cbd oi for anxiety CBD for Anxiety: What Do I Need to Know?
03 Apr 2020

CBD for Anxiety: What Do I Need to Know?

CBD has gotten quite the buzz lately (no pun intended). It’s suddenly being stocked on the shelves of every health food store, and it seems like CBD producers have no shortage of creative ways to mix it into foods and drinks. According to them, it can treat a laundry list of health problems, including anxiety. So are they right? 

Let’s take a look at the evidence on CBD for anxiety.

What is CBD?

CBD stands for cannabidiol. It’s one of many chemicals found in cannabis sativa plants, a species that includes hemp and marijuana. Another chemical found in these plants is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which is responsible for the “high” associated with marijuana.  Many, but not all, CBD products are extracted from hemp plants. The amount of THC in hemp tends to be very low, whereas in marijuana plants it can be much higher. 

In recent years, CBD has been marketed as a treatment for a number of medical conditions, including:

· Cancer

· Alzheimer’s disease

· Parkinson’s disease

· Anxiety

· Depression

· Chronic pain

However, the FDA has only approved one CBD medication, Epidiolex, for the treatment of 2 severe forms of epilepsy: Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome and Dravet Syndrome.

The FDA has started cracking down on CBD producers that it believes are making false statements about their products. It sent letters to several companies asking them to stop making unsupported claims that their products can treat conditions like Alzheimer’s, cancer, opioid withdrawal, chronic pain, and pet anxiety.

So, can CBD help anxiety?

At this time, it’s not clear how CBD treats anxiety. Some research has shown that it may work by affecting serotonin levels in the brain. Serotonin is a chemical in your body that plays a role in your mood, sleep, digestion, and behavior. Research suggests that serotonin levels can help treat anxiety and depression. Certain medications, such as antidepressants, work by regulating serotonin levels.

What does the research say about CBD?

Due to CBD’s rising popularity, a number of studies have examined it as a treatment for anxiety. 

· A 2011 study showed that CBD reduced anxiety and discomfort during public speaking in people with social anxiety disorder. 

· Another 2011 study found that CBD reduced anxiety symptoms in people with social anxiety disorder.

· A 2015 review of 49 studies found evidence that “strongly supported” CBD as a treatment for generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

· A study in 2019 used CBD to treat people who were struggling with anxiety and sleep. Almost 80% of people’s anxiety improved, and almost 70% reported improved sleep in the first month, but the results for sleep varied over time.

· A 2017 study didn’t find any evidence that CBD improved anxiety or paranoia, and it actually increased anxiety in some people.

These results are generally positive, but there are a few things to keep in mind. First, many of these studies have small sample sizes (even the ones with negative results). So the results don’t necessarily represent the general population. Second, these studies don’t look at the long-term effects of taking CBD for anxiety. This means we aren’t sure if taking the drug over time consistently reduces anxiety.

How should I take CBD?

There’s no known CBD dose for anxiety. Studies have found that doses of 300 mg to 600 mg reduce anxiety in people with social anxiety disorder. But more research is needed to determine an effective dose. 

When it comes to how to take it, there are many different forms and products including:

· Oils

· Capsules

· Drops

· Teas

· Vapor

· Candies

by Dan Wagener, MA

from goodrx.com