does cbd oil cause rebound anxiety?
our culture is becoming more open-minded and accepting towards cannabis, and we think that is a really good thing. research on cannabis, especially cannabidiol (cbd), is expanding with it, as people continue to ask new questions and set out in search of answers. we recently had a specific question come to mind and went looking for as much information as we could find on the matter: does cbd oil cause rebound anxiety?
because of the way cbd interacts with the human body, it does not cause rebound anxiety. rebound anxiety occurs as a bodily response to the withdrawal of a substance or medication. cbd does not affect the pathways of the brain that are related to dependence, and thus cannot create this response.
that’s not to say the relationship between cbd and rebound anxiety is black and white, however. predisposed conditions to anxiety, dependence to substances, and interactions with other medications also matter. now is also a good time to share some good news with you: cbd may be helpful in mitigating rebound anxiety from other medications.
what causes rebound anxiety?
in order to find out what causes rebound anxiety, let’s start with a working definition. according to anxieties.com, “rebound is the temporary return of greater anxiety symptoms after withdrawal from medication than you experienced before [taking] the medication.”
rebounds can happen when the effects of any substance wears off. one common example of this occurs when feeling the “crash” in the afternoon from your morning cup of coffee. but that does you no good if you’re feeling the debilitating effects of anxiety, so let’s keep on track: in order for rebound anxiety to occur, there must be some element of dependence that is present in the first place.
benzodiazepines (xanax, klonopin, valium, ativan, etc) are frequently used to treat anxiety, but they can be habit-forming and long-term use can lead to physical dependence while benzos have been proven effective at alleviating symptoms of anxiety, they are not a sustainable solution due to their long-term side effects. they also do not solve the underlying root of the problem.
taking benzodiazepines result in a physical level of dependence developing as the substance is consumed. as such, withdrawal effects to varying degrees are inevitable, especially within prolonged users. when withdrawal effects are experienced, there is potential for a rebound to occur, bringing with it even further-heightened feelings of anxiety that one is now stuck battling.
cbd and rebound anxiety
cbd is another increasingly-popular way to address the symptoms of anxiety as a whole, and much research has been done to back its efficacy. it is believed that cbd can help inhibit the brain’s receptors that are linked to anxiety, which results in the anxiety response either not occurring or happening at ea much lower level of intensity. as such, cbd can help with rebound anxiety, and can furthermore be helpful for many other forms of anxiety such as generalized anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, and panic disorder.
nobody wants to deal with anxiety, and rebound anxiety can only compound the situation: the lack of the previous solution (anti-anxiety medication) has now contributed to an even higher state of anxiety. enter cannabidiol: not only can cbd help alleviate symptoms of anxiety, but it is also effective at helping with physical addiction to various substances.
cbd has been shown to help with withdrawal symptoms of alcohol, opiates, and more. even further, studies now believe the endocannabinoid system (ecs) as a whole may help subdue addictive urges . cbd helps regulate the ecs, and even at large doses is both safe and non habit-forming.
for these reasons, cbd may attack rebound anxiety on both the mental and physical battle fronts. you may need to experiment to find an effective dosage for your own personal body chemistry, but a sublingually-applied tincture, especially one formulated with other calming adaptogenic herbs will quickly arm you with more ammunition to get through the attack.
do note, though, that the conditions for rebound anxiety must include withdrawal. cbd can be effective at treating rebound anxiety when one is not actively consuming anti-anxiety medication, but it is important to realize that it should not necessarily be taken in conjunction with medications.
cbd and anti-anxiety medications
taking cbd and benzodiazepines such as xanax (alprazolam) at the same time can put one at risk of experiencing heightened, out-of-proportion effects from either substance. cbd inhibits the same system of enzymes that the liver uses to metabolize benzodiazepines, meaning effects are likely to be prolonged. this puts one at a higher risk for side effects such as overdose, sedation, or suicidal thoughts.
the same goes for other benzodiazepines like ativan (lorazepam) and klonopin (clonazepam): combining cbd with these medications can increase risk especially of sedation and impaired thinking/judgment/motor coordination. antidepressants such as tca’s and maoi’s should also not be taken with cbd, as they are also affected by the same processes in the liver as benzodiazepines.
