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Considering CBD for Your Parents or Loved Senior? Here's What You Need to Know

by Kelsy Chauvin

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Friday April 16, 2021

While the popularity of CBD continues to surge across America, its potential benefits for seniors are becoming more evident.

Cannabinol, a natural, hemp-derived compound, is gaining momentum by consumers seeking non-pharmaceutical options for pain relief, better sleep, improved mobility, and more. Forbes recently cited a study stating the CBD market could reach a whopping $20 billion by 2024.

With Mother's Day and Father's Day around the corner, CBD can be that unexpected gift to elevate the celebration and help loved ones feel their best. Here are a few reasons why CBD might be right for golden agers, along with tips for new consumers.

Pain Relief
It's no secret that aging brings on new and different aches and pains. Inflammation is a common cause of pain, and studies show that CBD may be an effective way to fight it.

Brands like South Carolina-based Harmony CBD are making oils, lotions, and concentrates that make it easy for seniors to try out CBD in different ways. And because Harmony is among the few CBD brands making USDA-certified organic CBD, it's a reliable resource for getting started.

Better Rest, Less Stress
A growing field of research supports CBD's sleep and anti-anxiety benefits. One clinical study showed that patients' sleep improved with CBD, while their anxiety lessened.

Another recent study showed that consumers seek out CBD to successfully alleviate insomnia and stress. The same study showed that respondents commonly took CBD tinctures sublingually (applying drops under the tongue), and as capsules — both forms are available from Harmony CBD.

Well-Tolerated Wellness
Many consumers turn to CBD as an alternative to pharmaceuticals and often find the cannabis compound to be easier on the body than some pharmaceuticals. One reason is that CBD helps to balance the body's all-important endocannabinoid system, acting as a natural modulator with "therapeutic significance," according to one medical journal.

In a study of adults age 50 and over, "cannabinoid-based medicines" such as CBD are generally safe and acceptable treatments. When reading labels, consumers should be aware that "full-spectrum" CBD contains a trace amount (.3% or less) of THC, the psychoactive component of cannabis, while "broad-spectrum" is THC-free.

Reliable CBD
With the rush to market and sell CBD products, some brands stand out for reliability more than others. Loyal customers return to Harmony CBD thanks to the company's commitment to quality, transparency, agricultural practices, and extraction of CBD using heat, time and pressure — instead of harmful toxins.

As a result, seniors can try Harmony products knowing that they're free of artificial ingredients and made from U.S.-grown hemp that adheres the FDA's Current Good Manufacturing Practice (CGMP) regulations.

Educating Mom and Dad
Information about CBD's potential benefits and possible side effects is vital to ensuring our loved seniors' well-being. As a warning, know that not all CBD brands are equal. So impulse buying a CBD product at a gas station may not yield the same result as buying one from a reliable company that's transparent about its hemp sources and processes.

One important sign that you've found a trustworthy CBD brand is by reviewing its third-party laboratory reports for each product, which is usually listed on a product page as the "Certificate of Analysis," or COA. (Harmony also publishes its verified lab tests on its batch report page.)

Just as important is speaking to your family doctor about CBD and how it could interact with other medications and treatments.

How and When to Take CBD
Dosage is an essential factor for any new treatment. For CBD rookies, it's wise to start small and remember that different hemp products might have different potency or effects, even if the milligrams are the same. One rule of thumb is to limit first oral doses to around 5mg concentrations and go from there. Another tip is to think of CBD like you do vitamin C; that is, take small amounts two or more times per day since the body can only absorb so much at a time.

For seniors who are new to CBD, a broad spectrum product could be preferred since it's THC-free. (Again, consult your doctor for specific guidance.) Seniors should factor in their weight, body chemistry, other medicines being taken and the conditions being addressed. For example, a CBD balm might soothe a joint ache faster than a tincture.

CBD's Future
Preliminary research is still unfolding, but theories already exist around CBD's benefits for conditions including bone health, glaucoma, combating addiction, heart health and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Multiple Sclerosis. Discoveries and research are constantly emerging. For those interested in CBD and its benefits, tracking the industry's evolution can make for an engaging hobby as well as CBD's therapeutic benefits.

Disclaimer: These products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Kelsy Chauvin is a writer, photographer and marketing consultant based in Brooklyn, New York. She specializes in travel, feature journalism, art, theater, architecture, construction and LGBTQ interests. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @kelsycc.