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CBD and its Interaction with Anxiety Medications

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Feeling anxious about a certain event that is about to occur is natural. This sense of anxiety soon fades away. There are certainly other types of anxiety that are more pronounced and prolonged. Past traumatic events to toxic relationships can be trigger points for exacerbating episodes of extreme anxiety.

Are you suffering from an anxiety disorder?

Those suffering from anxiety issues present signs and symptoms. Some are more evident than others.

  • They commit to excessive worrying most days of the week over six months. The worrying occurs even during normal situations.
  • The person feels agitated tagged along with shaky hands, dry mouth, and sweaty palms. Their heart rate increases, as blood flow is shifted from their digestive system and directed towards the muscles. This happens as a means to run or fight.
  • They feel restless and uncomfortable moving. Most patients suffering from anxiety disorder have complained of feeling on edge for more than six months.
  • They find it difficult to concentrate as anxiety interrupts their working memory. Therefore, holding short-term information becomes a challenge and a resultant decrease in performing any function.
  • They experience irritability quite often and excessively. This is a common symptom among those experiencing anxiety issues.

Additional symptoms include tense muscles, sleep issues, panic attacks, avoiding social gatherings, and developing phobias.

While there are several medications to this effect, CBD is gaining growing recognition among people. Let’s find out how this compound helps those suffering from anxiety and what its effects are with other medications.

Does anxiety only affect you?

Anxiety is debilitating for the mind and the system of your health. Everything gets disordered in your way of doing things. Anxiety is accompanied by feelings of insecurity and letting oneself down. However, this doesn’t just affect the person in concern but also the near and dear ones. Family too is affected as the symptoms of a person’s anxiety are projected onto them.

The people around have to deal with the person’s outburst of anger, fear, and stress, patiently. It becomes a matter of concern for everyone, and also a stressful ordeal for everyone.

CBD and its relation to anxiety medications

Cannabidiol or CBD is gaining popularity among several people. It is known to ease symptoms of anxiety, and other health conditions like depression, inflammation, and so on.

Research shows that CBD is generally safe with a few minor side effects like fatigue and diarrhea. However, it does interact with some medications taken for managing chronic conditions, including anxiety.

CBD might interact with other medications that you could be taking by affecting its breakdown and absorption in the body.

That is why consulting with your doctor before taking CBD is necessary. You need to be completely honest in disclosing your medicines list to your doctor. Also, remember all the types of medications you take. They could be prescription-based or over-the-counter medicines.

How exactly does CBD interfere with other medicines?

Here’s introducing to you the CYP450 enzyme and its relation to drug metabolism. Understand that your body has to metabolize or breakdown the medicines that you consume. This is so that your body can absorb the health benefits of that medicine. Your gut and liver are responsible for breaking down your medicines. This family of enzymes called Cytochrome P450 or CYP450 converts foreign substances to eliminate them from your body.

Some medications are known to affect the rate at which this enzyme affects your metabolism. Sometimes, your metabolic rate could increase or decreases depending on the medicines you take.

Now, CYP3A4 is an important enzyme that is part of the CYP450 family. Bear with us; we’ll soon stop using this jargon. So, CYP3A4 specifically metabolizes CBD. But CBD also interferes with this enzyme i.e. CYP3A4. As a result, it affects the process of breaking down the other medications in your system. The other medications can do the same to this enzyme, in reverse, affecting the breaking down of CBD. Phew! We hope you got this.

Based on this, the rate of your metabolism can increase or decrease dramatically. A dramatic increase can cause your body to not effectively absorb the medicine’s effect. Similarly, a dramatic decrease in metabolism can lead to a breakdown of medicines, thus increasing its levels in your system. This causes harmful side-effects to your body.

CBD under supervised consumption

Apart from its ability to interfere with medications, when taken under the right circumstances, CBD can reduce anxiety. There are certain forms of anxiety, such as:

  • Social Anxiety Disorder or SAD – A condition where social interactions cause anxiety resulting in increased heart rate, nausea, trembling, and difficulty speaking.
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD – Anxiety and stress-induced post a traumatizing event that results in nightmares and replaying terrifying memories.
  • Anxiety-Induced Insomnia – Anxiety that disrupts quality sleep patterns resulting in feeling tired throughout the day, becoming cranky, and reduced focus at work.

Managing anxiety naturally

CBD can help reduce anxiety but this doesn’t mean you stop opting for natural methods. Trying out natural ways can help speed-up your process or treatment of anxiety. Here are a few ways.

  • Watch what you eat: Lower the risk of anxiety by consuming more vegetables, fruits, high-quality meat, fish, and whole grains.
  • Try probiotics and fermented foods: These are known to improve mental health.
  • Limit your caffeine intake: Caffeine increases the heart rate. For people with anxiety, this can worsen their condition. Strictly reduce caffeine intake.
  • Say no to alcohol: Anxiety and alcohol are strongly linked. Stay away from alcohol until you are completely cured of your anxiety issues.
  • Smoking is bad for anxiety: It increases the risk of developing an anxiety disorder.
  • Say yes to exercise: A regular workout regime lowers the risk of developing an anxiety disorder.
  • Meditate on it: A therapy known as mindfulness-based stress reduction has significantly reduced symptoms in people with anxiety.
  • Practice yoga: Yoga has been shown to reduce symptoms in people diagnosed with anxiety disorders. More research is being done on this.

Suffering from anxiety can be a daunting issue not only for the individual affected but for the family as well. Taking timely treatment and looking after one’s wellbeing is the right direction if you want to see and experience improvement.

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