In the article, ‘Cannabis for ADHD: An emerging therapeutic option’, Biles questions whether doctors are mistaking self-medication for cannabis use disorder. She asks Dr Singh about his professional experience in prescribing medical cannabis to people with ADHD.
Dr Singh says “We find that patients…may go out to get some drugs to self-medicate. It may lead to a downward trajectory, and these are very able people who may have lived a relatively stable life.”
Many studies suggest that dopamine is connected with the development of ADHD. Dr Singh explains how medical cannabis’ effect on the dopamine system can help with day-to-day behaviour.
“The dopamine system is all about focus, concentration, reward. That impacts what’s called ‘executive functioning’, which is the ability to plan, task sequence, and make judgments. It also has an impact on memory and our emotional regulation as well.”
“These stimulants essentially trigger dopamine production in the cells of the frontal lobe of the brain, and people report some really good symptom reduction. So, they focus better, concentrate better, and they feel less restless.”
Aside from the scientific findings, Dr Singh also provides first-hard examples of how medical cannabis has helped his patients better manage their ADHD symptoms.
“[One patient] was smiling and talking about how everything has shifted in a real positive way,” Dr Singh recalls. “Work had improved, the boss had commented and commended him on how things were progressing at work. His wife was really pleased with the change and described that the person she knew had come back.”
“I think one of the great things with medical cannabis is that it can be used to treat a whole host of problems and a whole spectrum of issues really, because it gets to the core,” says Dr Singh.
To read the full interview with Dr Singh see here.
If you or somebody you know is affected by ADHD and you’d like to know more about how medical cannabis can help, please find further information on our condition page here.