In a poll done by Gallup, it was reported that one in seven Americans has tried some form of CBD product. Relief from anxiety was number two on the list, only coming in second to helping with pain. However, many people remain skeptical about taking CBD for stress and anxiety issues. So it’s definitely worth taking a closer look at this topic to see precisely how CBD may help if you’re dealing with anxiety.
How CBD Works in Your Body
CBD is a cannabinoid, a special compound found in hemp plants. And cannabinoids are fascinating because they mimic endocannabinoids. Those are naturally produced by your body and are part of the endocannabinoid system (ECS). This complex cell-signaling system runs through your entire body and connects to your central nervous system and peripheral nervous system.
If you’re unfamiliar with the ECS, that’s OK. It’s actually a relatively recent discovery, first written about in the early 1990s. When it comes to the ECS and cannabinoids, the critical thing to note is the presence of unique receptors that allow cannabinoids like CBD to talk with your body. Researchers have identified two of these receptors in the ECS, and they’ve been labeled as CB1 and CB2 receptors. The effect CBD ends up having on your body depends on where the receptors are that it connects with. Interestingly, researchers found CB2 receptors in the part of the brain called the amygdala, which is generally believed to handle fear and anxiety. This may be why a lot of the research seems to favor CBD as a potential treatment for various anxiety-related issues.
What the Research Says About CBD & Anxiety
When it comes to research about anxiety, it’s important to note there are several types.Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), often described as chronic anxiety, is when an afflicted person suffers from feelings of extreme worry and tension, regardless of whether there is a good reason or not. Other more specific forms of anxiety include panic disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and social anxiety disorder.
Various reviews of recent research and studies related to CBD and anxiety all show promising results. A case study with a clinical population examined CBD’s potential to treat generalized anxiety disorder and its effects on sleep disorders. Researchers noted that 79% of participants experienced improved anxiety symptoms after a month of daily CBD servings. Another review of existing data and findings reported that CBD showed great promise in treating occasional anxiety experienced by healthy volunteers and those with generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder and PTSD.
CBD also showed promise as a treatment in a study conducted among Japanese teenagers suffering from a social anxiety disorder. There are also strong recommendations from researchers for further research into the potential of CBD as a therapy for individuals who suffer from panic disorder. Perhaps the most promising aspect of all this research is that data continues to suggest that CBD is safe, well-tolerated and with few adverse effects, and that it demonstrates no potential for abuse or dependence in humans.
Not Feeling the Benefits Yet?
If you’ve tried CBD for anxiety but haven’t felt any of the benefits, there could be a few reasons why. First of all, you might not be taking your CBD drops consistently. Ideally, you should be taking your recommended serving daily. However, we’re big fans of incorporating it as a part of our morning routine. A dropper-full under the tongue and we’re good to go!
How much CBD you should take will vary, depending on various personal factors, but doing research in this area will also be beneficial. Starting low and increasing your serving size every week can help you get to your ideal amount. And, of course, there are different ways to take CBD. When it comes to CBD drops, it’s easiest to take them sublingually. However, if that’s not your speed, adding them to your coffee is always a good alternative as well.
Other Ways to Help Your Anxiety
While CBD is fantastic, it’s important to remember that it’s not a panacea. That means it’s not a solution or remedy for every problem. So, when it comes to anxiety, you’ll be doing yourself a favor by incorporating other positive methods and changes into your lifestyle that will help you out. Ditching bad habits like smoking and excessive alcohol or caffeine intake are both helpful. Simple routines, regular exercise, a healthy diet and proper sleep will all benefit you, too. And, most importantly, if it all feels like too much, reach out for help. Whether it is family, friends or a mental health professional, sometimes what we need most is another person to get us through it.