does cbd oil reduce cravings for heroine

CBD oil may cut cravings, anxiety in heroin users: study

CBD oil may help control cravings and anxiety among heroin users, according to a small U.S. study.

New York-based researchers tested the non-intoxicating phytocannabinoid, which is extracted from cannabis plants, on dozens of longtime heroin users who had abstained from the narcotic for periods of less than a month to three months. The study showed that CBD oil could reduce craving and anxiety, which researchers said are two critical features of relapse in people addicted to heroin.

"Despite the staggering consequences of the opioid epidemic, limited nonopioid medication options have been developed to treat this medical and public health crisis,” researchers wrote in the study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry. “CBD’s potential to reduce cue-induced craving and anxiety provides a strong basis for further investigation of this phytocannabinoid as a treatment option for opioid use disorder.”

Researchers assigned participants to receive varying doses of a CBD solution or a placebo solution and exposed them to various cues, including videos of nature scenes and videos of drug use. Cravings and anxiety were most reduced in participants who had been given CBD one to two hours earlier.

“CBD’s potential to reduce cue-induced craving and anxiety provides a strong basis for further investigation of this phytocannabinoid as a treatment option for opioid use disorder,” researchers wrote.

CBD may reduce cravings, anxiety in heroin addicts, study says

Could this be another use for CBD? Researchers say it may be effective in treating those addicted to heroin.

Scientists with the Addiction Institute of Mount Sinai gave CBD to people addicted to heroin, and they found that it reduced their cravings as well as their levels of anxiety.

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The available medications for addiction, like methadone, act in a similar way. But they’re not widely used because they’re still opioids and are heavily regulated.

Nearly 400,000 Americans have died from opioid related causes since 2000.

CBD may help curb cravings of opioid addiction, study says

Researchers found an oral CBD solution reduced drug cue-related behaviors and cravings among a small group of heroin abusers.

Cannabidiol, or CBD, has been receiving a lot of attention lately as a potential treatment for everything from epilepsy to anxiety. Now, researchers report it might also help curb the cravings that come with opioid addiction.

Like marijuana, CBD comes from the cannabis plant. Unlike pot, it does not produce a high.

The study included 42 men and women with a history of heroin abuse who were not current users. Heroin is an illegal opioid. Other opioids include powerful prescription painkillers such as oxycodone, or OxyContin.

For the study, participants received either an oral CBD solution or an inactive placebo and then were shown videos that contained neutral and drug-related cues. Neutral cues included relaxing scenarios such as scenes of nature, while drug-related cues included scenes of IV drug use and heroin-related items such as syringes, rubber ties and packets of powder.

The researchers found that, compared to a placebo, CBD reduced drug cue-induced craving and anxiety in the participants.

“Our findings indicate that CBD holds significant promise for treating individuals with heroin use disorder,” said first author Yasmin Hurd. She is director of the Addiction Institute at Mount Sinai in New York City.

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“A successful non-opioid medication would add significantly to the existing addiction medication toolbox to help reduce the growing death toll, enormous health care costs, and treatment limitations imposed by stringent government regulations amid this persistent opioid epidemic,” she said in a Mount Sinai news release.

The United States is struggling with an opioid epidemic that’s claimed more than 300,000 lives since it began. Two current opioid addiction treatments are methadone and buprenorphine, which work on the same opioid receptors as heroin and other opioids.

But because these treatments carry a stigma, have their own addiction risk and are tightly regulated, millions of Americans with opioid addiction won’t use them, the study authors explained.

That’s why there’s an urgent need to find other treatments, the researchers noted.

The report was published May 21 in the American Journal of Psychiatry.

Hurd’s team is now working on two follow-up studies: one to examine how CBD affects the brain; and another to pursue development of CBD-based treatments for opioid addiction.