Does CBD Oil Work for Stress, Anxiety and Sleep?

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What are the most common reasons why people use CBD oil? A cross-sectional study of more than 2,400 CBD users conducted from 2017-2018 provides the answer. More than 60 percent of those who use CBD oil use it to treat specific medical needs, and of those, stress, anxiety and insomnia are among the most common conditions prompting the use of CBD oil.

Surveys Highlight Positive Results Using CBD for Stress, Anxiety and Insomnia

Does CBD oil work for stress, anxiety and sleep? That question hasn’t been confirmed yet via large-scale scientific research, although there have been some promising preliminary studies that this article will discuss shortly.

One clue we do have is the cross-sectional study cited above. In that survey, more than 65 percent of the people who used CBD oil to treat specific conditions reported that CBD managed those conditions either “very well” or “moderately well” without traditional medical intervention. A further 30 percent reported that CBD treated their conditions well in combination with traditional medicine. That’s an incredible success rate, even if the evidence is only anecdotal.

This article will explore the research suggesting that CBD could be useful in treating conditions such as stress, anxiety and insomnia. Before we go into detail about the research, though, let’s examine how to use CBD most effectively for these conditions.

How to Take CBD Oil for Stress, Anxiety and Insomnia

Maximizing your chance of success when taking CBD for conditions such as stress, anxiety and insomnia essentially comes down to two factors: the specific CBD product that you use and how you administer it.

It seems logical to choose a CBD product that begins to absorb right away while also providing some longer-lasting effects. The CBD product that best fits that absorption profile is CBD oil. You take CBD oil by holding it under your tongue for 30-60 seconds before swallowing it. Holding the oil under your tongue promotes quick absorption of the CBD through the sublingual artery. When you swallow the oil, the remainder of the oil’s CBD content enters your general circulation through your digestive system. In that way, you get some CBD almost immediately and some more CBD later.

You also need to choose a CBD product that’s strong enough to provide the results you want. As you’re about to learn, the researchers who are studying the benefits of CBD and are reporting positive results are often using very high dosages. Crescent Canna, for instance, makes a high-potency CBD oil with 9,000 mg of CBD per bottle. It’s the strongest CBD oil on the market, and it makes sense to choose a high-strength product if you want to give CBD the best possible chance of producing good results for you.

When using CBD oil for insomnia, consider taking it around an hour before going to bed to give your digestive system adequate time to process it. Begin with one serving as recommended on the CBD oil’s packaging and increase your dosage gradually if you don’t get the desired result. Once you’ve found the dosage of CBD that works for your needs, you’re not likely to see better results from increasing the dose further.

CBD can potentially interact with some prescription medications. If you are taking any prescription medication, talk to your doctor before taking CBD.

What Studies Support the Use of CBD for Stress, Anxiety and Insomnia?

With early evidence strongly supporting that it may have anxiolytic properties, researchers have put forth a great deal of effort to determine whether CBD could be beneficial for treating stress-related conditions such as anxiety, insomnia, panic and post-traumatic stress disorder. Several of those studies have produced promising results, and this article will conclude by discussing the details of those studies.

  • In 2019, Frontiers in Psychology published a study of late teenagers that took place in Japan. The study involved 37 volunteers who suffered from social anxiety disorder. During the double-blind study, the volunteers were either given 300 mg of CBD or a placebo each day for four weeks. The volunteers who were given CBD showed marked decreases in their anxiety scores, while the scores for the volunteers who received a placebo remained approximately the same.
  • In 2019, The Permanente Journal published a study in which a psychiatric clinic administered CBD to 103 patients with anxiety-related and/or sleep-related issues. Depending on the patients’ individual needs, the clinic administered CBD dosages ranging from 25-175 mg per day. In some cases, CBD was used along with traditional prescription medications. In other cases, it was used instead of those medications. After one month of treatment, most patients reported improvements in their symptoms of anxiety and insomnia.
  • In 2020, the Journal of the American Pharmacists Association published a systematic review examining all available studies and medical literature relating to the potential usefulness of CBD as a treatment for anxiety. In all, the researchers involved in the review selected eight studies that they considered high enough in quality to use. The review concluded that CBD has a “promising role” as a treatment for anxiety but that more research is needed to determine when CBD is most likely to be effective and what dosages should be used.
  • A 2015 systematic review published in Neurotherapeutics examined CBD’s potential role as a treatment for a number of anxiety-related disorders including post-traumatic stress disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder and social anxiety disorder. The researchers who compiled the review noted that, in preclinical trials, CBD has shown a marked anxiolytic effect possibly stemming from its interactions with the cannabinoid and serotonin receptors in the brain. The researchers also noted that, in existing studies, CBD has not been shown to have a worsening effect on anxiety, nor has it produced marked sedative effects or any known severe side effects at all. The researchers concluded that CBD seems to have an excellent safety profile and that it merits further study as a potential treatment for anxiety disorders. They also noted that further research is needed to determine whether CBD remains effective for treating these disorders during long-term use.

Medical Disclaimer: CBD oil is not intended to diagnose, treat or prevent any disease. Consult with a doctor before taking CBD if you are taking medication for any condition.