Numerous studies have found results that confirm the ability of marijuana to help anxiety and stress. In 2013 an Israeli study demonstrated that treatment with cannabinoids helped to control emotional responses and prevent stress-related responses for those that had experienced a traumatic experience. In 2015 a group of researchers found that cannabis treatments were effective in reducing anxiety in those suffering from PTSD.
The list of cannabinoids currently comprises 113 entries, with more and more additions each year. Of these 113, by far the best documented are tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol (in this order), with the two also being the most abundant constituents of the cannabis plant. In a typical chemical isolation process, cannabidiol makes up a little under half of the entire extract.
Then there is the matter of which part of the plant is used. THC tends to be more concentrated in the leaves of the plant, while CBD in its stem and seeds. It should be noted that these aspects are relative. Some degree of agreement exists that for the purest CBD, the stalk of a hemp plant (varieties of cannabis generally grown for fiber manufacturing, low in THC), or much less often the seeds. Taking into account the fact that CBD supplements are usually in an oil form, one may fathom the origins of the nearly ubiquitous hemp oil dietary supplements.
It’s believed that while CBD helps activate and regulate the body’s endocannabinoid system, it also helps regulate the neural pathways that are responsible for withdrawal symptoms and drug cravings. In early rat trials, those treated with CBD were less likely to exhibit anxiety-related withdrawal symptoms and drug-seeking behaviors after being exposed to cocaine. (40)
As the CBD oil market continues to grow, more and more products are being sold online or in your local health food stores. You can find many types of CBD and each one is used in a different way. The most common forms of CBD available include the following. (Of course, you should always consult your healthcare professional prior to using CBD and read and follow all label directions.)
Unlike THC, CBD will not make you high. That said, this doesn’t mean CBD is not at all psychoactive, as many assert, says Jahan Marcu, PhD, director of experimental pharmacology and behavior at the International Research Center on Cannabis and Mental Health in New York City: “CBD does change cognition. It affects mood, which is why people take it for anxiety. And some find that it makes them more alert.”
Current protocols include managing ADHD with a combination of behavioral therapy and medications. Numerous medications, both stimulants and non-stimulants, have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat ADHD. Because each individual reacts differently to each medication, finding an appropriate protocol can be a challenge associated with many negative symptoms, including:
The immediate and powerful effects of THC are explained because of the special affinity it has with the CB1 type receptors, which mediate crucial processes in the brain. The less prominent (but no less important) action of CBD was explained, at least for a while, by hypothesizing that it binds to CB2 type receptors, hence its more diffuse manner of exercising changes in the body. Early on, the antipsychotic effects of cannabidiol were observed, an aspect which seemed to be in consonance with this initial hypothesis.
The current trend in the cannabis-related area of research started in the late sixties and early seventies when products derived from cannabis (especially marijuana) were placed on the list of controlled substances in the US, under the Nixon administration. This move was retroactively interpreted as being part of the conservative reaction to the liberalizing spirit of the sixties.
Under federal law, cannabis (from which both CBD and marijuana are derived) is illegal everywhere, although the laws against it aren’t generally enforced in states that have legalized marijuana. Some manufacturers claim that CBD culled from legally imported industrial hemp, which has little to no THC, is fine to ship across the U.S., but many experts disagree, noting that because hemp comes from the same species as marijuana, cannabis sativa, all CBD falls under the DEA’s Schedule 1 designation. “This creative interpretation of the law runs afoul of reality,” says the Brookings Institution, a Washington, DC, think tank.
To my understanding, neither CBD nor THC are effective for “severe” pain; rather, they work better for mild to moderate chronic pain. Often, with severe pain, the dosage of opiates can be decreased with concomitant use of medical cannabis or CBD and that decrease in dose makes their use safer. Concurrent use of THC does increase the analgesic effect of CBD, but it also adds the “high” which some people do not want as a side effect.