatively safe to take daily and does not lead to a dependency. Therefore, many sufferers see this compound as a low-risk treatment option that provides real results.
Your Body’s Endocannabinoid System
The body’s endocannabinoid system is responsible for helping the body achieve homeostasis. It does this by making its own cannabinoids that are dispersed throughout the body so that they may bond to cannabinoid receptors. This process helps regulate bodily systems such as pain tolerance, function of the immune system and general mood.
If a person’s body doesn’t naturally produce enough cannabinoids, the endocannabinoid system cannot do its job properly, meaning that a person will be at a higher risk of experiencing a variety of symptoms. That’s why the natural health world is so excited about CBD. This compound essentially behaves as a supplement, providing the body’s endocannabinoid system with cannabinoids so that it can regulate the body’s many processes.
CBD has been widely tested for its effects on pain. It’s unique in that it has both anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties in its composition. Both of these properties tackle pain in different ways. And, thanks to the function of the endocannabinoid system, the body uses CBD to regulate pain tolerance so that a person can experience less pain overall.
CBD may also be able to help with the chronic fatigue that’s common among sickle cell anemia sufferers. It seems to have the ability to regulate cognitive function while balancing the hormones that are responsible for energy levels and mood.
Studies Regarding CBD’s Effects on Sickle Cell Anemia
There have been two studies that have demonstrated cannabis’ unique effects on sickle cell anemia.
In one study, it was found that many sickle cell anemia patients self-medicate with cannabis in order to benefit from its sedating effects as well as its positive effects on severe pain. The research found that 77 percent of sickle cell anemia patients found that CBD helped them deal with the psychological implications of suffering from a chronic disease.
The other study found that CBD was able to decrease instances and severity of pain in mice who had sickle cell anemia. This was due to the unique analgesic properties in the compound.
How Can One Take CBD to Manage Their Sickle Cell Anemia?
If you wish to try to treat your sickle cell anemia with CBD, it’s important that you choose a high-quality hemp product that’s uniquely potent. We suggest going with an oral tincture as this method of administration provides longer-lasting results. Look for a tincture that’s 1000mg or higher in terms of CBD concentration for the best results.
Because CBD often needs to accumulate in the body before producing real results, it’s important that you stick to a routine. We recommend taking your CBD once each day for a period of two weeks before reassessing your usage. From there, you can choose to increase your dosage level or the rate of frequency at which you take it.
Now, if you’re gonna take CBD for your sickle cell anemia, it is important that you inform your doctor. They will want to know what you’re taking and will want to make suggestions so that you can experience the best results possible.
Helping Patients Manage This Condition
CBD is a powerful compound that just may able to help patients manage their sickle cell anemia symptoms. If you’re interested in trying out this compound for yourself, speak with your doctor and do some research before settling on a particular product. By being a discerning customer, you just may be able to find the relief that you deserve.
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