How to use CBD for Depression: An Effective Anti-Depressant
Those who suffer from depression but don’t want to resort to pharmaceutical drugs often use CBD. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) depression affects more than 350 million people of all ages globally.
The most common medical treatments for depression in the U.S. are the use of pharmaceutical drugs like antidepressants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRIs) and their cousins, the serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (or SNRIs), antipsychotics (and/or atypical antipsychotics), and many of the same medications used to treat anxiety.
The trouble with these medications is that they often cause dependency and the list of side effects far outweighs the benefits – why is suicide an accepted side-effect of an antidepressant medication? We don’t know the answer to that, but we do know that you have a natural, organic plant-based treatment option – CBD from Ambary Gardens.
To demonstrate the efficacy in treating depression with CBD, we’ll analyze a series of studies conducted over the last 10 years. We will outline and synthesize the results of these studies below.
A 2010 study concluded that, “CBD induces antidepressant-like effects comparable to those of Imipramine. These effects of CBD were probably mediated by activation of 5-HT(1A) receptors.”
A 2011 stated, “In the last few years, there have been several advances in the determination of the role of the endocannabinoid system in the etiology of depression and the functional actions of antidepressant drugs. Specifically, a deficiency in endocannabinoid signaling is sufficient to produce a "depressive-like" phenotype at the preclinical level…and capable of inducing symptoms of depression in humans at a clinical level. Moreover, facilitation of endocannabinoid signaling is sufficient to produce all of the behavioral and biochemical effects of conventional antidepressant treatments.”
A 2016 study reported, “our results demonstrate that CBD exerts fast and maintained antidepressant-like effects as evidenced by the reversal of the OBX-induced hyperactivity and anhedonia.”
Another 2016 study concluded, “These findings extend the limited knowledge on the antidepressant effect of CBD, now shown for the first time in a genetic animal model of depression. These results suggest that CBD may be beneficial for the treatment of clinical depression and other states with prominent anhedonia.”
These studies show a very clear connection between CBD and its use as an antidepressant.
Recommended CBD Regimen for Depression
When formulating a CBD regimen for a any type of depression, it’s important to understand that CBD should be used regularly for maximum relief. Meaning it should be used as a preventative first – it can also be used to manage acute flare ups, but the preventative maintenance is most important! Think about it like any other dietary supplement, you want to establish a baseline concentration in your system.
In order to manage depression, we recommend ingesting full spectrum CBD oil daily in the form of Tinctures or Gel Capsules. The ingredients in the two products are the same, the only difference between the two is the form factor and dosage – pills vs. sublingual tinctures. We suggest those suffering from depression start with 5-10mg per day of CBD. If relief is not felt at this dosage, we suggest increasing by 5-10mg until the desired effects are achieved. You’ll notice that the Gel Capsules are pre-filled and contain 25mg of CBD per pill – there is no harm in starting at 25mg CBD daily as you cannot overdose on CBD nor are there any serious side effects. These ingestible products provide sustained relief for several hours – many people find they provide relief for the whole day! The one thing to keep in mind with ingestible CBD products is the delayed onset time – it can take up to 90 minutes for the full effects of the tinctures or capsules to be felt.
Managing Acute Flare Ups
In addition to the daily depression maintenance program outlined above, many people find they still need a safe way to manage acute flare ups. Whether it’s caused by an upcoming event, poor lifestyle choices, or stress – we recommend vaporizing CBD isolate to combat these acute bouts of depression.
The benefit of vaporizing or dabbing CBD isolate is that the relief can be felt almost instantaneously. CBD isolate is 99% pure CBD and provides a wave of relief that can be felt throughout the whole body. You can also ingest more CBD in the form of tinctures or pills to combat these persistent bouts of depression, just keep in mind that the onset time will be significantly longer than vaporizing.
A Quick Note About CBD & Drug Testing
If drug testing is a part of the conditions of your employment, you might be concerned about the potential of CBD to cause you to test positive for THC. This isn't an unfounded concern -- however, there isn't exactly a cut-and-dry way to answer it.
Much of the data we have about CBD is anecdotal, and its potential impact on drug testing is no exception. There are very few peer-reviewed studies on the subject, but there appears to be a small risk of a false positive for some users. Avoiding full-spectrum products containing traces of THC can reduce your risk of a false positive, but that may not eliminate the risk entirely.
If you are concerned about passing a drug test, you should consider this potential risk when deciding whether CBD is right for you. To learn more about the science of CBD and drug testing, check out our article for a more thorough discussion of how to minimize your risk of a false positive.