CBD Oil for Anxiety? Does it Work?
There are many out there who struggle with anxiety and are skeptical towards the traditional route of treatment. If you’ve skimmed through a news website recently, you were most likely updated into the ever-growing opioid crisis. And if you’ve looked into that matter, you’re well aware part of the problem is prescription medication given away for mental illness.
Still, there’s no denying your anxiety needs something to alleviate its symptoms. Recent research has discovered this something you need might just be cannabidiol.
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol (or CBD) is an extract from cannabis plants - particularly, hemp - which contains a chemical called cannabinoid. These chemicals attach themselves to specific areas of the brain and, in turn, induce effects such as relaxation and calmness.
The most commonly known cannabinoid is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) - the chemical that gets people high when they smoke marijuana. However, unlike marijuana, CBD contains hardly any THC. In fact, regulations won’t allow stores to sell CBD with over 0.3% THC. Whereas the average marijuana plant contains around 20% THC.
Therefore, CBD will not make you high. Unlike marijuana, hemp is grown on an industrial level for a variety of things, such as food, clothing, paper, and even insulation for houses.
What Does the Research Say?
I’m sure you’ve heard people alleviating their anxiety through marijuana itself. However, the problem with either medical or recreational marijuana is some people experience anxiety through their high. Due to such a long prohibition on cannabis, there’s only been so much research done on this topic.
Still, studies have found evidence that CBD contains characteristics which can relieve anxiety. Take the following studies as an example:
A 2010 study found cannabidiol can reduce symptoms for people struggling with a social anxiety disorder (SAD). By conducting brain scans on participants, it was discovered there were changes in blood flow in areas of the brain that are linked with anxiety. Ultimately, changing the brain’s response to anxiety. The participants also reported feeling better.
In 2011, another study was conducted where researchers specifically looked for treating people who feared public speaking. They found similar conclusions to the study above in which participants felt strong relief from social anxiety.
In 2014, a government-funded study tested CBD’s effects on animals and found it had anti-anxiety and antidepressant effects.
In 2015, a group of scientists analyzed a large number of studies done on CBD and anxiety and came to the verdict that CBD has a strong potential in relieving anxiety. However, they note that much of the research done has only looked into the short-term effects of CBD and anxiety and NOT the long-term effects. Therefore, it’s inconclusive how CBD will alleviate anxiety over a long period of time.
All these studies have found that CBD can be used as a medication for the following mental illnesses:
Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Social anxiety disorder (SAD)
Can CBD Really Help With My Anxiety?
The bottom line is there isn’t enough research to confirm that CBD is an answer to those with an anxiety disorder. Yet, the research which has been done will confirm that there’s a strong possibility. Especially when it comes to short-term alleviation.
In order to truly discover whether CBD will help your anxiety or not, I suggest you give it a shot after consulting with a medical and mental health professional. Unlike marijuana, you don’t have to worry about it inducing a high. Furthermore, any CBD containing either 0.3% THC or less is legal across the states. So, you don’t have to worry about criminal consequences for having it on you.
It should be noted that CBD might not be the answer for you. Anxiety works differently within all of us and, therefore, all of us will find ways of relieving it differently. But when it comes to new medicines on the market, CBD is without a doubt one of the most promising.
Written by Paul James.