Anxiety and depression are often misunderstood conditions that afflict many, many people. In fact, up to one out of three people will be affected by an anxiety disorder or depression during their lifetime. While some have success combatting the conditions with pharmaceutical drugs such as SSRI antidepressants, these really shouldn’t be relied on in the long-term as they come with numerous harmful side-effects.
If you are one the millions that suffer from anxiety or depression, however, there is hope. CBD, the non-intoxicating cannabinoid cousin of THC, is proving itself to be an effective anti-anxiolytic and antidepressant and is already helping thousands to manage their conditions and once again enjoy life.
A potent calming effect, along with a slew of other health benefits, is why CBD-containing products such as CBD oil have become so popular. This article will explain how CBD works to reduce anxiety and depression, how you can use CBD oil to treat these conditions, as well as give you our 5 top CBD products for beating your demons and improving your mental health.
5 Best CBD Oils For Anxiety
This American-made CBD oil soft-gels from renowned CBD brand Green Roads (you can read our Green Roads CBD Review to learn more about it) features a trusted formula by a licensed pharmacist with 20+ years’ experience. Ideal for sublingual use, Green Roads CBD Soft-gels consists of a broad-spectrum hemp extract, 99% pure CBD crystalline isolate, hemp seed oil and MCT Oil base.
Made with one of the best methods of CBD extraction, this CBD Oil Tincture by CBDmd is a great way to relax your self. A full spectrum CBD tincture grew and made in the US with 99% purity levels and less than 0,3% of THC. It comes in different sizes (30mL or 60mL) bottles with a dropper to make it easier to take. It also has different flavors like mint, orange, berry or natural; and different potencies to choose the best strength to mitigate your anxiety problems. Only by reading cbdMD reviews you could tell that this oil is very effective!
Calm CBD Gummies are a delicious, easy-to-take gummy that combines full spectrum CBD, naturally derived fruit taste, and an effective combination of hardworking and time-tested active components. The robust advantages of high potency CBD you’re familiar with and trust are further enhanced by tension-taming L-Theanine and Ashwagandha
The vegan friendly Calm CBD Gummies from Just Live are expertly prepared with a combination of key components that fight the effects of stress and mental strain. Our proprietary Calm Blend, which consists of ingredients shown to enhance serotonin synthesis, reduce stress levels, and create a calm state of mind to help you resist the pressures of life.
CBD is one of the most underrated and under-utilized natural remedies available. From anxiety and pain to insomnia and restlessness, CBD may help you relax in a manner that’s good for your mind and body. This slender can of CBD contains stress-busting full-spectrum hemp extract, ashwagandha root, L-theanine, and chamomile tea to provide a lot of calmness. It also includes antioxidants to boost your immunity and GABA to relieve anxiety—all without any added sugar or calories. Cheers for an excellent everyday chill!
CBD Benefits for Anxiety
When using cannabis compounds with therapeutic intentions, there is some evidence that consuming CBD and THC together offers an enhanced effect, known as the entourage effect. When it comes to treating anxiety and depression, however, it seems that CBD alone can be more useful.
The most obvious reason is that, unlike THC, CBD won’t get you high. This is beneficial when treating anxiety as the psychotropic effects of THC can sometimes cause feelings of paranoia and intensify anxiety. Additionally, CBD has been found to play an important role in regulating a huge number of physiological processes such as sleep and the inflammatory response. In this way, CBD is able to improve your overall health while also inducing a sense of relaxation.
Let’s take a closer look at the other main benefits of CBD for anxiety and depression…
1. CBD increases serotonin
CBD works through multiple molecular pathways to exert its effects, many of which are still being detailed by scientists. Having said that, studies have shown that CBD has a strong binding affinity for the 5-HT1A serotonin receptor.
This study from 2014 found that by directly activating the serotonin receptors of rats, high doses of CBD had a potent antidepressant and anti-anxiety effect. A serotonin deficiency is widely thought to play a role in many mood disorders, particularly depression. Therefore, by boosting its production, CBD seems to offer an effective means of improving mood and alleviating some of the symptoms associated with depression and anxiety.
2. CBD relieves physical symptoms of anxiety and depression
Anxiety and depression are not merely psychological disorders, as is often thought. When you get anxious, for example, you experience a wide variety of physical symptoms including increased heart rate, tense muscles, nausea and headaches. These symptoms, which are difficult to hide, only serve to increase anxiety in sufferers and can make life even more stressful.
