Sharing CBD with Your Aging Parents
CBD has quickly become one of the hottest wellness trends in the United States, with upwards of 33% of Americans using CBD products regularly. While the majority of users are between ages 18-34, CBD for seniors poses tons of potential benefits — however, those 65 and older are the least likely to try it. So how can we have meaningful conversations with our loved ones about CBD for elderly?
Years of disinformation spread by the government, media and corporations polluted the public’s opinion on hemp and cannabis, so we must be prepared to educate about the plant itself, its medicinal compounds, why it’s beneficial and how to properly administer it. Anticipate lots of questions, print out research, and discuss why it could be a great addition to your friend or family member’s wellness routines. Afterall, 64% of people who currently use CBD are using it for pain relief and inflammation, and 36% of which are using CBD in addition to prescription medications. Since pain, inflammation and side effects from prescription medications are all common in the aging community, CBD for elderly can be a truly great addition to your parent’s medicine cabinet.
If you’re struggling with how to approach your parents about using CBD, here is a straightforward guide to help introduce the world of CBD for seniors to your loved ones:
1. Educate Your Aging Parents on the Basics
First and foremost, educating yourself is key to having a valuable conversation with your parents about CBD. Stick to the basics. Be sure to mention that the majority of CBD comes from the hemp plant, and that CBD is merely a natural plant compound, isolated or extracted from the plant itself. Information is readily available online, just like this study from the National Library of Medicine. It’s important for seniors to understand that CBD does not pose health risks and that it is non-psychoactive, so they don’t worry about driving a car or performing daily tasks while taking CBD. It may even be wise to bring along a few products!
2. Discuss the Benefits
CBD for seniors offers tons of benefits that many people are using to alleviate symptoms associated with common elderly maladies. Whether your parent is suffering from chronic pain due to arthritis, lack of appetite or insomnia, or cardiovascular disease, CBD is an easy, naturopathic supplement with little to no side effects.
In a study on arthritis and joint pain, research revealed that participants saw an 83% improvement in pain and a 66% improvement in joint function. Due to CBD’s ability to calm the nervous system and reduce anxiety, preliminary studies show significant improvements in sleep function, as well as being shown to aid in vasorelaxation, or the reduction of vascular tension, which could help deter migraines or other tension-related pains in the head and neck. Additionally, research shows CBD has positive impacts on illnesses such as diabetes, stress and nervous system related ailments.
3. Talk About Products and Dosing
Now that you’ve discussed the science of CBD for elderly and its many benefits, it’s time to introduce the various products available today. This laundry list of products includes transdermal patches, topicals, oils, tinctures, edibles, CBD vapes, dried flower and more — but which product is right for your parents?
The best way to introduce a new product to your parents might be to gauge their curiosity as well as their needs. If they seem very open to trying CBD for something like anxiety, walk them through the various products and let them choose for themselves. However, if they’re suffering from joint pain and they’re more hesitant, start with a topical. Pain relieving lotions are nothing new, so trying a topical with CBD as the main ingredient is less intimidating than, say, smoking a vape pen or using a tincture.
It’s also important that seniors understand titration. Since there is no true standard dose of CBD, the most effective way to determine dosage is to titrate. Bring a small journal to give to your family member and tell them to simply write down the date, the product they’re using, the dose they are taking, and whether or not they felt any benefits. They can start with a low dose and slowly increase weekly (or biweekly, etc.) until they’ve discovered what works best for them.
4. Consider Any Contraindications or Negative Drug Interactions
A contraindication is any symptom or medical condition that is a reason for someone to not receive a particular treatment because of potential harm. Allergies to cannabinoids or sesame are the most apparent contraindications, but medical professionals also suggest caution if an individual suffers from certain mental illnesses.
When it comes to negative drug interactions, it’s wise to go over your parent’s list of prescriptions and cross-check a list from a reputable source. Here’s a list from Pennsylvania State University that may come in handy. If your parents are taking any medications, they should talk to their doctor or pharmacist to be completely safe. It’s best to seek advice from a certified medical professional.
CBD for Seniors
Sharing CBD products (like CBD oil for seniors or CBD immune booster) with your aging parents is a potential way to help your parents ease their suffering from a variety of common ailments. If you approach the conversation from a place of love and respect, armed with accurate information, introducing CBD to seniors doesn’t have to be so daunting.
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