We are living in very strange times. The UK is currently in lockdown and life just hasn't been the same since COVID-19 burst into our lives. Whilst this could be an introverts idea of heaven, many of us are struggling with the change in lifestyle.
We have been forced into a situation where many of our basic needs have been taken from us. Feeling safe in our communities, feeling financially secure, having interactions with our friends and loved ones. Being bereft of such things can cause serious psychological issues. And not just those who already struggle with their mental health are being affected. According to one major study, which was conducted in the early stages of the first lockdown, 57% of those who took part reported symptoms of anxiety, with 64% recording common signs of depression. This was noted to be significantly in excess of the levels normally reported in the UK.
According to the CDC, stress during an infectious disease outbreak can sometimes cause the following:
- Fear and worry about your own health and the health of your loved ones, your financial situation or job, or loss of support services you rely on.
- Changes in sleep or eating patterns.
- Difficulty sleeping or concentrating.
- Worsening of chronic health problems.
- Worsening of mental health conditions.
- Increased use of tobacco, and/or alcohol and other substances.
Can CBD help with anxiety, depression and stress during the COVID-19 lockdown?
We already know that CBD has been reported to help those who suffer with such ailments. Whilst no one can say CBD can help with the physical symptom of COVID-19, we can say that there is certainly potential to help with the indirect effects of the virus.
CBD has been reported to be helpful in the treatment of stress, anxiety, depression, sleep disorders and migraines. All of which may affect someone who is struggling during lockdown.
CBD is said to have an anxiolytic effect (i.e. reduces anxiety).
CBD can connect to receptors of the body's endocannabinoid system (ECS) and inhibit the release of anxiety messengers. The ECS in particular is suspected to be able to regulate fear through special signals.
Researchers have also found that CBD can increase serotonin and glutamate signaling. This is be done by activating the 5-HT1A receptor. So it seems possible that CBD could act faster than the SSRI antidepressant.
CBD has been shown to activate the 5-HT 1A serotonin receptor. These receptors can also increase neurogenesis in the hippocampus, as shown in a separate study with the anxiety drug buspirone on the opossum. Therefore, it seems likely that CBD could have similar effects. Another study showed that CBD could increase serotonin and glutamate levels. The results of the scientists indicates that CBD could have a fast and lasting antidepressant-like effect.
CBD can work wonderfully with our endocannabinoid system. As recent studies show, CBD has a calming effect on the body, relieves anxiety and can lower stress levels. This could already combat mild sleep disorders.
Studies suggest that CBD could help with migraines and headaches, which we know can often be triggered by stress. In a 2016 study by the University of Colorado, 121 migraine patients were given medical marijuana daily. It was investigated whether migraine attacks can be prevented in this way. The results were outstanding: around 40% of the test subjects stated that the number of migraine headaches had halved.
If you feel affected by the pandemic and think that CBD might be for you, feel free to navigate around the site and see if CBD can help!