Should You Be Taking CBD Oil? 5 Possible Drug Interactions with CBD Oil

CBD oil is the latest healthcare craze, expected to reach $22 billion in sales by 2022.

One of the reasons for its growing popularity has to do with its many benefits. CBD oil can be used to treat epilepsy, provide pain relief, decrease anxiety, and help with countless other health issues.  

As Americans become more aware of CBD oil’s miraculous abilities, it only makes sense that more people will reach for it to treat their symptoms. However, although CBD oil is safe in most situations, there are harmful side effects that you need to be aware of when mixed with certain prescription drugs.

To learn more about this, check out the list below about 5 possible drug interactions with CBD oil and see how it could affect you.

What is CBD Oil?

First, what exactly is CBD oil?

CBD—or cannabidiol – is a compound found in the cannabis plant. It can be turned into oil form by extracting the CBD from cannabis and diluting it with oil. Once diluted, it can be ingested directly by dropping it on your tongue or via capsule.  

CBD – like marijuana – has many great benefits. However, it can also have some negative side effects due to its inhibition of the cytochrome P450 enzyme system.

The cytochrome P450 enzyme system plays a critical role in metabolizing pharmaceutical drugs in our bodies. It helps break down and process these drugs at a certain rate

When the cytochrome P450 enzyme system is inhibited, your body cannot break down the drugs as quickly as it normally would. As a result, you are more likely to experience heightened side effects of these drugs.

5 Drug Interactions With CBD Oil

Because CBD oil inhibits the cytochrome P450 enzyme system, there are certain drugs you should be wary of using with it. Check out the list below of 5 drugs that could potentially interact with CBD.

1. Anti-histamines And CBD

Anti-histamines are typically used to treat allergies. When having an allergic reaction, your body releases chemicals called histamines.

These histamines are the cause for the typical allergic reaction – from watery eyes to itchy rashes. Allergy medicine that contains anti-histamines block the histamines from being released. 

While very effective in treating allergy symptoms, anti-histamines have a lot of side effects including drowsiness, confusion, and dizziness. Anti-histamines get broken down and metabolized by the cytochrome P450 enzyme system.

Because CBD oil inhibits this enzyme system, if you take both CBD oil and anti-histamines, there will likely be some interactions. The CBD oil will temporarily deactivate the enzyme system and cause the anti-histamine to stay in your system longer.

You will likely feel intensified side effects – with increased drowsiness and confusion. While this isn’t deadly, it is something to be aware of if you plan to take both. You shouldn’t try to operate a car or any other heavy machinery.

2. Clobazam And CBD

Clobazam is prescribed to treat seizures. It has a wide range of side effects including drowsiness, dizziness, nausea, and constipation

While CBD oil is also used to treat seizures, the combination of the two isn’t recommended. Because CBD inhibits the cytochrome P450 enzyme system, it causes clobazam to not be processed as quickly as it normally would.

Because of this, the typical side effects of clobazam is exacerbated. You should expect to feel extra sleepy and confused when mixing the two.

3. Beta Blockers And CBD

If you suffer from heart issues or high blood pressure, you may be taking a beta blocker. Beta blockers – such as Propranolol and Acebutolol — slow your heart rate and help increase the blood flow in your blood vessels. Altogether, this lowers your risk of a heart attack.

Beta blockers can cause nausea, fatigue, difficulty breathing, insomnia, and depression as potential side effects. Because CBD oil inhibits the enzyme system used to break down beta blockers, these side effects will be amplified.

This is especially concerning as beta blockers slow your heart rate and decrease your blood pressure. While this is the purpose of medicine, there is a fine line. If your heart rate slows too much or your blood pressure drops dramatically, this could be dangerous. This could cause you to faint or go into shock.

4. Blood Thinners And CBD

Warfarin is a common blood thinner. For those that tend to suffer from blood clots, Warfarin helps to dissolve existing clots and prevent future ones from forming.  

Because Warfarin’s job is to essentially thin the blood, CBD oil can amplify this effect. This can be very dangerous.

If your body is thinning the blood too much, you will be more likely to suffer from blood in your urine or stools. If you get a cut on your body, you’re more likely to experience excessive bleeding.

5. Narcolepsy Medicine And CBD

Sodium Oxybate is a medicine used to treat narcolepsy. It is considered a central nervous depressant which can decrease your heart rate and breathing. 

Because it is a central nervous depressant, there are some serious side effects with this medication that you need to consider. It can cause seizures, coma, and even death. If you decide to take this medication with CBD oil, you will have an even higher risk of having an adverse reaction.

Because the side effects with this narcolepsy medication are so severe, it is wise to be very cautious when mixing it with CBD oil.

Beyond these 5 drugs, there are many other medications that CBD oil can interact with. If you’re interested in learning about this, read more here

CBD Oil: Is It Worth The Risk?

While CBD has many proven benefits, it is smart to be cautious of potential interactions it may have with other drugs. If you do take any medicine, you should ask your doctor or pharmacist before you start taking CBD. While most of these effects are minimal, it is still better to exercise some caution in case there are any drug interactions with CBD oil. 

If you are interested in learning more about CBD or other current trends, please check us out here.

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