Anxiety is a nagging health condition many people deal with today. And even though occasional bouts of mild anxiety are normal, there’s cause for concern when things in your personal and professional life spiral out of control due to too much anxiety.
Prescription drugs are the ‘go-to’ solution for most folks that suffer from the condition – however, these powerful drugs can be addictive and come with a range of side effects, many of which can be long-term.
In the cannabis community, many people have touted the benefits of consuming CBD to curb and control anxiety symptoms. If you haven’t heard of this miracle cannabinoid yet, here’s a quick overview:
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol is a non-psychoactive compound derived from the cannabis plant, meaning that users do not feel the ‘high’ or euphoric feeling after consumption, which is the case with THC-rich marijuana strains. In case you’re wondering, Tetrahydrocannabinol is the most psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis, directly responsible for the euphoric high and relaxation.
CBD has tremendous therapeutic potential which is why it has been getting a lot of attention from scientists and medical professionals lately. Medical cannabis patients who are using CBD-rich strains have reported to have found relief from a wide variety of symptoms such as chronic pain and inflammation, diabetes, arthritis, cardiovascular disease, PTSD and, of course, anxiety.
CBD’s anti-anxiety properties have been touted in many well-researched studies to date – however, a question that has often plagued users is: “What’s the right dose to ease my anxiety symptoms?”
This question has lingered around in the minds of medical cannabis users for some time now because physicians are generally hesitant to prescribe medical – here’s why:
- Since an RDA or universal dose for everyone has not been established, doctors are not in a position to recommend or prescribe cannabinoids
- Majority of medical institutions and schools do not cover CBD or any kind of cannabis therapy in their course curriculum
However, when it comes to using cannabinoids to treat conditions like anxiety, there is one universal rule to bear in mind – that it affects everyone differently.
Before proceeding further, we’d just like to add a quick disclaimer that this article serves only as a dosage reference point, and since no official recommended dose has been established for CBD, the information presented here should not be interpreted as professional medical advice.
A Good Starting Point for CBD Dosing
Even though specific advice on CBD dosing cannot be given for general anxiety or anxiety related disorders due to current FDA regulations – the process of finding the ‘minimum effective dosage’ is not only fairly simple but works rather well.
At the individual level, the key to finding an effective dosage is to incorporate a stepwise approach to dosing. So, first you must establish a baseline dosage which will be adjusted incrementally over 3 days until you find a dose that is most effective for you.
Again, we would reiterate that every individual will respond differently to CBD so there is no ‘daily established value’ that’s well-suited to everyone. With that out of the way, here’s how you’re going to incorporate the stepwise dosing approach:
Start as Low as Possible and Take it Easy
In order to determine the minimum effective dose, you will need to determine the baseline dosage. It’s encouraging to know that majority of CBD users have reported very positive results at low doses. Keeping that in view, we’d recommend starting with the bare minimum dosage and slowly increasing it until desirable results can be had.
A small baseline dosage would mean anywhere between 2 and 5mg of CBD, taken twice or thrice daily. In any case, make sure you don’t exceed 6-10mg at this initial stage. This is going to be our baseline dosage.
Maintain the baseline dosage for at least a week to assess results and see how the cannabinoid reacts with your body. For example, do you feel the anxiety fading away slowly or is it adversely affecting your symptoms or perhaps interacting with an anti-anxiety drug you’re already taking?
Once your initial baseline dosage has transpired for 7 days, and if you have not noticed any improvement in anxiety symptoms, gradually increase the dosage by 1-2mg after every 3 days – until you notice positive changes.
Soon enough, you would have established the minimum effective dose – once you do, be sure to decrease your dosage by 1-2mg to see if the benefits persist at a noticeably lower dosage. The key thing to remember about CBD for anxiety is that a higher dosage does not necessarily mean better or faster results. If anything, it may make symptoms worse – therefore, if you find relief at the lowest possible dose, then that’s what you should always aim for.
