Drug or Medicine?

CBD usage is on the rise and the question still remains to whether or not it is a drug.


Gracie Nowlan, Staff Writer

Medical uses for cannabis are on the rise as CBD oils and powders are up and coming for solving conditions in people such as arthritis and other inflammatory issues along with the reduction of anxiety and depression. People and politicians are struck with mixed feelings about the gaining popularity of CBD. The laws and regulations revolving around cannabis have been moving around, but as of now, cannabidiol is considered to be legal in every state. Although, it is still controlled by the FDA and it must be produced in a manner that is consistent with the Farm Bill. A handful of states though, including Colorado, have led the charge of legislation and these states allow derivations of CBD to be grown, cultivated, as well as used indiscriminately. CBD itself has been removed from the Schedule I list of controlled substances, but all other cannabinoids produced remain as a Schedule I substance under federal law. Various other forms of cannabis are thus illegal where the state law does not specify. As for who is allowed to purchase and possess CBD, in Colorado, residents 18 years old and up can get a medical “weed card” for up to five minors as their legal caregiver.


There are certainly mixed feelings throughout the US about the legality of cannabis, but the views are much more lenient towards CBD oils and powders due to the number of people it has medically helped. Unlike THC, which is the main psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis and gives the feeling of being “high,” CBD is not psychoactive. Some people use cannabis for recreational purposes, creating controversy with using products containing ingredients from cannabis plants for medical purposes. The people who make CBD tend to extract the product from hemp plants instead of marijuana plants because hemp plants do not contain high levels of THC. The main purposes for the oils are to relieve pain and reduce inflammation and research suggests this to be true. People struggling with anxiety and depression are beginning to look into the more natural approach to aid them as studies have shown CBD to work for relieving anxiety. According to the website Health Line, “in one study, 24 people with social anxiety disorder received either 600 mg of CBD or a placebo before a public speaking test. The group that received the CBD had significantly less anxiety, cognitive impairment and discomfort in their speech performance, compared to the placebo group.” The oil has even been used to treat insomnia and anxiety in children with post-traumatic stress disorder in a safe and natural way.


Officer Vern Thomson works to keep the students safe on Coronado’s campus and he gave his take and experience with teens on the subject. Officer Thomson explained that he has “not seen abuse of CBD because usually there is no THC in the CBD oils.” Due to the fact that CBD oils are used for medical purposes, he does not see an abuse nor rarely a use of these oils at school. Similar to the growing popularity of Juuls and vaping, Thomson thinks of CBD as a fad because if “[teenagers] can associate anything to be cool, they are going to do it.” Officer Thomson explains that as for legality issues, if a student were to bring in a chapstick, lotion, or other forms of CDB, the school would confiscate it, but as far as Thomson is concerned, there is very little he has to do to deal with that because it has small traces of THC in it. Overall, Thomson believes that as for legitiamte medial purposes, CBD is extremely helpful and the success stories are there to prove it.


Along with helping people with arthritis and other inflammatory issues, CBD has been shown to alleviate cancer related symptoms. Health Line also found that “a study of 16 people undergoing chemotherapy found that a one-to-one combination of CBD and THC administered via mouth spray reduced chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting better than standard treatment alone.” CBD may also reduce acne, have neuroprotective properties, and benefit heart health. Although a lot of these claims have not been proven, the stories of the oils working are enough to get people to try a natural approach to their health issues.


The use of CBD oil for kids and adults alike has been shown to be extremely useful for medical reasons, but like any form of a drug, there are side effects. Although these effects are minor, they include tiredness, nausea, feeling irritable, and changes in appetite. These effects vary per person because some users may never experience side effects at all. To determine whether CBD should be treated like a drug or a medicine, there is a myriad of people that are still on the fence.