Medical Cannabis and Anxiety

Most people have feelings of nervousness or anxiety as a normal reaction to stress. However, for people with anxiety disorders, the anxiety they feel is ever-present and can become excessive, impacting work, relationships, and overall quality of life.

Anxiety disorders are a group of mental illnesses, which include social anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), generalized anxiety, and other specific phobias. The most common mental illness in the United States, anxiety disorders affect approximately 40 million adults age 18 and older.

The good news is that anxiety disorders are highly treatable, and medical cannabis is emerging as a safe and effective alternative to traditional anti-anxiety medications.

A recent one year observation study of Canadian cannabis patients suffering from pain and anxiety showed a significant drop in reliance on benzodiazepines, a commonly prescribed anxiety drug with several side effects. In fact, 45 percent of the patients eliminated the use of benzodiazepines within a year of cannabis treatment.

A 2006 study in Brazil also suggests that cannabis holds promise as a treatment for PTSD. Because cannabis can impact a person’s memory, it could be helpful in allowing a PTSD sufferer to forget bad memories or difficult experiences.

If you have an anxiety disorder, your doctor at Tetra Health Centers can help you find the right plan of treatment for you.