More and more people suffering from anxiety and depression are seeking an alternative to traditional treatments, including medication. Dr. Daniel Bober may recommend cannabidiol (CBD), which many patients find has minimal side effects and can safely provide substantial relief from their symptoms. Posted June 2019 Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a natural compound that has gained popularity in recent years. Here are some frequently asked questions about CBD answered by two mental health professionals who are working in this area: 1. What exactly is CBD? Is it the same as Cannabis? Hemp? Marijuana plant? Cannabis (marijuana) can help treat depression. Dr James Connell explains traditional treatments and side effects and how cannabis and CBD oil can help.
Treating Anxiety & Depression Naturally with CBD
Anxiety disorders and depression can be crippling mental health conditions that impact every aspect of your life. It can be especially difficult for patients who are struggling to find a medication that provides them with more benefits than side effects, or those who simply do not want to use medication to manage their condition. Now that medical marijuana is legal in Florida, CBD, or cannabidiol, has become a natural and attractive alternative in the state. Board-certified psychiatrist Dr. Daniel Bober may recommend CBD for anxiety and depression at his Hollywood, FL, practice, to help patients achieve a better quality of life.
Do Patients Find the Treatment to Be Effective?
What Is CBD?
Cannabidiol is a non-psychotomimetic constituent of Cannabis sativa. While CBD is a component of marijuana, it can be derived from both the marijuana and hemp plant which is a cousin of the marijuana plant  .While there is limited research on patients, some studies have also shown that CBD can have anti-anxiety and antidepressant effects  .
Is CBD Legal?
The use of CBD and its legality is complex as the government considers it in the same class as marijuana but does not typically enforce the same restrictive laws  . However, since CBD can be extracted from hemp plants, which do not qualify as marijuana in the state of Florida, many patients easily acquire low-THC CBD products online without a license.
For many patients, a combination of CBD treatment and therapy can be especially beneficial.
CBD is currently marketed as a supplement, so it is not regulated by the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA)  . As such, it can be nearly impossible to know which other active ingredients manufacturers are including. It is important to only use CBD provided by a trusted source.
Prevalence of Anxiety & Depression
While 40 million adults in the U.S. are affected by anxiety disorders each year, only 36.9 percent seek treatment  . Similarly, 173 million American adults have experienced at least one major depressive episode but 35 percent did not receive treatment  . It is alarming that a significant number of patients who are suffering from these serious conditions are not receiving the help they need.
Barriers to Treatment
Patients may be hesitant to seek treatment for several reasons including:
- Personal choice
- Financial restrictions
- Lack of awareness
Dr. Bober is dedicated to erasing the stigma of mental health disorders and helping patients find an effective solution for their condition. CBD may the answer for you or your loved one.
How Does CBD Help Improve Anxiety & Depression?
By helping regulate the endocannabinoid system (ECS)  , CBD can improve  :
- Ability to cope with stressors
- Overall mood
- State of mind
- Muscular tension
- Difficulties concentrating
Additionally, CBD may be able to help reduce social anxiety in patients  . In reality, CBD products are being used by individuals for widespread uses, from addressing specific conditions to improving overall well-being.
Are CBD Products an Effective Treatment Method?
CBD has been used for everything from anxiety, sleep, chronic pain, depression, and many other conditions. Despite the growing popularity of CBD, there is very little evidence that it works for most conditions. Several studies have found CBD to be harmless, which is to say safe, but that’s very different from proving its effectiveness. According to a study published in 2018, 62 percent of participants reported they were using CBD to treat a medical condition, primarily pain, anxiety, and depression  . Additionally, 36 percent reported that CBD was treating their medical condition “very well by itself”  .
Important Factors to Consider
To date, the FDA has approved only one drug for previously uncontrollable pediatric seizures. So why all the hype? Well for many, it’s financial motivation. CBD is becoming a multi-billion dollar Industry.
