Anxiety and other similar mental health issues aren’t the rarities that you may think. Statistics show that on some level, 20% of the population deals with some type of anxiety. However, there’s a lot of variance here that can either make it a mild issue in certain situations, or a serious problem that can impact your life.
Many people use a combination of conventional drugs and lifestyle changes to better combat anxiety, but one surprising tool you may have in your arsenal for this issue is legal CBD products. Note that CBD and medicinal marijuana aren’t one and the same, and CBD is on the tip of becoming a mainstream form of medication both for mental health and other issues like pain management.
Part of the issue with CBD stems from the fact that by the nature of its origin, there’s going to be a lot of confusion on exactly how well it can help. This is why it’s important to know exactly how CBD works as well as how these traits can provide help with mental health and anxiety.
When you buy a CBD-based product, you are buying something made with chemicals known as cannabinoids. Technically, our body already produces cannabinoids in certain situations. These include when we have feelings of relaxation and security, or after we get a good night’s sleep/finish a workout. Chances are you probably recognize the “feel-good” feeling you get after one of these moments. To stimulate these, cannabinoids attach to different receptors throughout the body’s systems. Many aren’t aware of the reach cannabinoids have. This set of chemicals and receptors help do things like reduce the amount of inflammation in the body, control how we feel pain, and impact our digestive system.
One thing that we need to dispel is the idea that CBD makes you high. As we mentioned before, cannabinoids can cause a good feeling, but this is very different than the psychoactive high that many people associate with medicinal marijuana. The major reason for this is that the bulk of CBD products are derived from hemp. Hemp is a “cousin” of the marijuana plant but has little to no THC, which is the chemical that causes a lot of the reactions we associate with traditional marijuana. Because of this difference, you can buy hemp-derived CBD oils and products legally in all 50 states.
A similar issue we should mention is whether or not taking CBD for mental health exposes you to problems with drug testing. Generally, this isn’t the case though. Because CBD has minimal THC, you likely won’t be selected for a follow-up test. Along with this, the follow-up test for marijuana is too focused to give you a positive result just from taking CBD. For those who want to play it safe, it’s a good idea to talk about CBD oil before using it, just in case there are any potential problems.
CBD is available in a variety of different forms, from a CBD oil tincture to capsules to even infused foods like CBD gummies. Your doctor will guide you to the right delivery system based on your needs and preferences.
CBD And Mental Health Support
With the introduction out of the way, we can begin to discuss whether or not CBD is a true solution when it comes to helping people with mental health issues and anxiety. There’s plenty of anecdotal evidence out there, but we’re beginning to see some scientific evidence as well. As an example, several studies show that CBD usage for animals and humans can reduce autism symptoms, feelings of isolation, and even some of the common markers of post-traumatic stress disorder.
So, we’ve established that CBD can help with mental health, but how is a little murkier. Some members of the scientific community theorize that it’s because CBD can help support the natural function of the hippocampus. This part of the brain plays a role both in memory and healthy emotions. Other studies show CBD being able to play a similar role to conventional drugs targeting social anxiety, as well as other issues like psychosis and child epilepsy.
One thing that everyone should be aware of is that utilizing CBD is only one part of a healthy mental health regimen. You don’t want to end up replacing things like therapy, stress relief practices, or changing your lifestyle and diet. Like other supplements, CBD is meant to be just that: a supplement. You also want to make sure that you talk to your doctor or medical professional if you’re thinking about CBD. Also, keep them in the loop about your progress after using it. This gives you access to their knowledge on the subject while keeping you safe if any issues arise.
On the topic of safety, it bears mentioning that CBD has been studied to be safe in both children and adults. Unlike many conventional opioids, CBD helps to lower pain without impacting breathing in any way. While everyone’s ideal dose is going to be different based on their body chemistry and needs, your average dose can range from 10mg to 100mg, and you won’t see any other side effects. What could be a bigger problem is how CBD interacts with other medications, so be sure to talk to your doctor. Granted, you want to do this with any dietary supplement.
If you’re interested in CBD for mental health, stopping by a health store or dispensary will likely show not only conventional oils, but several CBD-infused foods or other options like CBD gems. These can be useful, but if you have a specific mental health plan you want to fold CBD into, it can be difficult to get a consistent dosage out of these, even from some of the higher-quality options out there. This is why some experts recommend focusing on CBD oil, just because it’s easier to ensure that you’re getting the right amount at all times.