You may realize it by now the COVID-19 pandemic has caused drastic changes in all aspects of our lives. According to the CDC, fear and anxiety about this new disease effects adults and children alike (CDC, 2020).
A recent study reveals COVID-19 has a significant impact on mental health. Based on a review of published medical journals as of May 2020, the prevalence of stress, anxiety, and depression were evident among 9,074 obtained samples (Bai et. al., 2020).
Could you just imagine what it’s like for people who are suffering from anxiety even before the pandemic? Psychological interventions and medications may improve the mental health of vulnerable people, especially at this time of uncertainty.
There are therapeutic products available with prescriptions from licensed healthcare providers. The Injection and Infusion Clinic of ABQ dispenses cannabidiol (CBD) oil and lavender oil for anxiety.
We have Quicksilver full-spectrum CBD oil that has less than 0.3% THC and a broad spectrum that’s THC-free. We also carry Lavela WS 1265 known as Silexan lavender oil.
Both of these products do well with your anxiety and other mood disorders. CBD and lavender oils are only two of many substances for anxiety. Let’s discover their therapeutic properties.
CBD: How it works
Cannabidiol (CBD) and delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are the most common compounds derived from the Cannabis sativa/Indica plant. These two binds with receptors in your body.
The endocannabinoid system comprises CB1 and CB2 receptors that your body produces (Lu and Mackie, 2016). CB1 receptors are found all over your body specifically in your brain. They’re involved in anxiety, appetite, movement, pain, and sensory learning (Mackie, 2006). CB2 receptors, found in the immune system, aid in the regulation of inflammation (Turcotte et al., 2016).
Your body can produce its endocannabinoids as CBD stimulates the receptors (Zou and Kumar, 2018). THC though binds to CB1 receptors, which disrupts your normal physical and mental functions. Unlike THC, CBD is non-intoxicating and doesn’t produce psychoactive effects (Meissner and Cascella, 2020).
Therapeutic effects of CBD oil
A study reveals that CBD oil had therapeutic potential for medical conditions, most commonly pain, anxiety, depression, and sleep disorders (Corroon and Philipps, 2018).
An anonymous questionnaire was used to assess participants recruited in social media. Sixty-two percent of the CBD users reported using CBD to manage their medical condition. Almost 36% rated CBD oil as “very well by itself.”
The medical conditions enumerated in the study are the following:
- Chronic pain
- Arthritis/joint pain
- Insomnia or other sleep disorder
- Migraine, cluster, tension headaches
- Allergies and asthma
- Epilepsy or other seizure disorder
- Multiple sclerosis
- COPD/other lung condition
- Parkinson’s disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
Let’s zoom in to anxiety as one of the top answers. The THC component of cannabis can worsen anxiety. CBD though has the opposite effect of relief from anxiety. The following studies support this claim.
- A study found out that CBD may be effective in reducing anxiety behaviors of people suffering from general anxiety disorder, panic disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder (Blessing et al., 2015).
- Seventy people with anxiety and sleep problems participated in a retrospective study with positive results (Shannon et al., 2019). They received CBD in capsule form in various doses depending on the participant’s condition. During the first month, 79.2% of participants reported decreased anxiety. Sleep scores also improved among 66.7% of the participants, but it waned over time. While 19.5% of the participants reported worse symptoms after CBD therapy. The researchers noted though there were no safety issues with the use of CBD.
- Another study found out that CBD may be an effective and safe therapy for people with anxiety and non-chronic pain (Gulbransen, et al., 2020). The participants reported no major adverse effects as CBD was well tolerated. But, doses of CBD varied among the 400 participants that warrants further clinical trials.
CBD potential side effects
CBD users tolerated doses of up to 600 mg without central nervous system effects or psychotic symptoms (Mechoulan and Carilini, 1978). But caution must be taken until more robust clinical trials are performed to support CBD as a medical treatment (Welty et al., 2014).
CDB users with epilepsy and psychotic disorders reported side effects. The most common of these side effects were diarrhea, tiredness, and changes in appetite or weight (Iffland and Grotenhermen, 2017).
The researchers noted these side effects were not as serious compared to other side effects of drugs used for the treatment of the same medical conditions.
In a mouse model, researchers discovered high doses of CBD may cause potential liver toxicity (Ewing et al., 2019). This could be possibly the retention of substances in the bile which should normally be excreted.
