Neurological disorders are defined as disorders that directly affect the brain and nerves throughout the body and spinal cord. According to some of the most recent statistics, it is estimated that neurological disorders affect hundreds of millions of individuals worldwide. Per statistics from the World Health Organization, neurological disorders are the leading cause of disability globally. Statistics from Mind Gardens Neuroscience Network in Sydney state that in 2017, neurological disorders accounted for 37% of Australia’s entire burden of disease.
The Neurological Disorders Landscape
Neurological disorders encapsulate diseases that affect both the brain and/or the nervous system; there are dozens of conditions within the neurological disorders landscape. Some of the most common neurological disorders that you have likely heard of include Alzheimer’s, cerebral palsy, dementia, epilepsy, migraines, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, neuropathy, Parkinson’s disease, stroke, and vertigo.
Signs of Neurological Disorders
Each neurological disorder comes with its own unique set of symptoms and complications. However, some of the most common physical and mental signs of neurological disorders experienced by patients include the following.
- • Changes in balance or coordination
- • Changes in behavior
- • Decreased awareness of surroundings
- • Delusions
- • Depression/anxiety
- • Frequent headaches
- • Impaired vision
- • Loss of muscle control
- • Muscle weakness
- • Partial or complete loss of sensation in extremities
- • Poor cognitive abilities
- • Seizures
- • Slurred speech
- • Tremors
- • Unexplainable pain
When Should You Seek Help for Neurological Disorders?
If you regularly experience issues with your coordination, suffer from tremors or unintentional jerks, have unexplained memory loss, dizziness, numbness, tingling, seizures, or unexplained chronic pain, it is vital that you seek out professional help from your primary care physician or a licensed neurologist. Many neurological disorders are manageable with treatments; however, if left unaddressed, these disorders could result in severe complications and even fatality.
How Are Neurological Disorders Diagnosed?
Like many conditions, neurological disorders require a physical exam and discussion with a doctor. Additionally, tests such as CT scans, MRIs, electroencephalogram (EEGs), spinal taps, ultrasounds, and others are commonly administered to pinpoint the exact issue at hand.
The Endocannabinoid System & Neurological Disorders
Plant therapies are believed to help regulate the body’s endocannabinoid system through CB1 and CB2 receptors found throughout the endogenous system. This, in return, may result in viable treatment options for a variety of disease processes, including various neurological disorders and their associated symptoms.
A 2018 study concluded that cannabinoid compounds offered benefits in a variety of ways to those with neurological disorders. This study placed emphasis on the use of CBD as a treatment option for various neurological disorders, including Dravet syndrome, tuberous sclerosis complex, various drug-resistant epilepsy, and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, noting that CBD has been “found to be a promising compound that appears to be safe and efficacious.”
Traditional Treatments for Neurological Disorders
The standard treatment for neurological disorders includes a wide variety of different medications and therapies. Some of the most common medications prescribed to neurological disorder patients include pain and anti-anxiety medications, antidepressants, epilepsy medications, and many others that vary depending on the exact disorder and symptoms being addressed. It is also very common for patients with neurological disorders to also undergo psychotherapy, physiotherapy, and to undertake lifestyle changes, among other therapies to manage their symptoms.
Plant Therapies for Neurological Disorders – Clinical Trial Synopsis
The stories of plant therapies providing relief from a wide variety of different neurological disorders as well as their various symptoms are abundant on the internet today. Additionally, the significant amount of research we have available to date is quite promising.
Currently, the University of Notre Dame Australia is conducting a randomised, double-blind, crossover, placebo-controlled trial with eligible patients with dementia using medicinal cannabis treatments. Participants are eligible for the study if they are over the age of 65, reside within a residential aged care facility, have a diagnosis of dementia, and are displaying at least three associated behavioral symptoms, are compliant to taking medication, are not bedridden, and are able to speak English. Learn more about this registered trial here.
To see if you are eligible for plant-based therapies, you can book a telehealth appointment with one of our specialist doctors through Cannatrek Access.