Does CBD Help Anxiety? Studies show it may help
For many, CBD is a true miracle drug. The more we learn about it, the more benefits we find it offers. To name just a few of those benefits, CBD reportedly helps users fight pain, reduce inflammation, alleviate cancer-related symptoms, and even clear up acne!
This leaves many CBD novices with one question: Does CBD help anxiety?
Keep reading as we explore exactly that question.
Does CBD Help Anxiety?
The short answer to your question is yes, CBD absolutely helps relieve anxiety and its related symptoms.
Not only is CBD helpful in managing anxiety, it can also help with symptoms of depression, which often goes hand-in-hand with anxiety. One study had 57 men speak in public after taking either CBD or a placebo. The CBD significantly reduced their anxiety while speaking, whereas the placebo had almost no effect.
In another study, CBD was given to a 10-year-old girl with abuse-based PTSD. When the girl was on prescription anxiety meds, she had short-lived relief of her anxiety with major deterring side effects. On CBD, on the other hand, she saw a steady decrease in anxiety, and was even able to sleep better.
When you’re diagnosed with anxiety, the first place doctors often look for relief is chemical-based medications. While these medications are effective a lot of the time, they’re also not natural like CBD. The side effects can be drastic, giving the patient more symptoms they don’t want.
Not only are cancer patients using CBD for pain relief, they’re also using CBD to relieve anxiety and depression when undergoing treatment. The elderly frequently use CBD to deal with their anxiety, and CBD can even be given to anxious pets. On top of that, it also helps treat insomnia — another related symptom to depression and anxiety.
How Does CBD Help Relieve Anxiety?
The research on how, exactly, CBD helps relieve symptoms of anxiety isn’t concrete yet.
Researchers suspect that the answer lies in how CBD affects the brain’s serotonin levels. Serotonin plays a big role in mood, digestion, sleep, and behavioral control. Lower levels of serotonin are seen in people with depression and anxiety, whereas higher levels of serotonin are connected with happiness and confidence.
Antidepressants often aim to regulate serotonin levels in the brain. CBD seems to have the same effect, so it makes sense that it’s an effective anti-anxiety medication. Of course, we need more research to prove all of this at a deeper level, but it is the most likely case.
Are There Any Side Effects to Taking CBD for Anxiety?
Every medication — even a natural one like CBD — comes with a few side effects. However, compared to chemically produced drugs, CBD side effects are a walk in the park.
First of all, it’s almost impossible to overdose on CBD. You may experience an increase in side effects, but you shouldn’t worry about dosing yourself too heavily.
When you take high doses of CBD, you may experience the following side effects:
- Loss in appetite
- Fatigue & drowsiness
- Dry mouth
- May interact negatively with other medications
These side effects differ from patient-to-patient. A lot of the times, patients using CBD feel none of these side effects. The higher the dose the more likely you are to experience them.
Compared to the side effects of other anti-anxiety medications, however, these side effects are much less drastic. Common symptoms shared by many anti-anxiety medications include:
- Blurry vision
- Erectile dysfunction
- Upset stomach
- Weight loss or gain
- Concentration/memory issues
Worst of all, many prescription anti-anxiety meds are easy to get addicted to. This leaves your body craving more, even when you don’t need them. It may lead to taking higher doses as your tolerance grows, and can cause big social issues.
On the other hand, CBD is not addictive, is natural, and causes much fewer side effects than prescription drugs. If you can find relief for your anxiety symptoms from CBD, you absolutely should.
How Do I Take CBD for Anxiety?
There are many different methods of taking CBD, and all of them are effective in treating anxiety.
You can take CBD oil, vaporize CBD cartridges, smoke CBD-heavy bud, or eat CBD edibles. There’s also CBD topicals and creams and capsules available. As long as they’re dosed correctly, you’ll find relief from any of these.
However, that’s not where the considerations end. There are a few different kinds of CBD on the market, including full-spectrum, isolate, and broad-spectrum. So, which is best for anxiety?
For the most part, all of these types also help with anxiety relief. Some users report, however, that isolate is less effective than broad and full spectrum as it contains no cannabinoids. Isolate is 100% pure CBD, while broad and full-spectrum include a host of other cannabinoids that assist in anxiety relief.
The main upside of isolate is that it contains 0% THC, where other spectrums may contain a small amount of THC. You won’t get high, but the THC and cannabinoids with it often help relieve anxiety. So, you may want to try out a full-spectrum CBD oil if an isolate isn’t working for you.
What’s a good dose for anxiety?
It’s hard to recommend a specific dose, as it depends on the individual. Dosage may be affected by your weight, your body’s chemistry, and the level of your anxiety.
Since you can’t overdose on CBD, you have room to experiment. Start with a low dose — perhaps 20 mg a day — and increase if the effects aren’t working for you. Try increasing by about 5 mg per day until you find the perfect level for you.
You can also consult a doctor for a more exact dosage. You should always visit a doctor before starting on CBD for anxiety, especially to see how it will interact with any other medications you may be on.
Find Anxiety Relief Today
So, does CBD help anxiety? The answer is a resounding yes.
If you’re unhappy with the effects of your current anti-anxiety medication, or you’re on no anti-anxiety medication at all, try CBD today. It might just change your life forever.
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This article has been edited by GreenState staff.
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