The other problem is a lack of reliability and consistency within the industry. In a 2017 study, Marcel Bonn-Miller, an adjunct assistant professor in the psychiatry department at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine, said his team found that nearly 70 percent of the CBD products they analyzed were mislabeled. Many of these products contained less than the reported amount of CBD. Furthermore, because research has been limited to date, there is no consensus on what dose of CBD to use for what conditions.
Anyone who decides to use CBD should do so with products that have been independent laboratory third-party tested to ensure the vendor’s label and advertising are accurate. All this being said, CBD has shown promise (albeit anecdotally) for a number of conditions and the absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence. More studies are needed to separate these purported benefits from placebo effect and until then, patients must proceed with caution and with skepticism.
Is There a Risk of Marijuana Addiction?
Many patients and loved ones are concerned about marijuana addiction and safety when considering CBD treatment. However, the World Health Organization (WHO) Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD) found that “CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential”, including signs of withdrawal. This is especially true since many CBD products are available with such low quantities of THC that they provide no intoxicating effects  .
Additionally, the WHO reports that CBD is “generally well tolerated with a good safety profile”  . However, some negative effects may be experienced when CBD is taken in combination with certain medications. As such, your treatment and CDB usage should be closely managed by a professional.
As a board-certified psychiatrist, Dr. Bober can prescribe the proper dosage of CBD to safely manage your anxiety disorder or depression. The ratio of CBD to THC is important and varies from patient to patient. Typically, he will start off with a lower dosage and, if that is not effective, it can easily be increased to provide the relief you need. It is important to note that using CBD for anxiety or depression does not mean you should stop therapy. For many patients, a combination of CBD treatment and therapy can be especially beneficial.
With over a decade of experience, Dr. Bober is extensively knowledgable in the treatment of anxiety and depressive disorders. His patients’ health and safety are his primary concerns and he will only recommend CBD if he believes it is the very best solution for your needs or can complement other treatment methods. He can also work in collaboration with your therapist and doctors.
Find Relief with CBD
If you or a loved one are suffering from anxiety or depression, do not let medication deter you. CBD may be an alternative that can change your life. Call (954) 994-1115 to schedule your consultation with Dr. Bober at his Hollywood practice.
Can CBD Help with My Anxiety and Depression?
Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a natural compound that has gained popularity in recent years. Here are some frequently asked questions about CBD answered by two mental health professionals who are working in this area:
1. What exactly is CBD? Is it the same as Cannabis? Hemp? Marijuana plant?
CBD is cannabidiol. It is one of almost 200 cannabinoids that can be found in marijuana plants. Unlike many other cannabinoids, CBD is not psychoactive and has a different pharmacologic profile than other psychoactive cannabinoids. CBD can be extracted from both marijuana plants and from hemp.
2. Is CBD (and CBD products) safe to use?
If there are adequate safety studies of a product, it would be considered safe. However, the CBD products flooding the market are not likely to have undergone any safety testing. In fact, the FDA has issued several warning letters to firms that market unapproved new drugs that allegedly contain cannabidiol. As part of these actions, the FDA has tested the chemical content of cannabinoid compounds in some of the products, and many were found to not contain the levels of CBD they claimed to contain. It is important to note that these products are not approved by FDA for the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of any disease. Consumers should beware purchasing and using any such products.
3. It seems like CBD is now being used in lots of products (shampoos, cosmetics, oils, bath salts, etc.). Does it really help when it is part of a product?
There is no evidence that CBD has beneficial effects as part of various products. Furthermore, the amount of CBD in any of these products is unclear.
4. Does CBD based medication really help with anxiety and depression and has it been scientifically proven to help with anxiety and depression?
- There is evidence that CBD may be a useful treatment for a number of medical conditions. However, this research is considerably less advanced than for treatment of epilepsy. For most indications, there is only pre-clinical evidence, while for some there is a combination of pre-clinical and limited clinical evidence. The range of conditions for which CBD has been assessed is diverse, consistent with its neuroprotective, antiepileptic, hypoxia-ischemia, anxiolytic, antipsychotic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, anti-asthmatic, and antitumor properties.
