By Amy Reeves
“Is CBD oil right for me?”
That’s the loaded question a lot of people have been asking, and typing into their search engines, as CBD oil has become part of the latest health craze. So what do we know about it?
Well, we know that even though it comes from cannabis, it’s not psychoactive or addictive. That’s why the U.S. federal government recently lifted legal restrictions on it, opening the floodgates.
As for the particular types of people CBD oil might help, we at cbdMD have been doing a lot of research on the subject. Here’s what we found:
1. The Anxious
A whole lot of Americans suffer disabling anxiety – between 18 and 30 percent, depending on who you ask. It’s not surprising that anti-anxiety medications are among the most prescribed psychiatric drugs.
Anxiety is also one of the main reasons for CBD’s explosive popularity. Many people say it calms them down and helps them handle their stress.
Scientific research supports that CBD helped to control anxiety in several studies of participants in stressful situations.
2. The Adventurous
On the other hand, some people are so fearless they aren’t really enjoying themselves unless they’re getting banged up playing contact sports, surfing, bike-jumping or some such.
Some of CBD’s most enthusiastic endorsers are, in fact, extreme athletes. News of its powers to ease pain and promote healing spread so quickly in mixed-martial-arts circles that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency eventually had to change its rules regarding the use of cannabis products.
Lab studies suggest that this is because CBD helps to control inflammation, and also can protect nerve cells from damage.
3. The Arthritic
For similar reasons, CBD oil also has strong potential for managing arthritis.
Animal studies indicate that it can help both osteoarthritis – the kind that comes from old age – and rheumatoid arthritis, which comes from a malfunctioning immune system.
CBD can be an appealing alternative to standard treatments like naproxen and ibuprofen, which can upset the stomach with long-term use. CBD, if anything, appears to reduce nausea.
4. The Sleepless
Sleep troubles are even more common than anxiety.
Most people have bad nights once in a while due to stress or jet lag, while others have chronic insomnia.
Unfortunately, many existing sleep aids have drawbacks. They usually depress the central nervous system, which can leave you tired in the morning and can also make for dangerous overdoses.
CBD doesn’t usually knock people out, and many take it in the morning to help them throughout the day. But many also report it helps them sleep. This may be due to the anti-anxiety effect and/or the role CBD oil plays in managing the sleep-wake cycle.
5. The Addicted
Addiction is, of course, one of the reasons cannabis fell under such suspicion from the beginning. This is because of the THC, which brings that buzz people love and hate.
CBD, however, seems to counteract the THC in some ways.
A similar phenomenon occurred in a lab with mice hooked on heroin.
The reason for this seems to be the way our brains process emotional memories. We can remember what happened, but it’s how we feel about what we recall that leads to the craving to repeat the experience. CBD oil appears to help ease the memories back into the past so that they have less of a hold on us in the present.
6. The Traumatized
This effect on memory processing may also work for negative memories. CBD can help people get over negative experiences through a similar process psychologists call “extinction.”
This impact, along with the anti-anxiety effects, has great potential for the treatment of post-traumatic stress and other ailments that stem from trauma. Case studies have shown success with this route, in conjunction with other treatments.
7. The Spotty
Acne may not be a big trauma, but it sure can seem like it when you’re a teenager. With all the other things CBD oil can do, can it actually help acne too?
Maybe. As I mentioned earlier, CBD helps to fight inflammation, and acne – especially the nasty, oozy kind – comes from clogged pores getting inflamed.
But CBD also may help reduce the stuff that clogs pores in the first place. That would be sebum, the oil your skin naturally produces, and which acne-prone people tend to have in excess.
CBD oil appears to reduce the production of sebum, while not scorching your face the way benzoyl peroxide sometimes does.
The anti-inflammatory powers of CBD may also help with other skin conditions like dermatitis and psoriasis, which are, like rheumatoid arthritis, usually immune-system reactions.
As you can see, CBD can help a pretty broad range of people, and new research is coming down the pike all the time. There’s evidence it might even help people with more severe conditions like epilepsy, autism and cancer.
In the meantime, there are plenty of CBD products to sample for different types of conditions, including oils, patches, edibles, tinctures, and topicals.
Amy Reeves is a journalist and writer at cbdMD.com.