CBD for Anxiety & Depression
Anxiety and depression, two of the largest problems facing modern society, might have finally met its match. Read below to find out how CBD can help maintain your mental health.
One of the more positive outcomes of modern society is our acceptance of the various mental health disorders. Anxiety and depression have always existed throughout human history, but we have never as a society been so open to them as we are now. From videos, tv shows and articles, we can find a mountain of content related to identifying and finding ways to battle our anxiety. Not only can we find a lot of really helpful advice on how to deal with our own mental illnesses, but we have also managed to remove the stigma behind these illnesses as well; transforming them from something laughable to a matter to be taken seriously. One of the new ways people have been trying to help battle their depression is through the usage of CBD. Cannabidiol is a chemical compound found in the Marijuana plant, this chemical is useful in a multitude of ways, but one of its most popular uses is how it helps reduce anxiety. Providing less side-effects than traditional prescription medications, CBD is quickly becoming the most popular method in dealing with mental illness. Below we’ll explore the most common forms of anxiety and depression, how CBD actually works with our bodies and then how we can use CBD products to help us with our anxieties.
We’ll start with the three of the most common anxiety disorders: generalized anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and social anxiety. We’ll leave out obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and panic disorder for now and also due to their lack of association with CBD products (so far).
Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is when someone feels a general sense of anxiousness on most days. While it’s quite normal to feel anxiety during high-pressure situations, such as a job interview or before a big presentation, people with GAD feel an intense anxiety the majority of the time. So even if they are simply getting groceries or walking to work, they can suffer from intense feelings of anxiety. People who suffer from GAD also tend to suffer from related disorders such as depression and social phobias, which of course compounds their anxieties. People who suffer from GAD-like symptoms for more than six months are considered diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder.
Social anxiety disorder is when someone starts to feel symptoms of anxiousness specifically during social situations. Aside from feeling normal social anxieties, people who suffer from social anxiety disorder can feel intense anxiety from everyday social situations. They are in constant fear that their actions are being judged or laughed at, while in reality most people don’t notice anything out of the ordinary. The symptoms that come from this anxiety include trembling, extreme perspiration, stammering and even nausea. For people who have this anxiety, everyday living is a difficult ordeal, as their most difficult tasks of the day are just simple social interactions.
Post-traumatic stress disorder, more commonly known as PTSD is an anxiety disorder that develops after exposure to traumatic events in which physical and emotional harm occurs. This disorder is most commonly attributed to war veterans, as many experience a multitude of traumatic events during their service. People with this particular anxiety disorder have specific triggers within them that will initiate panic attacks. These triggers are almost always connected to their traumatic experiences, such as war veterans triggering panic attacks when they hear sounds similar to gunshots around them.
Many people have their own personal experience with depression or have people they know suffer from it. While we may all have our depressive episodes during life’s rough patches, actually having Major Depressive Order is drastically different. People who suffer from major depression tend to feel intense feelings of sadness, worthlessness, lack of interest and pleasure in life, in increase or decrease in appetite, feelings of guilt and thoughts of death or suicide. The worst part of this disorder is that it makes people feel absolutely nothing. They tend to start seeing life as a meaningless venture, with no happiness to be possibly found in anything. As you can imagine, these people find it quite hard to assimilate into normal society, as their depression gets in the way of their careers and personal relationships. This is why it’s so important to find ways to battle these illnesses, as they can be life-altering and finding ways to fix them can give people an entirely new meaning to life.
Cannabidiol or CBD, is the non-psychoactive compound found in the cannabis plant. Due to its many medical properties, its quickly become one of the more popular health products. In fact, CBD is so popular, it is quickly becoming one of the most popular products in general. You can see this through the rise of CBD-infused beers, chocolates, oils and creams. You’ll also probably notice the “now selling CBD” signs that are probably popping up around your hometown. So, we know that CBD is quite popular, but what does it actually do?
CBD is connected to our bodies through the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The endocannabinoid system is responsible for regulating a variety of our bodies functions such as sleep, appetite, pain and our immune system. Our body does this by producing endocannabinoids, which are neurotransmitters than bind to cannabinoid receptors all throughout our nervous system. The role that CBD plays in all of this, is that it impacts our endocannabinoid receptor activity, which in turn leads to reduced inflammation and affects all of the factors we listed previously.
CBD can come in many forms, but people consume it as either a tincture/oil or through CBD vapes. A lot of people also just smoke straight flower that is CBD-rich or even take pills made from CBD concentrate. All of these options are quick and easy, most importantly discreet. Unfortunately, most of these options are still quite expensive as the current extraction methods for CBD are quite complex.
Taking CBD for anxiety & depression
The traditional method for dealing with anxiety and depressive disorders is through the use of pharmaceutical drugs. The problem with a majority of these drugs is that they come with their own set of downsides like drowsiness, agitation, insomnia and headaches. If you’ve had any personal experience with people who take anti-depressants, then you’ll know just how impactful these side effects can be. Also, without proper medical insurance coverage, these prescription meds can be very expensive.
To reduce anxiety, a couple studies have shown that a 300mg dosage of CBD oil can help significantly reduce anxiety. If you’ve never had any personal experience in taking CBD for anxiety, I can only describe the feeling of it as a mellow body-high, usually attributed from smoking Indica-strain marijuana. Taking the CBD products instantly gives you a calm, allowing you to sleep, do work or just live life in a mellow state. They usually last about 3-4 hours, depending on the dosage that you take of course. Another advantage of CBD products is that they can help people who suffer from insomnia, as it helps you sleep by putting you in a calm state of mind.
The Future of CBD
Right now, the cannabis industry is currently an unregulated wild west of products. That’s why it’s always important to research the companies that you are planning to buy products from, as there is no current system for checks & balances set in place. But the future still remains bright for CBD products. As they have shown their effectiveness in dealing with anxiety and depressive episodes, certain cases of epilepsy and their wonderful health-properties. The products will only get better as the stigma is removed from cannabis products, and more regulations are put in place to actually support the industry, rather than restricting it. Also, as more research is conducted to further study the medical effects of CBD, the more it will be normalized into everyday use, hopefully reducing the overall reliance on traditional pharmaceutical medication.