Autism Spectrum Disorders comprise conditions that may affect cognitive development, motor skills, social interaction, communication, and behavior. This set of functional deficits often results in lack of independence for the diagnosed individuals, and severe distress for patients, families, and caregivers.
There is a mounting body of evidence indicating the effectiveness of pure cannabidiol (CBD) and CBD-enriched Cannabis sativa extract (CE) for the treatment of autistic symptoms in refractory epilepsy patients.
Epilepsy commonly co-occurs with autism. Multiple studies have found CBD to be highly effective at reducing or entirely stopping seizures in epileptic patients.
Additionally, CBD can be an effective treatment for insomnia, where patients have difficulty falling and staying asleep. As patients benefit from better sleep, they are likely to experience less anxiety, lower levels of stress, and fewer aggressive behaviors. As a result, people may be able to better focus in therapy, learning essential life and communication skills.
In a 2018 feasibility study on the safety, tolerability, and efficacy of CBD as a therapy for behavioral problems in children with ASD, researchers observed encouraging results of the effects of CBD on symptoms of autism. Sixty children with autism were treated with oral CBD and THC at a ratio of 20:1. These positive results were observed:
Behavioral outbreaks were much or very much improved in 61% of patients.
Anxiety problems were much or very much improved in 39% of patients.
Communication problems were much or very much improved in 47% of patients.
Disruptive behaviors improved by 29%.
Parents reported a 33% reduction in stress levels.
A separate study investigated the effects of medical cannabis (primarily cannabis oil containing 30% CBD) on symptoms associated with ASD. The study followed the treatment of 188 participants with ASD from 2015 to 2017. After six months of treatment, data was collected from 93 patients who remained in treatment and the following results were observed:
About 30% reported a significant improvement in symptoms.
Almost 54% reported a moderate improvement in symptoms.
Over 6% reported a slight improvement in symptoms.
Nearly 9% reported no change in their condition.
Of the above patients, about a quarter of them reported experiencing at least one side effect, the most common of which was restlessness.
Overall, the study provides encouraging results that CBD can be a safe and legitimate treatment for some symptoms associated with ASD.
You can find very informative researches about Autism and CBD here: