Cannabis For Dementia Although you may experience temporary memory problems when you smoke weed, cannabis may be good for the aging brain. Some res
Cannabis For Dementia
Although you may experience temporary memory problems when you smoke weed, cannabis may be good for the aging brain. Some research suggests it can improve or preserve brain function. Let’s look closer and see what science knows so far.
Cannabis For Dementia: Why Our Brains Go Downhill As We Age
Some people stay sharp as a tack until their final moments. Most of us, however, will experience some loss of brain function as we get older. This is how it is with all our bodily functions and organs. As a result of ‘normal wear and tear,’ our cognitive function decreases.
While we sometimes call this dementia, there are actually several different ways this can manifest. We and our loved ones may experience deterioration through memory loss, difficulty learning, and problems focusing.
One current hypothesis is that oxidation causes brain deterioration. As we age, our bodies are much less effective at moving natural waste products out. Although this is a natural process, the build-up of waste products have negative effects.
Oxidation is defined as:
The attacks of free radicals, or unstable molecules, subject our cells to continuous damage, known as oxidative stress or oxidation.- Sharecare
Another theory is the fact that glia cells in the brain create less myelin the older we get. Myelin forms a conduit in the brain for impulses to go through. Therefore, reduced myelin function contributes to reduced brain function too.
Neurons also deteriorate as we age. All of these factors pose potential diminished capacity as we age.
Research That Sheds Light On Cannabis For Dementia
In one study, researchers provided mice of different ages with cannabis and found they performed better in tests than those who did not receive cannabis.
Furthermore, we know that cannabis holds anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These could also contribute to keeping the climate inside the body in better condition, thus protecting the brain.
A 2002 study demonstrated that after ingesting oral cannabis, only certain parts of memory were temporarily impaired. While intoxicated by cannabis, encoding memories is impaired, but this effect goes away quickly as it wears off. It isn’t a long term effect. So, the burn out jokes are outdated and just bad science.
Cannabis For Dementia: Endocannabinoids And The Brain
Here’s some fascinating information. Do our bodies produce fewer endocannabinoids as we get older, and does this lead to some of the negative effects we experience through aging? Is cannabis the fountain of youth?
Some scientists think there could be some truth to this idea. THC even appeared to improve brain function in older mice who were actually somewhat forgetful to begin with. Is this because taking cannabis replenishes cannabinoid reserves in the body?
If so, we puff to keep us young, vital and engaged in the world around us. We vape to stay sharp. We may be reducing the inflammation that depletes our bodies, reducing the stress that taxes our minds and keeping our natural cannabinoid levels up where they belong.
Could cannabis do more good than harm to the brain? It certainly seems like a perfectly viable theory.