THC vs. CBD: Which One is a Better Treatment Option?
Many countries have been using cannabis medicinally for centuries, knowledge of its healing benefits are nothing new; however, its acceptance here in the United States is just starting to gain momentum. The therapeutic values of cannabis are only now beginning to be explored, slowed because it is heavily regulated by the federal government as a Schedule 1 Controlled Substance; nevertheless, the level of effectiveness that this plant offers when it comes to the treatment of life-threatening medical conditions can no longer be overlooked.
Recognized as one of the latest breakthroughs in healthcare, studies have found that cannabis can help treat several serious illnesses, with little to no side effects, and can even prevent the spread of cancer.
You may be wondering, how does it do that? What makes it medicinal?
The answer is cannabinoids.
Cannabis has proven to be a highly effective treatment for a variety of serious illnesses
Cannabinoids are chemical compounds naturally found in the cannabis plant. Once consumed, they bind to receptors in our endocannabinoid system to help regulate any problems and keep our bodies working properly. While the plant contains over one-hundred different cannabinoids, the two most common are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Many people have heard of THC, but it wasn’t until recently that CBD was brought into the spotlight, thanks to all of the medicinal benefits it brings to the table.
What's the Difference Between Them?
An interesting fact is that both THC and CBD have the exact same molecular formula: 21 carbon atoms, 30 hydrogen atoms, and 2 oxygen atoms. It’s how the atoms are arranged that influences how each one affects the mind and body. And while they actually help treat several of the same symptoms, the biggest differing factor between them is that THC is psychoactive, while CBD is not, and works more discreetly.
Typically, cannabis strains are either THC-dominant or CBD-dominant. If you want to use cannabis as a treatment option, it's good to know what each one is used for, how they interact with each other, and then decide how to proceed.
Let’s begin with THC.
THC is the psychoactive compound that works to relieve a multitude of symptoms experienced from a variety of medical conditions. Patients find relief from THC for:
- Post traumatic stress disorder
- Loss of appetite
- Muscular spasticity
- Psychiatric disorders
- Dependency and withdrawal
High THC cannabis strains include:
CBD is the non-psychoactive component that also helps to relieve symptoms. Largely known as an anti-inflammatory, CBD can be derived from the cannabis plant as well as the hemp plant.
Patients find relief from CBD for:
- Preventing the spread of cancer
- Promoting bone growth
- Slowing bacterial growth
- Treating psoriasis
- Helping to regulate blood sugar levels
High CBD cannabis strains include:
- Patients do not need to take high doses of THC or CBD to achieve effective results
- Patients do not need to experience psychoactive properties to benefit from cannabis
- High amounts of CBD are safe, tolerable, and often required to experience medicinal benefits
So, THC or CBD?
As you can probably tell, the best option really depends on what you’re trying to treat. It’s good to know that CBD can sometimes inhibit the full effects of THC and other medications, like high blood pressure prescriptions, so while it may seem like taking both simultaneously would be the way to go, it would heavily be determined by how your body reacts to each, what medications you are taking, and what your desired outcome is.
Because the effects of THC can be lowered from the presence of CBD, incorporating both components into your treatment plan can allow greater amounts of THC to be taken, which is beneficial if you need high doses of it or if you are sensitive to psychoactive properties.
In addition to the above, medical patients use both THC and CBD for:
- Pain relief
As THC and CBD become more popular, methods of treatment are expanding. Options presently include edibles, flowers, oils, tinctures, topicals, and more.
A Better Question: What’s Your Ratio?
Similar to prescription medications, the components of cannabis affect each person differently. What works for one person may not work for the next. When it comes to finding which one is right for you, it’s more about finding what ratio of THC to CBD is right for you. Some people react better to 100% THC or 100% CBD, while others may react better to more of a 1:1 or maybe a 2:1 ratio. Age, sensitivity, and medicinal need will play a leading role in what the best percentages will be.
In addition to determining the correct ratio of THC to CBD, finding the correct dosage is also important. For example, if you decide that a 100% THC strain is what helps, you will need to then find the right dose. It is usually wise to start off with a small, introductory amount, and then gradually increase it. You'll want to allow your body to develop somewhat of a tolerance before you can begin taking a large enough dose for effective results. If you start with too big a dose, you may have a negative experience, like increased heart rate or anxiety, and it could discourage you from continuing treatment.
When you’re deciding which route to go, THC or CBD, remember, you may need a combination of both. It may take a little time before you can find the correct ratio and then begin treatment for a specific illness, but the advantages it offers can be substantial. Do your research, seek advice from reputable sources, observe how each one works for you by finding the proper strain
and dosage, and finally, commit to treatment long enough to experience the full benefits.
Change Is Here
As the need for both THC and CBD continues to rise, it serves as major inspiration for the strains we choose to create here at 808 Genetics
. Strains that contain higher amounts of THC and CBD are being developed, as well as strains that have varying ratios of both. We aim to help improve the effectiveness and efficiency of medicinal cannabis for patients.
For those that believe in and have experienced its healing capabilities, cannabis is causing a major change in the way we look at healthcare, producing a ripple effect, and causing a major change in the way we look at other things in life. And its overdue recognition is advancing on a massive scale.
It’s an exciting time in the healthcare community and an exciting time in the cannabis community; all thanks to one amazing plant.
If you would like more information about THC or CBD, please contact us