CBD has become extremely popular in the world of alternative medicine but the label of “alternative” is perhaps unfair for a product with such a good track record of helping people with all kinds of ailments, including anxiety and depression.
Depression is all too common in the modern age. Many studies have suggested that up to one in three people suffers from depression or a similar anxiety disorder at some time in their life. While there is no simple cure for it, some products and medicines have become popular treatments and the fact that CBD oil is a natural product with so many benefits, it is easy to see why it has become a mainstream option. So, what are the benefits of CBD oil for depression? How does it help people suffering from depression and anxiety?
CBD oil or hemp oil can have many different effects on the human body but getting “high” is not one of the effects. CBD oil has only a trace of THC. THC in cannabis and products derived from cannabis what gives us a high feeling, it is the psychoactive substance that gives the real buzz of cannabis but also can bring with it feelings of anxiety. THC is not prominent in CBD and CBD products. It is not there to provide a high; instead, it has numerous other benefits to our system.
CBD is gaining a lot of attention for the benefits it offers. The benefits are incredibly far-reaching. Studies show that it can help with both physical and mental health, tackling issues including chronic pain, psychotic episodes, muscle issues, mental health problems and more.
How CBD Helps Depression
Where is the proof of CBD helping with depression? How does it work? What are the theories regarding the impact on our brains?
The studies which have taken place regarding CBD normally involve testing a controlled group, half of whom are given CBD (normally in its oil form) and the other half are given a placebo.
Almost universally in these studies, sufferers from anxiety and depression see an upturn in mood and well-being when given CBD, compared to the group who are given the placebo. Research into exactly why this is happening is a relatively early stage but the overwhelming evidence that it does indeed help with depression and anxiety have led to theories and studies on the impact it has on the human brain.
CBD oil can aid 5-HT1 receptors and these are a big part of the serotonin system and pathways and, in turn, can lead to an increase in mood.
More research has suggested that CBD has an impact on the amygdala region of the brain. This is the part which stimulates our primitive fight-or-flight response to stress. CBD dampens the response of this area, meaning that the reaction to stress and negative emotions can be lessened. This generally leads to a calmer and less worried state of mind.
There is a two-pronged benefit occurring here. The regulation of the stress response of the brain can totally change the way we react to stressful situations around us. The “reactive” types of depression are those which are affected by what is happening in the world surrounding us.
Combined with this impact on our reactions, CBD is also helping the brain itself by boosting the receptiveness to serotonin, the natural substance created in our brains to regulate mood and give feelings of peace, calm, and happiness.
These studies are early stage. The process can take a long time and CBD has only become popular in very recent times. What is important to say is that there is very little risk attached to taking CBD products. In the studies that have taken place, it has been proven to be non-toxic and safe for human consumption. As long as the product has low THC content (which is usually a legal requirement) then there are virtually no risks attached.
CBD vs. Anti-depressants
Though it is not always an “either-or” situation and many people are taking both CBD and anti-depressants, it is worth looking at the differences between the two.
Many anti-depressant medicines can be effective but also come with many side effects including weight loss and weight gain, feelings of tiredness, and even physical effects such as mouth ulcers. The effects on your system can be drastic and you will certainly be aware that a new substance is in your body when you start taking anti-depressants.
CBD, on the other hand, has very few side effects, if any. It is a totally natural product and it isn’t hard to see why people are turning to it as an alternative for this reason. However, due to being relatively early in its growth as a product, there simply isn’t the same amount of research and evidence available regarding its effects.
Effectively, there is basically no risk of adding CBD to your daily routine and seeing if it helps even if you are taking antidepressants already. CBD gives a natural option and an additional method of increasing your mental well-being.
Doctor’s advice should be sought if you are treated for depression already, and stop taking any medication you are on is definitely not recommended, with most of these medicines requiring a period of tapering off if you are to stop taking them.
Conclusion About Using CBD For Depression
Many people are searching for the effects of CBD for depression due to something they have seen or heard. The huge amount of people making bold claims about the effect of CBD oil and other products is not likely to be a coincidence. Many people have reported that this product has totally changed their outlook and had an impact on their physical and mental health. All of the anecdotal evidence for the benefits of CBD oil has been backed up by the studies which have taken place. And, for many people searching for extra help in their battle with depression, CBD oil has been a huge help—and one with no risk whatsoever attached to it.