Researchers noted possible risks in a comprehensive review of published medical journals with animal test subjects. Some of these were developmental toxicity, fetal mortality, neurotoxicity, and alterations in the male reproductive system (Huestis et al., 2019).
The combination of fats and CBD may intensify side effects among healthy people (Crockett et al., 2020). So, you may have to cut down on fatty foods when taking CBD oil. Which is a good thing, right?
It’s best to consult your healthcare provider if you are taking prescription medications, supplements, and over-the-counter drugs. These may interact with CBD oil if you intend to take it as an adjunct therapy.
Controversy on the legality of CBD and THC
Since 1970, CBD and THC fall under the drug class of Marihuana listed in the Controlled Substances Act (FDA, 2020). Categorized as Schedule I substances, CBD and THC had no known medical use. Both substances had a high potential for abuse especially THC due to its psychoactive effects.
The 2018 Farm Bill changed this regulation on CBD and THC. The FDA removed hemp from the list of controlled substances such as cannabinoids that contained less than 0.3% dry weight of THC. The FDA though still has the authority to regulate these products.
Some of these cannabis products have unsubstantiated therapeutic claims that haven’t been approved for safe and effective use. This includes dietary supplements. The FDA also pointed out some products are mislabeled and misleading.
The FDA and the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research support and aid companies in the development of new drugs such as cannabis-derived drugs. The key here is the development of quality drugs that are scientifically proven as safe and effective for medical use.
Silexan lavender oil: How it works
A brand name of lavender oil, Silexan is a substance derived from Lavandula angustifolia flowers. It has been used for the management of restlessness and anxiety. It has also been known to improve sleep (Seifritz et al., 2019).
The serotonin system plays a role in anxiety disorders. The main inhibitory serotonin, serotonin-1A or 5-HT1A can be found in the brain region where cognition, memory, and mood are regulated.
Increased anxiety may be linked to lower binding of 5-HT1A (Akimova et al., 2009). In a positron emission tomography study, the results suggest that serotonin 1-A receptor is involved in the reduction of anxiety or anxiolytic effect of Silexan (Baldinger, et al., 2014).
Therapeutic effects of Silexan lavender oil
The FDA granted lavender oil a “Generally Recognized as Safe” (GRAS) status (Malcolm, 2018). The efficacy and safety of Silexan for anti-anxiety has been well-established by scientific studies.
A meta-analysis study shows Silexan had significant anxiolytic and beneficial effects on sleep problems (Möller et al., 2017). It caused no sedation and improved the health-related quality of life of the participants.
In a study of 539 adults, Silexan performed well as an anti-anxiety therapy compared to the placebo paroxetine, an antidepressant drug (Kasper et al., 2014). The results also show it improved general mental health other than its significant antidepressant effect.
Another study compared Silexan to lorazepam, a well-known anti-anxiety drug. The trials involved 280 people who were given doses of 80 mg/day of Silexan. The results show Silexan for general anxiety disorder was comparable to lorazepam (Kasper et al., 2010).
Silexan potential side effects
- Researchers in a study reported slightly more adverse reactions among participants who took Silexan compared to people who took placebo (Kasper et al., 2010).
- Researchers in another study also noted slightly more adverse reactions, but none of these were serious (Woelk and Schäfke, 2009). These included dyspepsia and nausea.
- Pregnant women should avoid using lavender oil as it has a potential emmenagogue effect or it may cause bleeding and miscarriage (Ernst, 2003).
If you intend to take Silexan as an adjunct therapy, it’s best to consult your healthcare provider. Prescription medications, supplements, and over-the-counter drugs you are taking may interact with it.
Anxiety begun or be gone?
We’re aware this pandemic is taking a toll on everyone’s psychosocial and mental health. The Injection and Infusion Clinic of ABQ offers its services and quality products to alleviate your anxiety.
Quicksilver CBD oil contains only small traces of THC and is thus free of psychoactive effects. It takes just five minutes for you to feel relaxed and in a better mood. For CBD orders, please call us at 505-445-4300 to order.
Silexan doesn’t contain corn, dairy, gluten, sugar, and wheat. It’s also safe with no potential for abuse (Perry et al., 2012). Silexan is available at The Injection and Infusion Clinic of ABQ.
Should you have concerns about CBD and lavender oils, please let us know.