Anxiety is the New Normal. Is CBD Our New Cure?
For most of us, stress seems like an inescapable part of life. There’s the pressure of building a career that is supposed to express your passion while also paying your rent. There’s the juggle between your work, family and friends, kids and pets, and having a thriving social life. Add in your own hobbies and self-care - including exercise, healthy meals, and a good night’s sleep - and it can feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day.
The ongoing pandemic has only laid on more layers of stress to our lives. Negotiating working from home along with childcare and remote education; monitoring the health of yourself and your loved ones; keeping track of constantly changing rules about what’s open and where you can go; all on top of the social isolation that comes with spending more time at home than ever.
It’s a toxic cocktail that is damaging our health and wellness by causing us to live in a state of anxiety. Your body’s fear response is best designed for an immediate threat - like coming across a venomous snake. That brief, intense reaction is followed by exhaustion as your body recalibrates to a normal response. But when fear and stress become chronic, as they do in a two-year pandemic, it can lead to anxiety. Our minds and bodies are overloaded and fatigued, yet in “high-alert” mode due to the uncertainties we still face. So if you’ve never dealt with anxiety like this before, you’re not alone.
Different Types of Anxiety
Anxiety doesn’t manifest in only one way, and can look different on each person depending on what kind of anxiety disorder they might have. There are various types of anxiety disorders that are medically recognised. Broadly speaking, anxiety is a response of excessive fear or worry to the point where it becomes debilitating.
Generalized Anxiety Disorder
Generalised anxiety is not related to any specific event. Those who have GAD struggle with an “umbrella” feeling of anxiety and fear during everyday living, which can make it challenging to do ordinary things.
Social Anxiety Disorder
This type of anxiety occurs when sufferers are faced with social situations and public interactions. Whether it’s a party, a meeting, or a date, it can become a fearful experience.
Phobias are aversions and fears towards a particular event, situation, or object. These can range from common phobias like fear of heights, to very specific ones.
Panic attacks are a serious fear response that arise as a result of anxiety. Symptoms include hyperventilating, nausea, dizziness, heart palpitations, and chest pain - which is why panic attacks bear a resemblance to heart attacks.
What does research say about CBD and anxiety?
Lots of people who suffer from anxiety have reported life-changing results after using CBD oil. For those who are averse to traditional tranquiliser medications, CBD oil for stress provides an alternative that is free from harmful or debilitating side effects. Besides being a safer choice for most people, using CBD for anxiety is not just based on anecdotal evidence.
New research suggests that taking CBD can have a measurable impact on brain scans. CBD binds to CB1 and CB2 receptors, which might trigger a boost in serotonin - the “happiness” hormone. While serotonin has at least 14 different receptors, CBD binds to those that have the greatest impact on anxiety. When administered to rats, CBD has shown a decrease in anxiety. Yet despite this mind-altering potential, CBD doesn’t get you high.
Does CBD oil help stress and anxiety?
CBD oil for stress has become a popular therapy: It’s natural, friendly to the environment and to your body, and a relatively safe experimental option. But even though CBD is everywhere nowadays, it’s still a very new phenomenon - and in most places, CBD was not even legal until recently. That’s why the research into CBD oil for stress, although promising, is still a work in progress.
Still, the body of evidence is mounting, as several small-scale studies now support the link between CBD and reduced stress and anxiety. What’s more, CBD is proven to have an effect on the endocannabinoid system, or ECS. The ECS is a system of cell-signaling receptors that run through the central and peripheral nervous system. This system includes the cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2.
The ECS is responsible for regulating a host of bodily systems and functions, such as immune response, internal temperature, memory and cognition, and pain response. CBD helps the ECS to maintain a delicate equilibrium across all these different systems. Hormones such as serotonin, for example, are better regulated when the ECS is doing its job. CBD can bring your body and mind into an optimal balance, so the effects of anxiety and stress are minimised.
Is CBD a safe alternative for medications?
Thus far, CBD has not been associated with any serious side effects. It is not considered a harmful or addictive drug by the World Health Organisation, and there are no documented cases of addiction or overdose. Those who have an intolerance to hemp products should avoid CBD. For those with nut and seed allergies, proceed with caution when using CBD oil and always check labels thoroughly.
For most people, however, CBD oil is a safe alternative. It’s even safer than prescription psychiatric drugs, which have been known to cause adverse reactions in the brain. Anxiety is a complicated condition with a host of contributing factors, ranging from genetics to sleep patterns. Because of its effects on the ECS, CBD works in your body to maintain a balance, rather than addressing only a single aspect of stress and anxiety.
The most dangerous aspect of CBD products currently on the market is the lack of industry regulation. Ensure the quality of your CBD purchase by looking for a Certificate of Analysis - something every reputable brand should provide. If it’s your first time, start slow with a drop or two of CBD at a time and observe the effects you feel.
How to Use CBD Oil
If you want to use CBD oil for stress, it’s easy to incorporate into your everyday life. Unlike a pill, you don’t have to monitor dosages and times strictly, making it a convenient and less intimidating solution. Here’s how you can seamlessly add CBD to your daily routine:
MUKOOMI Hemp CBD skincare features the calming properties of CBD for your skin as well as your mental and emotional health. Keep it fuss-free with our minimal yet effective line of products.
A few drops of organic MUKOOMI Hemp CBD Oil in 100% pure hemp seed oil is a soothing addition to your morning coffee. Or your afternoon latte, or your evening tea. With CBD, it’s all up to you.
Incorporate MUKOOMI Hemp CBD Oil into your meals with these simple salad dressing recipes.
These are just a few ways to bring CBD into your life. CBD is absorbed through digestion and through the skin, so get creative and use it according to your needs. Athletes swear by CBD massages to get over injuries, while pet parents administer it to their furry loved ones during thunderstorms. A couple of drops before a job interview, or simply to give yourself a breather in the middle of a stressful day - the beauty of CBD is its ability to be with you, wherever you are.