The market for CBD health and wellness products is growing since the federal-level legalization of hemp cultivation for medical and therapeutic purposes with the US Farm Act of 2018. Since then, people are using it to treat common ailments like headaches, muscle and joint pains, heal minor wounds and sunburn, reduce inflammations, etc. Besides, people are using it in CBD therapy for treating conditions like anxiety, due to cannabidiol’s anxiolytic effect. Here in this article, we will try to give you a better understanding of the use of CBD for treating anxiety, read on to know more.
What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a very essential survival emotion that helps us to manage and overcome stressful situations. This response is mainly triggered due to the anticipation of danger or discomfort. So, anxiety from emotional uncertainty is quite normal and must be acknowledged. But, for some people, the physiological response can intensify and can affect normal functioning. For example, some start to hyperventilate, sweat profusely, and even scream for simple triggers like seeing a spider, anticipating the outcome of a test result, etc. Also, there are cases where people experience chronic symptoms without valid reasons and it is considered to be a mental health problem.
CBD Therapy For Anxiety
CBD, also known as cannabidiol, derived from the hemp or cannabis plant is useful for treating anxiety disorders due to its anxiolytic effect on the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is a network of chemical messengers like hormones and neurotransmitters spread through the body. Also, this system is responsible for homeostatic functions like mood, appetite, sleep, core body temperature, memory, etc. It is safe for treating or managing mental health problems like anxiety disorders due to its lack of psychotropic effects. Moreover, legally available CBD therapy products are made from hemp plant strains that have less than 0.3% of THC. This concentration cannot have any mind-altering effects.
CBD And Anxiety
It has been found from scientific studies that CBD increases the serotonin levels in the brain, low levels of this neurotransmitter are common in people suffering from anxiety disorders and depression. Cannabidiol acts as a serotonin reuptake inhibitor and increases its levels in the body. Also, it increases levels of the neurotransmitter anandamide and this improves your mood. So, CBD is a better option than pharmaceutical drugs like antidepressants due to its lack of side effects.
CBD therapy for anxiety is also useful because it helps in managing symptoms due to anxiety, like stress and palpitation. CBD’s effect on the ECS also has an influence on the endocrine system which is a network of hormones and the glands secreting them. Because of this, cannabidiol reduces the adrenal gland’s secretion of the stress hormone cortisol. Apart from this, cannabidiol enhances the calming effect of GABA through allosteric modulation of GABA receptors. As a result, it lowers the increased heart rate that is a common symptom in many anxiety disorders. However, you must consult with the physician before using it, as everyone doesn’t require it because of the differences in physiology.
Consuming Cannabidiol (CBD) For Anxiety
CBD for anxiety can be consumed in different ways, but one of the best methods for medical purposes is to use it in the form of oil. CBD oil is a popular product due to the versatility in its usage, i.e. you can easily adjust the dosage, can be consumed along with edibles, drinks or you can consume it directly. Furthermore, when buying CBD oil for anxiety you must check certain parameters to ensure that it is of the best quality, to experience maximum benefits and they are listed below.
Full-Spectrum CBD Or CBD isolate: The CBD oil can be either a full-spectrum or CBD isolate product and this can affect its dosage. The former is made using whole hemp extract and has all the natural cannabinoids found in the plant. Because of this, there is the entourage effect which enhances the individual effect of each cannabinoid, including CBD. But you should be aware that it will also contain 0.3% THC, as it is also naturally found in the hemp plant. CBD isolate is 99% pure CBD and it has no entourage effect.
The Extraction Method: Another important parameter that determines the quality of CBD oil for anxiety is the extraction method used. One of the popular methods used is CO2 extraction. Here supercritical carbon dioxide is used because of its highly adjustable solvating properties. This is the method used by most of the reputed manufacturers of CBD oil. In this method, the yield of cannabidiol (CBD) is high compared to other methods like solvent extraction, olive oil extraction, etc. Moreover, the final product will be highly pure without any impurities in it, making it an ideal choice.
On a final note, CBD therapy for anxiety is a viable option compared to pharmaceutical psychiatric drugs due to its health benefits coupled with very minimal side effects. However, keep in mind that it cannot cure the condition, but is only effective in managing the symptoms of anxiety. For more information, see this blog about the effects of CBD on mental health.