The chronic condition of asthma is marked by inflammation and narrowing of the airways that transmit air to the lungs. We have seen so many people with inhalers trying to cope with breathing difficulties due to asthma. People often discover asthma when they wheeze or cough persistently and experience shortness of breath which refuses to go away. However, CBD is raising new hope in treating those who are unable to manage their asthma with drugs or want to refrain from it due to its likely side effects. The promising therapeutic effects of CBD for asthma has made it a safer therapy compared to pharmaceutical medication.
What Asthma Is All About
Asthma tends to be a permanent ailment that strikes at the respiratory system and its sufferers generally face attacks when the airways near the throat resist airflow inside and outside of the lungs. This respiratory disease develops with the hypersensitivity of the lungs towards any substance that is inhaled known as an allergen. Such allergens can be cold air, pollen, smells, dust or fumes and even weather change which can trigger asthma.
Asthma results in more sensitive bronchi that respond more readily to subtle changes in the air which leads to narrowing of the airways. As the pathway between the air that is inhaled and the oxygen supplied to the body is constricted, people suffering from asthma can feel shortness of breath no matter how hard they try to breathe.
Symptoms Associated With Asthma
Asthma attacks are generally preceded by a slow decline in breathing capacity. During the spring or fall, asthma symptoms are seen to worsen in patients affected by pollen or mold allergies. Some of the symptoms of asthma include:
- Chest tightness
- Shortness of breath
- Problems in sleeping due to shortness of breath, wheezing or coughing
- A whistling sound while exhaling which is a common sign in children
There can be an aggravation of symptoms due to flu or cold. If you observe frequent symptoms, more breathing difficulty as measured by the peak flow meter, or an increase in the usage of your fast-acting inhaler it indicates that your asthma is worsening.
Causes Behind Asthma
The real reason for people having asthma is not fully known. Generally, family history and environmental factors play a common role for most people, though not for all. In sensitive individuals, inhaling allergy-causing substances can trigger asthma symptoms. Such allergens can be pet dander, respiratory infections, cold air, molds or pollens, dust mites, food sulfites, stress, tobacco smoke or various air pollutants can cause such triggers.
Often inhaled corticosteroids are taken to regulate swelling of the lungs besides drugs that block chemicals which result in inflammation and airway constriction in asthma are also administered. Natural therapy for asthma with no side effects and relatively safer is CBD (cannabidiol) which is a phytocannabinoid derived from the hemp plant and can be ingested as edibles or as tinctures in the form of CBD oil. CBD can bolster treatment options in asthma due to the link between the endocannabinoid system (ECS) and cannabinoids.
Ways CBD Can Assist In Asthma
Limited research has shown CBD showing promising in treating asthma. One recent research study has revealed that CBD stimulates certain ECS receptors with cannabinoids, which helps in opening airways. It had been found in the concluded research at the University of Florence that the stimulation of CB1 receptors on the endings of the bronchial nerves leads to bronchodilatory effects by acting on the airway smooth muscle and can be effective in asthma and airway hyperactivity.
Another 2015 study conducted by universities in Brazil hinted at CBD as a likely therapy for treating asthma. CBD on account of its anti-inflammatory nature can decrease inflammation in the bronchial tubes and also curb mucus production. When an allergen or different substance enters the lungs of a patient suffering from asthma, the immune system identifies it as foreign and triggers an inflammatory reaction.
CBD is an anti-inflammatory agent and lowers the cytokine production by stimulating a particular type of anti-inflammatory protein known as caspase. As caspase gets activated when CBD attaches to the CB2 receptors of the hyperactive immune cells it transmits a signal that initiates cell death. With the death of the immune cells through caspase activation, the process of inflammation is regulated and cytokine production gets reduced.
CBD Acts As A Bronchodilator And An Analgesic
The stimulation of cannabinoid receptors on the nerve endings of the bronchi worked like a bronchodilator and opened the airways thereby permitting unrestricted breathing. Moreover, CBD also curbs the breakdown of endocannabinoids like anandamide which helps to reduce pain resulting from inflammation. Since CBD aids in activating these receptors, it has the capacity to act as a bronchodilator and a powerful analgesic.
CBD Curbs Mucus Production
Mucus aggravates the symptoms of asthma and leads to airway obstruction. The cytokine protein IL-13 is broadly regarded as the cause behind such mucus production. Fortunately, CBD can particularly decrease levels of IL-13 within the lungs. This effect aids patients to comfortably expel mucus from their system through coughing and curb its excess production.
Conclusion On CBD For Sufferers Of Asthma
Studies have revealed the potential of CBD to safeguard the lungs from asthmatic symptoms. Cannabinoid receptors have helped in mitigating asthma and its activation by phytocannabinoids like CBD has the ability to activate these receptors and assist in regulating asthmatic flare-ups and restrict its symptoms for the patients to lead a normal life.