Health consists of behavioral, social, mental, and physical well-being, and these factors are equally significant. Despite this, there has always been less attention to psychic health, and only in recent years have interest in the matter increased. Once considered taboo with images of crazy houses and poorly portrayed in movies, mental health has become an entire study area, and the public widely accepts it. Moreover, CBD and THC have become prevalent treatment methods in recent years. The expansion of product options, combined with legislative changes, has enabled their popularity to increase even further. CBD and THC show a lot of promise in facilitating treatment, especially for mental health disorders, though comprehending the essence of these products is crucial for proper treatment.
Pros and Cons of CBD and THS Usage
CBD oil is a hemp extract used in medicine, cosmetology, and dietary supplements. It does not contain tetrahydrocannabinol, the substance responsible for the psycho-stimulating activity of cannabis. Therefore, CBD does not produce side effects, hallucinations, euphoria, and other narcotic phenomena. Cannabidiol inside the product has a refreshing, toning, and tonic effect on the body, helps to combat stress, and increases vitality and mental and physical performance.
The drug’s effect comes quickly enough with regular intake and lasts for a long time. The remedy has a mild sedative effect, relieves anxiety, stress, and aggression levels, and helps with various disorders, including obsessive-compulsive (Fletcher et al., 2018). All of this has a positive impact on the emotional state and activity of the brain and is a plus to use as a therapeutic agent. There are no dangerous or pronounced minuses to taking CBD, but another substance, THC, which is also used for medicinal purposes, is more tricky.
THC is a chemical compound found in marijuana and is primarily responsible for its effects on the human CNS. It stimulates cannabinoid receptors in the brain, activating other chemical reactions that underlie the psychological and physiological effects of marijuana, both positive and negative (Fletcher et al., 2018). THC has a psychoactive effect – it causes relaxation but is associated with mental dysfunction, hallucinations, and euphoria. THC cannot be used while driving a car or operating complex mechanisms, and, in general, interaction with society under the influence of tetrahydrocannabinol is a risky thing.
Mental Health Benefits
CBD shows promising results for all mood disorders that afflict individuals. The substance stimulates brain receptors like CB1 and CB2 for serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood and social behavior (Hazekamp, 2018). It has anti-anxiety effects, making it practical for other conditions, such as social anxiety disorder, generalized anxiety disease, panic, and obsessive-compulsive disorders. CBD is widely considered an effective measure for reducing the severity of the bipolar disorder, which helps those trying to maintain a stable mood throughout the day (Hazekamp, 2018). It regulates brain activity and increases levels of the hormone melatonin, which is possible for short-term treatment of insomnia.
Although CBD and THC have distinct effects on the body, both cannabinoids can help relax the body and calm the mind. These cannabinoids increase the secretion of serotonin and induce a feeling of euphoria. In addition, THC, regardless of the dose, affects the amygdala, one of the oldest structures in the brain responsible for fear and stress responses (Hazekamp, 2018). For this reason, mental health benefits are usually manifested at low doses when activation of the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex suppresses the amygdala. As a consequence, THC, when consumed in moderation, helps to relax, improves sleep, accelerates the recovery of the body after physical and emotional overloads, reduces anxiety, and helps to get rid of unpleasant memories of pain and fear.
However, until now, the evaluation of the results of using the substance to eliminate psychiatric symptoms and treat psychiatric disorders cannot be considered unequivocal and definitive. This is partly because this drug can affect the brain and nervous system, depending on the dose and inborn genetic characteristics. Much more is known about the mental health risks associated with THC use than its benefits, regardless of recreational or medical use.
Potential Side Effects
The most frequent side effects of CBD are diarrhea and weight loss. Diarrhea can be attributed to the fact that some people’s bodies have to adjust to the new drug in the system. Weight loss is feasible because CBD works contrarily and functions more as an appetite suppressant rather than a stimulant (Reynolds et al., 2020). Those who begin CBD for the first span frequently note modifications in their hunger and eating patterns as they get habituated to the unknown substance.
Substitute drugs in the body usually induce transient side effects, although most individuals do not report side outcomes from CBD. Recent studies demonstrate that while overall cognitive abilities remain the same, long-term use of THC can cause subtle but persistent executive function impairments (Reynolds et al., 2020). Risks include loss of concentration, associative thinking, and inability to analyze large amounts of information. Since CB1 receptors are also located in the cerebellum and basal ganglia, the effects of THC can also result in coordination and motor retardation (Piermarini & Viswanath, 2019). However, these risks can be avoided by consuming the proper amount of the substance after a doctor’s prescription.
Nowadays, mindsets toward mental soundness have altered dramatically, individuals are becoming conscious of specific cognitive health matters and are stepping out of their suspicion zones to analyze and treat these illnesses. THC and CBD are substances that can be operated as a safe therapeutic approach while bypassing medicines that can be addictive. Although CBD and THC have diverse impacts on health, both cannabinoids can help comfort the body and calm the mind.
Fletcher, T. L., Hogan, J. B., Keegan, F., Davis, M. L., Wassef, M., Day, S., & Lindsay, J. A. (2018). Recent advances in delivering mental health treatment via video to home. Current psychiatry reports, 20(8), 1-9.
Hazekamp, A. (2018). The trouble with CBD oil. Medical cannabis and cannabinoids, 1(1), 65-72.
Piermarini, C., & Viswanath, O. (2019). CBD as the New Medicine in the Pain Provider’s Armamentarium. Pain and Therapy, 8(1), 157-158.
Reynolds, K., Medved, M., Mackenzie, C. S., Funk, L. M., & Koven, L. (2020). Older adults’ narratives of seeking mental health treatment: Making sense of mental health challenges and “muddling through” to care. Qualitative Health Research, 30(10), 1517-1528.