CBD oil can relieve anxiety symptoms, because it affects our body, e.g. to those CB receptors located in the areas responsible for emotional experiences. Anxiety is a very common feeling that, when chronic, can even make life difficult. CBD oil in the treatment of anxiety has been studied more in recent decades, so there is a wide range of material supporting this view. In this article, we will delve into anxiety, anxiety disorder and how CBD oil could ease the symptoms associated with these!
My chest tightens, my hands sweat, it hurts, and my nerves tighten over the smallest things. The heart beats and the unpleasant thoughts grow inside the head to enormous proportions. We are talking about anxiety, a feeling that involves both stress and physical bodily reactions and symptoms. It is estimated that approx. 20% of the world’s people experience anxiety symptoms during their lifetime, but the number is certainly higher in reality.
Anxiety symptoms always have a message
Anxiety can be a short-term reaction essential for survival, as it may tell us when we are going in the wrong direction in life or if the decision we just made was wrong. Instead, constant physical and mental anxiety symptoms that hinder life are no longer something that would help us make the right decisions. Vice versa. A deeply anxious person is in a situation where the ability to concentrate is barely enough to survive, CBD oil, in its versatility, can ease this condition.
Anxiety is a familiar feeling to many
Anxiety is undoubtedly a familiar feeling to all people, but sometimes it can become chronic to the point of anxiety disorder. Anxiety is always associated with a malfunction of the stress response, which results in an overreaction of the body and mind to even small, insignificant things. Anxiety can be related to individual situations and events, but also to personal fears and emotional states. Common symptoms associated with anxiety and anxiety disorders are bodily sensations combined with stress. Heart palpitations, sweating, the compulsive need to run away from the place and things running through your mind too much are clear symptoms of an anxiety attack. Similar to these symptoms of anxiety is that the stress reaction always starts in the body first. (1)
Chronic anxiety, an anxiety disorder, is when the parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous system and their bilateral cooperation goes out of balance; the balancing function of the parasympathetic nervous system no longer works properly. The physical symptoms of an anxiety attack are caused by the activity of the sympathetic nervous system.
The endocannabinoid system is involved in anxiety disorders
Body balancer, endocannabinoid system, is an essential part in the generation of the stress response. The endocannabinoid system also regulates emotional behavior. It determines neural flexibility related to learning and response, especially in connection with events experienced as aversive (2,3). of the CB1 receptor activation plays a significant role in anxiety-related bodily functions. It has been found to work anxiolytically, i.e. as an anxiety reliever for various models of conditioned fear, which are also associated with anxiety and anxiety disorders. CB1 receptor activation prevents the consolidation of fear, and enhances fear extinction and CB1 receptor activation endocannabinoid anandamide (AEA) is necessary for the relaxation of hormonal stress. It also protects against chronic stress. (2,3,4)
Anxiety starts with stress
Anxiety develops in stages. First, stress is triggered as a result of some thought or event. Stress is transmitted to the brain to the hypothalamus, which further transmits the information about the caused stress to all body systems and functions. This event results in the release of stress hormones. The release of stress hormones triggers the activity of the sympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for the stress response. When the acute stress is over, the parasympathetic nervous system begins to relax the body and return us to a state of balance. This cycle creates anxiety. Anxiety becomes chronic anxiety disorder at the point when the parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems are no longer balanced normally, but the sympathetic nervous system and its function remains on, in the ON position. (5)
There are many ways to relieve anxiety
The best way to relieve anxiety is to get to the root of it. It is essential to put in order the things in life that contribute to the emergence of anxiety, even if it seems difficult at first. The background of anxiety may be a poor diet, too little exercise or traumas, unresolved issues in the past. It’s good to at least partially rule out their contribution to anxiety either before or at the latest when you start trying if CBD oil could be of help. CBD oil alone will not make anyone happy in this matter, but other causes of anxiety must also be weeded out. One of the most important factors is stress relief, which of course is not very easy in this age driven by haste. It is important to find your own ways to calm your mind. Meditation, moving in nature, calm music and sauna are natural, researched ways to relieve stress.
An anxiety disorder makes life difficult
In an anxiety disorder, stress and anxiety symptoms have become chronic, for example fear of public spaces and social situations, panic disorder and anxiety disorder. They are states of mind that really affect the quality of life. Activation of the sympathetic nervous system causes physical, even strong, symptoms. Although they go away on their own in minutes, they can prevent us from doing things we do in everyday life. (6)
Other body receptors related to anxiety
A receptor is a molecule present in the cell, which when activated, initiates the signal transmission mechanisms related to the cell. There are four different types of receptors in our body, which are activated by e.g. hormones and neurotransmitters. CB1 and CB2 receptors are well-known receptors of the endocannabinoid system, but our body also has other receptors that are affected by both endo- and exocannabinoids such as anandamide and CBD .
