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How CBD Interacts With Our Endocannabinoid System To Treat Anxiety
Every day it is more and more common for a person of any age to comment that they have or have had anxiety. What is anxiety? Do we all have it? Can CBD help me control this symptom?
Anxiety is defined as a fear and discomfort accompanied by physical symptoms (sweating palms, tachycardia, chest pain, etc.). This represents one of the most frequent mental health disorders in the population, often interfering with the work or daily life of the person who suffers from it.
A concept to differentiate is that of anxiety with fear. The latter is an adaptive response to a specific, known, external threat that is not caused by a conflict; On the other hand, anxiety occurs as a response to a non-specific, internal, vague threat or caused by some conflict.
But anxiety itself is not bad, it helps us to make an adaptive response to stressful situations, with the aim of preparing the body to be alert to a situation that represents a danger. Now when these adaptive responses of the organism are constant for a long time, they can become uncontrollable and chronic and end up affecting the person's quality of life.
Traditional treatments vary depending on the severity at which symptoms interfere with patients' lives. There are conditions of mild anxiety where there is an excellent symptomatic response to a multidisciplinary approach with psychotherapy, meditation, physical activity, detoxification from social networks and screens, sleep hygiene recommendations, a Mediterranean diet low in processed products and high in fruit and vegetables, adequate hydration, smoking cessation, etc. If symptoms persist despite lifestyle changes and psychotherapy, the specialist may consider the use of psychoactive drugs such as benzodiazepines, pregabalin and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.
Endocannabinoid system, a fundamental advance in science
In 1992, Professor Raphael Mechoulam and his team at the University of Israel discovered the first endogenous cannabinoid produced by our own body, which has a chemical structure very similar to the products of the cannabis plant, called Anandamide. Later they discovered others such as 2-arachidonylglycerol. This research advance was fundamental to the understanding that the human body produces endogenous cannabinoids (endocannabinoids) that bind to specific receptors (cannabinoid receptors) and activate them to produce different effects (Imbalance Response).
The cannabinoids produced by the body and cannabinoid receptors make up the endocannabinoid system, which is widely distributed in the organism of all mammals and is involved in multiple metabolic pathways, acting as a regulatory body on cellular physiology.
The objective of this system is to maintain the balance of the organism in its entirety, attending to regulate the situations in which the body does not function correctly, to return to achieve body homeostasis.
When there is no regulation of our body, the endocannabinoid system increases the production of endocannabinoids. Many times this is not enough, it is there that phytocannabinoids such as CBD used exogenously play a fundamental role in combating a symptom.
How to use CBD for anxiety symptom?
A key point is to understand that the endocannabinoid system modulates brain function by balancing it. There is abundant scientific evidence that links the appearance of severe episodes of anxiety with the alteration of this system. The main phytocannabinoid for the proposed treatment is cannabidiol (CBD) which does not have any psychoactive effect and helps stimulate the regulation of body balance when it binds to specific receptors.
It should be noted that cannabinoids potentiate the action of benzodiazepines and increase their effect. That is why in people with these treatments it is necessary to carry out a close control in the dosage of CBD. It is very important not to stop taking benzodiazepines suddenly, since the withdrawal syndrome caused by sudden suspension of these drugs can be very severe, so it is essential to have the supervision of a doctor specialized in medical cannabis for its correct approach.
To conclude, scientific evidence and extensive clinical experience recommend varieties rich in CBD. If possible they also contain limonene, myrcene or linalool.. If possible they also contain limonene, myrcene or linalool. CBD oil used sublingually is one of the main recommendations as a complementary base treatment, since the duration of the phytocannabinoids in this route lasts approximately eight hours. It is usually started with extracts in high dilutions (1/100), in three daily doses with one to two sublingual drops, gradually increasing until the effective dose is found. The Vaporized route gives us the advantage of rapid action and is useful as a rescue treatment in the event of crisis episodes, or as a treatment for various symptoms such as insomnia, for example. Two puffs of CBD at 180 degrees are usually indicated, then wait five minutes and evaluate the response. If the discomfort continues, another puff is recommended, increasing the amount depending on the needs of each organism. It is important to remember that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) used in high doses can cause anxiety states.
Anxiety is a symptom that affects a large portion of the population today. The problem of high work stress, excessive use of social networks, sedentary lifestyles, smoking, poor nutrition means that to solve this problem, we need to acquire interdisciplinary resources in order to achieve changes in styles and lifestyles, as they are; doing mostly aerobic controlled physical activity, Mediterranean diets rich in fruits and vegetables and low in processed products, treatment with psychotherapists and/or psychiatrists along with a CBD approach can help a person suffering from anxiety find a solution that allowing him to fully develop without having this debilitating symptom. It is essential to consult a professional trained in the subject so that clinical and symptomatic improvement is effective and safe.
This article has been reviewed and approved by Dr. Jordi Domingo Rivas
Psychiatrist with more than 25 years of experience in his specialty, created in 1998 the medical society Instituto NEPP S.L.
Article written by Pedro Bosco Veiga
Doctor graduated from the National University of the South, Argentina. PM: 3637.
Other entries of interest:
- Help fibromyalgia with CBD
- CBD and its effects on memory
- Reduce anxiety with CBD
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