Anxiety is the most common mental illness in the United States, with approximately 40 million adults being affected by it each year. It is a highly treatable illness, although less than 40% of patients suffering from anxiety will seek out any treatment for it. Most people with anxiety just suffer silently. It is generally a chronic condition. Panic attacks are the acute episodes of a generalized anxiety disorder, also referred to as a panic disorder. These panic attacks can vary widely in severity and frequency. They have the potential to seriously harm a patient’s day-to-day function and decrease their quality of life. Traditional treatments for panic attacks include narcotic medications that are highly addictive and potentially dangerous. Cannabidiol (CBD) is a cannabinoid, a class of molecule derived from the cannabis plant, which can effectively combat panic attacks without the undesired side effects of narcotic medications. Using CBD for panic attacks works.
Why Do I Get Panic Attacks?
Anxiety is a chronic mental illness. There are various types of anxiety disorders, one of which is known as panic disorder. It affects approximately 5% of the population. Panic disorder is characterized by the acute episodes, also known as “panic attacks”, that can be incredibly harmful to the people suffering from them.
These panic attacks can come suddenly and with little warning. There is the possibility of identifying “triggers” to these attacks, however it is not always entirely clear why or when these attacks will strike. Because of the unpredictable nature of these triggers, people suffering from panic disorder live in constant fear that they will suffer an attack. In fact, there have been instances of patients suffering a panic attack because they were worried about having a panic attack.
Mental illness is particularly damaging to a patient’s quality of life. It is a chronic condition that can damage relationships, professional prospects, and even a patient’s self-esteem or sense of self-worth. Using a remedy like CBD is critical in that it improves the patient’s overall quality of life and everyday function while treating the symptoms of their disease.
Symptoms of a Panic Attack
There is a continuing stigma regarding mental illness. Some people will say that a panic attack is “all in the patient’s head”. However, the symptoms and consequences of untreated panic disorder, and its acute panic attacks, are very real.
The symptoms of a panic attack include:
- High heart rate
- Weakness or dizziness
- Sweats and chills
- Pains or tightness in the chest
- Numbness and/or tingling in the hands and/or extremities
- Feelings of terror, impending doom, or even imminent death
- Difficulty breathing
- A sense of having lost control
The symptoms of a panic attack are terrifying to the person suffering from them. If left untreated for long enough, the severity of the panic attacks will generally only increase. This in turn will cause more distress to the patient and can even destroy a person’s life, requiring treatment.
Traditional Treatment of Panic Attacks
There are two primary traditional treatments for panic attacks: long-term use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI’s) and the use of benzodiazepine narcotics. Benzodiazepines are essentially tranquilizers and have a high abuse potential. They are frequently used as recreational drugs. Both have extensive side effects.
SSRI’s are a type of antidepressant and are used to treat the chronic aspects of anxiety and panic disorder. Prozac and Zoloft are two widely known SSRI antidepressants. They are frequently prescribed to treat multiple conditions at once, like both anxiety and depression in a single patient. They may cause:
- Dry mouth
- Feeling lightheaded or dizzy
- Erectile dysfunction (and general sexual dysfunction)
Furthermore, benzodiazepines are a class of narcotic drugs with powerful anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) effects. Xanax and Valium are the two most widely known benzodiazepine anxiolytics. They are used to treat the acute episodes of a panic disorder. However, they have even more severe side effects than SSRI’s and are profoundly addictive. Side effects of benzodiazepines include:
- Extreme sedation and intoxication
- Fatigue and drowsiness
- Confusion and aggression
- Disruptions in sleep
- Death (in cases of overdose)
Once a patient is addicted to benzodiazepines, they are one of the most difficult addictions to treat. In fact, benzodiazepine withdrawals are potentially fatal due to the risk of having severe seizures. Any patient detoxing from benzodiazepines must do so in a controlled environment and under the strict care of health care practitioners. The harms of prescription drugs often outweigh the benefits. Using CBD for panic attacks is a great alternative.
Best CBD Products For Panic Attacks
CBD and its Anxiolytic Properties
Traditional treatments for panic attacks are full of unwanted side effects. In the case of benzodiazepines, they also contain the risk of profound and dangerous addiction. There is an alternative, however. Cannabidiol (CBD) has been shown to have powerful anxiolytic properties. Furthermore, it can be used to treat the more chronic aspects of panic disorder as well as the acute attacks. Because it is so safe, stable, and effective, it is becoming a powerful tool in fighting panic attacks.
CBD is effective in treating anxiety in a similar capacity to SSRI’s. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is widely associated with feelings of well-being and happiness. There is a specific type of serotonin receptor known as 5-HT1A. In recent studies, CBD has shown to boost the body’s natural signaling throughout the network of serotonin receptors. Other studies have also shown that CBD boosts the transmissions of 5-HT1A receptors. These are similar to the actions that SSRI’s have on the same types of receptors, but there is evidence suggesting that CBD might do this even more quickly and more efficiently.
Furthermore, studies also suggest that CBD might play an active role in the development of new neurons in the hippocampus (also known as “hippocampal neurogenesis”). The hippocampus is a critical part of the brain that is involved in a wide variety of functions. These include both cognitive functions and the development of new memories. Brain scans in patients suffering from chronic anxiety and depression show a hippocampus that is smaller than the average patient’s. Successful treatment of anxiety and depression is associated with the creation of new neurons (also known as “neurogenesis”) in the hippocampus. Repeated administration of CBD has shown to promote hippocampal neurogenesis. This means that the daily use of CBD will help the hippocampus generate new neurons, which in turn will help the brain combat anxiety and depression.
How long does it take for CBD To Take Effect?
The route of administration influences how long it takes CBD oil to take effect. CBD in general has very high bioavailability, but there are various ways to ingest it. Sublingual (under the tongue) administration of a CBD oil tincture is notably the fastest way. It is the fastest way because the mucus membranes in the mouth directly absorb the CBD oil into the bloodstream. This bypasses the metabolism of CBD in the human stomach and intestines. Taking CBD oil tincture under the tongue can take effect in as few as 10 minutes.
Some patients, however, prefer the more traditional oral route of administration. This means they prefer to eat an edible or swallow a capsule. In these situations, the CBD has to first be broken down in the stomach and intestines, absorbed into the body, and further metabolized by the liver and kidneys. Depending on various factors like age, size, and overall tolerance, in can take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour for CBD oil to take effect.
It should be noted, furthermore, that CBD should be used with supervision from a health care practitioner. This is to ensure that it does not negatively interact with any pre-existing medications. ON the whole, however, CBD is a remarkably safe and well-tolerated medicinal supplement. It is most effective when used daily and can treat a wide variety of ailments in addition to panic attacks.
Research & Studies - CBD For Asthma
Below is a compiled list of scientific research and studies on Cannabidiol (CBD) and it’s potential use for treating Asthma.
- Evaluation of Serum Cytokines Levels and the Role of Cannabidiol Treatment in Animal Model of Asthma
- The role of cannabinoids in inflammatory modulation of allergic respiratory disorders, inflammatory pain and ischemic stroke.
- Activation of cannabinoid receptors prevents antigen-induced asthma-like reaction in guinea pigs
- Allergen challenge increases anandamide in bronchoalveolar fluid of patients with allergic asthma.
- Endogenous Cannabinoid Receptor Agonists Inhibit Neurogenic Inflammations in Guinea Pig Airways