Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition induced by a traumatic incident. Whether it is an accident, business loss, or death in the family, your response to the trauma can have critical consequences. You may feel distressed, disconnected, or isolated after experiencing a life-threatening event. If this overwhelming feeling affects your ability to recover, the PTSD symptoms may get worse with time. It can cause intense emotional and physical reactions that interfere with your day-to-day functioning. Current treatments for PTSD are ineffective and may have unfavorable side effects. Cannabidiol (CBD), a component of Cannabis sativa, has recently been found beneficial in alleviating this disorder.
What are the potential benefits of CBD oil for PTSD? What does the research say on this matter? If you are looking for the answers, go through this article. This post suggests how high-quality CBD oil can help with trauma rehabilitation.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Signs And Symptoms
We have all been through some form of trauma in our lives. Abuse, war, accidents, disasters, or traumatic loss are traumatic incidents that could be the reason for mental illness. Some people who experience such circumstances have trouble adjusting and coping, but they overcome with time and adequate self-care. However, many fail to recover even after months or years. They may have deep, disturbing thoughts and negative feelings about their traumatic experience. Experts consider this psychiatric condition post-traumatic stress disorder. The common signs and symptoms of this disorder are:
- Behavioral changes like agitation, irritability, hostility, or social isolation
- Avoiding situations or people that remind you of the traumatic event
- Nightmares, flashbacks, or intrusive memories
- Disconnection from family and friends
- Lack of enthusiasm for activities you once enjoyed
- Difficulty maintaining official and personal relationships
- Having trouble sleeping or concentrating
- Emotional numbness or memory lapses
- Frequent mood alterations such as rage, guilt, shame, blame, or negativity
- Substance abuse
Also Read: Does CBD Help With Blood Thinning?
Conventional Treatment For PTSD
PTSD is an awful health condition triggered by a terrifying event, causing severe anxiety issues. There is no definite cure for it, but there are many treatment options to alleviate its symptoms. For instance, various therapy techniques and prescription medications are available. Psychotherapy includes cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), eye movement desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), or Stress Inoculation Training (SIT). These therapies aim to alter the thought patterns that cause disruptions in your life. Besides, natural remedies and lifestyle changes can help people recover from PTSD like:
Yoga comprises physical, ethical, and spiritual perspectives. Physical poses, breathing exercises, and meditation are part of this practice. It offers a holistic approach to help unite body, mind, and spirit. More and more people with psychiatric disorders are turning to yoga for relief these days. Research shows that it can foster physical and mental well-being in PTSD patients.
A poor diet high in sugar and processed foods can cause depression, fatigue, anxiety, and weight gain. On the contrary, dietary changes can affect your overall mood or sense of well-being. It includes limiting or avoiding alcohol and caffeine. A study published in the journal Psychiatry research found a link between probiotic foods and reduced social anxiety. Probiotic-rich foods like pickles, sauerkraut, and kefir are more likely to help PTSD patients.
A natural way to improve mood, appetite, and sleep is to engage yourself in some physical activity. Whether you go for a walk in the park or work out in your home gym, a regular exercise regimen is worthwhile. It contributes to many positive physical and mental health benefits, such as reduced anxiety and depression. Research suggests that aerobic exercise is an effective treatment option for people with PTSD.
Under traumatic conditions, social support, cognition, and attachment organization all contribute to emotion regulation. A preliminary study illustrates that social bonds significantly affect PTSD development and maintenance. According to this study, individuals may receive or develop a sense of safety with supportive people. This aspect is essential to recovering from PTSD. So, it’s wise to join support networks such as family and friends or local organizations.
Using CBD oil for PTSD is common these days. CBD is not a modern phenomenon, but its usage dates back to 2737 BCE in China. However, its use halted because people linked it with marijuana sources that cause psychoactive effects. But soon after the 2018 farm bill removed hemp from Schedule I substances, hemp-derived CBD has a high demand. It’s highly sought after for medical reasons, including PTSD treatment. A research study shows that CBD offers therapeutic benefits for disorders caused by responses to traumatic memories. The compound has a lower side effect profile than the pharmacological therapy currently used to treat PTSD.
