Most human studies of CBD have been done on people who have seizures, and the FDA recently approved the first CBD-based drug, Epidiolex, for rare forms of epilepsy. Clinical trials for other conditions are promising, but tiny. In one Brazilian study published in 2011 of people with generalized social anxiety disorder, for example, taking a 600-mg dose of CBD (higher than a typical dose from a tincture) lessened discomfort more than a placebo, but only a dozen people were given the pill.
Most traditional treatments come with side effects that – in many cases – seem worse (or just as terrible) as the anxiety itself. These side effects range from mood altering effects like depression, to weight gain or loss, to dependence (the need for higher doses to achieve the same effect and avoid withdrawal symptoms)… the side effects are often a deterrent. Only around 36.9 percent of anxiety sufferers receive treatment for their condition.
‘CBD has proven anti-anxiety effects and may be helpful in depression, based on anecdotal reports,’ says Dr Gordon. ‘I use high CBD prescription cannabis medicine products as part of a mental health protocol with my patients suffering with anxiety and depression. The antidepressant effects of CBD have been shown in animal models, but we now need large, depression-specific studies in humans as the next step.’
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