Establish Baseline Values According to Bodyweight
A fairly accurate baseline value may be difficult to establish unless we take into account our current bodyweight.
If, for some reason, you feel that the ‘starter baseline value’ we’ve mentioned above may be too low for your bodyweight, then here are a few CBD dosing reference points according to bodyweight. Plus, if you suffer from sleep deprivation or feel that you may easily build a tolerance to low levels, then you may want to increase the daily dose:
For Mild Anxiety Symptoms
- 2-8mg or higher for 31-60lb individuals
- 4-12 mg or higher for 61-100lb individuals
- 6-18mg or higher for 100-175lb individuals
- 8-20mg or higher for individuals weighing between 175 lbs and 250 lbs or more
For Moderate Anxiety Symptoms
- 8-18mg or higher for 31-60lb individuals
- 12-24mg or higher for 61-100lb individuals
- 18-32mg or higher for 100-175lb individuals
- 22-40mg or higher for individuals weighing between 175 lbs and 250 lbs or more
For Severe Anxiety Symptoms
- 18-30mg or higher for 31-60lb individuals
- 24-40mg or higher for 61-100lb individuals
- 32-60mg or higher for 100-175lb individuals
- 42-60mg or higher for individuals weighing between 175 lbs and 250 lbs or more
In any case, we’d strongly recommend that you start as low as possible to assess the initial effects – it is always better to keep dosages within the lower range according to your individual bodyweight.
Common Consumption Method – CBD Oil
CBD oil, often referred to as hemp oil, is extracted directly from the cannabis flower. Unlike the cannabis that you typically see people smoke recreationally, CBD does not cause the ‘high’ feeling and is used mostly for medicinal purposes, including any conditions related to anxiety.
CBD’s therapeutic potential is irrefutable, as are its anti-anxiety and anti-depressant properties. These factors alone have led to the growing popularity of CBD oil as an effective alternative remedy for treating anxiety.
Dosing with CBD Oil
As is the case with any consumption method, the amount of CBD oil that is ideal for you can be a very personal thing – for one, your weight and height play a key role in selecting the optimal dosage. However, if you’re suffering from any health conditions and taking prescription medication that also includes anti-depressants and anti-anxiety drugs, it is always best to consult your physician before consuming CBD products.
The same principles apply to CBD oil as highlighted much earlier in the article: consider your bodyweight and the severity of your symptoms.
No matter, a good starting point is a single drop of CBD oil per day. Give your body some time to adapt and then gradually increase the dosage.
To assess your tolerance and after effects, you might want to increase the dose to 2 drops per day for at least a few weeks, to see if your anxiety symptoms improve.
Keep in mind that it may take a while for the CBD effects to kick in. Before attempting to take higher dosages, it is always a good idea to give it at least a few days.
You would also want to take smaller doses spread out over the day, which can enhance absorption and effectiveness of the oil.
We would, again, urge that you consult your physician before using CBD oil for anxiety, particularly if you are already on prescription medication for the condition. If this is true, then speaking to a qualified healthcare professional is important because you may need to properly ‘phase out’ the drug from your system before taking any CBD for anxiety.
Users who have used CBD oil have reported doses between 40-600mg to be effective. That does seem like a fairly wide range – however, keep your bodyweight in mind and always start at the lowest effective dose. Research done on social anxiety and the use of CBD oil has also confirmed that 600mg has been effective at reducing symptoms of anxiety, although this is by no means a baseline dose.
On a final note, when buying your CBD product, ensure that the THC:CBD ratio is clearly labelled, along with a batch number and manufacturing/expiration date. The THC ratio shouldn’t be too high unless you don’t mind experiencing the psychoactive effects.
Always select CBD products that are free of solvent residues, mold, bacteria, GMOs, thinning agents, corn syrup or artificial additives. Products that are extracted using the supercritical CO2 method boast the highest quality.
Check out our online store for the best cannabis seeds for anxiety.