If you are one of the many people who suffer from chronic pain or an anxiety disorder, you have likely tried a number of prescription and over the counter medications. With more people turning to holistic methods of treating these disorders, CBD oil sales have been on the rise. You have probably heard that CBD oils can be used to help manage both pain and anxiety without the side effects that prescription medications may cause.
What is CBD?
When researching whether CBD may be an option for you, it is important to understand what it is. CBD is one of the key chemical components of marijuana. Cannabidiol is the non-psychoactive chemical, while THC is the psychoactive chemical. CBD is now legal in all 50 states thanks to a farm bill that passed in 2018 which legalized commercial hemp.
How Does CBD Work for Anxiety?
CBD has a direct impact on the CB1 receptors of your brain. This can affect your serotonin levels which, in turn, can help to control feelings of anxiety and depression. By increasing serotonin levels, patients begin to feel less anxious or depressed. Many studies have proven that CBD is an effective, natural supplement for the treatment of:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Social anxiety
- Generalized anxiety disorder
One study focused on the use of CBD to treat patients with Social Anxiety Disorder. They selected 24 patients who suffered from the disorder and separated them into two groups. One group received CBD while the other received a placebo. The scientists then asked each participant to take part in a public speaking test. They found that the group that received CBD showed reduced anxiety, while the placebo group had elevated anxiety.
How Does CBD Work for Pain Management?
While taking CBD orally helps with anxiety, studies have shown that topical application is more effective in pain management. There are a number of CBD products effective in treating chronic pain topically, such as oils, creams and sprays. By applying the CBD oils directly on the areas of pain and inflammation, you remove the internal reactions of taking the medication orally allowing the full benefits to be received in the affected areas.
The human body has a system called the endocannabinoid system. This system controls how one perceives pain. Studies have shown that CBD can increase the function of this system, thus helping to control chronic pain. Research has shown CBD to be an effective pain management supplement for several conditions such as:
- Low back pain
- Cancer pain
- Pain associated with multiple sclerosis
- Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ)
Are There Side Effects with CBD Use?
While using CBD for the treatment of pain and anxiety conditions is a natural option, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a risk of side effects. While most of these effects may be minor, it is important to keep in contact with your doctors to monitor how CBD is working or effecting you. Some common side effects include:
- Dry mouth
- Change in appetite
- Change in mood
- Vomiting and Diarrhea
Finding the Right Dose
Unlike prescription medications for anxiety or chronic pain management, CBD does not come with a predetermined dosing schedule. Some things to consider when determining the right dose for you are weight, age, and intensity of symptoms.
The good news is that taking too much will only result in some nausea or dizziness. There are several ways to determine the correct dose for your needs:
- Consult with a medical professional or
- Contact the manufacturer or
- Start with a low dose and gradually increase it until you find the best dosage for you.
Many people have found that it may take several days to find the dose that works best for them as doses can vary from patient to patient. What may work for one may not work for another. It is important to find the dose that works for you to ensure experiencing the optimal benefits of CBD related to your specific condition.
CBD in Edibles
Because measuring the perfect dose each time can be difficult for some people, the use of CBD gummies takes the guesswork out of using CBD for your anxiety or pain management. In addition to making dosing easier, edibles also allow you to use your CBD discreetly, no matter where you are. While the oils and vapes are convenient at home or in your car, the gummies can be used at work, in the mall, or anywhere else that you may be.
For years, people have sworn that marijuana had many health benefits but, as of now, marijuana is still illegal on the federal level. CBD, on the other hand, is legal in all 50 states and has the health benefits without the psychoactive affects of THC. This means that patients get the health benefits without the high, allowing them to participate in and enjoy everyday life.
If you suffer from chronic pain or anxiety disorders and are tired of taking prescription medications that have risks of addiction and unpleasant side effects, ask your doctor if CBD can be added to your care regimen. Many doctors are willing to allow patients to try using CBD while being closely monitored, as studies about its use are still ongoing.