ECS Dysfunction And PTSD
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is vital for the smooth functioning of our body. It regulates and controls functions, such as pain, sleep, immunity, stress, inflammation, memory, emotions, appetite, and temperature. It works through densely packed chemical signals and cellular receptors, including CB1 and CB2.
Our bodies release endocannabinoids, stimulate these receptors and attain internal balance. However, the problem arises when PTSD impairs the ECS signaling in the brain. The body may experience a host of health and wellness issues due to ECS dysfunction.
Research indicates that endocannabinoids and phytocannabinoids like CBD have similar chemical structures. Even though CBD is an exogenous compound, it plays a significant role in the system. It can ease PTSD-related disruptions by preventing endocannabinoids from being broken down. It can influence receptor activity and inhibit excess enzymes. It mimics the role of endogenous endocannabinoids and helps restore balance. Though the therapeutic benefits of cannabinoids are evident, more studies on this perspective are necessary.
Benefits Of CBD Oil For Anxiety
CBD tends to boost ECS functioning and alleviate several ailments, including PTSD. Though THC also offers similar therapeutic benefits, CBD is a better option because it produces the desired effect without the sedation feeling. It will help to rest your mind, come out of the trauma, and lead a quality life. Let us know the potential benefits of using CBD-based products for PTSD patients.
People with PTSD may have scary nightmares about their traumatic experiences. The dreams seem so vividly real that they could even rattle you awake from a deep sleep. It may even set your heart pounding and sweaty while in bed. It may occur rarely or more frequently, depending on the intensity of stress in your mind. However, you can use CBD to stop nightmares and feel relaxed. Research shows that CBD ceased or reduced flashbacks, nightmares, and persistent memories in PTSD patients.
Eases Anxiety And Depression
PTSD is a psychiatric disorder that can exaggerate anxiety and depression symptoms in many sufferers. It may cause high levels of distress that may interrupt your daily activities. It may even affect your relationships with friends, family, and colleagues. Getting support from a therapist and taking CBD oil under medical supervision can help you feel better. A 2015 study shows that CBD helps reduce anxiety, panic attacks, obsessive behavior, and the long-term impacts of stress.
Helps With Insomnia
Insomnia is another core symptom of PTSD that can affect your mental health and well-being. Patients may have trouble falling or staying asleep throughout the night. As a result, they could experience fatigue, daytime sleepiness, tension, and low energy. A recent study acknowledges that cannabinoids like CBD contribute to bodily homeostasis by acting as a sleep aid. Researchers also noticed a significant impact on rapid eye movement and slow-wave sleep phases. Overall, the compound helps improve the quantity and quality of sleep.
Hyperarousal is a common sign of PTSD. It happens when your mind goes on high alert due to persistent recalling of your trauma. Even if no genuine danger exists, your body reacts as if it does, causing long-term tension after a traumatic occurrence. However, regular CBD use can help you to overcome this dreadful mental condition. It has an anti-stress and antidepressant effect that prevents overthinking in the brain. According to a neuroimaging study, CBD positively affects human brain functioning relevant for psychiatric disorders.
Disrupts Fear Memories
PTSD is a chronic psychological condition that causes intense fear in the mind. It is because of a traumatic event, such as domestic violence, sexual assault, natural disaster, or terrorist attack. Sufferers frequently feel on guard, as if something is always about to go wrong, leaving them exhausted and fearful. Such a situation can continue for many years after the tragic event. Fortunately, CBD can prevent the formation of fear memories. Research shows that CBD disrupts the feelings of long-term fear memory processing, resulting in less overwhelming stress.
CBD vs THC For Stress Disorder
CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabis compound with anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, anxiolytic, and antipsychotic properties. Unlike THC, it does not produce the mind-altering effects commonly associated with cannabis.
