For those who experience panic attacks regularly, life can be an uphill battle. Not knowing which random event will spark it is almost as bad as the panic attack itself.
For many anxiety sufferers, some days feel like they aren’t worth getting up for. A more severe version of anxiety disorder is panic attacks, and they can be both debilitating and exhausting at the same time. The thing with panic attacks is that you never know when, where, or why the next attack will take place. A longer than usual line at the supermarket could spark it, or an angry email from your boss complaining about your work. No matter how it comes, once that panic attack strikes, it’s almost impossible to get rid of.
People employ various strategies to cope with anxiety and panic attacks, with some success in many cases. A healthy diet, getting the right amount of sleep, keeping hydrated, and working out, All of these are vital factors when it comes to averting panic attacks or at the very least, minimizing them.
However, for those who suffer from more severe panic attacks, medications and psychotropic drugs are often the first port of call. The issue with pharmaceutical drugs though is that they are often addictive and can cause a variety of side-effects in some patients. These days, many people prefer natural solutions for their anxiety, and that’s where CBD (short for cannabidiol) comes into play.
CBD can be used in different ways to relieve the symptoms and anxiety and panic attacks and is highly effective for some people. CBD can be taken orally and sublingually using CBD oil tinctures. It can also be taken in CBD edibles like cupcakes and gummy bears. CBD also comes in vape form, and CBD flowers can also be smoked or vaporized for immediate effects too.
As it turns out, many anxiety sufferers favor vaping or smoking CBD as the active compound enters the bloodstream instantly via the lungs. There’s also some scientific evidence to suggest that CBD is useful specifically for anxiety and panic attacks.
A 2017 scientific review of studies by Vanessa P. Soares and Alline C. Campos, entitled, “Evidences for the Anti-panic Actions of Cannabidiol” looked at Panic Disorder (PD), a condition affecting around 5% of the global population. The study noted that the first line of treatment for PD is selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
However, these drugs have some nasty side-effects for many patients and are not a long-term and viable option. It’s already a well-established fact that CBD has anti-anxiety properties, and could be an excellent alternative for a range of mental disorders and issues.
The study looked at a database of other studies; focusing on keywords like cannabidiol and panic disorder; cannabidiol and anxiety, etc. Both experimental laboratory animal and human studies were reviewed, and the results were both interesting and compelling. Many studies concluded that CBD has anxiolytic-like effects in animal models and healthy human volunteers.
As the study notes, “Over the last two decades, the therapeutic potential of cannabinoids has been extensively studied. Although cannabis abuse is connected to marked anxiety, panic attacks, depersonalization, and emotional liability (primarily due to the psychotropic effects of ∆9-THC).”
With that said, the study continues, “A growing body of evidence suggests that non-psychotomimetic phytocannabinoids could be useful as therapeutic tools. The most promising of these compounds is cannabidiol (CBD), the major non-psychotomimetic constituent of Cannabis sativa.”
Research by Zuardi et al. demonstrated that just one 300mg of CBD decreased anxiety in healthy volunteers under SPS test conditions. Another study, carried out by Bergamaschi et al. showed that those suffering from anxiety experienced elevated levels of worry when speaking in public. However, according to the results there, a 600mg dose of CBD led to a “significant reduction in anxiety-related measures obtained during their speech performance.”
This overview of specific research into the connection between CBD and panic disorders certainly go towards supporting the notion that CBD has anti-panic mechanisms. It is also safe and very well tolerated by almost all people when taken orally and in the right dose. The conclusion of the research noted that “phase 2 and phase 3 studies are necessary to demonstrate the efficacy and the dose range of CBD for the treatment of this (panic attacks) anxiety disorder.”
The fact that CBD doesn’t cause dependence, tolerance, or abstinence symptoms, means it could become the treatment of the future, particularly for those wanting to steer clear of addictive prescription medications.