Feeling anxious or stressed because of COVID-19? Are you getting cabin fever because of lockdown? Your feelings as valid but it doesn’t have to be this way.
Anxiety is tough to deal with at the best of times. When the economy is falling apart, you’re worried for the health of your loved ones, and the future is uncertain, it’s no wonder we’re all feeling a little on edge. There’s advice everywhere about tackling panic attacks, but how can you nip it in the bud? How can you naturally stop that looming dread, in the first place? I heard about CBD oil and wanted to explore it a little further.
What is CBD Oil? 🌿
Much of the negative effects and media attention that cannabis gets, is from the THC chemical compound that is associated with the ‘high’. However, the CBD compound makes up 40% of the plant and has none of these negative effects usually associated with cannabis.
Rather than the psychoactive effects of THC, CBD instead produces a calming or relaxing feeling in the user that can help to reduce anxiety, and even painkilling and anti-inflammatory effects, proven by numerous studies over the years. It’s natural, so it’s something I wanted to learn more about..
Why did I decide to take CBD?
For those of you that follow my blog, you’ll know that I previously suffered from chronic anxiety. Paralysing panic attacks would drain me of all my energy and pull me into a dark place for hours on end.
Alcohol was my trigger but as a social butterfly in my mid-twenties, I found ditching booze difficult. It felt like I was having something taken away from me but when I eventually dropped the bottle, the benefits were clear. Getting sober resolved a lot of my anxiety issues but stress can still bring on this morning dread.
It’s not as bad as it used to be but being consumed by anxiety is something I never want to happen again. I genuinely feel so lucky that I could easily remove the trigger from my life. No, it wasn’t easy but I could dramatically improve my situation by just not drinking.
I fear that if I continue to let daily stresses get the better of me, my mind will fall back into this chronic anxiety, then it won’t be so simple to remove my trigger. That’s why I keep on top of my anxiety. I do this through daily meditation and natural remedies, as a preventative to avoid getting anxiety in the first place, as opposed to fighting fires.
I’d heard from some friends describe CBD oil as a “game-changer”. At first, I was sceptical. Being tee-total, I didn’t want anything to affect my sobriety. I also figured that since I used to struggle with such chronic anxiety, that CBD oil wouldn’t touch the sides.
The more I learnt about it though, the more I heard about how powerful it can be, without giving you any feelings of loss of control/feeling high. I was attracted to the fact it’s a natural remedy so I figured I’d trial introducing CBD oil into my daily routine for 30 days.
Benefits of CBD oil?
Throughout this post, I’m really focusing on talking about my anxiety and mood, because this was my driving force behind trying CBD oil for 30 days. There’s a ton of other benefits to taking CBD oil though which I’ve learnt about over the last couple of months.
• Chronic pain and inflammation
• Sleep disorders and insomnia
• Anxiety, stress, and depression
• Skin conditions
• Low appetite and poor metabolic function
• Weaker immune system
• Chronic diseases and cancer
How CBD oil affected me
Personally, I’m not struggling with some of these other issues, such as arthritis low appetite (haha! 🐷), or chronic pain. I occasionally have issues getting to sleep and I struggle with acne, so these were too benefits I was keen to keep my eye on. Both of these problems are erratic though, especially as I’ve been chopping and changing my skincare routine so much recently. That said, I tried to monitor any changes as best as I could.
I started sleeping like a LOG
I’d say 90% of the time I get to sleep within 30 minutes of getting into bed. Sure, sometimes I toss and turn, which can be really frustrating, but I wouldn’t say it’s a regular thing. My sleep improved when I went self-employed 4 years ago because I no longer had the fear of not getting enough sleep for work. A couple of weeks into putting 2 drops of CBD oil under my tongue before bed I noticed my sleep quality improved. I woke up feeling far more refreshed and way less groggy than usual. I feel like this is really helping me get into a better routine and gradually begin getting up earlier and earlier. I’m now waking up naturally around 7ish.
Period cramps started to improve
I came off contraception 18 months ago after learning about how dangerous it can be. I won’t go into detail in this post but there’s tons of really interesting reading online about why female contraception is bad. Taking control of my body was liberating and it came with a ton of benefits. It also came with a return of period cramps. As I’ve got older, these have become worse. Each month is a ritual of hot water bottles, chocolate and pain killers, and as from now on, CBD oil. I’d like to experiment with taking CBD for longer before I say for sure, but this month I felt a slight improvement in comparison to the previous month.
Anxiety felt far more manageable
Running a small business, buying a house and staying sane during a global pandemic is a challenge. Anxiety is through the roof, as we all adjust to the new normal. I’ve been doing a lot of meditation and being kind to myself, as well as incorporating CBD oil into my routine. It doesn’t act as a sudden relief, and I can’t imagine ever finding anything that would offer me that, but it does make things more manageable. I place 2 drops under my tongue before bed and take a couple of deep breaths and feel the a sense of calm wash over me.
My skin appeared clearer
I’ve struggled with oily skin and breakouts for almost a decade. In particular, I get a lot of spots on my chin, which is apparently from a hormone imbalance. I’m sure it’s a mix of things, but as I’m learning to understand my body more, I’m starting to think this might be the case. I’ve noticed my acne has been less intense than usual since I’ve been taking the CBD oil. I haven’t applied it directly to my skin and I’m not sure if this would help, but so far, ingesting it seems to be working for me. I’m going to continue with it and see how I get on because I could save myself a fortune in lotions and potions if this continues to work.
What are the potential side effects of taking CBD?
Personally, I haven’t had any negative side effects from taking 2 drops of CBD oil a day. Before taking CBD oil I did some online reading (as you probably should with most things you put on your skin or ingest!). I learn that taking too much could result in:
• Appetite and weight changes
It’s worth keeping an eye on how you’re feeling and consulting your doctor if anything doesn’t seem right.
Should you give CBD oil a go?
In a nutshell, my experience with CBD oil has been great so far. I would recommend it to anyone looking to tackle anxiety or struggling to sleep. In my opinion, you’ve got nothing to lose. There are no negatives but you may see some benefits. There’s a couple of things to know before you buy though:
• Buy from a reputable seller – There are a ton of companies selling fake essential oils online, which can be really frustrating. Based on this, I’m confident there will be a ton of people trying to cash in on selling fake CBD oil. Don’t fall victim to this, it’s not only a waste of money, but you could also be putting something damaging into your body. I got my CBD oil from a trusted retailer, CBDDIRECT2U. Get 25% off until the end of July by using discount code STRAWBERRY25.
• Use before bedtime – I read this on other blogs and I’m glad I got into a routine of taking it before bed. I popped a couple of drops onto my tongue before taking some deep breaths and falling asleep. Naturally, I associated it with a moment of calm and peacefulness, so that helped with my anxiety too.
• Avoid vaping – There are a few ways you can take CBD oil, including vaping. CBD oil itself isn’t harmful, however, vaping can still be damaging for your health. Avoid taking CBD oil this way. The quickest, easiest and least harmful way to take it, is to drop it into your mouth. There are infused flavours which mask the taste if you don’t like it – pictures below (top tip: orange is super tasty! 🍊)
Have you tried CBD oil? Have you thought about it? Let me know your thought in the comments 🌿