Does CBD Help with Anxiety?
Table of Contents
What is CBD?
CBD or Cannabidiol, is one of over 140 compounds in the cannabis or hemp plant that has been linked to numerous health benefits.
Unlike THC (tetrahydrocannabinol,) the psychoactive cannabinoid in cannabis that causes the “high,” CBD is not a psychotropic, so it won’t make you feel “loopy” or “stoned.” We discuss other health benefits of CBD in another article, so please check it out to learn more about what CBD is and how it may help people manage symptoms of different conditions. CBD and other similar compounds found in hemp or cannabis are known as Cannabinoids, and CBD is the most abundant cannabinoid in the hemp plant, whereas THC is the abundant cannabinoid in the marijuana plant.
Does CBD Help with Anxiety?
While medical professionals still debate whether CBD (cannabidiol) is an effective treatment to address anxiety and its accompanying symptoms, there is an overwhelming amount of pre-clinical and clinical evidence that suggests it can help to decrease anxiety symptoms in people with Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) or Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
Here is one of thousands of medical studies that supports this statement.
By calming the excitatory motor function in a person’s body and relaxing the central nervous system, people may experience a decrease in intensity and frequency of symptoms. The decrease in frequency and intensity of the symptoms may also lead to more restful sleep patterns, which will lead to better physical and emotional balance in a person’s life.
Everyone is different, so results will vary from person to person.
How Much CBD Should You Take for Anxiety?
There are several medical studies regarding the use of Cannabidiol (CBD) to address anxiety and the accompanying symptoms though an exact dose has not been discovered yet and may never be found because everyone is different and has different needs.
In one test, the test subjects were given as little as 25mg per dose to as much as 600mg per dose, and the results were varied; however, a pattern emerged that low to mid-range doses seemed to reduce anxiety in the participants better than higher doses. In fact, those test subjects who were exposed to doses of 300mg – 600mg experienced no reduction of symptoms, and in some cases, their anxiety was amplified.
The point is, everybody is different and there is not one correct dosing size that fits all. This means that you have to tinker with the dose until you find your sweet spot. Our suggestion is to always “start low and go slow” as you seek to find the right amount for you.
And remember, what works for you may not work for someone else who has similar symptoms.
Does it Matter What Form I Take the CBD in?
The form of your hemp-derived product can matter when it comes to experiencing a therapeutic response. For example, if you have trouble absorbing nutrients and vitamins from the food you eat due to digestive or gut challenges, you may want to stay away from edibles like gummies or chocolates because they will go through your digestive system before entering your bloodstream where the CBD can begin to work on your symptoms. In this case, a tincture administered sublingually (under the tongue) would be best because it bypasses the digestive system and solves that challenge if you fall into that category.
Conversely, if you are looking for a “quick fix,” then edibles may not be the way to go because they typically can take 60 minutes or more to get into your bloodstream. In other words, it is a slower time to onset.
But with a tincture for example, it takes about 15-20 minutes to get into your bloodstream. So again, different products for different people and different scenarios. Vaping CBD is the fastest way to feel the effects as the time to onset is typically 1-2 minutes, but the effects may also last for a limited amount of time.
So, you must be open to not only tinkering with the amount of CBD to take to address your symptom(s), but you must also be open to tinkering with the various form factors available to you, as some may work better for you than others.
Remember to be patient and to be deliberate in your regiment and we are certain that you will notice a pattern that serves you.
Are There Any Side Effects of Taking Too Much CBD?
The World Health Organization (WHO) has stated that CBD poses no great risk for side effects and is Generally Recognized as Safe or GRAS.
That being said, there may be side effects if you are taking certain medications, so it is always prudent to consult with your doctor prior to starting on a CBD regiment. One of the known side effects of taking too much CBD is that it can make you feel lethargic and sleepy. In some instances, people with sensitivities may experience diarrhea or an upset stomach. In some medical studies, taking high doses of CBD amplified feelings of anxiety, so you must experiment to find your right dose or “zone.”
What's the Bottom Line?
The bottom line is that more clinical trials and medical studies need to be done in order to determine whether CBD can be used as an anxiolytic to manage symptoms of anxiety or not. There are tens of thousands of anecdotal stories and evidence pointing to the conclusion that CBD can absolutely reduce symptoms of anxiety which is why more and more people are exploring it as an option and adjunct to prescription medications, but again, we need more scientific and empirical studies to get to the truth of the matter. As time goes on, and once the FDA takes a direct stand on regulating CBD, we will see more support from the federal government who will hopefully fund more of these important studies.