CBD and Anxiety
Do you suffer from anxiety? You’re not alone as Anxiety UK says that 6 million people in the UK suffer from anxiety or depression (approximately 3 million with depression as their primary problem and 3 million with an anxiety disorder.) Anxiety is a broad spectrum and can affect each one of us differently. From generalised anxiety disorder (GAD), Panic disorders, social anxiety disorder (SAD), specific phobias agoraphobia, Substance medication-induced anxiety, Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD). These are some of the most common types of anxiety people come across.
People can be affected by more than one type of disorder however, the most common is GAD. It is estimated that generalised anxiety disorder affects up to 5% of the UK population. Women are slightly more affected than men, and the condition is more common in people from the ages of 35 to 59. However, younger people can still suffer from this mental illness.
GAD can effect us psychological (mental) and physically.
Symptoms can be different from person to person, they include:
- feeling restless or worried
- having trouble concentrating or sleeping
- dizziness or heart palpitations
Feeling anxious at certain times is natural, before a presentation, big event and other stressful situations – it is okay to feel jittery or have the flutters.
But when you feel anxious about everyday stuff, your worries and fears are getting the better of you, or causing distress. It maybe time to go to the GP and speak to them with regards to your anxiety.
A GP will discuss your symptoms ask you questions about your fears, emotions and how you are feeling to see if you have an anxiety disorder.
So what causes Generalised Anxiety Disorder?
The exact cause of GAD is not entirely understood however, industry professionals believe that it may be caused due to combinations of different reasons.
- Your brain maybe hyperactive in parts of the brain which focus on emotions and behaviour
- A chemical imbalance of levels of serotonin and noradrenaline, these chemicals help regulate your mood
- You genes that you inherit from your parents – you’re estimated to be 5 times more likely to suffer or develop GAD if a family member also suffers
- Stressful or traumatic experiences, such as child abuse, domestic violence or bullying can lead to GAD
- Having a history of drug or alcohol misuse
- Suffering a long term illness such as chronic pain.
However, there are some simple methods which can help people manage their anxiety.
Psychological therapies can help people manage their anxiety, one of the main therapies is cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT). You can speak to your GP with regards to getting treatment.
Medicines such as antidepressants called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) can potentially help.
However, many people are turning to natural medicines / supplements such as CBD oil to improve their wellbeing and help to combat their anxiety. There are also some self help methods you can introduce in your life to control your anxiety / GAD.
- Exercising regularly
- Self help course / speaking to a professional
- Stop smoking
- Reduce the amount of caffeine intake throughout your day
- Cut down on the amount of alcohol you consume
- Yoga and mediation can help with piece of mind
So what is CBD?
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a cannabinoid which can be extracted from hemp flower and leaves (cannabis sativa .l) and cannabis plants. However, due to legality in the UK, CBD is extracted from hemp. When extracted the resin contains 100+ chemical compounds within it, CBD is one of the cannabinoids which can be founds.
Cannabinoids such as Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) the psychoactive ingredient associated with getting ‘stoned’. This is later filtered from the resin or left at trace amounts no more than 0.2% in the UK. This is due to the legality of THC, being a class B controlled substance. The resin is then diluted into a carrier oil being; MCT (coconut oil), hemp seed oil or other oils. You maybe thinking should I take CBD oil for my anxiety?
So how can CBD help anxiety?
CBD oil can help reduce stress, this is one of the major causes of anxiety / GAD. Humans have an endocannabinoid system (ECS), consuming CBD helps or body control ECS receptors in our body. ECS plays a major role in controlling homeostasis this helps our body maintain a healthy equilibrium / balance. Consequently CBD oil and other cannabinoid based products can lead to people having better control on their mood, improved relaxation, better sleep and a reduction in their anxiety.
Alongside that, our body also becomes more sensitive to serotonin by enhancing our 5htp1 receptor. CBD allows our 5htp1 receptor respond more efficiently to serotonin. Serotonin helps filter negative thoughts which can cause humans to feel anxious. Overall, studies have shown positive results for CBD as treatment for multiple anxiety disorders, including generalised anxiety disorder.
CBD works very similar to SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) which is a prescription based drug. Due to CBD having the ability to work alongside serotonin receptors to help balance your mood. Researchers have seen promising results from CBD as a short term remedy, but the long term benefits need further research.
CBD Oil Dosages for Anxiety
The FDA approves CBD as a food supplement for a broad spectrum of medical and psychological illnesses. However, they also have strong policies against the cannabidiol market advertising CBD as a ‘100% guaranteed’ cure all medical conditions.