CBD does not get you high, which is why it is so popular as a therapeutic agent. Another benefit of CBD over other drugs (such as THC) is that it causes fewer side effects at high doses. Multiple studies affirm the medicinal efficacy of CBD for PTSD. CBD appears to be effective in alleviating primary symptoms of the condition, including improving sleep, easing overthinking habits, and enhancing your mood.
Also Read: Cannabinoid Therapy
Other Beneficial Cannabinoids For PTSD Patients
PTSD treatment involves anticonvulsants and atypical antipsychotics. But many patients do not respond well to these pharmacological drugs. They may experience side effects that prevent them from taking the medications in sufficient doses for long. It is why patients prefer using medical cannabis instead of over-the-counter medicines. CBD exhibits antipsychotic, anticonvulsant, neuroprotective, analgesic, and antioxidant effects. These therapeutic properties help resist several PTSD symptoms, from destroying bad memories to enhancing their mood.
CBD oil comes in different forms, out of which full-spectrum is more effective than CBD isolate. It is because full-spectrum CBD oil contains many cannabinoids beyond CBD. It includes:
- Cannabinol (CBN)
- Cannabigerol (CBG)
- Cannabichromene (CBC)
- Cannabidivarin (CBDV)
- Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV)
- Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA)
- Cannabidiolic acid (CBDA)
Besides these cannabinoids, full-spectrum CBD extract also contains compounds, such as terpenes, flavonoids, vitamins, essential fatty acids, protein, etc. Various cannabinoids and compounds synergize with CBD, generating the entourage effect. The generated synergy enhances the therapeutic potential of CBD and helps alleviate PTSD symptoms more efficiently.
Best CBD Consumption Method For PTSD
CBD isolates are devoid of beneficial and nutritional compounds other than cannabidiol. So, starting with a full-spectrum CBD oil for PTSD is wise. Let us discuss the most common way of taking your dose.
CBD delicacies are available as capsules, oils, candy, pastries, cakes, milkshakes, coffee, tea, and smoothies are a few of the CBD delicacies available. These days, various oral products come in tasty treats with desirable flavors. You can eat them the same way you take in your regular food. It means you can consume CBD oil orally or mixed into your meals. The compound will pass through your digestive tract and liver before penetrating blood circulation. The lengthy administrative route causes delays in generating results. You will feel the effect within 2 hours, and the impact will last between 2 to 6 hours.
This method pertains to CBD oil tinctures generally available in a dropper or spray bottle. It involves placing a few drops of oil under your tongue and holding it there for a minute before swallowing. The compound dissolves and diffuses into your bloodstream through the blood vessels in your mouth. It produces effects swiftly because it bypasses the digestive tract. Within 10-15 minutes, you may start to feel the CBD effects. This method is ideal for PTSD patients seeking rapid onset action. Their effects may last up to 5-6 hours.
Vaping And Smoking
Many CBD inhalation products are available on the market. For example, pre-rolls, e-cigarettes, e-juices, vaporizers, dab rigs, bowls, joints, and pipes. Generally, you inhale by taking in the smoke and expelling it after a few seconds. The smoke travels quickly from the lungs to the bloodstream, producing an immediate effect. However, always consult a doctor before starting this fast-acting CBD regimen for PTSD.
Also Read: Can CBD Help With Hives?
Conclusion On CBD Oil For PTSD
PTSD is a debilitating disorder marked by a psychological stress reaction due to a traumatic experience. Its treatment involves many pharmacological and psychotherapy approaches. However, if you use full-spectrum CBD with these conventional treatments, it can help you to recover fast. These days, CBD-based products are available in many types, including oils, tinctures, topicals, vape juices, edibles, and beverages. Make sure to buy a quality-tested product from authorized cannabis vendors for your needs.
Best-quality CBD products can help combat the fear in your mind due to your traumatic experience. CBD works by addressing ECS imbalances and potentially helping reverse endocannabinoid deficiency. Eventually, it facilitates homeostasis by regulating pain, sleep, memory, appetite, energy, anxiety, and immunity. However, consult your doctor for guidance before you incorporate CBD into your daily routine.