- There is insufficient scientific evidence to support the claim that CBD is an effective treatment for depression or anxiety. That does not mean it would not help, but there simply haven’t been properly controlled clinical trials to support an indication of CBD for treating anxiety or depression. Considerably more research is required to evaluate CBD as a potential treatment for anxiety and depression.
5. Is there current research in the US for CBD? Are other countries using CBD?
- There are dozens of current clinical trials that are evaluating the potential benefits of CBD for a variety of disorders, e.g., alcohol use disorder, pain, anxiety, PTSD, etc. Most of these studies are being conducted in the US, but some are being conducted in other countries.
- CBD is also being studied in combination with THC (THC is the main psychoactive compound in Cannabis). The CBD+THC combination product is known as Sativex, which is approved for cancer pain and spasticity in Europe and Asia.
6. Is CBD FDA approved and can doctors prescribe it?
Purified CBD extract (GW Pharmaceuticals) was approved by the FDA in 2018 as a treatment for 2 rare forms of epilepsy – Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome – as a Schedule 5 compound. The brand name is Epidiolex.
7. Are there pricing regulations for CBD?
Only for the FDA approved product.
8. How can I be sure that what I am reading about CBD (articles, etc.) is providing truthful information?
Look for scientific evidence to support any claims – controlled trials, evidence that the product under discussion has been assayed by some legitimate source to verify chemical constituents. Engage in a conversation with a medical professional.
ADAA offers a free online search tool to find mental health professionals from the ADAA member community. Click here to learn more.
The information in this post was graciously provided by Kathleen T. Brady, MD, PhD, Vice President for Research, Medical University of South Carolina, and Christopher D. Verrico, PhD, Assistant Professor, Psychiatry Research, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas
Can Cannabis Treat Depression? Dr Jim Explains.
1 in 16 Australians suffer from depression. While there are a number of treatments for depression, medical cannabis is becoming more popular. In this article, Dr Jim explains traditional treatments and side effects and how cannabis can help treat depression in some patients.
Dr James Connell
- Cannabis can be prescribed to help treat depression in Australia.
- CBD or cannabidiol can be used to treat depression and has limited side effects.
- THC can also be used to treat depression but for some people, it may make their depression worse.
- While cannabis is often well tolerated, there can be adverse side effects for some patients.
In this video Dr Jim explains traditional depression treatments and side effects, and how medical cannabis is being used to treat depression in Australia.
Cannabis and CBD oil for depression
While feeling anxious, sluggish and in a low mood or state at times is normal, depression can be a serious medical condition. According to Beyond Blue, 1 in 16 Australians are currently experiencing depression. There are a wide range of treatments for depression. An increasing number of doctors and individuals are using cannabis to treat depression.
In this article Dr Jim will help answer the question, “Can cannabis (marijuana) be used to treat depression?” It’s important to note that while depression and anxiety treatments are similar, the conditions can be mutually exclusive. Just because you are experiencing one does not mean you have the other. If you’d like to learn about cannabis and anxiety, you can read our cannabis for anxiety article.
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What are the signs of depression?
Depression can be debilitating depending on the severity of the condition. There are a number of types and subcategories of depression. There are major depressive disorders. People also experience dysphonia, which is chronic low mood. There can be situational stressors which can lead to a depressive disorder, for example, postnatal depression.
However, all of these conditions have similar features. The main features for depression include pervasive low mood and anhedonia, which is the lack of ability to enjoy previously pleasurable or enjoyable experiences.
Depression can also cause changes in sleep. This can present as difficulty getting to sleep or as hyper-somnolence, wanting to sleep all of the time. A change in appetite can also be a symptom of depression. Some individuals put on weight and other people will have no appetite whatsoever.
Finally, changes in self worth including feelings of worthlessness and guilt or thoughts of death and dying or increased suicidal ideation. All of these feelings can lead to fatigue and mental and physical slowing, so that everything becomes an effort in someone’s life as well.
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