A racing heart, sweaty palms, and racing thoughts: these unwanted symptoms can make regular life feel debilitating for people who suffer from anxiety disorders.
According to the World Health Organization, anxiety disorders affect one in every thirteen individuals globally, making it the most common mental health disorder (WHO). Finding a healthy way to manage anxiety symptoms is a top priority for individuals who suffer from it.
Anti-anxiety medications that function quickly, such as Xanax and Valium, may provide immediate relief, but they might become addictive. Long-acting antidepressants like Prozac may help reduce symptoms over time, but they don’t work for everyone.
CBD, or cannabidiol, has recently gained popularity as a supplemental or alternative treatment for anxiety.
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol (CBD), an element present in the Cannabis sativa plant, includes about 540 chemical components and CBD and THC (another well-known cannabinoid).
CBD and THC are cannabinoids that bind to certain cannabinoid receptors in the brain. THC gives people a ‘ high’ sensation that is usually associated with marijuana. In contrast, CBD shows no such impact and provides several health benefits.
According to Trusted Source, CBD has potent pharmacological effects. CBD has anti-inflammatory qualities, according to many scientists and experts. It works by preventing the body from producing particular enzymes that cause inflammation. CBD medication reduced seizures in people with Dravet Syndrome, a drug-resistant seizure disease, according to a comprehensive analysis published in CNS Drugs in 2020.
Many experts are researching the different therapeutic benefits of cannabis and CBD due to the expanding legalisation of usages of medical cannabis in the United Kingdom. One of the most common questions asked by doctors is if CBD can help with anxiety disorders.
How does CBD help?
There are many receptors in our body, and they are chemical structures made up of proteins connected to your cells. They get signals from a variety of sources. CB1 and CB2 receptors are thought to interact with CBD. Our central and peripheral nervous systems contain the majority of these receptors.
The specific mechanism by which CBD impacts CB1 receptors in the brain is unknown. It may, however, affect serotonin signals. Serotonin, a neurotransmitter, is crucial to your mental well-being. Low serotonin levels are frequently linked to depression in persons. In rare situations, a lack of serotonin might result in anxiety.
A selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), such as sertraline (Zoloft) or fluoxetine, is the standard treatment for low serotonin (Prozac). SSRIs can only be obtained through a doctor’s prescription. Some patients with anxiety may be able to control their symptoms without using an SSRI if they use CBD instead. However, before making any modifications to your treatment plan, you should consult with your doctor.
Research on CBD usage for treating anxiety
2015: In a study done in 2015, researchers concluded that CBD interacts with the serotonin 5-HT1A receptor, the cannabinoid type 1 receptor (CB1R), and other brain receptors responsible for fear and anxiety-induced behaviours. Preclinical and clinical evidence confirmed CBD as an effective treatment for a variety of anxiety disorders.
2018: A study published in 2018 found that CBD may exacerbate anxiety. Symptoms such as cortisol concentration, heart rate, and systolic blood pressure were used to assess anxiety. According to the study, CBD enhanced anxiety in some of the subjects, which comprised a limited sample of people with paranoid symptoms.
Small sample sizes and dose variability could be to blame for the inconsistent results. CBD is a bidirectional medication, which means that at various doses, it can induce opposing effects.
2019: Outpatients at a mental health clinic in Fort Collins, Colorado, were studied in a retrospective case study published in 2019. 77% of the patients polled acknowledged anxiety worries. In addition to therapy, most patients were given 25 mg of CBD daily for three months.
After two months, 78.1% of patients said their condition had improved from the previous month. 79.2% of patients reported a decrease in anxiety after the first monthly examination. However, some patients stated that their anxiety symptoms increased after using CBD, with 15.3% reporting that their anxiety got worse after the first month and 19.5% reporting that their anxiety had worsened further after the second month.
2020: Researchers assessed CBD’s effects on 397 adults residing in New Zealand in a more recent 2020 study. Participants in this study were fed medical CBD prescriptions to treat neurological symptoms, non-cancer pain, cancer-related symptoms, and mental health problems.
After three weeks of CBD treatment, all groups reported an improvement in their general quality of life. Individuals who got CBD treatment for anxiety or depression reported improved capacity to perform everyday duties and a reduction in pain and anxiety or depression symptoms.
70% of study participants said they were satisfied with CBD treatment somehow, ranging from good to outstanding. Only 9.9% of those who took part in the study had negative side effects like drowsiness and vivid nightmares. Even fewer people in the research (0.8%) said their symptoms were getting worse.
2020: Researchers assessed the effects of CBD treatment in 72 persons with anxiety or sleep issues in a retrospective study. The majority of study participants took one 25-mg CBD capsule once a day (mg/d). A few people were given 50 or 75 mg per day. One person with schizoaffective disorder and a history of trauma received up to 175 mg/d. 78.1–79.2% of subjects reported improvements in anxiety symptoms after two months of CBD administration. However, after CBD treatment, 15.3–19.5% of patients reported worsening symptoms.
