How Exactly Does Marijuana Help Anxiety?
There are compounds found in marijuana called cannabinoids. When consumed, these cannabinoids attach to multiple “cannabinoid receptors” in the brain. The most common cannabinoids are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD).
These cannabinoids bind to a receptor called cannabinoid receptor type 1, also known as CB1. CB1 receptors are found in large numbers in parts of the brain that asses for threats and manage fear responses. When the cannabinoids are bound to CB1, the brain appears to decrease its reaction to threats, this facilitates the anxiety relief many feel from marijuana.
What Dosage is Best?
Although cannabis use helps to relieve anxiety when its cannabinoids are bound to CB1, it is important to note that your dosage must be kept within the correct limits to make sure your anxiety doesn’t get worse.
With the regular consumption of THC your number of CB1 receptors actually decreases. This means that your brain is now less sensitive to its natural endocannabinoids, making it more likely to have an increase in day-to-day anxieties. If you plan to utilize marijuana to help cope with anxiety, you need to be mindful of your dosage, frequency of use, and the type of marijuana you are consuming.
One way to control for this is by utilizing strains that have lower THC content and higher CBD content, as CBD appears to fight the anxiety-inducing parts of THC. Many people don’t realize that there are now strains that have little to no THC. These strains are real game changers for those who suffer from anxiety, but that doesn’t mean that they are the only options. Many other strains containing THC work just as well.