Individuals with mood disorders can feel as if they’re on the receiving end of a social stigma that denotes medication and therapy are the only ways to treat these “diseases.” However, with millions of people suffering from what can often be debilitating effects of anxiety and depression, one has to question if pharmaceuticals are really the best option out there.
If you’ve been prescribed a specific treatment by a doctor or therapist, it’s not necessarily a great idea to throw caution to the wind and abandon your medication, but it may be worth exploring how the use of CBD can positively affect your symptoms.
While more research still needs to be done, multiple studies have shown that CBD can dramatically reduce the effects of anxiety and depression. Let’s learn more about this compound and uncover exactly how and why it works.
CBD And Marijuana
To those who are unfamiliar with the nuances of various marijuana components, CBD may just sound like a reference to weed. In fact, that couldn’t be farther from the truth, as CBD is one of over 400 compounds found inside of a cannabis plant. Its full name is cannabidiol, and it’s secreted from special glands.
Much like THC and many other compounds, CBD can be utilized to provide a specific set of benefits. However when separated and administered apart from THC, CBD offers users a purely medicinal function without the psychoactive properties that you’d typically expect when getting high. Some products do combine THC and CBD for maximum effectiveness, but many items contain CBD only and are solely used in a therapeutic setting.
Since CBD doesn’t get you high, you’d think that it would be legal, yet in many states it is treated much like marijuana itself and you cannot obtain CBD oils, creams, or edibles. It is classified as a Schedule 1 drug and users can be subject to legal ramifications.
Symptoms Of Anxiety And Depression
In order to fully understand how CBD can help with these specific mood disorders, it’s important to grasp exactly how these symptoms can affect a person’s life. Both anxiety and depression can range from minor annoyances that pop up every so often all the way to major issues that are debilitating on a regular basis.
Anxiety can come in the form of a panic attack that includes a rapid heart rate, sweating, twitching, and hyperventilation, or it can be a mild feeling of unease that persists over a long period of time. Similarly, depression symptoms may ebb and flow and can affect individuals in different ways.
Typically, depression includes feelings of sadness or hopelessness and can be accompanied by issues with eating and sleeping. Repeatedly reflecting on one’s worries and feeling as if there is no way out of a problem are common depressive behaviors.
How CBD Can Help
Individuals who choose to treat their anxiety and depression with marijuana may find that their intentions have the opposite effect, as many strains are known for agitating pre-existing symptoms. Instead, using pure CBD has shown promising results in a number of studies.
Researchers have examined brain scans of people who are prone to anxiety and compared the images before and after CBD use. The results were amazing, detailing a change in blood flow to the regions of the brain that are responsible for anxious behavior. Test participants also noted that they truly felt better after taking CBD.
Antidepressant effects have also been seen in animal studies, and other focus groups that examined individuals who had a fear of public speaking noted promising results after CBD use as well.
More Than Just Anxiety
While both depression and anxiety are two major mood disorders that affect millions around the world, CBD has been reported as a treatment for other conditions like seasonal affective disorder, PTSD, obsessive compulsive disorder, and many others. Those who suffer from insomnia have reported that CBD helps them to sleep better at night, and of course many know about the potential help that this compound can bring to cancer patients.
If you’re interested in using CBD to help with your depression or anxiety, it’s important to note that long-term research has yet to be established, and while both controlled studies and real life users report that its properties are fantastic, we still don’t know much about how CBD affects us. Officials from the World Health Organization and the Food and Drug Administration are careful to make blanket statements about CBD’s effectiveness and instead point to the need for more research.
Tips For CBD Use
People with anxiety and depression who are currently not receiving any treatment or have found that their prescribed treatment is becoming ineffective might want to take a chance on CBD. While a variety of methods are available, the way you ingest this compound will vary based upon your comfort level and symptoms.
Some like the convenience of CBD edibles as they are easy to use and fairly discrete, looking like any other candy or treat. However, it takes some time for your body to digest these items and it can delay the relief you’re looking for, especially if you are in the midst of a panic attack.
A better option tends to be CBD concentrates that can be placed under the tongue. These tinctures come in a range of sizes and allow for a faster acting experience. If you’re dealing with depressive symptoms for days on end or feel that your anxiety is about to reach an uncontrollable level, try a CBD tincture.
The future is bright for CBD products and the impact that they will have on anxiety and depression patients around the world. With such a variety of products available, both with and without THC, there are options for everyone. Remember, if you are currently under the care of a physician, do not simply abandon your current treatment plan in favor of CBD. Many medical professionals are becoming more knowledgeable about CBD by the day and a discussion with your doctor is your best bet in finding the results you’re looking for.