CannabisMd is the authority publisher on CBD and Cannabis
The number of people suffering with anxiety is on the rise every day. Most people who have anxiety are told to avoid the use of marijuana. This is because the presence of THC in marijuana may introduce or aggravate anxiety in some people. However what they do not realise is that CBD hemp oil does not contain the psychoactive component which causes the high in traditional recreational marijuana use, and that in fact, there are many health benefits to using CBD oil as a treatment for a host of medical conditions.
In recent times there has been much more research into the uses of CBD oil as an anti inflammatory and when treating pain, including chronic pain, neuropathic pain, and other forms of pain. Patients across the United States have begun using CBD oil for pain relief with only positive feedback to share. However there is growing interest in the effects of CBD oil on anxiety. In relation to the use of CBD oil as a treatment for anxiety, two discoveries have been very important. First, CBD can c ounter the effect of THC, reducing the risk of triggered anxiety.
Significantly more research needs to be done in this area to determine how this process works and how it can be used to eliminate anxiety risks with patients who use THC. The second discovery is that CBD, when not in the presence of THC, can reduce anxiety in people with anxiety disorder, PTSD, and other similar mental health conditions.
CBD may accomplish its anxiolytic effect by acting on the limbic and paralimbic parts of the brain, where important learning, memory, emotion and motivation functions take place.
Severe Anxiety and PTSD
In a study which demonstrated the benefits of CBD oil in cases of extreme anxiety, published in The Permanente Journal in 2016, a 10-year-old girl who suffered from a number of effects of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as a result of neglect and sexual abuse when she was young had her symptoms effectively brought under control with the use of CBD. Before the CBD, other medications had been used with partial success but their effect did not last and she suffered significant side effects.
In this case, CBD was used to effectively treat a range of symptoms including improving the young patient’s anxiety and reducing her insomnia. These led to improvements in her behaviour at home and in school and gave her an improved quality of life overall. Other than the CBD oil effects, her health was improved with only dietary supplements. No other medications were used.
Social Anxiety Disorder
In another study, published in 2010, a small group of 12 people with SAD (Social Anxiety Disorder) and 12 healthy controls were given a public speaking test along with other testing. The 12 healthy controls performed all the tests without medication, the 12 SAD test subjects were divided into two groups of six, with six given a placebo and six given 600 mg of CBD an hour and a half prior to testing. The CBD group showed significantly less anxiety, discomfort and cognitive impairment during the speech, similar to the healthy controls. The placebo group had higher anxiety, discomfort and impaired cognition. As a part of the testing, a negative self-evaluation test was applied to all of the subjects. Negative self-evaluation virtually disappeared in the CBD group.
In other words, the use of CBD reduced anxiety levels to within the range of healthy individuals for people with social anxiety disorder and did so with a single dose taken shortly before testing. These results hold promise for CBD oil for anxiety treatment.
Importantly, as pointed out in the same study, CBD does not appear to develop a dependence. It also doesn’t appear to develop a tolerance, requiring the need for higher and higher doses to be effective. Further study needs to be done to confirm these apparent findings – with a sufficiently large number of subjects over a sufficient period of time.
Reversing Trauma and Treating Addiction With CBD
A study published in the British Journal of Pharmacology looked at the potential uses of CBD to help reverse anxiety disorders that are caused by traumatic memory and learned response as well as potential treatment for addiction.
Humans have an adaptive response to threats and rewards that have helped our species survive. It is when these responses go “overboard” that they result in anxiety disorders and addiction. These emotional memories tend to persist much longer and without treatment, can lead to relapse.
While researchers have discovered that CBD reduces anxiety, they have also discovered that CBD also calms reactions to threats, including reducing the intensity of fear memory development. CBD does this by reducing the fear response in the moment but also by interrupting fear memory development. It also helps to extinguish fear over time (as the memory is recalled).
The data while still early, suggests that using CBD oil for anxiety arising from trauma may also significantly reduce the lasting effects of remembering or reliving that trauma by dulling the response to the memory.Further studies are required to help understand how CBD helps to regulate emotions and the formation of emotional memories, so that specific treatments for substance abuse and anxiety conditions can be developed.
Because THC can induce anxiety, it is important to look for an industrial hemp CBD oil that has no THC. Inhaled marijuana is not recommended because of the THC content.
CBD oil suffers from similar problems as in other areas of the cannabinoid industry. Mislabelling is a problem and these substances have a fragmented and confusing set of laws surrounding them. Some products will be labelled with concentrations of CBD, others with nutritional data and still others with little or no information at all.
Also, because there is a lack of consistent regulation, CBD concentrations can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, and batch to batch. Again, due to the lack of consistent regulation, some products may contain some of the cannabinoids (like THC), fungi and pesticides that are inadequately removed from the plant material and other contaminants that may be introduced by the manufacturing process. Flavourings may also be present in a CBD oil product.
Look for high quality, full spectrum CBD oil products that are tested by third party, independent laboratories for content, concentration and quality. At the very least, if the products are tested by the manufacturer make sure that they provide detailed information about the nature of the testing as well as the results.
CBD oil is available in dispensaries where the law allows for it to be sold. It is also available online for delivery to your home by package or in the mail. In many cases the ingredients and testing information for a particular product will be available online at the manufacturer’s website and on the website of many retailers.
Talk to your health care professional about using CBD oil for anxiety and whether it can treat your form of anxiety disorder. Talk to him or her about whether CBD could have any interactions with any other medication that you are taking. For example, CBD can counteract the effects of THC. There are few if any side effects from CBD according to the studies to date. However, should you experience any side effects, you should discuss these with your health care professional as well.
According to the literature, CBD is generally safe to use at low to high doses but standardized dosage parameters have yet to be set. Talk to your health care professional about the dose that is right for you. Your health care provider may suggest a higher dose that tapers downward or a lower dose that increases until the anxiety is controlled. Some adjustment may be required to achieve the correct dose for any individual situation.
CBD oil may take more or less time to work for you, though generally the studies suggest that its effects are relatively fast-acting. Follow the instructions for use on the label carefully and any directions provided by your health care professional for best results.
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