The study did find that pharmaceutical TCH (either with or without CBD) was linked to small improvements in symptoms of anxiety among people with other medical conditions such as chronic pain and MS, although this evidence was considered low-quality.
This does not mean that CBD isn’t necessarily effective; of the studies reviewed, most only included a small number of participants, followed participants for a short period of time, and less than half were randomized controlled trials.
Some of the ways that CBD can be used include:
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
A large-scale study on the use of CBD in the treatment of pediatric epilepsy found that CBD reduced the frequency of seizures by more than 50% in 43% of the patients with Dravet syndrome. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently approved a cannabis-derived medication containing CBD, Epidiolex, to treat certain childhood seizure disorders.
There are also three main types of CBD available.
Anxiety is a common problem for many people. Anxiety disorders affect an estimated 19.1% of U.S. adults each year. Some studies suggest that CBD may help alleviate symptoms of anxiety. One study look at the possible neural basis for CBD reducing symptoms of social anxiety disorder.
PTSD affects approximately 6.1% of U.S. adults. It is characterized by symptoms including re-experiencing traumatic events, intrusive thoughts, nightmares, and avoidance of things that may trigger memories of the trauma.
Survey participants were asked to rate how CBD impacted 11 common symptoms of mood disorders (see chart below), indicating whether the symptom was a “much better,” “little better,” “no change,” a “little worse,” or “lot worse.” CBD appeared to be quite effective as an anti-anxiety agent and anti-depressant. Participants reported that it performed especially well at mitigating feelings of nervousness. Ninety-two percent of people experienced some relief, and 68% reported that feelings of nervousness were “much better” with CBD . CBD also performed well at relieving panic attacks, mitigating mood swings, and quelling feelings of agitation, irritability, and sadness.
Most participants reported that their anxiety and/or depression were of moderate severity.
CBD was less effective at mitigating difficulties concentrating, lack of interest in activities, and digestive upset. While still somewhat helpful for most, seventeen percent of people reported no improvement in these symptoms. And, 3% of people reported that the ability to concentrate worsened with CBD .
Of the participants taking CBD for a mood disorder, most stated that they had anxiety, depression, or both. The most common types of anxiety were generalized anxiety disorder (50% of all participants taking CBD for anxiety), social anxiety (10%), and panic disorder (10%).
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Most people with depression (58% of all participants taking CBD for depression) were not sure what type they had. Twelve percent of people taking CBD for depression said they had major depressive disorder, and seven percent said they had bipolar depression.
In compiling a list of conditions that CBD may help, we examined hundreds of peer-reviewed articles in scientific journals.