These days, more people than ever are using medical marijuana for a variety of health benefits. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you have probably heard about its powerful effects when it comes to treating symptoms like chronic pain and insomnia.
But what about marijuana for anxiety?
If you’re living with high levels of stress or medically diagnosed anxiety, you might be surprised to discover this natural remedy’s potential for symptom relief. This is especially true if you’re incorporating marijuana into a well-rounded and established mental healthcare routine.
Keep reading to learn some surprising facts about using marijuana to manage your anxiety symptoms.
Using Marijuana For Anxiety
Does weed help with anxiety?
Yes, but only if used properly. Keep in mind that marijuana is not medicine. It is a natural treatment or supplement that can offer symptom relief to some users living with anxiety.
If you have been diagnosed with a severe anxiety disorder, you should speak with your doctor before adding marijuana to your treatment plan.
CBD vs. THC
Cannabidiol, commonly known as CBD, is one of the two main chemical compounds found in marijuana or hemp plants. Unlike THC, CBD doesn’t get you high. Its benefits are purely medicinal.
Little research exists, linking THC to the relief of anxiety symptoms. But, the same can’t be said about CBD. On the contrary, numerous studies like Sublingual Cannabidiol for Anxiety have concluded that a daily dose of CBD offers reliable and proven medicinal benefits to users experiencing anxiety.
While Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC might not be clinically proven to reduce anxiety symptoms, it does offer feelings of deep relaxation and euphoria. It has also been linked to relief from symptoms of nausea and pain. Plus, its sedative effects can make it easier to fall asleep.
So, depending on your symptoms, both CBD and THC might be beneficial when it comes to using medical marijuana for anxiety! If you’re new to these products, start slow and keep your personal high in mind if dosing with THC.
The relationship between sleep and anxiety is complicated and undeniable. The more anxious you are, the harder it is to sleep. And, sleeplessness or insomnia can make you up to 17 times more likely to suffer from clinical anxiety.
Thankfully, both THC and CBD offer powerful symptom relief when it comes to sleeplessness.
Marijuana’s sedative effects can shorten the time it takes to fall asleep. And, studies have shown a link between the stages of sleep and THC. Specifically, THC reduces the time you spend in REM sleep and increases the time you spend in slow-wave sleep.
Simply put, THC reduces dreaming. This effect can be helpful to people who have conditions like PTSD or experience frequent, disturbing dreams, and nightmares. Plus, because you’ll spend more time in “deep” slow-wave sleep, you’ll feel more rested with fewer hours of shuteye.
CBD has also been proven to support a healthy sleep cycle. It decreases the symptoms of anxiety and pain, and may even interact with specific receptors in the brain that control the sleep/wake cycle. And, in a recent study, CBD was shown to improve sleep quality in over 60% of participants!
In recent years, CBD has become a widely accepted treatment for sleeplessness and insomnia. The American Sleep Association even recommends it.
Dosage is Key
When it comes to using cannabis for anxiety relief, proper dosage is essential. If you’ve ever been too high, you know that it doesn’t feel good. But, feelings of stress and paranoia are easy to avoid if you follow proper dosage guidelines.
Research has shown that THC can decrease anxiety at lower doses and increase anxiety at higher doses. So, you should always start by using small amounts of cannabis, especially if you’re dosing with a potent strain.
That’s why many THC infused products are sold with a low recommended dose of 5mg. For relief from anxiety symptoms, you should start by using a small amount and take more if you need it.
Don’t forget that marijuana edibles, sublingual concentrates, and pills or capsules can take up to 90 minutes to offer relief. Never take more without waiting to feel the full effects of your initial dose.
On the other hand, CBD appears to decrease anxiety at all tested doses. Taking too much does not increase your risks of feeling adverse side effects like paranoia, but will probably just make you feel sleepy.
So, if you’re interested in using weed for anxiety, a CBD based product or marijuana with a high CBD to THC ratio may be your best bet. This way, you can experience powerful symptom relief without side effects.
Anxiety is your body’s natural response to stress. And, it’s a term that we use to describe a wide variety of medical disorders.
Recently, more and more studies are linking marijuana use to relief from specific types of anxiety, like OCD or obsessive-compulsive disorder, and DSM-5 anxiety disorders, which include GAD or Generalized Anxiety Disorder, SAD, or Social Anxiety Disorder, and PD or Panic Disorder.
A mental healthcare professional can help you understand your specific symptoms and type of anxiety before adding cannabis to your treatment plan. Marijuana can interact with prescription and over-the-counter medications, you should speak with a doctor before using it if you’re already on medication.
When it comes to treating specific and severe forms of anxiety, marijuana may be used alongside prescription medication or other natural remedies. Healthy activities like exercise, yoga, and meditation can all increase its benefits.
The Road to Relief
Now that you know a bit more about the different ways to use marijuana for anxiety relief, you’re probably excited to give it a try.
Don’t forget to speak with your doctor first, especially if you have a severe and diagnosed form of anxiety. And, remember to purchase all medical marijuana from a licensed dispensary who offers delivery.
Keep in mind that you should always follow package instructions when using marijuana to reduce the symptoms of your anxiety. Start with a small dose, and add a bit later if you need to.
Do you have more questions about using medical marijuana or how to dose? Check out our other helpful articles and blog posts for more tips and tricks, plus product recommendations, cannabis news, and more.