Given how strict Australia’s medical cannabis regulations are, there must be some sort of age requirement for CBD, right? What is the age to consume CBD? Is there an age requirement for CBD?
What are Australia’s CBD age restriction laws like? Fortunately, there are none. But things aren’t so simple.
If a child with epilepsy has exhausted all other options, a doctor, in their expert opinion, can prescribe CBD to someone under 18 years old.
But is CBD for children a good idea? Are there any examples of children already taking CBD?
While we always encourage you to speak with a doctor before giving your child CBD, this article will explore what the latest research says.
CBD Legal Age: The Science
There is no age requirement for CBD. But we suspect a doctor’s willingness to approve cannabis for specific ailments (like insomnia) will differ when the patient is a child versus an adult.
As it stands, pharmacies indirectly set an age limit to buy CBD by being the official gatekeepers of medical cannabis.
Even adults can run into problems ordering medical cannabis from particular pharmacies. A child would not be at an appropriate age to buy CBD oil.
Epidiolex is the only CBD-based drug the FDA has approved for children. It also has approval from Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration.
Epidiolex aims to control seizures in children with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome (two rare forms of epilepsy).
Researchers studied Epidiolex in three randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled drug trials before coming to market.
Additional research supports using CBD for epilepsy.
In one study of a 10-year-old patient with PTSD, researchers found CBD oil reduced her anxiety and helped her insomnia.
So CBD oil age limits don’t make much sense considering how beneficial it is for children.
And indeed, we have anecdotal accounts of children receiving all kinds of benefits from CBD oil. Even when it means the parents have to venture outside the legal system.
Using the green market is always an option if your child’s healthcare provider isn’t on board with CBD. Australians are buying high-quality products from the black/green market.
Children Who Have Benefited from CBD
CBD has been used in a range of childhood conditions to reduce spasticity, seizures, hyperactivity, and pain.
Here are a few real-world examples of children who have benefitted from taking CBD.
If you haven’t heard of Charlotte Figi, you’re missing a big part of the CBD story. Charlotte’s story is the most well-known among children who are famous for taking CBD.
Charlotte was born in 2006 with Dravet syndrome. This rare form of epilepsy caused her to suffer from grand mal seizures up to 300 times a week.
Charlotte’s parents tried every conventional medicine on the market, and nothing worked. That is until they tried a high-CBD, low-THC strain of cannabis later named Charlotte’s Web.
CBD oil reduced Charlotte’s seizures to a couple of times per month. She began to walk, talk, and even eat without her parent’s help.
Unfortunately, CBD oil could not cure Charlotte’s respiratory illness, and she died in 2020 at age 13.
But Charlotte’s story inspired other parents to look for CBD alternatives to conventional seizure medication.
Without Charlotte, the CBD oil age liberation movement likely wouldn’t have occurred. After all, it’s not every day someone suggests giving cannabis to sick children.
But thanks to the impact of Charlotte’s story, researchers and drug manufacturers developed Epidiolex.
Eight-year-old Melbourne resident Phoenix Honey has autism and began taking CBD oil in late 2021. Her mother, Kerri, says Phoenix was “full on” even with her old medication. It wasn’t until they were approved for CBD oil that they noticed a difference. Phoenix is not only calmer but more manageable.
Because the TGA only approves low-dose CBD, Phoenix is taking up to 12 tablets a day.
Ashley Surin was only two years old when she was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Doctors treated her with chemotherapy, and her cancer went into remission.
Unfortunately, the consequence of such intense treatment at such a young age meant Ashley began experiencing seizures. These seizures were severe and occurred almost daily for the next nine years.
Then, when she was 13 years old, Ashley’s parents looked into medical cannabis options at her doctor’s suggestion.
Like Charlotte Figi, Ashley’s parents found that her condition improved significantly. She no longer needed regular hospital visits. She could think and talk more clearly and had more control over her body.
Parents find inspiration in Ashley Surin’s story because of the legal boundaries she pushed.
Her Illinois school banned medical cannabis, so Ashley could not wear her CBD-THC patch to school. Obviously, that rule didn’t sit well with her parents.
The Surin’s began writing what would become “Ashley’s Law,” allowing eligible students to bring (and use) their medical cannabis on school grounds.
What is the Ideal Age to Consume CBD?
Researchers say our brains don’t finish developing until we’re 25 years old. So it’s generally not recommended to experiment with substances before then.
But when it comes to using CBD oil as life-or-death medicine, there’s no question that a CBD age restriction does more harm than good.
Fortunately, Australia does not have an age requirement for CBD.
However, that doesn’t mean your child’s healthcare provider is on board. They may want to test out every pharmaceutical in the book before attempting CBD oil.
And then, there are the low-dose-only options from the TGA.
If that doesn’t appeal to you, there’s always the green market where high-quality CBD oil products are available. You wouldn’t be the first parent to step outside the system.
We always suggest speaking with a trained cannabis clinician about your child’s condition. They’ll be able to suggest the correct titration guide so your child can find the right dosage and avoid building a tolerance.