Repeated Head Trauma Sucks
At this point, I have fully lost count of how many concussions I have suffered from. If I had to give you a ballpark number it would probably be around 15-20. With this repeated head trauma, even soft hits to my head during everyday activities can spark concussive like symptoms. This means, I have to be very careful about hitting my head, and when I do hit my head, I have to be very concerned with my recovery time. This makes it incredibly challenging to get through life as a 21 year old student who loves to adventure and explore. I just can't put my life on pause for weeks at a time whenever I bump my head on the kitchen counter. So, I looked everywhere for a solution, I tried 20+ medications , many therapies, and through the process of trial and error, I found out what the most effective treatments are for minimizing my recovery time.
I Hit My head On Thursday
Just last Thursday I was playing with my puppy, and while picking her up, I bumped my head on the wood floor of my apartment. Within minutes, I had a horrible headache. An hour later, I was facing every symptom of a concussion, throbbing head pain, light sensitivity, irritability, anxiety, fatigue, a stupid feeling of WOW I hit my head again.
Typical Recovery Protocol
Under normal concussion circumstances, a doctor would tell me to rest in a darkroom, remove myself from simulations, and ice my head. He would most likely schedule a follow up appointment within the next week or two to check my progress. I agree fully with this recommendation, but it certainly doesn't eradicate the pain or symptoms fully, It's kind of a "wait it out" approach. I have repeatedly tried this method of recovery, and in my experience it takes about 1-3 weeks for the pain to fully go away... not a speedy process by any means. In addition to the slow recovery time, who knows what is happening to your brain chemistry if your brain is in a state of inflammation for 3 weeks.
Why It's Crucial To Stop Secondary Inflammation
It's pretty clear that the secondary effects of inflammation caused by a head injury can be more damaging than the initial head injury itself. To put it simply from a medical perspective, If you can control the inflammation within your brain after an injury, your brain damage could be reduced significantly.
CBD and INFLAMMATION
I have personally found on every occurrence of my head injuries, that taking 25mg of Cannabidiol (CBD) 4 times a day for 3 days straight completely takes my pain away. The reason I believe CBD has this effect is because it's been shown in preclinical studies to prevent inflammatory chemicals like glutamate from being released after a head injury. Thus, limiting the secondary inflammation after a head injury, allowing my brain to recover faster and prevent any further damage from occurring.
"A considerable number of preclinical studies have demonstrated that cannabidiol (CBD), a major non-psychoactive constituent of marijuana, may provide neuroprotection against acute or chronic brain damage" Mechoulam and Shohami 2007; Garcia et al. 2011; Sagredo et al. 2011; Fernandez-ruiz et al. 2013; Harvey et al. 2012; Pazos et al. 2012, 2013; Valdeolivas et al. 2012.
My Speedy Recovery This Week With CBD
When I hit my head on the floor, I immediately grabbed my CBD tincture from my fridge and put 25 mg in my mouth. In under a minute my pain fully went away, my thinking started clearing up, and I was able to resume my day as if nothing happened. Today, 4 days after my injury I have no pain, and no present concussive symptoms. I have repeated this personal experiment countless times. Due to the hypersensitive nature of my brain, small hits cause big pain, and big hits cause even bigger pain. Wheather I just tap my head on the ground, or if I hit my head hard by the boom of a sailboat, I stay calm because I know I am able to control my pain and increase my recovery time significantly.
If you are interested in more to science that I believe backs up my anecdotal evidence, check out my blogpost Medical Marijuana - How I Overcame Post Concussion Syndrome, Graduated From High School, And Traveled The World
Meditation and breathing exercises
In addition to using CBD, I always meditate after a head injury. I find a comfortable place to sit, straighten my back, and close my eyes. I use a breathing technique which I find helps tremendously;
- Breathe in slowly for 5 seconds through your nose
- Breathe out slowly through your mouth for 5 seconds
- Continue this for 20 minutes
Now this can be harder than you think, it takes a lot of concentration. In the beginning, I focus on my chest rising and falling until I start drifting away, then your unconscious mind takes over and the healing begins. I find a great increase in energy and decrease in pain every time I practice this exercise.
"meditation may reduce stress-induced cortisol secretion and this could have neuroprotective effects potentially via elevating levels of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Meditation may also potentially have beneficial effects on lipid profiles and lower oxidative stress, both of which could in turn reduce the risk for cerebrovascular disease and age-related neurodegeneration. Further, meditation may potentially strengthen neuronal circuits and enhance cognitive reserve capacity"
This is my personal experience, by no means am I claiming that this will work for everybody or even anybody. However, there is some great evidence out there to support CBD's role in neuroprotection, inflammation control, and pain reduction for head injuries. I am not a doctor, but I am a patient that has been tremendously helped by CBD, look into, I hope this helps.
If you have any questions, please feel free to ask them in the comments section below.
This article is purely informational. I am not a doctor, though I am a patient. This is not advise.