Lynda Bannon pictured holding Zoe alongside her other three daughters
A Dundalk mum-of-four has credited CBD Oil as the reason her two-year-old disabled daughter Zoe has been able to take her first steps.
When Lynda Bannon’s daughter was diagnosed with quadriplegia and cerebral palsy at 21 months old, doctors warned that she could be in a wheelchair for life.
But the 32-year-old mum, who works at Paypal, said that she and her husband Eamonn began to notice the changes in Zoe just two weeks after starting her on a dose of the medicinal cannabis oil.
“She wasn’t walking before and now she can take a few steps using a walking frame and even shouts out ‘steps’ when she’s doing it. The oil has given her body the strength to be able to do this,” the mum explained,
“It’s too much of a coincidence that Zoe has come on so much since she started taking the CBD Oil. I will never take her off it now.”
Whilst Lynda is overjoyed that her “wee warrior” is taking her first steps, she says that one of the most rewarding changes was with Zoe’s ability to communicate. Previously Zoe was unable to communicate up to when she was 14 months old. The toddler also suffered from separation anxiety and found it hard to communicate.
Lynda said: “Before if I had family or friends around in the house, Zoe couldn’t even look at people. Her speech and communication have come on leaps and bounds. She is 100% a different child.
“Now she’s able to tell me where she is sore when she wakes up during the night so I can help her. Although sometimes I do think she just wants to get into the bed with us for a cuddle! She knows what she’s doing.”
Lynda also credits her daughters Kayleigh, Brooke and Teagan in helping Zoe’s development: “She also loves playing with her older sisters and copying them. They are just fantastic with her.”
Lynda explained that herself and her husband came across the use CBD Oil as a treatment for Zoe’s conditions through American Facebook groups.
“In the US CBD Oil is used a lot. People are very open about it. When we first bought the CBD Oil we were both terrified to give it to Zoe. There is still a stigma attached to it here in Ireland. We had it sitting in the corner for weeks. But she was in such pain, we decided to try it,” said Lynda.
When asked what advice she would give to other parents who are looking into treating their children with CBD Oil, Lynda says:
“I would say to people don't hesitate like I did. It’s an all natural product - get over the stigma.
“Even children who are on the autistic spectrum, I think it would really help them. I mean, you’d do anything for your kids.”
Lynda says that the next step will be to build Zoe's strength up so that she can travel to the US to get an SDR surgery carried out next year.
She said: “I can see a goal now, which I couldn't see before. We are working towards building her strength up for the operation and I have to think about fundraising the €100,000 to cover costs.”
“The doctors are amazed at her progress so far. It’s tough every day but she is surprising everyone. We see so much potential in Zoe.”
CBD Network Ireland has since gotten in touch with Lynda after reading the above article (in last's week's print edition of The Dundalk Democrat) and has set up a Go Fund Me page to help with Zoe's upcoming specialist surgery in America. You can help here: www.gofundme.com/zoemurphyappeal