According to research, at least three million Canadians suffer from anxiety or mood disorders. This impacts their daily activities and makes it hard for them to work or study. To cope with anxiety, some change their sleeping habits or try relaxation techniques, but most turn to prescription medications. Though the use of cannabis is still a debate for many, history shows that it has often been utilized medicinally.

What are anxiety disorders?

Anxiety is our body’s natural reaction to a potential threat. However, when we are constantly overwhelmed by anxiety and feelings of helplessness, it disrupts our lives and impairs our ability to carry out simple everyday tasks.

Anxiety disorders can be classified as:

  • Phobias
  • Panic disorders
  • Social anxiety disorders
  • Agoraphobia
  • Generalized anxiety disorders
  • Post-traumatic stress disorders

Symptoms include:

  • Fear
  • Panic
  • Insomnia
  • Muscle tension
  • Breaking out into a cold sweat
  • Increased heart rate
  • Feeling light-headed
  • Nausea

Cannabidiol (CBD) as anxiety treatment

Many drugs have been used to treat depression and anxiety. Not all of them are effective, and others lose their effectiveness over time. This has led to a search for alternatives, including medical marijuana. Cannabis has two main components, Tetrahydrocannabinol (or THC) and Cannabidiol (or CBD), and CBD has been specifically found to have anxiety-relieving effects. THC has the opposite function. It stimulates the brain, and though it also has medical benefits, when taken in excess it can trigger anxiety and paranoia. Cannabis bred with a higher level of CBD is more suited for treating anxiety, fighting inflammation, and reducing spasms.

Recent studies of medical cannabis and anxiety

In one study conducted in 2017, patients using benzodiazepines were given medical cannabis for anxiety and pain. Of those who were prescribed medical cannabis, 40 percent were able to quit using benzodiazepines. A 2014 study proposed that a contributing factor in the development of anxiety disorders is lack of endocannabinoids in the brain. Medical marijuana was found to encourage the production of these endocannabinoids. Other studies also discovered the usefulness of marijuana in lessening symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder and generalized social anxiety disorder patients.

Research in this field is still new, but medical cannabis, specifically Cannabidiol (CBD), can be used safely to treat anxiety. It produces milder side effects than other medications. Those suffering from anxiety disorders can benefit from medical marijuana as long as they are guided by an experienced physician.

If you’re considering medical cannabis to ease anxiety symptoms, contact the caring professionals at The Clinic Network. Call us at 1-855-462-3646 or at any of our clinics. We have a team of counsellors and medical doctors who can advise you on the best strain for your needs and assist with a personalized treatment plan.

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