Sadness and uncertainty are a part of life. However, when these feelings turn into depression, excessive worry or panic attacks, they can be harmful to both the mind and body. While there are a lot of products on the market for treating mental issues, they often come with side effects. Enter CBD: a natural treatment derived from the cannabis sativa plant purported to alleviate both anxiety and depression. Read on to find out more about the potential benefits of this emerging treatment.
So What is CBD?
Short for cannabidiol, CBD is one of the hundreds of cannabinoids found in the cannabis sativa plant, also known as marijuana. However, unlike other cannabinoids, such as THC, tetrahydrocannabinol, CBD is not psychoactive, which means that it will not get you high. CBD is said to have numerous benefits including alleviating pain, insomnia and inflammation.
CBD for Anxiety and Depression
While researchers are still unsure how CBD works, the substance is believed to interact with the CB1 and CB2 receptors in the brain, altering serotonin signals—serotonin is a neurotransmitter related to mental health. Since anxiety and depression are characterized by low serotonin levels, this can be considered a breakthrough.
In terms of anxiety, CBD has shown to be beneficial for people suffering from generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as physiological symptoms related to anxiety such as rapid heart rate. CBD’s anxiety-reducing properties can also alleviate insomnia.
It is believed that CBD also has a positive effect on the hippocampus, a part of the brain that regulates emotions and often doesn’t function well in people with depression. CBD does this by promoting the formation of neurons in the hippocampus.
How to Use CBD
Most people suffering from anxiety and depression take CBD in the form of capsules, oils and tinctures. The substance is more effective when taken on a regular basis rather than as a one-off. Long-term CBD use is generally considered safe, as the substance is not considered addictive. Nevertheless, it is best to talk to your doctor before starting a course of treatment. If you are thinking of using CBD for anxiety or depression, read more here to inform yourself about the available options.