CBD Oil for Anxiety: Can CBD Reduce Anxiety?
CBD Oil for Anxiety: Can CBD Reduce Anxiety?
Feeling anxious? Anxiety is something everyone experiences at times, difficult to manage and with no cure. Many sufferers are turning to CBD looking for a natural remedy and research suggests it may help.
For some feelings of anxiety can be constant, overwhelming or out of proportion to the situation and this can affect your daily life.
According to the Mental Health Foundation, 74 per cent of us have felt so stressed at some point over the past year that we’ve felt overwhelmed and unable to cope.
Taking steps to reduce stress – linked to anxiety, depression, insomnia, heart disease, poor immunity and digestive problems – is, the most important aspect of our health that we can change, causing a ripple effect of wellness for your mind and body.
What is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a feeling of unease, like a worry or fear, that can be mild or severe. Everyone feels anxious from time to time and it usually passes once the situation is over.
Anxiety in the context of survival makes a lot of sense if you think about it – we’re not terribly strong, we can’t run very fast, and we don’t have ferocious fangs or claws to protect ourselves with. Only constant vigilance has ensured our survival for tens of thousands of years.
But today, we feel and experience the same unease and biological reactions often unconsciously as it is programmed into our brains. Anxiety is brought on by the stresses of modern life and can make our heart race, we might feel sweaty, shaky or short of breath.
When anxiety becomes a problem, our worries can be out of proportion with relatively harmless situations. It can feel more intense or overwhelming, and interfere with our everyday lives and relationships.
And there are no shortage of things to be anxious about these days! Anxiety about work, anxiety about sex, anxiety about relationships, anxiety about money and family… it can quickly pile up and overwhelm us.
Many people have begun to supplement their mental health support with herbal remedies, including CBD. And there’s good evidence that CBD can help a great deal – but to understand why, it helps to know how anxiety works in the first place.
Negative effects of anxiety
if you’re under enough stress for long enough, you may develop chronic anxiety even if nobody else in your family has and there are a number of negative symptoms which come with having anxiety.
High levels of stress hormones are known to cause or aggravate many serious health problems, including:
- Heart disease
- Digestive problems
- Weakened immune system
- Weight gain
- Muscular tension
- Endocannabinoid imbalance
Treating anxiety with modern medicine
Anxiety disorders are most commonly treated with the benzodiazepine class of drugs - medications like clonazepam (Klonopin), diazepam (Valium) and alprazolam (Xanax). All of these medications have serious abuse and addiction potential, and withdrawing from benzodiazepines can be deadly; even withdrawal from powerful opioids (both legal and illegal painkillers, including heroin) is considered less dangerous.
Benzodiazepines are notorious for causing massive weight gain and permanently slowing the metabolism, they leave some people feeling like ‘zombies,’ and can cause impaired coordination and trembling, making the patient seem drunk and/or drugged. When combined with alcohol, they can cause death even at relatively low doses.
What is CBD Oil?
CBD is short for cannabidiol. It is a phytocannabinoid which was discovered in 1940. It is one of the hundreds of naturally occurring compounds found in industrial hemp plants. CBD oil is extracted from the hemp plant using super critical CO2 extraction to get the most pure plant extract retaining the whole plant goodness.
Is CBD Oil legal?
In the UK, CBD oil which contains less than 0.2% THC is totally legal. The vast majority of CBD products are made from industrial hemp with negligible THC content, typically below 0.06%. You should be aware that most CBD products you’ll find for sale don’t advertise their health benefits – that would require them to be licensed by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, which can be a long and expensive process. Instead, they’re marketed as nutritional or cosmetic supplements.
CBD’s Impact On Anxiety
Research suggests that cannabidiol influences our neurotransmitter systems, neural regeneration and a phenomenon called extinction learning.
How CBD works:
Effects on serotonin. CBD binds to the serotonin receptor that is thought to play the largest role in moderating anxiety.
Effects on the endocannabinoid system. Endocannabinoids, play a major role in many essential functions, both physical and mental to bring the body back to balance.
Under stress, the body’s system of cannabinoids and corresponding receptors can become unbalanced and dysregulated. CBD may help restore balance to the ECS by boosting production of the endocannabinoids that are necessary for maintaining so many essential processes.
Effects on neural regeneration. Chronic stress can damage neurons (brain cells). Over time, it may even shrink the brain. Research suggest the brain can actually regrow neurons that have been damaged or destroyed. Studies suggest that CBD may encourage neural regeneration, especially in the hippocampus — a part of the brain associated with memory, learning and mood.
Effects on extinction learning. Studies on both rodents and humans indicate that CBD can facilitate the extinction learning process, supporting us to let go of anxiety triggers more readily.
How Should You Take CBD?
How to take CBD depends on the type of CBD products you buy.
We recommend our 5% Full Spectrum CBD Oil is a good option for beginners.
CBD Oil Treatment Tips
To get the most out of CBD oil, there are some critical tips you need to follow:
- Have a method of accurately measuring your CBD dose. Having a constant CBD dose will ensure your body has access to the same amount of CBD each time. CBD oil tinctures usually come with a pipette and a recommended number of drops twice per day.
- You should take CBD at the same time each day. This provides your body with a reliable supply of CBD at the same time and will allow it to become a habit. Having it with a coffee in the morning and warm drink before bed, if you already do this will make the habit even easier to form as you are piggybacking on an existing habit.
- Try to buy full spectrum oils and opt for cold-pressed products. This process preserves the properties of CBD.
- Purchase quality CBD products from reliable and reputable brands that follow the guidelines.
- It’s recommended to talk to your doctor before making any change to your diet. While there have been no adverse effects reported by those that have tried CBD oil, you can't ignore the fact that it can interact with other prescription medications.
CBD potential side effects
CBD is generally considered safe. However, some people who take CBD do experience some side effects. The most common are diarrhoea, fatigue, appetite changes, and weight changes.
CBD can also interact with other medications or supplement you’re taking, so it’s always wise to ask a doctor about starting CBD – just as you would with any other medication.
Is CBD Addictive?
According to a recent report by the World Health Organization (WHO), CBD is not addictive and it has no potential for abuse or dependence. This is mainly because CBD does not contain any addictive substances, in contrast to THC and some cannabinoids which contain such and are, therefore, capable of being addictive.
Closing thoughts on CBD for anxiety
CBD is one of the naturally occurring chemical substances found in industrial hemp possesses immense health benefits in treating conditions such as anxiety, depression, mood disorders, and inflammatory diseases.
CBD oil helps to significantly improve depressive symptoms and the individual’s quality of life. However, it should be noted that CBD does not provide a cure for the disorder, but it may help offer the patient relief and a better quality of life.