Anxiety and stress are incredibly common around the holidays. Whether you’re hosting the big Christmas get-together or spending your first holiday season without your college-age kids, mental health is often overlooked during this busy and stressful season.
CBD, with all it’s new and exciting possibilities, seems like a natural fit to help weather the sometimes stressful holiday season. And the good news is, it might actually help!
But before we start discussing how to use CBD, we need to cover one point: CBD is still new enough that clinical trials are ongoing in a variety of areas. Although many people swear by CBD and have great results, it’s still not clinically proven that CBD will help sleep, insomnia, anxiety, pain or any other condition.
While CBD can be marketed for a wide range of medical and psychological concerns, the FDA is firmly against companies marketing CBD as a ‘100% guaranteed’ cure against severe medical conditions or as a replacement for prescribed medications.
You should always talk to your doctor if you decide to use CBD for serious concerns, especially if you’re already taking prescription medication. And pay attention to your own body’s needs when deciding what strength and which serving size to use.
Getting enough sleep can be a year-round problem, but during the holidays the increased stress and pressure can often lead to more difficulties than usual getting some shut-eye. Many people have turned to CBD as a way to naturally support healthy sleep, without having to resort to harsh over-the-counter sleep aids.
So, CBD is not a sedative in the technical sense. Instead, CBD helps supports balance in your entire body by interacting with your body’s endocannabinoid system, which means potentially better overall functioning, and better sleep.
If your issue is the quality of your sleep, supporting your endocannabinoid system with CBD may help you get a good night’s rest. CBD offers people suffering from sleep issues a more natural, gentler option than prescription sleep aids.
Some people might find that chronic sleep issues are improved by taking CBD on a regular basis, daily, shortly before bed. Try taking one dropper-full right before you get comfortable in bed and see if CBD helps support a good night’s sleep for you. If one dropper-full doesn’t work, try increasing your serving size to 1.5 dropper-fulls the next night, and so on, to see how much CBD you need to support your sleep.
If you have more acute sleep issues, like occasional trouble relaxing before bed, then CBD use may be useful only when you’re having trouble sleeping. Try taking CBD as-needed, as an aid instead of daily.
Holiday Stress and CBD
Though the holidays are often called “the most wonderful time of the year”, it’s often overlooked that all that wonder comes at a price – usually increased stress levels. For many, the pressure to have the perfect holiday can become overwhelming. Or perhaps the season brings back less than perfect memories. These issues can negatively impact our mental health through the holiday season and even into the new year.
CBD seems like a natural fit for assisting us in dealing with the increased stress and feelings of anxiety that the holidays can bring, and there’s some promising research around this topic.
Your endocannabinoid system (eCS) has been shown to impact anxiety and depression. One of your endocannabinoids, 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), has a critical role in regulating emotional behavior. Low levels of 2-AG have been found to cause anxiety and depression in initial studies done on mice and increasing 2-AG levels had the opposite effect. This seems to suggest that taking CBD, phytocannabinoids, may help support your body’s natural endocannabinoid levels and healthy functioning.
When taking CBD for stress or anxiety, as with everything, it’s important to keep in mind your own body’s needs. This encompasses everything from your weight, age, metabolism, fitness level and severity of symptoms. It really is important to talk to your doctor, especially if you’re planning on taking CBD for more severe anxiety-related concerns or if you are already taking a prescription medication to support your mental health.
As with any concern, we recommend starting at a lower serving and working your way up, paying careful attention to how your body reacts.
For more general stress, you might try using CBD regularly at a dose that works for your body and helps ease daily symptoms. For times of acute anxiety, try taking a dose before or during times of high anxiety to see if that gives you relief in the situation.
And once again, don’t be discouraged if your first try doesn’t work right away. Building up to the strength and serving size that’s right for you is trial and error, especially when it comes to mental health.
If you want to learn even more about CBD, be sure to check out these great resources that go more in-depth on this topic.
How Long Does CBD Take to Work?
This is a tricky question. CBD, while it does show promise as a way of managing the perception of pain, anxiety, sleep, and more, is not a one-size-fits-all solution.
I know I’ve said it before, but when starting to take CBD, it’s important to experiment with different ways and times of using it. Everyone is different, and your body’s needs may not be the same as someone else’s.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medications, or under a doctors care, please consult with a physician or qualified professional before using this product
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