Depression and anxiety are two mental health conditions that tend to appear simultaneously. In fact, research studies show that over 45% of people with one mental health issue usually meet the criteria of two or more other disorders. While these conditions are manageable, there’s still no cure for them. It’s for this reason that a lot of people are turning to alternative medicine such as CBD. This is article provides a review of CBD for anxiety and Depression.
Understanding Cannabidiol for Anxiety and Depression
So what is CBD? CBD or cannabidiol is a compound that has many health benefits. It’s one of the most popular compounds from the cannabis plant. CBD is nonpsychoactive and this means that it doesn’t alter the way the mind functions.
Depression is a condition that’s characterized by feeling down, sad, and upset, more than normal. It affects the body both emotionally and physically. An individual may end up experiencing physical effects like chronic fatigue, change in weight, difficulty sleeping, and pain or aches. Emotionally, they may lose interest in life, feeling hopeless, restless, and irritability among others.
On the other hand, anxiety is characterized by a constant feeling of fear or worry. It normally causes physical and behavioral changes. Generalized anxiety disorder features symptoms such as racing heart, easily getting fatigued, difficulty concentrating, and sleeping difficulties among others.
How Effective CBD Is For Anxiety and Mental Health?
There are so many health benefits of CBD and this includes improving mental health. There are several research studies that highlight the effectiveness of this compound in treating anxiety and depression. CBD normally interacts with the serotonin receptors found in the brain.
It should be noted that serotonin normally affects an individual’s emotional state. Clinically, low levels of serotonin in the body have been linked to depression. However, studies indicate that CBD has anti-depressive and anti-anxiety properties.
Thus, it can help to treat the seasonal affective disorder, sleep disorder, and PTSD among others. However, there isn’t enough scientific evidence to support this. Therefore, there is still a need for more research studies.
How Safe Is It to Use CBD or Cannabidiol?
Cannabidiol has a good safety profile. It’s now clear that there are many health benefits of CBD. People are taking CBD-based products to treat a variety of symptoms. It can help to reduce symptoms of anxiety-related behaviours such as:
- Social anxiety disorder
- Panic disorder
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder
- General anxiety disorder
But even though CBD is highly effective, it still has some downsides. You can experience possible side effects as a result of CBD interaction with drugs. Both drugs and CBD are metabolized in the liver. So if you are taking certain medications and then go ahead and take CBD, the possibility of interactions is very high. Some of the most common ones include:
- HIV antivirals
- Immune modulators among others
Note: if you are under any medication, make sure that you first consult with your healthcare provider. The same applies to anti-depressants and antipsychotics for mental health problems. The best thing about using CBD is that its non-habit forming. So, you can use it for as long as possible without it leading to dependency.
How Legal Is CBD To Use?
You can buy and use CBD without a prescription. This is per the current legality of CBD. With the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD became legal at the federal level. This means that you can buy it in all the 50 states in the US without facing legal charges. However, there is a catch. The CBD oil product should contain less than 0.3% THC. Note that THC is a psychoactive compound. It’s normally associated with the “high” feeling that marijuana tends to produce.
It’s also important to check the laws in your state and any travel destination before buying or using CBD. This is because the FDA has still not yet approved the use of non-prescription products. As of June 2018, the FDA approved the use of CBD to treat two types of epilepsy. These are two rare and severe forms of epilepsy. So, the FDA approved the use of epidiolex, a CBD-based drug to treat patients (age two years and older) who suffer from these forms of epilepsy.
So, Should I Use CBD If I Have Anxiety Disorder?
It should be noted that both depression and anxiety tend to appear together. So, if you have one of these conditions, the possibility of you developing the other is very high. Research studies and consumer reviews indicate that CBD can help to manage both.
A study found that people who took around 600 mg of CBD experienced fewer symptoms of social anxiety. This is contrary to those people who took a placebo. In another research study, those who took a smaller dose i.e. 300 mg of CBD still experienced reduced levels of anxiety.
There are suggestions that indicate that anxiety may have a direct link to low serotonin. From the above information, CBD interacts with serotonin receptors. So, this definitely explains the benefits it offers people suffering from anxiety.
The Bottom Line
Anxiety and depression tend to occur concurrently, just like most emotional health issues. Neither of these conditions has a cure at the moment. However, you can manage their symptoms and still lead an almost normal life. CBD is one of the best sources of alternative medicine for mental health issues. It has anti-anxiety and anti-depressant properties. It calms the mind and relaxes the body.
However, it’s very important that you consult with your doctor first. This is because CBD normally interacts with certain medications. It may result in unwanted side effects, thereby, worsening your health condition.