Social anxiety is one of the most common forms of anxiety in the United States today. In fact, it’s estimated that approximately 6.8% of the population, or 15 million people of all ages, genders and backgrounds.
Social anxiety disorder, commonly referred to as SAD, is a disorder which is characterized by a sudden increase in anxiety caused by social interactions, crowds of people, or public speaking. People with SAD often suffer from intense feelings of inadequacy, insecurity, body shame, impostor syndrome and even paranoia.
The current treatments for SAD leave a lot to be desired. Patients are often prescribed with anti-anxiety medications. This is problematic because these medications have a 24/7 effect on the patient, who only needs treatment in certain situations.
However, many patients have found a treatment that they claim works effectively for them and their specific needs; cannabis.
Cannabis has been found to have some impressive anti-anxiety effects. This may surprise some people, but researchers have figured out exactly how this works.
Cannabis contains chemicals which are called cannabinoids. It turns out that these chemicals are also naturally produced in the human body in the endocannabinoid system. This is a system which produced and processes cannabinoids, and plays a regulatory role in mood.
The cannabinoids found in cannabis can play a supplementary role in the endocannabinoid system. They support the system and help it to carry out its functions as effectively as possible. In doing this, they have a positive impact on mood and anxiety.
Cannabis could be the ideal treatment method for people with social anxiety disorder because it can be used when needed, unlike current anti-anxiety medications.
However, the long term side effects of cannabis on people with anxiety are still relatively unknown. Additionally, some studies have shown that cannabis could actually cause anxiety in some patients. So, much more research is needed before we can conclusively say that cannabis is an appropriate treatment for social anxiety disorder.
In the meantime, the number of people with social anxiety who are treating their condition with cannabis seems to be on the rise and appears to be set to continue to do so. If their stories are to be believed, the development of a cannabis-based social anxiety treatment could be just a matter of time.