on the other hand, ssri’s such as zoloft (sertraline) are likely to exhibit no adverse reactions when taken with cbd. however, the presence of both results in more competitive effects, leading to decreased effects on both the pharmaceutical and natural sides. therefore, using both ssri’s and cbd together is likely to result in a less effective outcome than taking either individually.
are there any other adverse effects when taking cbd for rebound anxiety?
cbd does have known side effects, though they are extremely mild compared to many other available medications that are used to treat anxiety. common side effects associated with cbd include reduced appetite, drowsiness, fatigue, and dry mouth (though a few of these could also be desired effects for some cbd users). diarrhea is also a rare side effect, though that may also be due to impurities in other components of a given cbd product.
prescription blood thinners and over-the-counter medications such as advil (ibuprofen) and aleve (naproxen), both of which slow blood clotting, are also affected by the same liver enzyme processes as benzodiazepines. this can result in higher levels of medications remaining in the bloodstream, which can further lead to issues such as excess bleeding.
lastly, prospective and/or new mothers should consult with their doctors about any potential issues with using cbd to treat anxiety, or anything else for that matter. although cbd is nontoxic and safe to consume even in large doses, there is no conclusive information on how cbd may affect breastfeeding or a developing fetus.
comparing the side effects
if looking into possible solutions for rebound anxiety, cbd provides one obvious benefit over switching to another pharmaceutical medication: it is all-natural and non-habit forming. exploring cbd as an option can prevent relapse from the chemical that is causing the rebound, and it also makes it possible to not need to replace one pharmaceutical substance with another, thereby potentially reducing further risk toward future rebounds.
as already mentioned, cbd’s side effects are relatively mild compared to other pharmaceutical options. for example, xanax has a list of side effects that is over 20 symptoms long, including, but not limited to drowsiness, sleep and memory problems, irritability, diarrhea, vomiting, and dry mouth. many of cbd’s side effects are also present with xanax, though the list of side effects for xanax far exceeds anything that cannabis comes close to matching.
grogginess, headaches, and depression are other side effects of benzodiazepines. regarding depression, antidepressants often exhibit many of these same side effects. additionally, further side effects from various antidepressants include irritability, anxiety, and sexual problems such as decreased sex drive and erectile dysfunction.
we are not here to denounce the role of modern medicine in our world: however, there is also an undeniable chance that a never-ending cycle of pharmaceuticals may not ever solve the problem. as we just saw, anti-anxiety medications can cause depression, and antidepressants can cause anxiety. cbd, on the other hand, has been shown to potentially help with both anxiety and depression and a whole lot more.
there is no easy, one-size-fits-all solution to rebound anxiety, or to any other form of anxiety, either. regular cbd usage may be able to help, though. if you have any further questions, drop us a line and we will be happy to see how we may be of further assistance.
from the bottom of our hearts, we support your journey and hope we can help, whether it be through providing knowledge and information, or via our 100% organic, third-party lab tested cbd products.
does cbd oil cause rebound anxiety? our culture is becoming more open-minded and accepting towards cannabis, and we think that is a really good thing. research on cannabis, especially cannabidiol
Using CBD Oil for Treating Anxiety
Cathy Wong is a nutritionist and wellness expert. Her work is regularly featured in media such as First For Women, Woman’s World, and Natural Health.
Arno Kroner, DAOM, LAc, is a board-certified acupuncturist, as well as an herbalist and integrative medicine doctor. He operates a private practice in Santa Monica, California.
In recent years, cannabidiol (CBD) oil has become a widely favored remedy for anxiety. While some individuals take CBD oil to soothe their everyday worries, others use it to treat more serious conditions like generalized anxiety disorder.
A compound found in the marijuana plant, cannabidiol has increased in availability as marijuana use is legalized in more and more states across the country. A growing number of companies have begun selling supplements, salves, and other products made with CBD oil, typically touting these items as natural remedies for issues like anxiety and pain.
Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (or THC, another compound found in marijuana), cannabidiol doesn’t produce a “high” when consumed.
The most common mental illness in the U.S., anxiety disorders affects more than 18 percent of the population each year, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America.
