Here’s what you need to know about some of the most well-studied uses of CBD for children:
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Certain states may have some restrictions for purchasing CBD, but hemp-derived CBD products are legal on the federal level as long as they contain under 0.3% THC. Marijuana is illegal on the federal level, and it is not legal to give THC to children. Because some CBD products contain trace amounts of THC, the legality of these products for children is something of a gray area. At this point, it is up to the parent to make a responsible decision regarding CBD use.
Very little controlled research has been done with CBD and kids. There is only one approved drug based on CBD for any age group, and that’s for rare kinds of epilepsy in children. There are promising hints — but little proof thus far — that the compound might work on some other conditions in children too, including other kinds of seizures, autism and anxiety.
“There can be pesticides, heavy metals and microbes in the plants,” said Hazekamp. It isn’t clear if those are making it into CBD oils, he said.
Hints of help
With no scientific proof that CBD works and is safe for children, Mitchell said stimulant-based medications like Adderall are a better option than CBD. “We know much more about one than the other, so the choice is simple,” he said. But he understands why a parent might consider CBD as an alternative, he said, given that it is typically seen as a gentle drug with few side effects.
“I’m trying to be very cautious about it,” said Meiri with regards to CBD and autism. “We still don’t have enough research about safety and efficacy.”
In addition, Adelaide’s doctors began to see signs of liver failure. Cervantes took her off the CBD. She said CBD, “does not come without side effects, which I think is a major misconception about it.” In trials of Epidiolex, a moderate dose caused side effects in at least 10 percent of the children, including elevated liver enzymes, decreased appetite, diarrhea, fatigue, sleep problems and malaise.