As the medical community explores alternative treatment options for short and long-term depression, anxiety disorders, and PTSD—CBD supplements are increasingly part of the treatment plan. Unlike medical marijuana CBD is processed without the THC, which is what makes you high, making it an excellent alternative to prescription anti-depressants. Below are just a few ways hemp-based products can help to improve mental health.
Supportive Treatment For PTSD
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can be caused by a variety of circumstances. This includes military combat, serious accident, violent crimes, sexual assault, witnessing a violent death, natural disasters, prolonged abuse, and more. Sometimes PTSD occurs immediately but it is not uncommon for symptoms to be delayed. For example, a soldier may not exhibit symptoms until they leave a war zone, or until after they are discharged and return home.
Symptoms of PTSD can be severe and debilitating, including social anxiety, flashbacks, nightmares, irritability, paranoia, anger, physical aggression, and more. Group and individual therapy are a common treatment option, combined with antidepressants. Unfortunately, the side effect of antidepressants can make things worse. Patients often feel as though they are in a fog and antidepressants can increase anxiety, irritability and insomnia.
CBD has become a popular alternative as it is non-addictive, has minimal and low-risk side effects, and also addressed physical pain and inflammation which can worsen PTSD. THC-free products positively stimulate the body's endocannabinoid system (ECS), providing a rapid decrease in anxiety. When used with personalized therapy CBD can be used to facilitate the emotional memory processing required to minimize, manage, and overcome PTSD.
Mental Health In Minority Communities
There is still a long way to go in eradicating the stigma surrounding mental health challenges across every demographic, but more so in minority and oppressed communities. The reasons for this are many, including access to quality healthcare of any kind—which is compounded by the age-old mindsets that discourages asking for help or taking ownership for your mental health.
It is estimated that 16% of African Americans in the United States have mental health challenges—which is over 6.8 million people. While minorities are less likely to attempt suicide, they are more likely to suffer from hopelessness and depression linked to generational oppression and current-day racism. Children who live in low-income or violent communities are at a higher risk of PTSD, which often goes undiagnosed—or is misdiagnosed as behavioral disorders.
CBD provides a legal, non-addictive, affordable, and easily accessible means of treating mental health. The challenge is that adoption of both medical marijuana and CBD supplements is lower than in white communities, as illegal drug and substance abuse is a stereotype minority communities work hard to overcome, so there must be more education regarding the difference between no-THC supplements and THC products. Particularly that there is no high. Working with a mental health professional to discuss a THC treatment program is the way to go. Local community and mental health centers can suggest referrals to low and no-cost mental health programs for those who qualify.
There are many ways in which Hemp-based products can be used for women’s health, including mental health. Currently, women are 2 times as likely to suffer from depression than men (this includes kids and adults) and 2 out of 3 people who suffer from anxiety disorders are women. The most common causes of mental health concerns in women include:
- Societal inequality
- Being overloaded by the responsibilities of work and family
- PMS and menopause
- Postpartum depression
- Emerging sexuality and sexual identity issues
- Conflicts with parents or spouse
- Obsessive compulsive disorder
- Increasing societal pressure to be “perfect”
Asking for help is challenging for independent women. The dream is to do it all, but we all have our limits. This has many physicians and mental health professionals working CBD into their patient’s treatment plan. It can help take anxiety down a few notches, improve quality of sleep, and reduce mood swings when hormones are fluctuating.
CBD can have the same positive effect for both men and women, but men are less likely to reach out for help. Studies show that only 19% of men with mental health concerns reach out for help, compared to that of 28% of women. From a young age, most men are taught not to talk about their feelings, which means that many men cannot accurately identify or express their feelings in a healthy manner. With societal pressure to be a strong, self-sufficient, masculine provider, the fear of being weak is high. Not only are men less likely to reach out for help but less likely to consider that they have a mental health area of opportunity. Signs that a man may be struggling with short or long-term mental health challenges include:
- Mood swings
- Worry and stress
- Difficulty sleeping
- Substance abuse
- A frequent need for an adrenaline high
- Chronic headaches
- Chronic pain
- Digestive issues
- Suicidal thoughts
- Symptoms of PTSD
While Holmes Organics CBD products can be ordered and shipped to every state, if you plan to use it to address you or a loved one’s mental health concerns—we urge you to reach out to a mental health professional to create a full treatment plan. CBD is only one portion of a treatment program and may be able to replace your current prescriptions.