July 28th is World Hepatitis Day. As this day approaches it is important to take a moment to learn more about hepatitis, which affects millions of people around the world. Lastly, can CBD help to alleviate symptoms of hepatitis? This is a guide to hepatitis and CBD.
What is Hepatitis?
Generally speaking, hepatitis refers to inflammation in the liver. What confuses many people about this disease is that it comes in a variety of forms. More specifically, there is Hepatitis A, B, and C, all of which are slightly different forms of a similar virus.
Complicated, right? Here’s a quick breakdown of the common types of hepatitis
Hepatitis A (HAV)
Hepatitis A is transmitted through stool. This can happen if water or food is contaminated, in hospital settings (if you’re a caregiver), or through some types of sexual contact. While Hepatitis A usually goes away on its own, symptoms are flu-like and can also include jaundice.
Hepatitis B (HBV)
Hepatitis B is transmitted through blood, semen, and bodily fluids. Symptoms of Hepatitis B include dark urine, flu-like symptoms, and jaundice. If untreated, pregnant women can pass HBV to their newborn children. Lastly, if HBV goes untreated, it can become chronic HBV, which can lead to some liver cancers and even scarring of the liver.
Hepatitis C (HCV)
Hepatitis C is transmitted through blood, sexual contact, and from pregnant mother to newborn. Those with HCV don’t always have symptoms right away, or even for years. Common symptoms include flu-like symptoms, jaundice, and light bowel movements. Hepatitis C doesn’t go away by itself – medications are required. If left untreated, you can experience severe liver problems.
Hepatitis Caused by Drug & Alcohol Use
Excessive consumption of drugs and alcohol can also cause hepatitis. The liver plays a central role in the body’s metabolic processes and helps to repair damaged cells. Prevalent drug and alcohol use prevent the liver from performing those functions, which leads to inflammation.
Can CBD Alleviate Symptoms of Hepatitis?
Using the endocannabinoid system as a vehicle to travel through the human body, CBD is able to impact all of the body’s essential systems. A depth of research shows that CBD and the endocannabinoid system overall can impact inflammation. More specifically, research suggests that CBD is a natural anti-inflammatory, which is why athletes and those with medical conditions are turning to CBD for recovery. In fact, another study suggests that CBD can positively impact those with hepatitis C, and that it should be studied further for its potential in this realm. It is clear that CBD’s potential for helping those with hepatitis is there, but more research is required.
A Guide to Hepatitis and CBD
Whether you, a loved one or a friend suffers from some time of hepatitis, you’re not alone! On July 28th, you can help to spread hepatitis awareness; it is only through knowledge that we can hope to break the stigma regarding hepatitis and find solutions.
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