Depression and CBD

April 28 , 2021 | Wellness

What is depression, and could CBD be the natural solution people have been looking for?

During the current COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of attention has focused on the physical effects of the virus. Still, another area of concern is people’s mental health because of the many restrictions governments are imposing on people. While necessary to slow the spread of COVID-19, the stay-at-home restrictions and social distancing take a big toll on people’s mental health.

Think of the additional stress, anxiety, and worry that people are dealing with due to being cut off from their loved ones and support systems. Economic strains, personal relationships, social activity, all of these are factors that can directly affect your mental health. So, it’s not just your physical health that you need to take care of during these unprecedented times.

Even as hundreds of businesses were shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many cannabis dispensaries remained open, if only under modified social distancing requirements. Cannabis is quickly becoming an essential part of everyone’s life to help relieve stress which is one of the biggest contributors to anxiety and depression.

WHAT IS CBD?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the two most abundant cannabinoids found in both the hemp and cannabis plants. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD has no psychotropic properties. What does that mean? It means that CBD isn’t going to give you that ‘euphoric high’ that THC products will.

Inside all of us is something known as the Endocannabinoid System (ECS). It’s believed that the ECS is responsible for maintaining homeostasis and regulating a variety of different bodily functions, including mood, hunger, sleep, and appetite, to name a few. The ECS comprises a series of receptors that are spread throughout the body and all linked together. It’s because of the way the ECS is spread throughout the body that CBD is so versatile and has so many different delivery methods.

WHAT IS DEPRESSION?

Depression is a mental health condition that affects millions of people worldwide. There are various pharmaceutical treatment options for depression, as well as therapy, but many people around the world are looking for natural solutions to help treat their depression.

Some of the symptoms of depression include:

  • Feelings of sadness, tearfulness, emptiness, or hopelessness.
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in most or all normal activities, such as sex, hobbies, or sports.
  • Angry outbursts, irritability or frustration, even over small matters.
  • Sleep disturbances, including insomnia or sleeping too much.
  • Tiredness and lack of energy, so even small tasks take extra effort.
  • Reduced appetite and weight loss or increased cravings for food and weight gain.
  • Anxiety, agitation, or restlessness.
  • Slowed thinking, speaking, or body movements.
  • Feelings of worthlessness or guilt, fixating on past failures or self-blame.
  • Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions, and remembering things.
  • Unexplained physical problems, such as back pain or headaches.
  • Frequent or recurrent thoughts of death, suicidal thoughts, suicide attempts, or suicide.

WHAT DO THE STUDIES SAY ABOUT CBD?

There have been various studies into CBD and mental health. One study found that CBD helped people with Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD). Another study which was conducted in 2011, found that CBD helped people with public speaking anxiety. A 2015 analysis of different CBD studies found that CBD had the ability to help reduce depression and anxiety-like effects.

Another study published in 2020 found that CBD had the ability to help alleviate many of the symptoms of depression, anxiety, and mental health conditions. However, it’s essential to understand that more clinical trials are needed before we can make any definitive claims about CBD or its ability to treat depression.

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DEPRESSION AND CBD – CONCLUSION

We still have a lot to learn about CBD before we can make any definitive claims about its ability to help depression and other mental health conditions. No two people or their conditions are the same. What works for one person may not work for another.

There is a growing body of anecdotal evidence which says that CBD works for them, but it’s anecdotal only. Currently, the only cannabis-based medication approved by the FDA is Epidiolex.

If you are currently taking any medication, please speak to your doctor or healthcare professional before taking any CBD products. CBD is generally considered safe, with a good safety profile by the World Health Organization, but it can interfere with some prescription medications.

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