Remarkably, many people report that CBD has a profound effect on the physical symptoms of anxiety and depression. This alone can make dealing with these conditions a lot more manageable.
3. CBD reduces social anxiety
One of the biggest difficulties of anxiety and depression can be the social anxiety that so often accompanies such disorders. We all get self-conscious in public from time to time, but when these feelings spiral out of control and become overwhelming, that’s when it can become a real issue.
One of the most interesting studies to come out of the research into CBD is this one from 2010. Two groups of people were put through a public speaking exercise, with one group given CBD 1-2 hours beforehand. Researchers found that the group that was administered CBD prior to giving their public speech experienced “significantly reduced anxiety, cognitive impairment and discomfort in their speech performance, and significantly decreased alert in their anticipatory speech.”
4. CBD can help you to recover from a trauma
CBD has also been found to help your nervous system recover after a traumatic event. As trauma can play a big part in mood disorders such as depression and anxiety, it is now widely thought by scientists that CBD could be a useful treatment for helping people deal with such conditions as PTSD.
5. CBD is safe and well-tolerated (unlike commonly prescribed antidepressants)
One of the most attractive reasons for people turning to CBD oil and away from traditional antidepressant drugs is CBD’s unique safety profile. A number of studies have confirmed that CBD is well-tolerated and produces little side-effects in humans, even at extremely high doses.
And when you consider the many negative side-effects of antidepressants like SSRIs, it highlights the immense value that CBD has in offering a safe, all-natural and effective alternative.
CBD Dosage For Anxiety
When first starting out with CBD oil for anxiety-related disorders, many people ask how much they should take. While it is clearly an important topic, let us begin by stating that there is little actual scientific evidence that dictates how much CBD you should take for any given condition. CBD is a complex natural remedy and, therefore, can affect everyone differently.
Having said that, there is some information out there that will help you to decide what dose to start with. After all, hundreds of thousands of people, if not more, are now using CBD oil to successfully treat their anxiety and depression, so useful guidelines can be gleaned from their experiences.
One very important factor to consider is that finding the right dose will be personal to you. We all have a unique physiology and things like your height, weight and current health status can all play a role in how CBD works for you. If you do currently have a medical condition, it is advisable to consult your doctor before taking CBD oil.
Once you have been given the all-clear from your healthcare provider, it’s time to decide your starting dose. Ideally, it is always best to begin with a small dose. If after an hour or two you feel no effects or signs that your symptoms are decreasing, you can then gradually increase the dose. Once you find your sweet spot and you notice your symptoms wane, there is no need to increase the dose further.
A good starting dose may be somewhere between 1 and 5mg (micrograms). From there, you should increase the dose by a couple of mg each time. Judging by personal accounts posted online, it seems that doses of between 5-50mg once- or twice-a-day are effective at reducing anxiety. Again, some people will respond well to very low doses, while others will need much larger doses. Listen to your body and act accordingly.
How To Use CBD For Anxiety
So now you know how CBD oil can help with mood-disorders as well as how to find the right dose for you, but how should you use CBD oil to treat anxiety? Well, there are a number of application methods that can be effective. In this section, we will go over each one and discuss the pros and cons so that you can make an informed decision as to which is best for you and your situation.
- Sublingual: Probably the most common way to take CBD oil, and the method that most CBD companies advise, is to put a few drops under your tongue. Here, your sublingual tissue readily absorbs the CBD oil straight into your bloodstream. The advantages of this method are that it is fast-acting and efficient. You can also expect the effects to last a few hours. The downside? Many CBD oils do not taste great, especially the unflavored ones.
- Swallow: If the taste of CBD oil is not for you, then you can always try mixing it with some food or drink and swallowing it. This method is not the most efficient as the CBD must pass through your gastrointestinal system before it can reach your blood. This is a long journey from the mouth and not all the CBD will make it. Additionally, effects can take some time to kick in for the same reasons.
- Topical: Applying CBD oil topically is usually reserved for treating localized pain and injuries and not for conditions such as anxiety. It is, therefore, best to stick to the two previously mentioned application methods.
Anxiety and depression are all to common conditions. Many learn to cope with them, although traditional treatments bring their own risks. Luckily, however, modern medical research is discovering the powerful calming effects of CBD to offer a safe and effective alternative.
In fact, many thousands are already benefiting from CBD oil. And while the research is in its early stages and a full understanding of the mechanisms at play is far from complete, given its remarkable safety profile, you really have nothing to lose by trying CBD oil and everything to gain.