A Beginner’s Guide for CBD Consumption to Manage Anxiety

A case report published in 2019 examined patients at a Fort Collins, Colorado, behavioural wellbeing facility. In this study, 103 people where initially reviewed, with 72 in the final sample, and 47 of the patients sampled reporting distress symptoms. The bulk of patients received 25 milligrams (mg) of CBD every day in addition to their medication over three months (although as you will see, doses can vary widely).

57 of the 72 patients (79.2%) reported an improvement in depression and anxiety after the first monthly usage. Within two months, 32 of the 41 (78.1%) of the remaining patients showed a change in their condition relative to the previous month.

However, several patients indicated that their anxiety problems increased due to taking CBD. 11 of 72 (15.3%) reported that their anxiety became exacerbated during the first month, and 8 of 41 (19.5%) reported that their anxiety worsened even after the second month.

These contrasting results may be explained by variables such as limited sample sizes and dose variability, and that CBD is a bi-directional drug. 

CBD Consumption Method

If you are considering using CBD oil for anxiety for relief, it is important to educate yourself. Understanding the advantages and disadvantages of different consumption methods (and dosage) will assist you in determining which form of consumption better fits your needs.

Tinctures and Essential Oils

CBD oils and tinctures are a convenient, simple, and precise way to ingest CBD. The majority of tinctures are made from an alcohol foundation. CBD oils are infused with CBD extracts in a carrier oil along with hemp or coconut oil.

Oils and tinctures are undertaken via a dropper, which enables precise dosage measurement. When taken sublingually (i.e. under the tongue), the cannabinoid rapidly reaches the bloodstream – with effects beginning as soon as ten minutes and can extend up to 3 to 4 hours.

Consumables

This type of CBD is extremely convenient to consume. It is usually tasty, especially as gummies. However, it can take a couple of hours or more to feel the effects.

Additionally, the bioavailability of CBD can affect digestion since it must travel across the gastrointestinal tract before being metabolised by the liver. As a consequence, just a trace amount of CBD enters the circulatory system.

It is important to know that not every gummy is created equal, however.

Since there are currently no over-the-counter (OTC) CBD products approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), it is important to do your research and make sure you are buying a quality product.

It is also worth noting that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently declared CBD-containing foods to be unlawful. CBD edibles must be purchased from state-licensed adult-use stores.

The Law

If purchasing CBD products in the US it is important to note:

  • Hemp-derived CBD products (with less than 0.3% THC) are legal on the federal level, but are still illegal under some state laws.
  • Marijuana-derived CBD products are illegal on the federal level, but are legal under some state laws.
  • Check your state’s laws and those of anywhere you travel.
  • Keep in mind that non-prescription CBD products are not FDA-approved, and may be inaccurately labelled.

CBD Dosage for Anxiety

As far as research is concerned, you will find that dosing regimens differ greatly. For example, Japanese research gave teenagers 300 mg of CBD, while the Colorado study (mentioned at the start) gave patients 25 mg (with some getting 50 or 75 mg, whilst one received 175 mg). Why is there such a big dosage disparity?

As a literature review from 2017 suggests, there is no uniformly prescribed dose for CBD, and no large-scale clinical studies have been conducted to support dose recommendations. Instead, it underscored the fact that different people (and, in animal studies, different animals) respond to different dosages of CBD. Most of the human studies use dosages anywhere between 20 and 1,500 mg per day. Additionally, the FDA is currently gathering information regarding CBD, including its accumulated impact on the body, before determining how to regulate it.

If you are considering utilising CBD to help control your anxiety symptoms, take a slow, effective transition regarding dosage (although we advise you to consult a medical professional prior, due to potential for interactions with other medications you are taking/or may take).

What the Research says about CBD

CBD has been the subject of a lot of discussion and research over the past few years.

And, the above does not imply it is dangerous, in fact the same 2017 literature review demonstrates a great deal of research has found that it is a successful and well-tolerated therapy/treatment.

It is worth remembering that there is still a lot about CBD that we do not know. As the cannabis industry grows, researchers will likely conduct more studies on cannabis, including marijuana and hemp, and its derivatives.

Dosage Guidelines in General

There are several elements to consider when determining a CBD dosage, including:

  • Your bodweight;
  • Your indivdual body chemistry;
  • The concentration of CBD in each pill, capsule, drop, or gummy; and
  • The condition you are treating.

The amount of CBD in each substance differs but is usually represented in milligrams (mg) per bottle.

Suppose you have determined the efficacy of the CBD substance you are looking to consume, dosage calculations will include a milligram recommendation depending on your weight and the seriousness of the symptoms, for example.

Additionally, your body chemistry affects how you react to CBD. Some people metabolise medications more quickly than others, which may be due to genetic or lifestyle factors. If you are aware that you metabolise drugs rapidly, you may require a higher dose (but do this in consultation with a medical professional).

CBD can exert bidirectional effects depending on other medication you may be taking. Further, overstimulation of the endocannabinoid system in the body can worsen rather than alleviate symptoms.

Begin Slowly and Steadily

Titration is the method of modifying a medication’s dose to maximise its benefits while minimising any harmful effects. Though CBD has shown to be safe at high concentrations (300-600 mg), it is prudent and much more cost-effective to begin with a low dose and gradually raise it, monitoring the symptoms along the way.

Summary

Regardless of whether you are certain or still wary of CBD it is advisable to speak with a medical professional prior to starting to use CBD.

CBD has been shown to be a successful and well-tolerated therapy, but there is a lack of consensus on the optimal dose, and there are a variety of consumption methods. This means you may have to workout the best dose and consumption method for you through trial and error.

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