5-HT1A serotonin receptor
The 5-HT1A serotonin receptor regulates the release of many neurotransmitters and these receptors are located in the peripheral and central nervous system. The 5-HT1A receptor is known as an anxiety-relieving target and it has been found e.g. preventing the harmful effects of stress and promoting the extinction of fear. The function of this receptor is complex, but it has been found to act as a direct promoter of signaling when activated by CBD. In animal experiments, it has been found that many anxiety-relieving functions in the body take place specifically through the serotonin receptor, which is why it is perhaps the most significant receptor related to the relief of anxiety symptoms. (2)
The TRPV1 receptor, on the other hand, increases anxiety symptoms when activated. It has been shown that, depending on the balance of the endocannabinoid system, either the CB1 or TRPV1 receptor is activated in a stressful situation and it has been speculated that it regulates emotional behavior. CBD activates the TRPV1 receptor at very high doses, possibly by interfering with anandamide inactivation. (2)
CBD oil as an anxiety reliever
Numerous studies of CBD oil the benefits are indisputably proven. In addition to CBD has been found to relieve anxiety, according to user experiences, it also relieves stress. Studies show CBD oil to relieve pain, to improve sleep quality and to correct loss of appetite. These are key factors in terms of preventing anxiety.
CBD has also been found to have an effect on the body’s and mind’s defenses and on how a person is able to live outside his own “well” (2,3,4).
Systematic use of CBD oil has been shown to reduce the intensity of the fear reaction, as well as the so-called reduction of freezing. CBD reduces the manifestation of conditioned fear and alleviates the symptoms of long-term stress. It has also been found to reduce the manifestation of the “fight or flight” reaction (3,4).
CBD oil dosage for anxiety relief
Studies have shown that lower dosages have the most effective effect on the treatment of anxiety. This is interesting, because it is easy to think that the bigger the dose, the bigger the effects. One reason for this may be the activation of the TRPV-1 receptor at higher doses of CBD, as the TRPV1 receptor blocks the anxiolytic effect. (2) Animal experiments found that CBD oil affected anxiety symptoms almost equally with both short-term and long-term use (3,4). CBD has been found to respond weakly to the CB1 receptor, which plays a significant role in terms of anxiety, but on the other hand, it increases the structural activation of the CB1 receptor and increases anandamide levels by inhibiting the activity of FAAH, a cannabinoid degrader (2).
Terpenes also affect anxiety
With terpenes commonly found in plants has also been found to have anti-anxiety and anxiety-relieving effects. These terpenes are particularly abundant in the hemp plant, and thus part of the anxiety-relieving effects of CBD oil also come from terpenes. It has been hypothesized that combining terpenes with cannabinoids increases the calming effects, despite their small amount relative to cannabinoids. Terpenes have even been thought to play a significant role when talking about the therapeutic effects of hemp. Full-spectrum CBD oil has these terpenes in store, making it a good choice for treating anxiety. (7)
Well-known cannabis researcher Ethan Russo has put forward a theory about the synergistic effect of plants, which shows that using the whole plant instead of using one part gives more comprehensive help (7).
CBD oil has been found to be an effective anxiety reliever in several studies, both in animal and human experiments. Especially full-spectrum oils, which contain all the active ingredients of hemp, are an effective and safe way to relieve anxiety symptoms both acutely and in the long term. However, anxiety in itself is such a multi-caused state of mind and body that CBD oil alone does not necessarily help, anxiety should and should be treated with other means as well.
- Anxiety. 2018. Huttunen M. https://www.terveyskirjasto.fi/dlk00188. Referred to on 30/03/2022
- Cannabidiol as a Potential Treatment for Anxiety Disorders. 2015. Blessing E., Steenkamp M., Manzares J., Marmar C.. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4604171/. Referred to on 30/03/2022
- Use of Cannabidiol for the Treatment of Anxiety: A Short Synthesis of Pre-Clinical and Clinical Evidence. 2020. Madison Wright M, Di Ciano P, Brands B. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7480724/#!po=16.6667. Referred to on 30/03/2022
- Cannabidiol in Anxiety and Sleep: A Large Case Series. 2019. Shannon S., Lewis N., Lee H., Hughes S.. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6326553/. Referred to on 30/03/2022.
- Generalized anxiety disorder. 2018. Huttunen M. https://www.terveyskirjasto.fi/dlk00555. Referred to on 30/03/2022
- Anxiety disorder. 2019. A working group set up by the Duodecim of the Finnish Medical Society, the Finnish Psychiatric Association and the Finnish Youth Psychiatric Association. https://www.kaypahoito.fi/hoi50119. Referred to on 30/03/2022
- The “Entourage Effect”: Terpenes Coupled with Cannabinoids for the Treatment of Mood Disorders and Anxiety Disorders. 2020. Goldstein Feber S., Namdar D., Hen-Shoval D., Eger G., Koltai H., Shbiro L., Weller A.. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles /PMC7324885/. Referred to on 30/03/2022.