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Cannabis has had a major boom. Once the butt of old-school stoner jokes, cannabis has transformed in recent years, finally gaining long-awaited recognition for its many health benefits, especially thanks to CBD products.
Derived from a compound found in cannabis, CBD, short for cannabidiol, provides all the medical benefits of cannabis without the high. While this may seem like a fun-less approach to cannabis, CBD’s general inability to induce stoning sensations can sometimes be a positive for those struggling with anxiety.
“CBD is the non-psychoactive part of the plant, so that means you won’t get any effects like euphoria,” doctor and medical cannabis expert Junella Chin said recently Healthnoting that you “probably won’t feel sedated or impaired in any way.”
Although Chin noted that about 5% of people experience side effects from CBD, “these are usually the same people who experience side effects from Advil or Tylenol.” In other words, the chances of experiencing a CBD high are quite low.
So why does CBD’s low likelihood of inducing a high matter? Smoking cannabis alone has been documented to trigger feelings of anxiety or paranoia in some people, an experience that James Giordanowho teaches neurology and biochemistry at Georgetown University, said it comes down to a few factors, including how familiar someone is with feeling uplifted.
“Disorientation can be very anxiety-provoking,” he said. Vice of why someone who is new to smoking cannabis can feel less than pleasant.
Beyond this lack of familiarity, the composition of his brain may also play a role in how he experiences the plant’s psychoactive effects. “What pot tends to do is heighten aspects of his personality,” Giordano explained. “If you tend to be a cheerful person, if you smoke weed, those personality traits tend to be uninhibited and you become more of them. People who have anxious traits or those who have paranoid traits might have need a little caution.
As such, a highly free option – like CBD – is a great choice for people struggling with anxiety. According to a recent survey by Forbes Healthof the 60% of American adults who said they had tried CBD, 51% of that subset said they used the compound to “relieve anxiety,” a consensus Chin apparently echoed in his interview.
“[CBD] tells your body to calm down and reminds you that you are safe,” Chin told the outlet. Although she was careful to note that CBD is not a “cure-all” for anxiety, encouraging a “healthy lifestyle with plenty of exercise and good nutrition,” she noted that the product can be part of a holistic approach to keeping your mind at ease.” It softens the nervous system so you’re not in a heightened ‘fight or flight’ response,” she says. said.