Anxiety is a common mental illness affecting millions of Americans. Marijuana as a treatment for anxiety has gained popularity over the past few years. Thus it has been legalized in many states of USA and you can purchase it easily with your MMJ card. Like if you live in Temecula, CA you can get your medical marijuana card in Temecula through a tele-medicine service and use it to purchase cannabis through your local dispensary or all over California.
With scientific evidence that cannabis can help manage anxiety symptoms effectively, more patients are preferring it over prescription medications. Also, manufacturers are focusing on creating innovative products to help consumers ease the way to consume the herb. A Canadian agency Rethink has manufactured special rolling papers for creating straws, thus allowing consumers to drink cannabis.
Major Symptoms of Anxiety
Anxiety can create a lot of problems in the lives of patients. It can cause sleep disturbances, thus leading to fatigue and lack of concentration. Research says that anxiety can link to insomnia. Other symptoms of anxiety disorders are-
- Excessive worrying
- Tense muscles
- Panic attacks
- Negative thoughts
- Increased heart rate
Several factors can increase the risks of anxiety disorders. These include trauma, stress, and drug abuse.
Marijuana For Anxiety
Before we discuss how marijuana helps fight anxiety, let’s understand the science behind this condition. Studies have found that the endocannabinoid system (ECS) plays a vital role in controlling different bodily processes, including brain function. It regulates anxiety, fear, sleep, appetite, mood, and memory. The system comprises endocannabinoids, cannabinoid receptors, and enzymes. In the brain areas, such as the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, and amygdala, there exist cannabinoid receptors, which ensure a healthy balance.
When you consume cannabis, its active ingredients (cannabinoids) stimulates the endocannabinoid system, thus easing anxiety symptoms. Actually, the phytocannabinoids work by binding to cannabinoid receptors.
According to a study published in January 2020, the endocannabinoid 2-AG helped reduce the anxiety-inducing effects between two important brain regions, the amygdala, and frontal cortex. 2-AG activates the same cannabinoid receptors as THC.
THC is a psychoactive compound responsible for making consumers high. This is probably a reason why patients prefer CBD products. CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid known for delivering calming and relaxing effects, thus boosting sleep and anxiety.
In a 2019 study of 37 social anxiety sufferers, researchers analyzed the effects of CBD oil and placebo. They gave participants with 300 mg of CBD oil or a placebo daily for 4 weeks. The participants reported significant improvement with CBD.
Additionally, studies have found that CBD work by interacting with the serotonin system of the body, as SSRIs do. It affects the way the receptors respond to serotonin in the brain. According to an animal study published in 2014, CBD interacted with these receptors to deliver anti-anxiety and antidepressant effects.
Cannabis vs Anti-Anxiety Medications
For fighting anxiety symptoms, there are various medications available. However, anti-anxiety pharmaceuticals can cause various side-effects. For instance, patients can build a tolerance on the drugs, thus increasing the daily dose.
Doctors usually prescribe benzodiazepines for anxiety sufferers. These medications work by managing the levels of GABA. Studies show that marijuana also impacts the GABA levels. In other words, cannabis works the same way as benzodiazepines.
Patients may overdose on benzodiazepines and cannabis. Thousands of people have died with benzodiazepines overdose, but no one has died from a marijuana overdose. However, the latter can lead to some health issues, such as confusion, anxiety, fast heart rate, and increased blood pressure levels.
Mixing The Both
Thinking of mixing your anti-anxiety medications with marijuana? Wait! It may carry some risks. For instance, taking citalopram and marijuana together can lead to side-effects, such as confusion, drowsiness, and lack of focus. However, the risks can be minimized by adjusting the dosage.
Additionally, there’s some evidence that CBD can impact the effects of prescribed medications by stimulating the body’s endocannabinoid system & inhibiting the activity of cytochrome P450, the liver enzymes that break down toxins. Thus, by deactivating the activity of these enzymes temporarily, CBD can change the way chemical compounds are metabolized.
Some medical experts advise patients to avoid combining CBD with medications that come with a grapefruit warning. The FDA says that consuming grapefruit juice while taking certain medications can lead to negative effects, even overdose.
So, it’s good to do some research regarding combining cannabis with medications you are taking, currently. You can talk to your doctor to seek professional help for what’s right for your condition.
How to Use Marijuana For Anxiety?
Before you start using cannabis for managing anxiety symptoms, get a medical marijuana card in Temecula. It allows you to access licensed dispensaries legally to buy high-quality, tested cannabis products. By law, medical users can purchase high potency marijuana oils, edibles, tinctures, and flowers for managing their conditions.
If you want to save time, opt for telemedicine services. Telemedicine technology allows you to see a doctor online, thus avoiding the need of visiting a clinic. The doctor will evaluate you via a HIPAA-compliant software, and provide you with an MMJ rec letter (in PDF format) via email.
To alleviate your anxiety symptoms completely, you should select the right cannabis strains and delivery methods. Let’s discuss them.
Major Cannabis Strains For Anxiety
Different strains contain different levels of cannabinoids such as THC and CBD. Thus, they can influence the medicinal effects you receive. So, always check the label carefully when purchasing marijuana products. Here are some of the best strains for anxiety sufferers-
- Blackberry Kush
- Northern Lights
- Strawberry Cough
- Jack Herer
- Granddaddy Purple
- Critical Mass
Different Methods of Consumption
It’s the most popular method of cannabis consumption, which delivers immediate effects. You can roll a joint and inhale the smoke containing cannabinoids. Additionally, you can use a water pipe for smoking cannabis. Here, water is used to cool the smoke, thus providing a smooth smoking experience.
A vaporizer converts dried flowers/concentrates into vapors, which are inhaled through the mouth to receive immediate effects. The modern technology vaping devices come with temperature control features, allowing consumers to have customized vaping experiences. Since vaping doesn’t produce as many carcinogens as smoking, it’s considered safe.
Tinctures & Oils
These are concentrated forms of cannabis, which deliver stronger effects. Tinctures are perfect for dosage control. The cannabinoids are absorbed orally. Tinctures can contain either alcohol or glycerin vegetable oil. Alcohol-based tinctures have a fast action.
You can eat foods and drink beverages infused with THC, CBD, and other cannabis compounds. Edibles are absorbed through the digestive system and have a different onset and duration. Usually, they take 30-60 minutes to deliver full effects, which last longer than smoking or vaping.
Anxiety is a common condition for which people consume cannabis. When marijuana compounds are delivered into the body, they stimulate the endocannabinoid system, thus boosting mood, sleep, etc. Those who want to alleviate anxiety symptoms without getting high can opt for CBD products. Studies show that cannabis is safer than anti-anxiety medications. Medical experts believe that cannabis may interact with certain medicines to produce negative effects. So, you should talk to a licensed doctor when mixing medications with marijuana treatment.
Additionally, analyze your condition and select the right strains, dosage, and consumption method for managing your symptoms. And the best way to do that is to get the 420 evaluation done by a MMJ doctor and get its recommendations on your condition and cannabis usage and then Get your medical marijuana card in Temecula to buy cannabis from your local cannabis dispensary and use it for anxiety.