CBD oil for anxiety is an approved treatment by the FDA however, experts still find it is difficult to accurately measure correct dosages. Reasons behind this is because there are many variables to take into consideration; height, age, weight, what you have eaten during the day all can affect on the dosage you need.
You may be wondering is CBD oil dangerous? Fortunately it is relatively harmless, as humans would need to consume 20,000mg at once to reach a toxic level. In comparison, this is the same as having two pints at the pub. The worst thing you can feel from the non – psychoactive substance is nauseous, light headed, dry mouth and fatigued. The side effects indicate that your dosage is too high and you should lower your dosage.
We advise trying Dr. Ed’s 5% 500mg calm CBD oil for anxiety. Starting with 5 drops in the morning and 5 at night. If you feel anxious during the day we recommend taking 5 more drops when needed. Slowly increase the amount each day from 5 – 10 until you reach a comfortable level. If you wanted a stronger dosage Dr. Ed has a 1000mg bottle as their strongest dosage. Reasons why we recommend Dr. Ed’s CBD for anxiety is because of it’s unique calming terpene blend.
Thus before trying out what dosage is right for you, we advise consulting your doctor beforehand. If you are looking to take CBD therapeutically and taking other medication, pregnant, breastfeeding, have allergies or mental health issues. Please consult your doctor beforehand.x
So What are Terpenes and How Can They Treat Anxiety?
Terpenes are a large naturally occurring diverse group of organic compounds. They can be found in a variety of plants, herbs and even in cannabis and hemp. Multiple terpenes can be present in cannabis, or a certain type of terpene can be more dominant. They are fragrant oils which dictate the aroma of a plant. It is what gives cannabis strains their signature smell and flavour. Terpenes do not get you high like THC however, they bind to receptors in our brain and give an increase in certain effects i.e. feeling calm. When adding a terpene blend to CBD oil you can naturally improve the taste of a product. Alongside, engineering the CBD oil to act in a certain way.
With this in mind, Dr. Ed cleverly has added a subtle terpene blend which naturally helps to calm the user. This make their CBD oil perfect for helping to treat anxiety. With their non waxy oil, they have created a good balance between terpene and CBD. This is what gives there product their unique citrus taste. If there are too many terpenes present, it can cause the flavour to be less pleasurable and enhances the product too much.
Should THC be Present in CBD Oil to help treat Anxiety?
When purchasing a CBD oil you may of come across THC free or with trace amounts of THC. THC at trace amounts will not get you high. However, when THC is present in CBD oil can help with creating an entourage effect. The entourage effect is caused when other cannabinoids are present and due this it allows each cannabinoid to respond more efficiently with in our ECS. So a little bit of THC helps the CBD work more effectively in our body.
However, each person responds differently from substance to substance. Some people maybe completely fine with a little bit of THC in their CBD oil. But for others this could potentially be anxiety inducing. As mentioned Dr Ed’s CBD oil is great for treating anxiety. This is because their calm CBD oil contains a broad spectrum of cannabinoids with out the THC. With it containing; CBD, cannabidivarin (CBDV), cannabigerol (CBD), cannabichromene (CBC) and cannabidiolic acid (CBDC) it allows you still to benefit from the entourage effect.
There is a lot of trial and error with CBD oil for anxiety and purchasing the right product can be hard. Not every CBD product may work to help your anxiety, this maybe due to multiple reasons. The product does not actually contain any CBD in it or at low amounts. To prevent this make sure the company you purchase the product publishes their test results. Product which work for one person doesn’t mean it will work well for another. This is because everyones chemical make up is different, and each product may a have different response from person to person.
Conclusion: Can CBD Oil help treat your anxiety?
To conclude products derived from cannabis and hemp have shown positive results as a therapeutic forms of treatment, with a multitude of medicinal benefits. On the 1st November 2018 cannabis in the UK was legalised for medicinal purposes. However, only a handful of patience have been prescribed cannabis as a form of medicine. Fortunately, CBD oil is legal to consume recreationally and medicinally.
CBD may not be a wonder cure for all types of anxiety. However, it has great potential to help people treat their anxiety and improve their overall wellbeing. When trying out a product make a mental log of how you are feeling and if the product is working for. If don’t have success trying another brand or a slightly higher dosage. We call this the Goldilocks principle, you have to find the right balance and work out what is right for you.
However, we recommend running it past your practitioner before taking CBD to try and combat your anxiety.
Overall we recommend starting with Dr. Ed’s 5% 500mg calm to help with anxiety.