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The Ways in Which CBD Affects Glaucoma

Glaucoma is the second leading cause of loss of vision in the world. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention[1], an estimated three million Americans suffer from glaucoma, with almost 50% being unaware that they have it.

Glaucoma can affect almost anyone, although certain people are at higher risk of contracting it. This includes people over the age of 60, people with diabetes, and people with a prior family history of glaucoma.

It is also more prevalent among African Americans[2], as they are six to eight times more likely to get it.



What is Glaucoma?


Glaucoma is a progressive condition that increases the pressure that the fluids in the eye exert. Failure to treat it in time can lead to permanent damage, loss of vision, and blindness. There are several types of glaucoma[1] depending on the area of the eye where the fluid pressure is building and the extent of the pressure. Symptoms of glaucoma range from blurred vision and headaches to nausea, sudden loss of sight, and severe eye pain.



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Managing Glaucoma with CBD oil

CBD oil has recently gained a lot of popularity due to its therapeutic benefits for various health conditions. Cannabis is often used to reduce eye pressure to prevent glaucoma from getting worse. A study conducted in the 70s[1] found that the THC in CBD is a key contributor in reducing intraocular pressure, which is why it is widely prescribed to glaucoma patients.

CBD oil is a non-intoxicating cannabinoid that is extracted from the hemp plant. Research shows that the low doses of THC in CBD oil are highly effective[2] in lowering the pressure that fluids exert in the eye. Secondary outcomes of the application of CBD included enhanced vital signs, visual acuity, and psychotropic effects such as improved mood and cognitive functioning.

Further follow-up studies and reviews have also implicated the effects of the endocannabinoid system and endocannabinoids in sustaining ocular health[3]. It is also speculated that phytocannabinoids might possibly help improve the functioning of the ECS to contribute positively with respect to the conditions like glaucoma.


Final Thoughts

While there is no cure for glaucoma, CBD can allegedly lower the intraocular pressure and protect the retinal cells when administered correctly.

The anti-inflammatory properties of CBD[1] can also be used to relieve other inflammatory eye conditions without the litany of side effects that occur as a result of common glaucoma medications.



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