Is CBD Safe for Kids?
CBD has gained huge popularity amongst parents in recent years due to several purported health benefits that it may have for kids. But there is still a lot of misinformation about CBD, leading many people to view it with both distrust and distaste. As a result, many parents are constantly wondering is CBD safe for kids, and they’ve yet to find a reliable answer.
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol (CBD) derives from the cannabis plant family. Like other phytocannabinoids, CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, potentially resulting in therapeutic effects in various parts of the body.
There are three main types of CBD oil:
Full-spectrum CBD oil
These products utilize the whole plant. They contain cannabinoids like CBD, CBG, CBN, and THC, as well as terpenes.
Broad-spectrum CBD oil
Broad-spectrum CBD products are almost identical to full-spectrum products, but there are no traces of THC.
This remedy is 99% pure CBD. It also typically includes carrier oil.
Now, a lot of the wariness toward CBD stems from a lack of information about it. People unfamiliar with CBD typically question its safety.
Is CBD safe?
According to the World Health Organization, which compiled a report about CBD, CBD is safe to use. The organization acknowledged that adverse effects might occur but stated that those side effects are likely due to an interaction between CBD and a person’s existing medication. The WHO also found that the use of pure CBD products does not result in dependence or addiction.
While CBD is generally safe, many parents who want to give it to their children for specific health conditions may be hesitant to move forward. Children and adults do not process substances in the same way, so questions about CBD’s safety profile for children can arise.
Is CBD safe for kids?
Researchers still need to examine CBD more in-depth, especially its effects on children. However, some research has shown that CBD is safe for kids in daily doses of 20mg per kilo of body weight. But side effects may occur if children take higher doses.
An epilepsy study of 65 children under 16-years-old showed that CBD did not have long-term effect or serious side effects. However, there were some side effects to note. Adverse effects included increased seizures, drowsiness, changes to weight, stomach upset, and more.
Another study of 137 children found that CBD helped with seizures in 50% of the children. The side effects were similar to those in the former study. But it’s important to note that the children in these studies were given CBD in much higher doses than is typically recommended for children.
For many parents, the potential benefits of CBD may outweigh the possible side effects. But because of the grey areas around CBD, they might wonder whether it is against the law to give it to their child.
Is it legal for parents to give their children CBD?
Products high in THC are totally illegal to give to children. However, it’s important to remember that CBD products are non-intoxicating. As such, full-spectrum CBD remedies, which have trace amounts of THC, are okay to give to children.
Broad-spectrum CBD products and CBD isolates are also excellent choices. But it’s always a good idea to consult a doctor before giving a child any new holistic treatment or supplement, including CBD.
Why do parents want to give their children CBD?
Parents may be wondering why it’s worth giving their child CBD, but the remedy has several possible health benefits. In fact, the same reasons adults take CBD are the same reasons parents may want to give it to their children.
Research indicates that CBD might be an effective treatment for anxiety, but more research is required to determine whether the same is true in children.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Epidiolex, which contains CBD. The remedy is for people over two years of age with Lennox-Gastaut and Dravet syndromes. Overall, CBD may be particularly great for children who do not respond to traditional treatments.
CBD can be beneficial for the skin, both internally and externally. CBD oil taken internally may help with some of the common triggers of skin conditions, while topical CBD products have the potential to help skin conditions at a surface level. CBD may be great for eczema, rashes, psoriasis, dry skin, and bug bites.
Many children struggle to fall asleep at the end of the day due to overstimulation. CBD can be helpful because it may calm the hyperactivity in the brain. It’s also not a sedative, so there is no sluggishness the next day.
There have been many studies about the potential efficacy of CBD as a means of improving symptoms of autism. One study of 188 children (age five to 18) on the autistic spectrum showed improvements in most participants’ symptoms after one month of using CBD. And the improvements continued over a six-month period.
However, it’s important to note that there were minor side effects, such as sleepiness and a loss of appetite. Additionally, the children continued to take their other prescribed medications. So while CBD holds promise as a complementary treatment, it is not a cure-all remedy.
Best CBD products for children
If the potential benefits of CBD for children have convinced parents to try it, the next step is choosing an appropriate CBD product for children. The best CBD products for children are oils, edibles, and topicals.
The perk of CBD oil is that it’s the simplest to come by, and it’s easy to disguise its flavor by mixing it with a child’s favorite drink. These remedies also provide quick relief, so they’re great if parents need fast-acting solutions.
Edibles are great because they taste like a treat. Kids love chocolate, so a CBD-infused chocolate bar will be easy to give to kids. And if parents want to get creative, they can always buy activated hemp to create their own CBD edible. The main concern is keeping these products out of reach so that children can’t take any unsupervised doses of CBD.
Topicals are the best option for skin conditions. They’re just like lotions, so kids won’t put up a fuss when parents use them. But be sure to test out the product on a small patch of skin first. Doing so will ensure the child does not react to the CBD topical.
Worst CBD products for children
Adults and children differ in size and in their ability to process different substances. Therefore, CBD products that might be completely appropriate for an adult to use may not be safe (or even legal) to give to kids. For example, here are a handful of remedies parents shouldn’t give children.
These products should not be given to children, as they contain alcohol.
While easy for adults to swallow, these remedies might get stuck in a child’s much smaller airway.
These products should never be given to children under any circumstances.
These remedies are not recommended for children. While non-intoxicating, they are very potent, and even adults can misjudge the dose. Products with a lower concentration of CBD are a safer option.
Taking time to purchase the right CBD products will go a long way in protecting a child’s health. As long as parents buy safe product types for their children, the CBD experience should be just fine.
What parents should keep in mind
Parents should consider a few factors before giving their child CBD. Below are four steps that will ensure a child’s CBD experience is a good one.
The dosage is important. While it is generally accepted that it’s all but impossible to take too much CBD, the dose does matter. High-quality products will outline how much CBD is in a serving, which will make it easier for parents to figure out a child’s CBD dosage. But it is always safest to consult a physician first.
- Product quality
It’s vital to buy a high-quality product. Anything from a gas station should be avoided, as should products that seem oddly cheap compared to other CBD products.
- The Certificate of Analysis
A good CBD company will have its certificate of analysis (COA) easily available to consumers, so parents should check the tests that have been done on a brand’s products. If a product does not have one, it’s best to look elsewhere.
- Additional medications
The last thing to consider is whether the CBD will interact negatively with any medications a child is currently taking. It’s a good idea to chat with a specialist and the child’s doctor to weigh the risks. How do most doctors feel about CBD oil for children?
A few years ago, most doctors would have likely shut down any CBD conversation because there was still so much unknown about it. However, while doctors are unlikely to suggest its use, they probably won’t be against children using it, either.
If parents are confused or concerned about broaching the topic of CBD for kids with their doctor, they can use two simple strategies.
Monitor the results
Ask doctors to monitor the child over a period of time to see if the CBD is interacting negatively with the child’s other medications.
Look for a test program
Find a doctor who’s in a program that is testing CBD. These doctors will be more likely to suggest CBD for a child, especially if traditional treatment methods are failing.
With these steps, parents should have more success and confidence speaks with doctors. And the conversations should lead to both parties agreeing to analyze the CBD performance instead of trusting it on a whim.
Do research before giving a child CBD
While several types of CBD products are considered safe for children, it’s critical to thoroughly research whether it’s something that could benefit a child and if it’s something a child really needs. It’s also important to consult a doctor before giving a child CBD, as it may interact with existing medications.