Medical Research News

Medical Cannabis a Possible Treatment for Autism?

Written by Cara Wietstock

Despite a lack of clinical studies, medical cannabis has been shown to have an effect on the symptoms of autism.

For years activists have been attempting to gain more awareness for cannabis as a possible treatment for autism. Just one quick search on the internet will reveal heartfelt stories about children, teens, and adults that have successfully treated their autism using whole plant cannabis treatment. So why is there still an air of mystery when it comes to the links between endocannabinoid deficiency and autism? Here is what we know so far.

What Do We Know About Autism?

Scientists have been able to identify that it is a combination of environmental factors and genetic mutations that cause autism. Other risk factors include the ages of parents at the time of conception, maternal illness during pregnancy, and difficulties during pregnancy or birth. For example, if the umbilical cord is wrapped around the babies neck, causing oxygen deprivation. Autism is a collection of disorders that impact brain development. This can come in the form of communication difficulties, problems with social interactions, and repetitive behaviors that can verge on injurious. It was only recently that the cause of autism was discovered. Autism is now traced to early brain development.

Cannabis and Autism

Science, as we know, is driven by data. It is this lack of clinical studies that deters physicians from prescribing cannabis for autism. Cannabis and autism differs in this regard from cannabis and epilepsy. One of the most instrumental pieces of prescribing a treatment is knowing the proper dose. As of right now, dosing cannabis for autism hasn’t been deduced to a science. This is why clinical trials are so necessary. Once physicians know how to dose out whole plant medical cannabis treatment perhaps it will become more accessible. Until then, we must continue to lobby for clinical trials. There are some non-profits operating in the US that are doing just that. Check out MAMMA to learn more and find out how to get involved.





About the author

Cara Wietstock

Cara began working in the retail cannabis industry of San Francisco, CA in 2011 and continued in that sector for years. In 2015 she dedicated herself to writing full-time. Her passion for the written word and deep respect for the healing properties of the plant have brought her to Terpenes and Testing magazine. She now helps keep us on the cutting edge of scientific cannabis discovery as the Editor-in-Chief of the print publication.

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