Background: Different addictions can have devastating consequences for individuals and society because they affect people’s work, relationships, and health. Even though there are already quite a few drugs for addiction treatment, in many cases there is still present drug relapse, so the treatment of addiction is a major clinical challenge. Based on many recent studies, CBD has attracted a lot of attention, mainly due to its anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects and the reduction of withdrawal symptoms in addicts. At the same time, it does not cause psycho-activity and other side effects.
Aim: To review literature and create a systematic, critical review of studies, that has been published until now and has evaluated the impact of CBD on addiction (of nicotine, cannabis, alcohol, and opioids).
Methods: At the beginning, we defined a search profile. With this search profile we found 291 articles in the independent article database, PubMed. After reviewing the titles, abstracts, and table of contents, we removed irrelevant articles from the review. We added another one, found when reviewing the literature in other articles. A total of 27 articles that met all inclusion and exclusion criteria remained after a detailed overview. The results were then briefly presented, and results interpreted.
Results: According to the included studies, CBD therapy presents promising results in addiction treatment in regular drug users. On the other hand, it would be better for occasional users to take other treatment approaches. Various studies have shown that CBD directly and indirectly affects addiction and is an effective support at several different levels for addiction treatment. Addiction treatment with CBD makes sense in the acute stages and long term. Positive effects are achieved by reducing neurodegeneration, inflammatory processes, improving memory, heart rate and normalizing gene expression and receptor levels in the body. In addition, CBD also has the effect of reducing drug cravings, withdrawal symptoms, anxiety, depression, stress, and irritability. The doses and gender of addicts are important for the effectiveness of CBD, as well as the individual's desire to deal with addiction and other approaches to treatment. The best approach would be a combination of treatment with cognitive-behavioral therapy and motivational interviews.