Although anxiety disorders are generally treated with psychotherapy, medication, or a combination of the two, many people opt to forgo these standard approaches and self-treat with products like CBD oil.
According to a survey published in Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research in 2018, almost 62 percent of cannabidiol users reported that they used CBD to treat a medical condition, with the top three conditions being pain, anxiety, and depression.
Due to a lack of research, scientists aren’t sure how CBD oil might help treat issues like anxiety. Some research suggests that in addition to impacting the endocannabinoid system, cannabidiol may influence receptors involved in the modulation of serotonin (a chemical messenger thought to play a role in anxiety regulation).
So far, most of the evidence for CBD’s effects on anxiety comes from animal studies and laboratory experiments.
For a report published in the journal Neurotherapeutics in 2015, scientists analyzed this preliminary research and found that CBD oil shows promise in the acute treatment of conditions like generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Social Anxiety Study
While there’s currently a lack of large-scale clinical trials testing the use of CBD oil in the treatment of anxiety, a small study published in Neuropsychopharmacology in 2011 determined that CBD may help alleviate social anxiety.
For this study, 24 people with social anxiety disorder received either 600 milligrams (mg) of CBD or a placebo an hour and a half before performing a simulated public speaking test. Additionally, 12 other people with social anxiety disorder performed the same test without receiving any CBD treatment.
Results revealed that pre-treatment with CBD significantly reduced anxiety, cognitive impairment, and discomfort while participants were delivering their speech.
The anxiety-reducing effect of CBD may follow a bell-shaped dose-response curve, suggests a study published in Frontiers in Pharmacology. After administering different dosages of CBD before a public speaking test, researchers found that subjective anxiety measures were lowered with the 300 mg CBD dose, but not with the 100 or 900 mg CBD dosages.
Paranoid Trait Study
Another study, published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology in 2018, tested the effects of cannabidiol in people with high paranoid traits and found that cannabidiol had no impact on anxiety, cortisol levels, heart rate, systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressure reading), and persecutory ideation.
Anxiety in Healthy Participants Study
Cannabidiol did not reduce responses to negative emotional stimuli or reduce anxiety in healthy participants, according to a study published in Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research in 2017. Researchers tested participants’ responses to negative images or words and threatening emotional faces and sensitivity to social rejection after taking oral cannabidiol.
Using CBD oil may cause a number of side effects, including anxiety. Some research indicates that CBD oil may also trigger the following side effects:
- Changes in appetite
- Changes in mood
- Dry mouth
- Low blood pressure
Cannabidiol has been found to slightly increase heart rate at a dose of 900 mg. In addition, there’s some evidence that the use of CBD oil may lead to increased levels of liver enzymes (a marker of liver damage).
CBD oil may also interact with several medications, including benzodiazepines, calcium channel blockers, antihistamines, and some types of anti-epileptic drugs. If you are on any of these types of medications, consult your doctor before using CBD oil.
A research review found that in the treatment of certain types of refractory epilepsy, participants used lower dosages when using a CBD-rich extract compared to purified CBD products, and found adverse effects were less frequent in those using CBD-rich extracts.
It should also be noted that, because CBD oil is mostly unregulated, products may be incorrectly labeled. To that end, a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 2017 found that nearly 70 percent of all CBD products sold online are mislabeled and that a number of products contain a significant amount of THC.
Since THC can aggravate anxiety and make your heart beat faster than normal, it’s possible that using CBD oil that contains THC might make your anxiety worse.
A Word From Verywell
If you’re experiencing symptoms like frequent restlessness, difficulty concentrating, irritability, muscle tension, fatigue, lack of control over feelings of worry, and sleep problems, talk to your doctor as soon as possible. By working with a mental health professional, you can find the anxiety treatment plan that’s right for you.
Because letting an anxiety disorder go untreated can deplete your quality of life and lead to physical health problems (such as digestive conditions), it’s crucial to consult a doctor rather than self-treating. If you’re thinking of using CBD oil to help manage your anxiety (and it is legal where you live), make sure to talk with your doctor about whether it’s right for you.
Discover how CBD oil is touted as an all-natural way to find relief for people suffering from anxiety.