The Pandemic has taken its toll not only on our outer world but most certainly on our inner. Even the World Health Organization has published the dim prospect of an imminent, pandemic-related mental health crisis. It is well known that psychological stress from any origin is likely to raise the risk of depression and anxiety. The stress originating from coronavirus implications may likely come with its own mental health challenges. Chronic stress is known to weaken the endocannabinoid system (ECS), therefore making us more exposed to illness.
With the cannabis plant’s ability to support the endocannabinoid system and research demonstrating that CBD has helped relieve various mental health symptoms, we have dug a little deeper into CBD’s effect on anxiety and depression.
CBD and Anxiety
The link between cannabinoids and anxiety and fear has been of special interest in clinical research.
Anxiety disorders are the most well-known mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults, or 18.1% of the population and are routinely defined by excessive worrying about things and events that manifest in physiological responses in the body.
In laboratory settings, CBD has been shown to decrease experimentally induced anxiety and lessen fear memories in healthy adult participants. Clinical trials in patients suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have demonstrated that dronabinol and nabilone can reduce their symptoms.
Although CBD trials have shown limited impact on baseline levels of anxiety, it is evident that CBD reduces experimentally induced anxiety and fear. For example, one study in healthy participants and those suffering from social anxiety disorder found that CBD decreased task-related anxiety. Whereas another study implies that CBD reduces amygdala activation in case of a threat and alters functional link between prefrontal regions and the amygdala, which could explain its inherent anxiolytic effects.
While more is to be learned about CBD’s anxiolytic effect, and with clinical research moving at a slow pace, we might be a while from an official approval of CBD as an anti-anxiety solution. In the meantime, to minimize any damage to our endocannabinoid system caused by current coronavirus stress (which may make us more exposed to anxiety disorders), we could do far worse than incorporate high-grade CBD oil into our self-care regimen.
CBD and Depression
Depression is characterized by having a persistently low mood or loss of pleasure in regular activities for at least two weeks. Approximately 17.3 million adults in the U.S. have had at least one major depressive episode.
Studies in animals have shown that CBD certainly improves the symptoms of depression. This is to be thought most likely due to the activation of 5-HT1A receptors in the brain.
In one study, animals were given a 5-HT1A receptor antagonist beside CBD, limiting the cannabinoid from bonding with the serotonin receptor. This seemed to prevent the mood-enhancing impact of CBD. Another study found that aside serotonin, CBD increased glutamate production, and neurotransmission resulting in immediate antidepressant-like effects.
The current research unquestionably indicates that CBD can improve symptoms related to depression. It is hoped that more clinical data will be available soon, however, it is unmistakable that CBD for depression continues to be one of the most common reasons people turn to CBD oil.
CBD is inevitably a multifaceted supplement that’s becoming well established by research with more evidence emerging that shows real therapeutic benefits.
For more information and to try out our range of CBD oproducts or to see how CBD can help you cope during stressful times, head over to our store.