Cannabidiol or CBD is a natural compound found in the cannabis plant that has become increasingly popular. This rise in popularity is partly because of increasing research on CBD’s potential health benefits, including working as an antidepressant. The preliminary results of some research on CBD oil and depression are auspicious.
CBD as an antidepressant
Depression and anxiety are common mental health conditions that can have long-term effects on people’s health, social life, capacity to work, and overall well-being. There are many antidepressant drugs that a doctor can prescribe to help a person treat or control depression. However, a majority of these drugs have side effects, such as mood swings, insomnia, and sexual dysfunction.
Previous studies show that CBD oil vape pens can treat depression and anxiety. Furthermore, since it is a natural compound, it may cause fewer side effects in some people. houseofcoco points out that CBD interacts positively with serotonin receptors in the brain. Serotonin is a crucial hormone that affects many functions of the body, including a person’s emotional state and sense of well-being. Maintaining a balanced serotonin level is often an essential treatment for people with depression.
What does experimental research say about CBD oil working as an antidepressant?
Past testing of CBD oil in animal models provides some evidence for using CBD to help treat depression. In a 2014 review of results of various studies, the authors indicated that CBD oil could act as an antidepressant and anti-anxiety compound when animals consume it.
Another credible review in 2018 also pointed out that many studies have demonstrated CBD oil’s anti-stress and antidepressant activities in animal models. It shows noticeable anti-stress effects after short-term or long-term use. The authors also found that the compound works without directly activating endocannabinoid receptors in the brain. This property indicates that CBD oil has a lower risk of addiction.
Researchers even studied the potential of CBD in helping reduce the cravings of patients with opioid use disorders. Furthermore, researchers from a 2018 study stated that CBD showed promise as a fast-acting antidepressant.
Moreover, a majority of researchers who conduct animal studies on CBD oil call for more direct studies on humans. Nevertheless, the preliminary results are essential steps to establish how CBD oil works in the body.
CBD oil vs. panic and anxiety
Some previous studies on humans have shown that CBD oil may help treat other problems commonly associated with depression, such as anxiety or panic disorder.
A 2017 review on the potential benefits of CBD oil for panic disorders found some positive results. Panic disorders affect about 5% of the world’s population. As per one study in the review, a single dose of 300 milligrams (mg) of CBD caused a significant decrease in anxiety levels in humans after a simulated public speaking test. Another study demonstrated that a 600 mg dose of CBD oil could significantly reduce anxiety measures in people with social anxiety disorder.
Does using CBD oil as an antidepressant cause any side effects?
Oral, inhaled, or topical use of CBD oil does not seem to cause any side effects. However, people who are sensitive to CBD oil constituents may experience some mild side effects, appetite changes, diarrhea, and fatigue.
Also, wax vaporizers can interact with many drugs and increase liver toxicity. This explains why epidiolex, a CBD product approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat seizures, warns that people who use it may develop liver problems. In a 2019 publication of a particular study, the researchers tested Epidiolex on mice. They found that mice given higher doses developed liver problems within a day. Although the results of rodent studies may not directly translate to humans, they do prove that natural products do not necessarily mean that it is entirely safe at high concentrations.
Anyone considering the use of CBD oil as an antidepressant should discuss existing medications with their doctor. CBD can interact with certain over-the-counter drugs and dietary supplements as well as prescription drugs. When taking CBD, be careful not to consume grapefruit prescription drugs.
When a person uses it frequently, CBD oil tends to be more effective as an antidepressant. There seems to be no risk of CBD addiction; hence long-term use may be more effective. It is safe for most people. The FDA is yet to approve any over-the-counter CBD products. Buying from reputable sources is essential. In addition, it is a good idea to check third-party laboratory results showing the level of CBD in any given product. CBD products derived from hemp are illegal at the federal level but are legal under specific state laws. You should check the laws in your state and wherever you go.