Finding a natural and non-pharmaceutical solution to debilitating anxiety disorders can be daunting. Speaking from experience, doctors and therapists tend to offer drugs first, and then suggest behavioral changes to address the underlying problems. Those lifestyle changes tend to follow all too familiar patterns: eating well, getting more exercise and meditating. While they are tremendously vital for long-term recovery, they often cannot provide immediate relief when panic is imminent.
When regularly practiced, and once anxiety is no longer at a boiling point, meditation and other mindful activities are incredibly effective. But, in extreme moments of stress, it's hard to consider anything else but moment-by-moment survival. You’re not thinking about going for a run, those breathing techniques you practiced so carefully or whether you had a well-balanced lunch. You are holding on for dear life. Panic is debilitating.
Today, we introduce you to the benefits of hemp oil; anxiety could soon be a thing of the past.
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All-Natural Hemp Oil for Anxiety
Many people suffering from anxiety-related disorders turn toward cannabidiol (CBD) hemp oil as a way to manage ongoing stress effectively. Treating anxiety with hemp oil to reduce the stress of it to a more manageable level makes it much easier to tackle long-term lifestyle changes.
CBD comes from cannabis sativa L., one of many cannabinoids under intense research for a wide variety of health issues. One of the more well-studied and promising areas of research is hemp oil’s potential for anxiety relief.
Where Does Anxiety Come From and Why?
What goes on in your brain when you suffer a panic attack or stress out continually? Stress is an evolutionary trait, developed as a preventative in times of danger. Normally, stress and anxiety trigger what is known as the body’s fight-or-flight response, releasing a host of natural chemicals and hormones meant to propel you into action.
Those neurotransmitters inject a boost of energy for physical exertion, partly by reducing energy consumption for non-vital processes (think digestion and menstruation). One primary hormone expressed in times of stress is called cortisol. It increases heart rate, blood flow, and circulation.
Stress is triggered by a wide variety of environments and situations, not all of which may make sense to the modern human. Very few of us are chased by lions these days. Our 21st-century stress bubbles to the surface at the office, in our relationships, and over financial situations. Once it reaches a certain level over prolonged periods, it begins to have a drastic effect on our quality of life. Long-term anxiety is detrimental to mind, body, and soul.
To make matters more complicated, everyone experiences, processes and manages stress in different ways. About a third of babies are born with a predisposition for anxiety, even if there are no contributing environmental factors. Upbringing, times of trauma and a long list of other environmental factors can trigger the onset of panic and anxiety disorders.
Anxiety and the Human Brain
Scientists have discovered two areas of the brain directly related to anxiety: the amygdala and the hippocampus. The amygdala is responsible for interpreting experiences for other areas of the brain, which means it is responsible for notifying the brain and body which situations warrant anxiety attacks.
Anxiety is a combination of nature and nurture, but as mentioned, some people are born with a proclivity for it. Whatever the root cause, the brain eventually rewires itself for anxiety after prolonged exposure to stressors. Even if the external (or internal) stressor is long gone, the brain operates on edge, ready to spring into panic mode at any moment.
That is why it is important to treat even mild symptoms of anxiety, to cut them off before the neurological pathways become thoroughly habituated. Currently, only about one-third of those who experience stress pursue treatment, and many continue to suffer in silence.
There is a new alternative on the horizon, however, and it is CBD hemp oil. Anxiety is now better understood and so, too, is the oil’s potential. It’s making waves as a safe and extremely viable alternative for people with periods of intense stress and anxiety.
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Hemp Oil Studies: Anxiety and Panic
Current research shows that CBD reduces stress, anxiety, and fear, specifically by targeting the related areas of the brain. While many studies continue to explore how hemp oil controls stress responses, some of its characteristics already are apparent.
As an example, CBD successfully reduces anxiety related to THC consumption. Researchers believe THC and CBD interact with the cannabinoid receptors in our brain in a very interesting way.
As THC cannabinoids bind to the CB1 receptors, CBD counteracts them through indirect activation of the receptors. That pushes the receptor to unlock with the THC molecule much more quickly than would normally happen. Cannabidiol thus reduces the potency of THC.
Certain studies relying on functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) have uncovered evidence that CBD reduces fear, stress, and anxiety by decreasing brain activity in the left amygdala-hippocampus complex. Remember, that area is where anxiety is believed to originate in the brain. The fMRI and SPECT results have also shown that CBD reduces the ability of the mind to recognize stress-related facial expressions, which could potentially affect externally stimulated anxiety responses.
Finally, there is unequivocal evidence from a famous CBD study for stress management. It examined CBD for social anxiety triggered by a public-speaking engagement. When compared with a placebo, CBD successfully inhibited symptoms of anxiety and fear. The participants were much more relaxed when treated with it before their speech than those who received the placebo.
Anxiety is one of the main areas of focus for past and future study of CBD oil, and there is much more to learn about its anti-anxiety mechanism.
How To Dose CBD Oil for Anxiety
Finding the perfect dose of CBD hemp oil takes a bit of experimentation and patience. You have to start low, increase slowly and get in tune with daily fluctuations in stress levels. Learn everything you need to know in our hemp oil for anxiety guidelines.
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With such strong preliminary results and extremely limited and low-risk side effects, CBD hemp oil offers a compelling alternative to prescription anti-anxiety medication. CBD provides a way to conquer anxiety in moments of need and begin to manage the underlying causes through behavior therapy and lifestyle changes.
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