Monday, June 24, 2019

My CBD EXperiment

I've written numerous blogs about our CBD experience treating Michael's seizures. We had grand success for a while and then experienced an epic fail. I don't blame CBD. Perhaps we experienced the "honeymoon period" that often occurs with pharmaceuticals as well. Who knows? (as with most things epilepsy). At any rate, since we have experienced an extended period of time with weeks, even months, between prolonged tonic seizures there will be no cannabis for Michael at this time though we certainly do not rule out using it at some future date.

As for me---well that's a different story. About 8 months ago the occasional arthritic ache and pain turned into a nearly daily occurrence and I was taking Ibuprophen 2, 3, sometimes 4 times a day. I  didn't want to continue that pattern. So---I thought, why not try CBD? I think of this as my personal cannabis experiment. And I want to share what I have learned so far.

After searching the internet, reading reviews and generally just trying to determine which suppliers seemed legitimate and trustworthy, I chose my first brand. Each month or so, I switched based on the level of effectiveness and to be perfectly honest, my curiosity. Also, once I had access to the marijuana dispensaries locally, I could peruse their shelves and question staff about the numerous products that were stocked. Please keep in mind this is my personal experience. I am not recommending any one brand nor am I suggesting that because a product didn't deliver for me, it's not a good, even excellent, product. I used tinctures. Doses varied and I generally divided the total daily dose into 2-3 administrations.  My measure of success was a dose that controlled any aches or pains and enabled me to avoid using Ibuprophen.

The first three products were purchased on-line. They were priced from $110-$130 per 30 ml. bottle. They were CBD oil tinctures with extremely low levels of THC. They all touted that their hemp was grown in the U.S. First: Elixinol- I required 30 mg/day. The tincture was citrus flavored and delivered via pumps under the tongue. The flavor was tolerable but not great. The second product was MedTerra. It was clear, tasteless and administered via dropper. I needed 33-50 mg/day. Third was Premium Jane (love the name). It was citrus flavored---delicious, administered via a marked dropper, and I needed 50 plus mg/day.  Each product lasted approximately a month.

The next product I tried was recommended by Katie's dog groomer. Yep. Anyhow...she swore it helped eliminate her brother's significant shoulder pain. It's quite pricey@ $325 per 30 ml. bottle. BUT it's unique extraction process (their sell) means that one needs only 2 drops to get 25mg of CBD. It's called Whole Flower Fluid. When I recognized I needed at least 4 drops 2-3 times per day to achieve effectiveness, I knew this was not the one for me. I was off to my local dispensary in search of a new product.

I consulted with the "bud specialist" at the dispensary and settled on a 30:1 tincture by Papa & Barkley. The specialist talked about the synergistic effect of adding more THC. That made sense to me as it's mentioned in so much literature about cannabis. This product definitely tastes of the plant. It comes with a marked dropper which is very helpful. I found it effective when taking about 60 mg of CBD/day. Because it does contain more THC than the previous products it is less costly @ $90 per bottle. I used this for at least 3 months, figuring I had found a formula I could stick with. However...

When I visited the local dispensary last Saturday, next to Papa & Barkley on the shelf was a brightly colored box (rainbow) which caught my eye. The product, high CBD full-spectrum tincture by Chemistry, also caught my attention because the strain of the plant, AC/DC, was on the label AND unlike every other product the mg/ml was broken down: 7.6 mg CBD, 4.3mg CBDa, .62mg THC, .52mg CBC, .12mg THCa. No math required.  The price was definitely right: $60/30ml. How could I not try? So far, so good @ 1 ml/day. It's administered via marked dropper and tastes plant-like as well, though not as pronounced as Papa & Barkley. I'm anxious to see what happens with this one in the next month. Even if I have to increase the dose somewhat, it seems to be the most cost-effective to achieve the desired results. I'll let you know.

It appears that CBD products with more THC and other cannabinoids work better for me. I have noticed that I am somewhat calmer (it's all relative right ?), sleep better and have much more focus (sometimes laser-like) on most of the oils and in particular, the last two. I haven't used Ibuprophen since I started my experiment. I feel good. Really, really good. Straight from the box of my current tincture: " smooth out life's edges and bring a touch of equanimity to the day."

I'm smoothin' out the edges. What about you?