CBD Guides: Can CBD help with generalised anxiety disorder?
We examine the science behind taking CBD for anxiety to see if it could help with the symptoms The post CBD Guides: Can CBD help with generalised anxiety disorder? appeared first on Cannabis Health News.
Anxiety is one of the most common mental health conditions in the UK and it can have a debilitating effect on a person’s daily life. Could CBD help to ease the symptoms?
Anxiety is a natural reaction to stress creating fear or apprehensive feeling about what will happen. While anxiety can happen to everyone from time to time, there are some people who struggle with strong feelings of anxiety every day. These feelings of anxiety can be a symptom of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) or social anxiety disorder.
GAD is a life-long condition that can leave people feeling anxious most days or struggling to relax. The NHS estimates that it can affect up to 5 per cent of the population. It is also thought to affect more women than men.
What are the symptoms of generalised anxiety disorder?
The psychological symptoms of generalised anxiety disorder can be restlessness, a feeling of dread, feeling on edge, difficulty concentrating and irritability. Patients with GAD may remove themselves from situations where they feel these emotions most such as social situations or work.
It can also cause physical feelings such as dizziness, fast or irregular heartbeat, dry mouth, shortness of breath, stomach aches or excessive sweating. All of which can be exhausting.
What is CBD?
CBD is a cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant. It is non-toxic unlike the cannabinoid tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
We have different receptors throughout our bodies. It is thought that CBD interacts with these receptors by giving them signals. In particular, it may interact with the receptors, CB1 and CB2 which are found in the immune and nervous systems.
How does CBD work for anxiety?
CBD is thought to interact with the receptors in the brain potentially sending signals to the neurotransmitter, serotonin. There is still a lot of research needed in this area to understand how the two interact.
Serotonin is the neurotransmitter responsible for your mental health and lower levels are sometimes associated with depression or anxiety. This is why the prescription treatment for anxiety is usually selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI).
Reducing anxiety in SAD
A study examining the effect of CBD on people with Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) found that it may help to reduce anxiety.
SAD is a social disorder where people can feel panic at the thought of social settings or speaking to groups of people. Participants in this study were given 400 mg of CBD or a placebo. The researchers reported that those in the group given the CBD recorded lower levels of anxiety.
Improving sleep quality
Another study examined if CBD could help to improve sleep quality while reducing anxiety. The study involved 72 participants with 47 experiencing anxiety of which a further 25 had poor quality sleep. Each participant was given a daily dose of 25mg of CBD then asked to self-report how they felt afterwards. The researchers recorded that 79.2 per cent recorded reduced anxiety while 66.7 per cent said their sleep had improved after the first month.
How do I take CBD for anxiety?
There is no right or wrong way to take CBD for anxiety. It comes down to lifestyle, personal preference and availability.
Here are three of the most popular ways to take CBD
Edibles are great if you aren’t a fan of the hemp taste that some oils may have. They are available in many different versions from brownies to gummy bears. It’s also a discreet way to have a dose of CBD without anyone knowing.
However, there are some downsides to edibles
They can often be found in sugary sweets which can be difficult if someone is following a particular diet or reducing their sugar intake. Edibles can take longer to work so if you need a quick dose of CBD then this isn’t the method for you.
A large percentage of CBD can be lost in the digestion process meaning that you may absorb less than the amount you had intended.
Patches are a good choice if you often forget to take oils or capsules on a regular basis.
They can be applied to the skin easily and left for a day or two depending on the brand. They are designed to be discreet and forgotten about. The CBD in the patch is absorbed through the skin and into the system.
Oil or tincture
Oils and tinctures are the popular way of taking CBD.
There isn’t much difference between the two as they are both ingested through the mouth. To take, pop a small drop of oil or tinctures under the tongue allowing it to absorb for a few minutes before swallowing.
The main difference between tinctures and oils is the carrier. Tinctures use alcohol whereas oil is, well, oil. Oils normally use a carrier such as hemp, rapeseed or flaxseed. Tinctures will usually have a sweetener or flavouring added to mask the bitterness of the alcohol.
What is the best CBD for anxiety?
There isn’t one particular method or type of CBD that works for anxiety. It comes down to personal preference and lifestyle. If the above methods don’t appeal then there are loads of other ways to take it including bath bombs, skincare, massage oil or even capsules.
There is bound to be a method for everyone.
How quickly does CBD work for anxiety?
While it does depend on different factors, some are faster than others.
If you vape or use oil then it will be faster acting than edibles. It is also worth noting that weight may also play a part in how quickly a dose affects you. It’s best to start with a low dose letting it build up over time. A lot of people when new to CBD expect it to work instantly as if it was the same as paracetamol. CBD takes time to build up in the system.
Keeping a record of the different effects you feel can help you to determine future doses, what brands work for you and what methods you prefer.
Would CBD help with depression and anxiety?
CBD is also thought to help with depression as well as anxiety. The two conditions are usually closely linked.
A study from 2011 examined the effect of CBD on people with SAD. The participants were given either 400 mg of oral CBD or a placebo. Those who were in the CBD group reported feeling less anxiety.
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