Many people are looking to find the best CBD oil for anxiety, and it’s no surprise. The market is saturated with prescription drugs designed to help with stress and anxiety. However, the rate of people with these issues continues to skyrocket.
The Anxiety & Depression Association of America (ADAA) recently released some eye-opening statistics. It found that anxiety disorders are the #1 most common mental illness in the United States. An estimated 40 million adults have one of these disorders, equivalent to over 18% of the population.
Even though anxiety disorders are treatable, only 37% of people with one get help. If you have an anxiety disorder, you’re 3-5 times more likely to visit the doctor than average. You’re also up to six times more likely to go to the hospital for help with a psychiatric disorder than someone without an anxiety disorder.
There are different types of anxiety disorder, including:
- Generalized anxiety
- Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
- Social Anxiety Disorder
- Panic Disorder
So, why would people look towards CBD oil for anxiety? One reason is that they’re dissatisfied with what conventional treatments do.
How Successful Are Prescription Drugs at Treating Anxiety Disorder?
There is a wide variety of drugs designed to ‘treat’ anxiety disorder. These include:
However, these drugs come with a host of side effects that range from mild to serious. These include:
- Shortness of breath
- Sexual dysfunction
- Vision problems
- Feelings of depression
- Weight gain
Apart from the side effects, these drugs don’t work nearly as well as some people would have you believe. Johns Hopkins revealed that symptoms return for over one-third of people who use antidepressants.
What about trying something that could prove effective AND cause minimal side effects? This is where CBD for anxiety comes into play.
How Could CBD Oil for Anxiety Work?
There are many different cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2) that work in the human body. These chemical structures are attached to our cells and receive signals from different locations. CBD seems to interact with the CB1 and CB2 receptors indirectly. These receptors are primarily located in the peripheral nervous system.
At present, researchers aren’t sure how CBD impacts the CB1 receptors in the brain. However, the belief is that the cannabinoid could change serotonin signals. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter, and it has a strong link with our mental health. People with depression often have low levels of serotonin, which may also cause anxiety.
Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are the main treatment for low serotonin. However, like other prescription drugs, SSRIs could have an array of side effects.
In contrast, the evidence to date suggests that CBD oil for anxiety has an excellent safety profile. Research shows that humans can consume up to 1,500mg of CBD a day without any ill effects.
Some studies outline CBD’s efficacy for individuals with an anxiety disorder.
CBD for Anxiety – The Research
A study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology in 2011 looked at the effects of CBD in Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD). The researchers gave volunteers with SAD a placebo or an oral dose of up to 400mg of CBD. Those who received the cannabidiol reported reduced anxiety levels overall.
A study published in the Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry in 2019 provided male volunteers with CBD before completing a simulated public speaking test. Participants consumed the CBD 90 minutes before the test. Those who consumed an oral dose of 300mg of cannabidiol reported feeling significantly less anxious during the test than those who received the placebo.
Interestingly, those who used 300mg reported more noticeable effects than male participants who used 150mg and 600mg.
At present, there isn’t enough data available to draw firm conclusions on whether CBD oil for anxiety is effective. However, the research to date is promising. One concern is that the CBD concentrations used in these studies are particularly high. The majority of users don’t consume more than 50-100mg a day. Many people use far less. Using 300mg of CBD per day would prove exceedingly expensive.
Final Thoughts on CBD Oil for Anxiety & Stress
Hopefully, future research will show that you only need to use a relatively small amount of CBD for anxiety. Alternatively, perhaps the price point will go low enough to make cannabidiol affordable for most people.
There is evidence that CBD could help people suffering from anxiety and stress. It appears to interact indirectly with the CB1 and CB2 receptors in the body. Unlike prescription medication, it doesn’t come with a long list of side effects. There is also no evidence that it is addictive. As a result, you can use CBD sensibly to see if it positively impacts your stress and anxiety levels.