Stress is a biological mechanism of dealing with threats. However, an average modern man experiences acute stress trying to juggle daily challenges and life demands, from social to work. Experiencing this long-term and frequently can lead to chronic stress with health, mental and behavioural implications. Over the years, many opted for alcohol, tobacco, and other substance abuse as coping mechanisms. But the results are short-lived, with long-term use leaving a trail of health implications.
Despite the popularity of cannabis stress-relieving properties, many working people have cold feet trying out cannabis. The reason is that smoking readily comes to mind at the mention of cannabis. Understandably, few can afford to go about their daily routine with a lingering ‘skunky’ smell. There are several ways of consuming cannabis besides smoking. Tinctures, topicals, edibles, and vaping are good substitutes. Vaping, for instance, is a discreet alternative for those who want the smoking experience without the mess or odour. You can shop at an online vape store to choose from varieties of vaping pens. Whichever way you decide to consume your cannabis, let’s explore how cannabis can help you live a quality and less stressful life.
What Does Science Say About The Stress-Relieving Properties of Cannabis?
Despite the legislative obstacles making comprehensive studying the effects of cannabis unrealistic, several preliminary studies showed there might be some truth to the age-long claim that cannabis can relieve stress and anxiety. One such study conducted at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) investigated the effect of THC, the most active ingredient in a cannabis plant, on coping with stress. Forty-two healthy volunteers were split into three random groups. The first two groups received 7.5 mg of THC and 12.5mg of THC in capsules for accurate comparison. The third group was given a placebo. Every participant in each group took part in a series of psychosocial tests 2 hours after the capsule might have kicked in. After five days, the participants in the low dosage group reported a more positive mood and less stress than others.
Another similar study at the Washington State University, overseen by Carrie Cuttler, clinical assistant professor of psychology, found that ten or more off of cannabis can help reduce stress. The results showed that cannabis high CBD and low THC contents reduced the stress level of the patients tracked by 93.3%. Adding all these to different cannabis users’ data and anecdotal evidence hint at cannabis being a worthy alternative to alcohol, tobacco, and medications to manage stress and live a quality life.
Ways To Use Cannabis To Cope With Stress
● Cannabis as a Sleep Aid
A good sleep uplifts the mood and improves the overall well-being. Unfortunately, conditions like stress might lead to insomnia or disruption in sleeping patterns. Warding off stress demands adequate night rest. In comes cannabis. For centuries, people have relied on the sedative and relaxing effects for solving sleep problems or falling asleep faster. When it comes to smoking or vaping cannabis flowers for sleep, Indica is generally preferred to Sativa for its relaxing property. Whether buying online or physical dispensaries, the rule of thumb is to go for cannabis products containing a good balance of relatively high non-intoxicating CBD and moderate THC with a good representation of relaxing terpenes. Having a good night’s rest with a reduced REM level sets you for a less stressful day.
● Using Cannabis To Improve Mood
Besides serving as a sleeping aid, cannabis does much more by helping the body maintain homeostasis and physiological functions like your mood. Nothing eliminates stress, like improving your energy and mood, which comes as part of the package when cannabis interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system.
Stress-related depression has its root in serotonin deficiency. CBD, the most reputable and non-addictive ingredient of cannabis, got its anti-stress effects from activating the ECS to release optimal serotonin levels. It also influences the brain’s chemical receptors to make effective use. Compared to other antidepressant medications, using cannabis works fast. And what’s more, taking the right amount and routine can be perfect for maintaining a less stressful and happy life since it has little or no side effects.
● For Improving Social Interaction
Everyone can relate to getting nervous or uncomfortable meeting new people or speaking in public. It is more profound when it keeps you from doing things instead of serving as a motivation. Considering most people’s daily routine relies on relating with others, there is no running away from social interactions. And it can get really stressful. The first documented suggestion of cannabis for anxiety dates back to 1563 when a Portuguese physician, Garcia de Orta, recommended it in his book.
Cannabis contains chemical compounds, precisely CBD and THC, which stimulate the CB1 and CB2 receptors in the endocannabinoid system. Among other benefits, those interactions give cannabis its anxiolytic effects, making it great for handling your social phobia and living a less stressful life. THC is also anxiogenic and can trigger anxiety worse when used in high dosage. For effective results, an equal ratio of CBD and THC works fine.
Proper Dosing and Ingestion Method are Key
Mitigating stress with cannabis requires finding the right dosage and mode of delivery. A dosage with low CBD and THC contents delivered more discreetly than smoking might be the best for calming the nerve while going about your daily routine. For those with PTSD and who desire sound sleep with little REM, consuming cannabis moderately rich in THC might work well.
Though CBD and THC are the most talked about, pay attention to other ingredients in cannabis flowers or products. Terpenes and their combination may have a say in how cannabis affects you. For instance, Linalool is sedative, while Limonene and Caryophyllene are known to have antidepressant properties. Concerning finding a perfect dosage and combinations, a one-size-fits-all plan does not apply. Since individual physiology and requirements are different, microdosing could be the best way to find the ideal spot for you. It’s personal and subjective. By rule of thumb, for a beginner that wants to live a good quality of life without stress, 2.5 mg is an ideal place to start.