Mental Health & the Benefits of Vaping
It’s currently estimated that forty million people over the age of eighteen suffer some type of anxiety disorder in the United States, while approximately seven million adults are afflicted with depression. The most common type of treatment for mental health issues is the use of prescription anti-anxiety, and/or anti-depression pills such as Xanax, Zoloft, and Klonopin. The FDA and psychiatrists continue to push out this pharmaceutical-grade medicine as if it was candy; however, the truth is these types of pills come with a myriad of side effects. A good portion of the public is beginning to become aware of holistic alternatives, and the use of cannabis for treating mental conditions is on the rise. Vaping marijuana (CBD) has been show to greatly relieve the effects of anxiety and depression, while minimizing the risk of lung cancer which is associated with traditional smoking. Below is a list of some benefits of vaping cannabis to improve one’s mental health.
Several studies done in Spain have shown that use of CBD leads to boost in transmission between serotonin receptors. Serotonin is an important neurotransmitter and chemical that assists in regulating one’s mood. Cannabis contains something called a 5-HT1A agonist which is a sub-type of a serotonin receptor. Drugs such as Prozac (anti-depressant) also work to increase serotonin, but unfortunately, come with an FDA “black box” warning which means prolonged use has been associated with addiction, death, and even violence in cases. Increasing serotonin the natural way via the inhalation of CBD is obviously the superior choice.
One of the worst effects of depression and anxiety can be impaired sleep ability. People suffering from mental health conditions frequently report insomnia as a devastating consequence, and lack of sleep further affects every part of their lives, as their work and education performance declines. Vaping cannabis has been proven to aid sleep, and one strain in particular, Indica, is known for its powerful relaxing and calming effects. Additionally, for people suffering from debilitating nightmares, they can choose to vape a strain with higher level of THC which will result in decreased dreaming according to a 2008 pubmed study.
There have been a few research studies done in mice which verify that CBD use results in the growth of new neurons. People suffering from anxiety and/or depression often report high levels of chronic stress. Unfortunately, it’s been shown that chronic stress severely and negatively affects the brain; being under chronic stress not only kills neurons, it has even resulted in brain shrinkage verified by MRIs. The power of vaping CBD to cause neural regeneration is amazing, and more studies should be done to investigate its potential.
In summary, anyone that is living with anxiety disorder and/or depression should seriously consider vaping cannabis as an alternative treatment method. Many studies have already proven marijuana’s effectiveness in reducing anxiety, helping with mood regulation, assisting in the REM sleep process, and just making people happy in general. Cannabis will definitely play a role in the treatment of any mental health condition.