CBD as a mood regulator to fight anxious or depressive states
Recent clinical studies have shown that CBD can be an excellent ally in fighting the symptoms of depression. The antidepressant potential of cannabidiol, the non-psychoactive molecule derived from cannabis, is undoubtedly related to its interaction with the endocannabinoid system. In this article, we will investigate the possibility of using CBD as a therapy against depression.
Depression: a real illness
Very often depression is underestimated and treated as if it were not a real pathology. Those who suffer from it, instead of being referred to a doctor, are accused of being lazy and pessimistic and more often they do not receive the support they deserve. Depression makes people unattractive from a social point of view and very often those who suffer from it tend to isolate themselves or to be isolated by others because they are not understood.
According to the WHO, it is estimated that 25% of the European population suffers from a more or less serious form of depression. Certainly, it is a syndrome that can affect anyone in certain periods of life, even people who do not show any symptoms. Another WHO study predicts that by 2020, depression will impose itself as the second largest impact on health in the world and we still do not have a definitive cure with no side effects in our hands.
What is depression and how it manifests itself
Pathological depression (or major depression) is a mood disorder. Those suffering from it experience constant dissatisfaction, sadness and are unable to take pleasure in daily activities. These people live in a condition of frequent negative mood, often suffer from various health problems (real or imagined) and are often demotivated, have little interest in others and they may be inclined to try and abuse drugs to find relief. Furthermore, depression is one of the main risk factors for suicide and self-injury.
Statistically, it is shown a higher spread of the pathology in females. In fact, the diagnosis of major depression appears in 25% of women and 12% of men.
From an objective perspective, depression is detectable as a neurochemical imbalance and is usually treated with drugs such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and antipsychotics. There are various theories about the origin of this imbalance as some doctors see it as the primary cause of depression while others as a consequence of the depressive state. Thus, as a symptom.
What is serotonin, the good mood hormone
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that performs numerous functions such as regulating the sleep/wake cycle, mood, sexual desire and appetite. It is also called the good mood hormone because the more serotonin we have in our circulation, the greater our sense of fulfilment and happiness.
CBD and depression
CBD has been widely studied in recent years for its potential as a mood regulator to combat anxious or depressive states. There are many studies that encourage its use to regain a chemical balance in periods when one feels destabilized. Its action is based on the solicitations produced by the interaction of CBD with the endocannabinoid system, a network of receptors capable of influencing mood, pain perception and muscle tension.
Endocannabinoids stimulate the activity of serotonin, which as we have seen is closely linked to humoral dysfunctions.
According to this theory, CBD is indeed an effective alternative to the drugs usually used to treat depression, but we would like to emphasize that the action of cannabidiol is highly subjective and related to the receptivity of our endocannabinoid system. This could be the reason why CBD-based treatments are difficult to standardize in terms of dosage and effectiveness.
There are many studies for the treatment of depression that see CBD-based therapies as protagonists and, once validated and standardized, could become a very valid alternative to combat depressive states. Above all, treating yourself with cannabis derivatives would not involve the heavy side effects of antidepressant drugs currently in use.