Help with Anxiety – Stress – PMS

Stress vs Anxiety

Simply put, stress is a reaction to something happening now, while anxiety is a reaction to something that may happen in the future. Stress can cause anxiety, anxiety can also cause stress, and both get in the way of life.

The human body has a built-in system designed explicitly for processing cannabinoids. It’s called ‘the endocannabinoid system’ (ECS) and it plays a major role in homeostasis – the body’s ability to maintain a healthy inner balance.  Studies have shown that hemp derived CBD has a very positive effect on our ECS.  Similar studies have indicated CBD can regulate sleep, appetite, mood, and consequently the level of anxiety we might be experiencing at a given moment.

What’s truly fascinating is that this compound can have a real impact on the brain receptors involved in the body’s response to anxiety.  CBD specifically binds to 5-HT1A which is thought to have the strongest role in anxiety disorders.  Overall, studies have shown, CBD, through its positive interaction with our ECS, can provide significant relief with Anxiety and stress.  A 2011 study published in Neuropsychopharmacology, revealed that cannabidiol (CBD) could reduce social anxiety – one of the most common types of anxiety disorders.

Unfortunately, the medical system’s solution to anxiety falls short for many people. If you struggle with chronic stress or anxiety, you may wish to consider supplementing your treatment with CBD. 

The growing popularity of CBD products as anti-anxiety supplements is backed by a plethora of convincing research, though there’s still a long way to go. Several clinical trials are currently underway, but there is already good evidence of CBD’s usefulness for:  

  • Generalized anxiety disorder
  • Panic disorder
  • Social anxiety disorder
  • Obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

CBD for PMS

Although there are no specific medical studies investigating cannabidiol (CBD) for the treatment PMS symptoms per se, there are several studies that do make the link between the two, where CBD has been shown to be a highly effective treatment for symptoms of PMS.  There is much more information on CBD and PMS in our women’s section.

Cramping, Aches & Pains.  As far back as 1999, Harvard scientists noted that CBD can be highly effective in treating symptoms such as muscle spasms and cramping, with a more recent 2007 study explicitly showing that CBD is effective in treating pain and inflammation.  In addition, a 2017 review paper found 9 different studies showing CBD to be an effective antispasmodic. This means that CBD relaxes smooth muscle tissue, in turn effectively relieving uterine, intestinal and bladder cramping often associated with PMS.

Mood Swings, Irritability & Depression.  One of the most debilitating symptoms of PMS is the dreaded mood swings, irritability and depression that sets in a couple of days before menstruation.  Luckily, CBD is also effective in helping to stabilize mood, in addition to helping alleviate and mediate the symptoms of depression and anxiety. Although the investigation of mood disorders predominantly involves animal models and clinical populations, they do seem to be generalizable to larger populations, including women who suffer from PMS.

Acne.  Yet another symptom associated with PMS is hormonal acne, and many women experience the frustration of pimples popping up just before their period starts.  The topical application of CBD has shown to not only decrease sebum production, but also to treat skin inflammation, making it a promising therapeutic agent for treating acne.

Sleep Difficulties.  Many women experience insomnia and restlessness as part of the constellation of PMS symptoms. On the other extreme, some women find that they are excessively sleepy and fatigued right before their period. A 2017 scientific review article took a look at over 65 studies investigating the effects of cannabinoids on sleep. The majority of the results showed that CBD in particular is very effective in helping to regulate wake-sleep cycles.  More specifically, CBD may have therapeutic potential for relieving sleeplessness and insomnia, as well as improving REM sleep and daytime sleepiness.

Summary

The main reason why CBD is so effective in treating the symptoms associated with PMS is due to the homeostatic effect that phytocannabinoids such as CBD have with the body. All vertebrates have what is called an endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is responsible for creating an ideal environment for all biological and physiological systems to perform optimally.  Studies have indicated that CBD is very effective at aiding your ECS.