Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychoactive chemical compound derived from cannabis plants. Although very closely related to THC (the compound in marijuana that makes people high), CBD does not (can not and will not at any dose) cause a high. This compound has been touted as of late to be a sort of “miracle drug.” Many users claim CBD provides relief for everything from nausea and insomnia to arthritis, general aches and pains.
CBD binds to receptors in a recently discovered body system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS provides support and regulation to numerous other body systems. So, if the ECS isn’t healthy and well, symptoms from other systems may manifest.
CBD and Daily Stresses
For many, the stresses of daily life are cyclical. You have good days and bad days. Challenges at home or at work may add burdens to your brain for a short period of time. But, generally speaking, you may feel mentally sound. CBD may help relieve the way you react and respond to the stresses of daily life, whether short- or long-term.
CBD and Anxiety
For individuals diagnosed with forms of anxiety and depression, CBD may also be a welcome addition. People experiencing social anxiety disorder (SAD), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression often have low levels of serotonin, a “mood-boosting” neurotransmitter in the brain. Increasing the production of serotonin may reduce feelings of anxiety and promote a sense of calm and peace of mind.
CBD also acts as an antipsychotic; studies show it can reduce the effects of THC, as well as potentially reduce symptoms caused by illnesses such as schizophrenia.
While studies have been conducted on animals, human trials are still relatively new. However, the animal trials have produced such encouraging results that human studies are gaining traction. Animal studies have shown a reduction in behavioral, as well as physiological (i.e. elevated heart rate), signs of anxiety.
One controlled, double-blind human study on the effectiveness of CBD on SAD showed “significantly decreased subject anxiety” when participants were given CBD instead of placebo before being tested with public speaking.
Another small social anxiety study conducted in Japan in 2019 showed not only a substantial decrease in anxiety, but more than 50% of the participants receiving CBD decided to also seek some form of treatment, while none of the placebo participants did.
More human studies and retrospective analyses are being conducted to continue testing the effectiveness of CBD on many forms of anxiety.
Is CBD Safe and Effective?
If you’ve decided to pursue CBD as a treatment method for your anxiety, you may be wondering just how safe and how effective it is. Like many substances, there are exceptions to every rule.
- Is CBD safe? Yes… almost always. There is a very low risk of side effects, a relatively low risk of drug interaction and a zero risk of overdose. Exercise due diligence. If you are on blood thinners or medications that caution against combining with grapefruit, consult your pharmacist.
- Is CBD effective? Yes… almost always. CBD has an impressive track record thus far. But it’s also a bidirectional product. This means different doses may have different effects for different people. It may cause alertness, focus and clarity at some doses or calmness, peace or even sleepiness for others. (This isn’t necessarily a bad thing!)
CBD to the Rescue?
It’s important to make sure the CBD you choose is high quality and that you are using an appropriate dose. That’s why it’s so important to discuss CBD and other medications and treatment options for your SAD, GAD or PTSD with your physician. It’s also critical to not discontinue the use of prescribed treatments without consulting your provider.
If you and your provider feel that CBD may be a step in the right direction for you, explore some of the high-quality CBD products offered by BIPRI, including PM Rest, which may promote healthy sleep and a greater sense of calm and relaxation. Use the subscribe and save option to ensure you never run out. For a limited time, save 15% with subscribe and save; plus, get a 15-minute consultation with our Clinical Director.