As you may know, all too acutely, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can severely damage your quality of life. If you experience recurring nightmares, anxiety attacks triggered by unwanted memories, and feelings of detachment or hopelessness, you may benefit from products containing cannabidiol (CBD).
Before you leap into a CBD product purchase, it only makes sense to learn some basic facts about what CBD does, how it might help you, and your options for purchasing and using it. Check out the answers to these frequently asked questions about CBD for PTSD.
How Do CBD and Other Cannabinoids Interact With the Brain and Body?
CBD qualifies as a cannabinoid, a substance derived from plants in the Cannabis genus of the Cannabaceae family. (Most commercially available CBD comes from hemp.) Cannabinoids interact with the endocannabinoid system, which has receptors throughout the brain and body.
CBD and its cousin THC (the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana) both appear to activate CB1 and CB2 receptors. This activation can help promote feelings of calm, well-being, and happiness. It also has anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties that can help control some forms of chronic pain.
Why Does CBD Improve PTSD Symptoms?
People who suffer from PTSD tend to have low levels of anandamide, a cannabinoid naturally produced in the body. CBD may help compensate for that insufficiency, improving everything from sleep quality to overall mood.
CBD seems to help the brain emphasize pleasant memories over unpleasant ones. Anandamide helps to prevent the mind from recovering traumatic memories. By interacting CBD1 receptors, CBD can help restore this function if you have low anandamide levels, enabling your brain to switch off those upsetting memories.
What Makes CBD Preferable to Other Options for PTSD Sufferers?
PTSD sufferers have traditionally turned to a variety of drugs that might relieve their symptoms, including marijuana and opiates. The high levels of THC in marijuana can cause paranoia and anxiety, while opiate addiction has gained notoriety as a killer of millions throughout the U.S.
By contrast, CBD doesn't seem to present any dangers to human health. Additionally, its minimal THC content prevents it from either causing addiction or creating unwanted negative feelings.
Many of the same veterans and first responders who experience PTSD from their past experiences also struggle with chronic pain that already requires strong pain-killing medication. CBD's analgesic effects can ease discomfort, possibly enabling some veterans to rely less heavily on opiates for their pain management needs.
Which States Allow You to Legally Buy and Use CBD Products?
Thanks to the Hemp Farming Act of 2018, the U.S. government now classifies cannabis and hemp as two different categories of substances, with different laws applied to each. As a result, the federal government allows the sale of hemp-based CBD products with a THC content of less than 0.3 percent.
Keep in mind, however, that individual states don't have to make CBD or other hemp products legal, even if the federal government allows them to do so. Some states may permit the sale of CBD in one form but not another (tincture as opposed to gummies, for instance), potentially limiting your choice of products.
Why Don't Manufacturers Advertise CBD as a PTSD Treatment?
If the federal government allows the sale of hemp-derived CBD, and if CBD appears to show clear benefits for PTSD sufferers, you may wonder why you don't see it advertised expressly for that purpose.
The FDA, which regulates the sale and marketing of a wide range of ingredients, drugs, and additives in the U.S., has not officially approved CBD as a cure or treatment for any medical condition, including PTSD. However, this prohibition does not bar individuals from using CBD for their own general purposes.
The Brothers N Arms can help you get started toward a happier, more rewarding life with the aid of CBD products. Take our CBD quiz to start on your healthy new path.