The buzz surrounding the use of CBD oil for anxiety is only increasing. Suddenly, people are putting the product in everything. It would seem that everywhere you look, the suppliers tout health benefits that include anything from relaxation (actually true) to complex neuropathic pain reduction.
In our examination of the use of CBD for anxiety and its effects on humans, we will draw from past research, proven facts, and ongoing studies.
The laws and regulations governing how CBD oil for anxiety UK is marketed, used and researched impact its usefulness. Having been legalised in some places but still illegal in most countries, cannabis has not been studied long enough to yield extensive results.
That’s not to say that no research has been done. On the contrary, we have promising results from various institutions and peer-reviewed publishers who have discovered connections between CBD oil and anxiety.
Let’s dive in.
Table of contents:
- The nature of anxiety
- Big Pharma vs CBD
- Does CBD Oil work to reduce anxiety?
- How long does CBD oil take to work for anxiety?
- How to use CBD oil for anxiety
The nature of anxiety
Humans are designed to have fear and anxiety to cope with things that threaten their survival. In health doses, fear and anxiety can spur us on, help us innovate, and continue the species' survival.
However, when these feelings get out of hand, they could become a crutch. Symptoms of fear and anxiety often arise from:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
- Social anxiety disorder (SAD)
- Panic disorder (PD)
The recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders no longer classifies OCD and PTSD as anxiety disorders. However, the major symptom they share is anxiety. If an individual is dealing with any of these, the chances are that their quality of life suffers/has suffered.
The consequences could be as serious as an increased risk of becoming unemployed, an impaired sense of well-being, and even elevated suicide risks.
Combined, all these factors aren't something anyone should be dealing with by themselves. Therapy is advised, but sometimes, medication is prescribed. Given the non-psychoactive nature of CBD, the fact that you can't overdose on pure CBD, and few/non-existent negative side effects, it presents an attractive alternative, especially if it works.
Big Pharma vs CBD
Big Pharma currently sells treatments like benzodiazepine, serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, serotonin reuptake inhibitors, antidepressants, partial 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) 1A receptor agonists, and monoamine oxidase inhibitors for anxiety issues.
For PTSD, antipsychotics and anticonvulsants are the way to go. Their response is frankly not comprehensive enough, produces nasty side effects, and maybe a financial burden for the user.
Cannabidiol (CBD) offers a variety of therapeutic properties benefiting users with not just anxiety modulation but pain management, neuropsychiatric disorders, and some actions related to the central and peripheral nervous system.
Recently, CBD has had proponents and users saying that it is a viable option for helping with anxiety. We are about to find out what is known about CBD and anxiety.
Does CBD Oil work to reduce anxiety?
Before treating anything, we have to answer whether CBD works for anxiety reduction/management. The answer is not black and white, but it is not a completely muddy pond either. Let's say that in any wonder drug's infancy, scepticism abounds, and it is encouraged to ensure that we know the plant's ingredients are safe and regulate them.
Yes, there is an abundance of caution, or over-caution, as some might say, but that's the nature of bureaucracy.
So, does it work? And if so, how can I use it?
Evidence from human studies shows that CBD has the potential to be used as an anxiety treatment. The recommendation is to take oral doses that range from 300 to 600 milligrams. These doses have been proven effective in reducing experimentally induced anxiety without interfering with baseline anxiety levels.
It was also shown to limit anxiety in patients diagnosed with social anxiety disorder, one of the most common types caused by human interaction or the simple act of being among people.
In another study, the scientists examined neuroimaging findings to provide verifiable evidence of how CBD interacts with the subjects. The study found that the presence of neurobiological targets (reduced amygdala activation and changes in medial prefrontal amygdala connectivity) may be behind CBD's positive effects.
However, more studies are required to learn more about the connection between CBD and anxiety.
How long does CBD oil take to work for anxiety?
In a recent study involving 397 adults in New Zealand, patients were given CBD for a variety of ailments, including neurological symptoms, cancer-related symptoms, non-cancer pain, and mental health symptoms.
The question to answer was ‘does CBD help anxiety sufferers?’ and ‘how long does CBD oil take to work for anxiety?’
Every group reported improvements in the overall quality of life after 21 days of treatment. The individuals prescribed CBD for depression and anxiety showed improved ability to go through a day normally, performing functions with more ease, with reduced pain, anxiety, and depression symptoms.
About 7 out of 10 people in the study reported their satisfaction with the regimen, expressing sentiments that fell between ‘good’ and ‘excellent’.
About 9.9% of the participants reported some negative effects like vivid dreams and a feeling of sedation. Only about 0.8% of the study’s participants reported that their effects got worse after taking CBD.
In a retrospective study with 72 participants suffering from sleep and anxiety issues, researchers tested the effects of CBD in alleviating sleep and anxiety problems.
Most of the participants were given one 25mg capsule of CBD a day. Other participants received 50mg or 70mg per day. One of the participants had a history of trauma and schizoaffective disorder and was given up to 175 mg per day.
After the first 8 weeks of the clinical trial, 78.1-79.2% of participants reported improvements. 15.3-19.5% of the participants reported that their symptoms worsened after the treatment.
A third study we looked at was done in 2020. For this, the researchers evaluated how much CBD oil benefits anxiety patients. They found evidence backing the use of CBD as a viable complementary or monotherapy treatment for social anxiety disorders, anxiety disorder, and PTSD.
However, the studies did not all use the same dosage. They ranged from as low as 6mg per dose to a high of 400mg. The variation highlights the need to conduct more large-scale, standardised clinical trials to find optimal dosing and write a clinical usage framework to help medical practitioners and other users benefit more from CBD therapy.
How to use CBD oil for anxiety UK
Now that we know what the medical community knows and the potential CBD for anxiety benefits and how it alleviates related symptoms, we should look at some of the methods used to get it into the body.
A 2019 study showed that an ideal CBD dosage for anxiety mg ranges from 300 to 600mg. The effects experienced by the users depend on the dosage, the product’s purity, and delivery method.
Some of the common methods include:
- CBD Oil
- CBD Vaporized oil
- CBD Flowers
- CBD Edibles (most popular are CBD Gummies in the UK)
- CBD Capsules
- CBD Sprays
- CBD Patches
The method used determines how quickly the effects are felt.
Taken orally in capsules, edibles, or oils, the best CBD oil for anxiety UK will begin to show effects after 30 minutes to 2 hours. Smoking or vaping CBD oil produces more immediate results.
It is recommended to use oral CBD for anxiety UK for relief throughout the day. The products are helpful when taken in the morning with some food and then about an hour before bed. For immediate relaxation, one can smoke or vape the CBD oil, especially when faced with an anxiety-inducing event/incident/occurrence.
The evidence gathered so far shows CBD’s demonstrable efficiency in the reduction of anxiety and its related behaviours, as well as several disorders that include SAD, OCD, PD, PTSD, GAD, and all without producing anxiety or negative symptoms related to pharmaceutical drugs, which tend to be addictive or produce anxiety when the patients stop taking them.
The current human experiments support these pre-trial reports, suggesting CBD works for anxiety.
One thing to keep in mind with the human clinical trials is that the dosages administered are considered acute (higher than what you’d normally be advised to take as a first-timer).
The potential value of CBD oil anxiety and other cannabis ingredients warrants more study to determine its benefits for treating anxiety and related disorders.
If you are still wondering, 'is CBD oil good for anxiety UK,’ or unsure of the products most suitable for you? We suggest that you book a free consultation with us and get all the information you need.