2020: In a study published in 2020, the authors looked at eight research studies that looked into CBD’s involvement in treating various anxiety conditions. The researchers discovered evidence that CBD can be used as a monotherapy or supplemental therapy to treat generalised anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
How to use CBD for anxiety?
If you want to use CBD in any way to help you control your anxiety, you should first educate yourself. Understanding the benefits and drawbacks of various ingestion strategies will help you decide which strategy is best for you.
Oils and tinctures
CBD tinctures and oils are a convenient, straightforward, and precise way to take CBD. The majority of tinctures have CBD on an alcohol basis. CBD oils are made from CBD extracts mixed with a carrier oil like coconut or hemp seed oil.
A dropper is used to administer tinctures and CBD oils, allowing for precise dosage control. When taken sublingually, the THC reaches the bloodstream swiftly, with effects appearing in as little as ten minutes and lasting up to three to four hours.
Vape oils containing CBD
A special pen that vaporises the oil can be used to vape CBD. CBD vape cartridges purchased from authorised, state-licensed cannabis retailers are tightly controlled, but CBD cartridges obtained from other sources are not. In an uncontrolled atmosphere, proceed with caution when considering any vaping product.
CBD edibles may be added to practically any cuisine you can think of. While this form is very easy to consume—and frequently pleasant, especially as gummies—it may take an hour or more to feel the effects.
Furthermore, CBD’s oral bioavailability can obstruct absorption because it must transit through the gastrointestinal tract before being processed by the liver when taken orally. As a result, just a small amount of CBD enters the circulatory system. CBD edibles are only available in state-licensed adult-use marketplaces.
Smoking CBD provides a nearly quick way to enjoy its effects. Smoking delivers the cannabinoid directly to the lungs’ alveoli, where CBD molecules enter the circulation for quick absorption. However, quantifying your CBD consumption can be difficult when you smoke, and smoking itself might promote lung inflammation.
CBD for Anxiety
If you look at the studies mentioned above, you’ll note that the dose differed greatly. The outpatients in the Colorado trial received 25 mg of CBD daily, while the youths in the Japanese study received 300 mg. Why is there such a prominent difference in dose?
There is no widely suggested dosage for CBD, as most scientists and physicians will readily admit, and there have been no large-scale clinical research to advise dosage guidelines so far. Furthermore, the FDA is still studying more about CBD, such as its long-term effects on the body, before deciding how to regulate it.
This isn’t to say that CBD isn’t safe. Based on existing data, it looks to be a safe and well-tolerated medication. If you’re interested in experimenting with CBD to help with anxiety symptoms, make sure you do it with caution and knowledge (which is always a good idea). Some dosage considerations are listed below.
Dosing guidelines in general
When deciding on a CBD dose, there are a few things to think about:
- Body mass index
- CBD concentrations
- Anxiety severeness
The amount of CBD in each product varies, but it’s usually reported in milligrammes (mg) per container. You can use a dosage calculator or an app like Accugentix to help you find your optimum dose once you know the potency of the CBD product you have. Dosage calculations can give you a milligramme recommendation based on your weight and the severity of your symptoms.
The way you react to CBD is also influenced by your body chemistry. Some people metabolise drugs more quickly than others, which could be due to genetics or lifestyle. If you know you metabolise medications rapidly, you might be able to get away with a higher dose.
Side effects of using CBD
CBD is generally thought to be safe. Some CBD users, however, may encounter the following negative effects:
- Diarrhoea and fatigue
- Changes in weight and appetite
CBD may react if taken with any medications or nutritional supplements you’re taking. If you’re already taking some drugs with a “grapefruit warning,” such as blood thinners, you need to be cautious. If both CBD and grapefruit are taken at the same time, then they interact with enzymes in our body involved in drug metabolism.
A study on mice concluded that giving them CBD-rich extract through force-feeding increased their risk of liver damage. But note that, some of the studies on animals had received exceptionally high doses of CBD.
You should not discontinue taking any medications you’re currently taking without first consulting your doctor. While CBD oil may assist with anxiety, if you suddenly stop taking your prescription meds, you may have withdrawal symptoms, including dizziness, fogging, irritability and nausea.
CBD through research and studies over the years has been deemed useful in treating anxiety in people. For people, where other medications do not work, they can definitely try this healthy alternative and make life much easier. You can use it in a variety of ways like using it as oil or vape oil or gummies etc for oral intake. Add few drops in your coffee to make it CBD infused coffee for treating anxiety or add to any other food. Buy CBD products legally and made with safety standards in anywhere in the UK from Hempthy. Always buy from a trusted source to ensure safety.