The Research: Cannabis Science Relating to Emotional Distress

Select citations from the most recent literature in regard to cannabis and specific cannabinoids as they relate to the nervous system and brain health.

Cannabis and Anxiety

This 2019 Canadian study examined the prevalence of cannabis use for anxiety symptoms through a survey. About 900 (888) people who were using cannabis to treat anxiety symptoms responded about their medical use of cannabis (referred to as CMP – “cannabis for medicinal purposes”). Among the symptoms they reported included Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Major Depressive Disorder, Panic Disorder/Agoraphobia. Most (92%) reported that cannabis improved their symptoms. The vast majority perceived symptom improvement and did not believe it caused them impairment or an inability to control use.

CBD and Anxiety/poor sleep  

This 2019 study out of Colorado was to determine whether CBD helps improve sleep and/or anxiety with varying doses of CBD from 25mg to 75mg/day. Seventy-two adults with either anxiety (47 of them) or trouble sleeping (25 of them) were given the CBD. After the first month the majority of patients experienced an improvement in anxiety and sleep. The sleep scores demonstrated mild improvement while anxiety scores decreased within the first month and remained so during the 3-month study duration. The conclusion quoted from the study: “Cannabidiol [CBD] may hold benefit for anxiety-related disorders. Controlled clinical studies are needed.”

CBD and Anxiety During Speaking Engagements 

This 2019 study out of Brazil confirms the anxiety-reducing properties of CBD.  Fifty-seven men were given none or various doses of CBD (150mg, 300mg, 600mg) and then performed a simulated public speaking test (SPST). This public speaking test a well known for its anxiety-inducing effects – as you can well imagine! Intriguingly, those taking the 300mg CBD had significantly reduced anxiety but not so with the placebo or the 150mg and 600mg. The researchers’ conclusion: “Optimal therapeutic doses of CBD should be rigorously determined so that research findings can be adequately translated into clinical practice.”

Cannabis use may contribute to reducing severe depressive and suicidal states in those suffering PTSD 

This 2019 Canadian study draws on data from a Community Health Survey of Mental Health (just regular people over 15 years old) and reports there is “compelling preliminary evidence from a general population sample that cannabis use modified the association between PTSD and depression and suicidality” meaning that cannabis reduced depression and suicidal inclinations among those who didn’t have a dependence on cannabis use. Researchers concluded: “There is an emerging need for high-quality experimental investigation of the efficacy of cannabis/cannabinoids for the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder.”

Treating Anxiety-related and Substance Abuse Disorders with CBD 

This is a 2017 British overview of studies showing the anti-anxiety effects of CBD and focuses on the findings as they relate to reducing fear and processing addiction cravings. The study notes: “Converging lines of evidence have established that acute CBD treatment is anxiolytic [reduces anxiety] on both humans and animals.” and “In summary, this line of research may lead to the development of a formulation of CBD for use as a treatment for anxiety-related and substance abuse disorders in the future.”

“Everyone’s relationship to cannabis is different – from non-existent to long and enduring.” – Becca Williams

In Becca’s MasterMind groups and courses, she helps people heal from emotional trauma through an immersive program. Her practice integrates neuroscience with ancient healing modalities utilizing expressive movement, meditation & breath work techniques with the judicious use of cannabis. Subscribe and join Becca for exploring this cutting-edge approach to Emotional Liberation®.