During the last few years, research and study have proven OCD, obsessive-compulsive disorder, to be a much more serious issue than many in the behavioral health field originally thought. A report that was recently released by the NIMH, National Institute of Mental Health, states over one percent of adults in the United States have been diagnosed with OCD. Many of these people have no idea CBD products may be able to provide the relief they have been unable to find anywhere else.
OCD, an anxiety disorder, is characterized by a horrific pattern of compulsive action and obsessive thinking. These thoughts include everything ranging from a thought or memory to images leading to anxiety being triggered in the person. Combatting the distress and anxiety leads to the person suffering from OCD to compulsively act out to reduce and compensate for the anxiety.
When it comes to lowering this anxiety the person experiences, there are a ton of positives being shown with the use of CBD oil. This means CBD products could be effective in terms of reducing OCD symptoms.
How the use of CBD benefits OCD
We are unable to understand OCD’s origins, similar to the majority of other mental disorders. There is a wide range when it comes to options for treating OCD. These can be both random and very complex at times. What one person is able to do for relief might not make any difference at all for someone else.
Once a person is medically diagnosed with OCD, the “typical” treatment might include a combination of antidepressant or anti-anxiety medications, along with behavioral therapy and psychotherapy. For a lot of patients, they are able to find some relief with antidepressants. That being said, there are many unpleasant and unwanted side effects that accompany OCD relief. For someone taking Paxil, Prozac, or Zoloft, they can often experience side effects such as but not limited to:
- Weight gain
- Vision impairment
- Loss of sex drive
On top of experiencing these negative side effects and others, when a person is prescribed antidepressants or medications such as these, it is not uncommon to have severe difficulties when it’s time to stop taking the medications. More often than not, there are withdrawal symptoms included. Some common side effects people experience with a medication that is anti-anxiety include but aren’t limited to:
- Libido issues
Many anti-anxiety medications prescribed by a doctor are also both highly addictive as well as extremely difficult for the person to stop taking. When they agree with the doctor the medicine is no longer needed, the withdrawal symptoms can be very hard to overcome, resulting in the person remaining on the medication when it’s no longer needed.
When all of this is taken into consideration, many people suffering from OCD and other behavioral health issues are stuck looking for another means of relief. When you figure in the negative side effects and the difficulty getting off the medications, they simply aren’t worth taking.
On the other hand, CBD oil does not come with these same difficulties and side effects. When you figure in that CBD products come with no risk of dependency or overdose, and the WHO’s statement of “no public health problems” being reported that are linked to CBD oil, CBD products look like an obvious choice.
Still, you will want to make sure you have a discussion with a doctor or healthcare provider before starting to use a CBD product to manage OCD symptoms. You will want to talk with them about the other medications, prescribed or bought over the counter, that you are using for OCD. You will want to make sure there isn’t a potential for more serious risks.
Is CBD effective for OCD?
So far, there has been very limited research and study completed when it comes to battling OCD with CBD oil. That being said, OCD has been medically classed as an anxiety disorder. It has been well researched and heavily documented that CBD products produce positive results when used to relieve anxiety disorders. When considering OCD, you could easily transfer the potential benefits a person can receive from treating depression and anxiety with CBD oil.
There was one specific case study determining CBD oil is just as effective as diazepam and other sedative medications for anxiety relief. It just so happens that, through the course of this study, over 79 percent of patients who were treated with CBD oil experienced a lower level of anxiety symptoms.
CBD products have also proved to be effective in aiding individuals experiencing PTSD, post-traumatic stress disorder, which might make CBD oil useful to address other conditions linking to OCD and other thoughts, behaviors, and actions affected by anxiety.
An enzyme known as FAAH, fatty acid amide hydrolase, used for breaking down anandamide is inhibited by CBD oil. This lowers the amount of anxiety being experienced along with any behaviors that may be brought on by an adverse memory. With a response that has been dulled and the addition of anandamide, people who have found themselves getting caught up in obsessive and compulsive behaviors are able to find relief.
There was another study, 2015v, completed showing the potential of CBD products to help with the management of OCD and anxiety has also received attention through the examination of how CBD could potentially treat disorders that have been associated with anxiety. The conclusion was reached that “existing preclinical evidence strongly supports CBD being used as a treatment for generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder when administered acutely.”
Using CBD for OCD
If you are someone who is suffering from OCD and trying a CBD product is something you are interested in, make sure you have a conversation with your doctor before getting started. The first thing you want to do is seek medical advice in regards to how CBD may interact with any other medications you may be currently taking and if this is a safe option for you.
Once you and your doctor have agreed that CBD oil may be what you need, you will want to decide which method of using CBD oil is best for you. There are more options to choose from than you might think. The decision is made by most people based on the preferences of their lifestyles and the needs they are trying to meet.
If you are simply looking for an easy way to supplement with CBD, edibles, tinctures, capsules, and drops are some of the most popular methods of use. These methods can easily be incorporated into any daily routine you might already have. The results you will get can be expected to last for up to a few hours.
The majority of CBD consumers are familiar with both edibles and capsules. Both of these methods of use will give you a consistent dose of CBD oil. That being said, the results you are expecting may take some time before they happen. The CBD oil has to pass through the user’s digestive system in order to be absorbed. This means it can take up to an hour before you feel the desired effects. This time will vary depending on how much food is already in your stomach and your metabolism. Once you do begin to feel the effects, you can expect them to last anywhere from four to six hours.
There are several benefits that come with using CBD drops and tinctures. Similar to capsules and edibles, many CBD consumers use these methods of use as part of a supplement regimen taken daily. That being said, drops and tinctures are also beneficial to address a symptom faster than what happens with a capsule or edible. With drops and tinctures, CBD oil is absorbed by being placed in liquid form in the mouth under the tongue. This will produce effects in as little as twenty to thirty minutes and they last anywhere from two to four hours. A tincture will come in a small bottle that can be easily carried in a bag, purse, or even a pocket. This makes them a go-to source for many consumers who are constantly on the go. The dose can be adjusted, depending on the needs for the given time.
CBD flower and vape oils will give someone the quickest relief for symptoms that seem to come out of nowhere. With flower and vape oils, the CBD oil is absorbed through the lungs directly. This allows for effects to be experienced instantly. That being said, the effects aren’t going to last as long as they do with other methods of use. It isn’t uncommon for them to be over as soon as an hour or so. Also, depending on your environment, these methods of use aren’t always going to be as convenient as taking a capsule or placing a drop underneath the tongue.
There are specific benefits that accompany each of these methods of use. While there isn’t exactly a right or wrong method, you may want to do some experimenting to see which method provides the most for your specific wants and needs.
The dose of CBD for OCD
It’s important to keep in mind here that no two people are going to be exactly alike. This means what is working for one individual doesn’t exactly mean it will work for another. The best thing is to discuss this with your doctor, not a friend. Be willing to start out with a smaller dose and work your way up. Many of the negative side effects that happen with CBD oil are the result of using too much. Start out with a lower level and allow yourself to see how your body is going to respond. Then you can increase the amount once or twice a week until you discover the dose that provides the effects you are looking for.