PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder is a type of anxiety disorder that occurs after experiencing traumatic events such as natural disasters, physical or mental abuse, accidents, military combat, etc. Those who are suffering from PTSD have a heightened sense of danger. The traumatic experience will alter their natural fight-or-flight response, which may lead to stress and fear even when they are safe.
PTSD is very common in war veterans. That is why this condition is also known as battle fatigue or shell shock. According to the National Center for PTSD, about 15 % of the Vietnam War veterans suffered PTSD. This anxiety disorder will affect people of all ages. PTSD occurs as a response to the chemical and neuronal changes in your brain when you are exposed to a traumatic event.
Symptoms Of PTSD
Post-traumatic stress disorder has a negative impact on your daily life. This condition will restrict you from performing your day to day activities. The symptoms of PTSD fall into 4 categories. They are intrusion, avoidance, arousal and reactivity, and cognition and mood.
The intrusion includes flashbacks of the traumatic event, unpleasant memories of the event, frequent nightmares, and intense physical and mental distress. The next one is avoidance. If you have PTSD, you will start to avoid going to places, seeing people, and situations that could remind you of the traumatic event.
Other symptoms of PTSD include depression, panic attacks, irritability, anger, trouble concentrating, reduced interest in activities, feelings of guilt, etc. People suffering from PTSD also have a constant feeling of being on the edge.
Treatment Of PTSD
Traditional treatments of post-traumatic stress disorder include therapy, medications, or a combination of the two. The medications for PTSD include antidepressants, anti-anxiety drugs, sleeping aids, etc. These medications help to control the symptoms of anxiety and depression. The FDA has approved the use of antidepressants sertraline and paroxetine.
Recent studies are showing positive results on the use of CBD on the treatment of PTSD and other anxiety-related disorders. CBD, one of the cannabinoids present in hemp and marijuana plants, has many therapeutic properties that could help in the treatment of many health disorders, including anxiety.
CBD For PTSD
There are several studies that show the positive effects of CBD in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder and other anxiety disorders. When you use these products, the CBD will be absorbed into the body and it will interact with the CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the endocannabinoid system.
This interaction of CBD with the cannabinoid receptors has a ripple effect in the central nervous system like increasing pleasure and altering the processing of memory. This is very effective in the treatment of PTSD because it helps in blocking the retrieval of the traumatic memory and the body will experience a pleasure boost and reduces the anxiety level.
Recent studies are suggesting that the regular use of CBD helps to control the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. A study conducted in the year 2012 looked at the effect of CBD on predator threat stress on rats. During the study, the rats were exposed to a cat for a period of one hour.
The rats were administered with a single and repeated dose of CBD after one hour. The results of the study were encouraging. The scientists observed that the repeated doses of CBD helped to reduce the anxiety levels over the next seven days of the predator exposure.
CBD is also helpful in treating PTSD-related substance abuse. Some people with post-traumatic stress disorder often turn to alcohol to cope with the symptoms and become addicted. It will lead to substance abuse disorder or SUD. Statistics are showing that about one-third of war veterans with substance abuse also suffer from PTSD.
PTSD often leads to several sleeping disorders, including insomnia. Several studies are going on to find the effects of CBD on PTSD-related sleeping problems. Most of these studies are showing positive results. A 2019 study conducted on 72 individuals with anxiety and sleeping disorders showed that CBD was effective in reducing both disorders significantly.
How To Use CBD For PTSD Treatment?
Most people take CBD orally for getting effective relief from PTSD and other anxiety disorders. There are several other consumption methods of CBD that is equally effective as CBD edibles. Transdermal CBD products and inhalable CBD products such as CBD vapes and dabs are used by many people to get relief from anxiety disorders.
There are several other methods to take CBD into our body for getting relief from PTSD. You can add CBD oil or tinctures to your food and drinks, which is one of the easiest ways to consume CBD. Some people do not like the earthy taste of CBD and the flavors in the food can help mask the earthy taste of CBD and will make it easier to consume.