At first, I was wary. Although I live in Los Angeles, where it seems like there’s a medical marijuana depot on every corner, I’m not one for doing drugs (legal or otherwise). I mean, I don’t even take Advil when I get a headache! But despite the fact that CBD oil is made from hemp, it doesn’t contain THC. THC is the compound responsible for the “high” that comes with ingesting marijuana. In fact, scientific reviews have proven that CBD “does not interfere with several psychomotor and psychological functions,” and is safe to ingest without any side effects. Let me repeat: YOU WILL NOT GET HIGH FROM CBD!
Acute vs. Chronic: Most studies have examined the acute effects of CBD rather than effects associated with chronic, ongoing administration. It is possible that acute administration may attenuate anxiety, but chronic administration may not. Some individuals may become tolerant to the effects of CBD when administered chronically and/or may find that it worsens their anxiety.
Acute “as needed” administration: Though studies haven’t examined the effects of chronic CBD administration in humans, most have documented the effects of acute administration. Acute administration is associated with a significant anxiolytic effect (as compared to a placebo). Unlike medications such as SSRIs, CBD provides fast-acting (nearly instantaneous) anxiety relief and doesn’t require daily administration for weeks/months to attenuate symptoms.
Talansky says that his sleep improved almost immediately when he started taking CBD daily. Soon after, he was also less anxious about transitioning from pro cycling to his new sport, felt that he recovered more quickly from hard training, and had fewer flare-ups of his old cycling injuries. Now he encourages other athletes to try CBD, in part “to get rid of the association with smoking weed,” he says. “It’s completely different.”
Doesn’t affect cognition: A major drawback associated with anxiolytics is that many affect cognitive function. Sure it helps to take a pill and have less anxiety, but what if it compromises your cognitive abilities (e.g. critical thinking, problem solving, planning, etc.)? Agents such as benzodiazepines are linked to memory problems and generally impair functionality despite reducing anxiety. Research has highlighted CBD’s ability to reduce anxiety without impairing cognitive function.
People who smoke cannabis often smoke it to get high and for its calming qualities, using cannabis specifically cultivated for very high amounts of THC content. Strains such as skunk are bred to contain as much of the psychoactive compound as possible, with THC levels increasing dramatically over the last few decades due to the popularity of THC’s effects for recreational users.
A syrup is also absorbed sublingually, and I took Shunney's advice of swishing CBD Living's Sleep Aid ($26; cbdlivingwater.com) around my mouth for a minute before swallowing to promote absorption. One tablespoon contains 15mg of CBD plus 2mg of melatonin, and the cherry flavor tasted like Nyquil, which I kind of liked. Again, I could feel the effects of the CBD working through my system after about 40 minutes or so, but I didn't think I actually fell completely asleep any early than the other nights. (Related: Will Melatonin Really Help You Sleep Better?)
This has been the year medical cannabis hit the mainstream. The government has announced that it is relaxing laws on when cannabis medicines can be prescribed by doctors, following high-profile cases such as that of Billy Caldwell, the 13-year-old boy hospitalised by his epileptic seizures after he was denied legal access to the cannabis oil that helps control them. Meanwhile a new generation of cannabis medicines has shown great promise (both anecdotally and in early clinical trials) in treating a range of ills from anxiety, psychosis and epilepsy to pain, inflammation and acne. And you don’t have to get stoned to reap the health benefits.
CBD can fight insomnia without making you get high. On the other hand, certain CBD oil formulations that contain low amounts of THC may also be employed for treatment of this condition. This is why it is very important that your doctor approves of your decision about taking CBD oil or edibles for sleeping disorders. Make sure that you are not self-administering yourself with any online treatment.
Cost is another consideration. Most CBD oils are sold in concentrations of 300 to 750 mg, although this may range from less than 100 mg to more than 2,000. A good indicator of price-point is the cost per milligram. Low-cost CBD oils usually fall between five and 10 cents per mg; mid-range prices are 11 to 15 cents per mg; and higher-end oils cost 16 cents per mg or higher. Given these varying per-milligram costs, a bottle of CBD oil may be priced anywhere from $10 or less to $150 or more.
Critics contend that the Realm of Caring parents are using their kids as guinea pigs, that not enough studies have been done, that many, if not most, of the claims can be dismissed as the result of the placebo effect. “It’s true, we don’t know the long-term effects of CBD, and we should study it,” Meagan says. “But I can tell you this. Without it, our Addy would be a sack of potatoes.” No one asks, she notes, about the long-term effects of a widely used pharmaceutical that has been routinely prescribed for her two-year-old. “Our insurance pays for it, no questions asked,” she says. “But it’s highly addictive, highly toxic, turns you into a zombie, and can actually kill you. And yet it’s perfectly legal.”
The second scenario involved anxiety associated with socializing, unknown strangers, a party going on, etc. I also had been experiencing anxiety related to a health issue that’s been plaguing me for awhile and has yet to get corrected. The health anxiety prompted me to run the second CBD experiment, and I went extra crazy with the dosing when the friend asked me to hang out.
“I just felt good,” he adds. “But I wasn’t high at all.” Joliat’s anecdotal experience with CBD is a common one. Some informal polling suggests a lot of people today are at least vaguely familiar with cannabidiol, and have either used it themselves or know someone who has. But even some people who use it don’t seem to know exactly what it is or whether there’s any hard science out there to back up its benefits.
CBD Oil for Sleep
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