What Is Anxiety?

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental health condition, thought to be a combination of biological, psychological and other factors.

Anxiety disorders can affect how people function in their day to day lives, impairing social interactions, family relationships, interaction with coworkers or school life.

An estimated 12% of Canadians are affected by an anxiety disorder each year. Treatments are available and typically include prescription medications or cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). 

The classifications of anxiety disorders fall into separate categories and each have their own set of causes or symptoms. These classifications include:

  • Phobias
  • Social Anxiety Disorder
  • Panic Disorder
  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Separation Anxiety

Medical Cannabis and Anxiety

A common misconception is that anxiety disorders and mental illnesses can just resolve on their own. Mental illnesses require attention and can be managed with the right treatments. The two most popular treatments are Pharmacological and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT).

Pharmacological treatment involves prescribed medications that attempt to reduce and alleviate the symptoms associated with anxiety, panic and stress. These often start at low doses and can be prescribed for as little as 6 months or for a lifetime. CBT is a supportive method of treatment involving solo or small group therapy which involves identifying patterns of anxiety, inducing said patterns and then attempting to challenge and overcome them. Although pharmacologic treatment has been proven effective for managing anxiety, some individuals do not like the side effects associated with anxiety medications and are searching for a more natural way to manage their condition.

Medical cannabis has been proven to be an effective option for many patients suffering from anxiety. Oftentimes, the cannabinoid cannabidiol, or CBD, works best for individuals suffering from anxiety, as it has anti-anxiety properties. One study in 2019 used CBD to treat people who were struggling with anxiety and sleep. Almost 80% of people’s anxiety improved, and almost 70% reported improved sleep in the first month.

Individuals looking to use medical cannabis as a treatment option for anxiety may use it either alongside other medications such as pharmaceuticals or as their primary medication. We are here as your medical cannabis doctor’s office to provide guidance however you would like to use your medication, and offer full education and ongoing support on dosing, strain selection, and much more.

Apollo Clinics Can Help

 Apollo Cannabis Clinic is an evidenced based clinic who has been conducting observational research on medical cannabis and anxiety since 2014. The staff includes health care professionals to assist patients of all ages and backgrounds. 

In order to access Apollo’s services, begin by visiting apollocannabis.ca to fill out an intake form. Once the information has been submitted and reviewed an Apollo representative will contact you to book an appointment with one of our doctors. 

During the initial appointment individuals will disclose their medical history and past cannabis use, and the doctor will determine an appropriate treatment plan with regards to cannabis. It is important to be honest and open with the doctor as it will provide them the best chance at helping individuals manage their anxiety with cannabis

How can medical cannabis help with treating Anxiety?

Multiple research studies have shown CBD can help reduce anxiety and discomfort in those diagnosed with generalized social anxiety disorder (SAD). It’s found that CBD works with CB1 and CB2 receptors which are found in the central nervous system and can affect serotonin levels as well as blood flow to different regions in the brain. With all that said, correct dosage played an important part in those that found relief.

What forms of cannabis are available and most commonly used for patients with anxiety?

Consistent treatment of ingestible options (oil and/or gelcaps) is often recommended. This is because their effects can work in your body for up to 8 to 12 hours and allows them to provide patients with extended relief throughout the day or night. There are also other options available that include dry flowers, vaporizers, edibles, beverages, and more. For quick onset relief, vaporizers can be beneficial when needed. You can work with your Apollo healthcare practitioner to find and decide what is going to work best for you and your personal preferences.

Can I take the medication on an as-needed basis?

Individuals looking to use medical cannabis as a treatment option for anxiety may use it either alongside other medications such as pharmaceuticals or as their primary medication. It is usually recommended to be taken consistently to be effective, but there is generally no immediate harm if doses are missed. Please always confirm with a healthcare professional before starting or stopping any medication.

How do I dose medical cannabis for anxiety?

Our physicians and patient care specialists work 1-on-1 with you to find your optimal dose. As every person’s body is different, we start slow and create a personalized dosing schedule for you. If at any time you feel like you need to make adjustments, we are here to support you by phone and email 7 days a week.

Find out if medical cannabis is right for you.

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