CBD vs. THC: What’s the Difference?
Tetrahydra-what? Canna-ba-who? To anyone who has not done research into Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD), the differences might not be so obvious. These two substances occur naturally within the cannabis family of plants, but what do they do? What makes them different? In this post expect to find out about both compounds, when they were discovered, what they treat, and what their differences are.
THC was discovered in 1940 when scientists started to look into the compounds behind the “high” for cannabis. First synthesized in Israel in 1969, the compound has slowly found uses overtime for medical applications. Neuropathic pain, spasticity, overactive bladder, anxiety, depression, PTSD, and numerous other conditions have been found to been relieved to varying degrees by the drug. Most of the world currently has strong laws against the use of cannabis, and define that by the presence of THC in most cases. As such, THC has had a tough time find it's way into true medical use. Medical cannabis has slowly started to change that attitude. However, THC is the primary psychoactive component in the plant and as such carries a negative stigma.
CBD was likewise discovered in 1940. First synthesized in 1963, this compound is created through a similar pathway as THC. Neuropathic pain, anxiety, depression, and epilepsy have had varying success being treated with CBD use. While not having the negative stigma like THC, CBD has got to enjoy more research and medical usage. CBD has been shown to have some success in relieving pain as a topical cream or infused into a patch. Also, CBD has been used in the treatment of cancer patients to varying levels of success.
Comparing the two on the surface can be bluntly put as THC gets you high, CBD does not. CBD has been more researched as a result. The pain relief without a noticeable high, increased appetite and anxiety relief have made CBD a great potential treatment for cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. THC has been shown in the lab to reduce the size of tumors in rats and in petri dishes. This has not been fully tested in humans, however, this shows that THC likely has other valid medical uses. Expect to see more information about other cannabinoids such as CBG in the years to come. As the legalization of cannabis continues, more research will be done into the other chemical compounds found in the plant. This means cannabis has the potential to create numerous drugs for a wide variety of ailments.
The whole topic of THC and CBD can be confusing. We hope after this blog, you have a much better understanding of the two compounds and their uses. In recap, THC causes a good portion of the “high” associated with cannabis. THC has been shown to treat neuropathic pain, spasticity, overactive bladder, anxiety, depression, PTSD, and other ailments. CBD has been shown to treat neuropathic pain, anxiety, depression, loss of appetite, and epilepsy. In short, THC is what gets you high with some medical applications and CBD is more of the medicinal compound found in cannabis.