Anxiety: Can It Be Treated with Cannabis Instead of Pills?
Cannabis is becoming the medicine of choice for anxiety.
Do you know someone with anxiety? It is a common disorder in North America that often goes undiagnosed and therefore, untreated. A diagnosis can be difficult because there are many forms of anxiety and not all symptoms can be easily identified as coming from the condition. For example, outbursts of rage is a less common symptom that many do not associate with this condition.
How do You Know if You Have an Anxiety Disorder?
Some of the terms you may have heard include: Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). The development of any one of these can dramatically disrupt a person’s life.
Due to the tremendous impact on everyday life, many people seek a combination of treatments that may include: medication, therapy, or hypnosis. Medications such as, Zoloft, Paxil, Prozac, Xanax, and Valium are commonly prescribed to alleviate symptoms. Unfortunately, these also have negative side effects that include: addiction, drowsiness, restlessness, constipation, nausea, and dizziness. Further, many patients complain that the pills make them less energetic and less able to engage in activities that previously made them happy.
There is another way – cannabis.
How Can Cannabis Help?
For years, cannabis consumers have known about the calming effects of this healing plant. Today, we are learning how to medicinally apply these positive benefits. Whether it’s relaxation, sleep, or improved appetite that you seek, this little green bud helps in ways that pharmaceuticals haven’t been able to. Cannabis is able to calm nerves and mellow the mind and that helps with anxiety disorders.
Unfortunately, THC has been known, at times, to cause temporary (and often incredibly brief) periods of paranoia when consumed in very high doses. There is no association, however, between this passing state and anxiety disorder.
The good news is that there are strains high in CBD that are very effective in treating symptoms. The low dose of THC means that there is no risk of a paranoid episode. Many patients with social anxiety disorder are finding success in treatment with high CBD strains. These strains improve cognitive functioning and speech performance, both of which can be impacted by this condition.
Interestingly, professionals at the University of Washington Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute claim, “All other things being equal, THC appears to decrease anxious feelings at lower doses and increase it at higher doses.”
As with most things, using cannabis is about balance and moderation.
Are you suffering in silence? Cannabis may help, though we encourage individuals to seek professional help before beginning or changing any treatment.
What’s your experience of using CBD or THC to treat your anxiety? We’d be happy to hear in the comments below.