THC or Tetrahydrocannabinol is in a class of substances called cannabinoids and is the main psychoactive substance in cannabis. THC has been found to have several therapeutic applications such as treatment of mild to moderate pain, appetite loss, insomnia, depression and nausea.
Recent pre-clinical trials conducted by the FDA have suggested that THC-rich inhaled cannabis significantly reduces the onset of neuropathy (nerve pain/degeneration of nerves) in patients who suffer from that condition. THC was also found to have potential benefits for the treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in studies recently conducted by International Association for Cannabinoid Medicine. The CB1 receptors in the brain that are stimulated by THC appear to play an important role in the ability to eliminate adverse memories, often at the core of PTSD.
CBD or Cannabidiol is another type of cannabinoid found in cannabis. Unlike THC, CBD is non-psychoactive and does not contribute to a feeling of “being high”. In fact, many patients report an alerting effect from CBD and thus care should be taken with consumption of high amounts of CBD near bedtime until you are familiar with your reaction.
CBD has also been found to have several therapeutic benefits. CBD has been found to provide relief from chronic pain due to muscle spasticity, muscle convulsions and inflammation. This type of pain is often experienced by patients who suffer from Multiple Sclerosis, Fibromyalgia and Epilepsy. In addition to pain relief CBD has been shown to assist with general feelings of anxiety as well as cannabis-induced anxiety.
Recent research at Temple University has suggested that in CBD may also be a strong preventative for the onset of chemotherapy-induced neuropathy, a side-effect of some of chemotherapy drugs.
From a general therapeutic perspective THC and CBD have important effects on one another when ingested together. When present along with THC, CBD prolongs the effects of THC-therapy by inhibiting the breakdown process of THC in our liver. If the THC breakdown is inhibited, its effects persist longer. When appreciable amounts of CBD (>4% CBD by weight for flowers) are ingested along with THC, the CBD may reduce the psychoactivity many patients would normally experience from the THC present. Exciting studies that are currently being conducted at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco are demonstrating that specific amounts of THC and CBD injected into breast and brain tumors can eliminate those tumors completely, in 30 days.