Despite its centrality in human cultures across the globe, the European taxonomists who bequeathed Cannabis sativa its name didn’t quite get it right. When Carolus Linneaus came to naming the marijuana plant’s genus, he thought there was only one species, instead of the three we now know exist. Hence the confusion surrounding the fact that there are three distinct species of the genus Cannabis sativa, one of which is the sativa species.
Some manufacturers ship CBD products nationally, an illegal action which the FDA has not enforced in 2018, with CBD remaining the subject of an FDA investigational new drug evaluation, and is not considered legal as a dietary supplement or food ingredient as of December 2018. Federal illegality has made it difficult historically to conduct research on CBD. CBD is openly sold in head shops and health food stores in some states where such sales have not been explicitly legalized.
Consumers report using CBD for a huge variety of health and wellness reasons, but a lot more research is needed to determine which symptoms and ailments it works best for. Currently, there are more than 40 clinical trials enrolling patients to examine the effectiveness of CBD for a variety of diseases, including substance use disorder, chronic pain, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, schizophrenia, and many others. Most importantly, CBD is incredibly safe, and not addictive. Even young children can tolerate daily doses of up to twenty milligrams (20 mg) per kilogram (1 kg) of body weight (for a 175 pound adult, that’s more than 1,500 mg). The most common side effect of high-dose CBD is sleepiness.
Cannabis lowers the pressure in the eye that causes optic nerve damage leading to glaucoma. Research has shown conclusively that marijuana users experience lower internal eye pressure while the body metabolizes THC. However, the psychoactive side effects of using THC to treat glaucoma make cannabis a nonviable medication for most people with the disease.
To be clear, there is no one specific test, scan, or anything else of the sort that you can do to determine whether or not you need CBD oil for pain. Also, since cannabis is not yet recognized by the FDA, you unfortunately can’t really go to your doctor either and have them recommend it; until marijuana is FDA-approved, it cannot be prescribed by physicians.