Why You Should Switch from Antidepressants to CBD Oil
Please be aware that the information in this article is solely for educational purposes and isn’t a substitute for medical advice from a qualified doctor. Always seek medical advice from a qualified physician and always consult your doctor before altering prescribed medications.
CBD vs. Antidepressants
As legislation evolves and the world is ready to embrace the vast benefits of alternative medicine, we’re coming into a new era of health and beauty products that contain cannabidiol (CBD). Antidepressants are often prescribed as the first line of defense for mental disorders, despite them being decades old, there isn’t much evidence to support that they work to combat depression and often come with extreme side effects.
What's CBD Oil?
CBD derives from cannabis plants such as hemp or marijuana. The cannabidiol is then mixed with oil to produce CBD oil. Unlike smoking marijuana and many products that contain marijuana, CBD serves as a relaxant to the body and mind. THC is the component in cannabis that causes a psychoactive effect and creates the “high” that stimulates the mind and body. In CBD oil, the THC component isn’t present, making it the perfect remedy for ailments such as anxiety, epilepsy, depression, joint pain, muscular pain and many others.
What Are Antidepressants?
The term antidepressant is pretty common nowadays for people suffering from depression and anxiety. The medications used to treat different types of mental health disorders come in various classes of FDA approved medications such as SSRI’s, SNRI’s, tricyclic anti-depressants and several others.
Antidepressants are designed to improve chemical imbalances within the brain by increasing certain amounts of dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine, in an attempt to improve the user’s mood. Despite antidepressants coming a long way over the years, they don’t essentially help everyone that uses them. Furthermore, there can be serious side effects of using antidepressants.
Can You Combine CBD Oil with Antidepressants?
Antidepressant users that aren’t finding the full benefit of their medication will often turn to alternative medicines and forms of therapy. Many people that suffer from anxiety and depression will often try out new medications and CBD is a safe, effective alternative that can be bought in stores.
SSRI’s are commonly used as the first line of medication for individuals suffering from depression. In comparison to other treatments, they offer a lot of relief and have few side effects, when compared to other treatments. CBD has the potential to interact adversely with SSRI’s and many other antidepressants, making side effects more severe within the user.
Despite the cases of patients being unable to use CBD, in-depth research has found that many people reported using CBD oil in conjunction with their SSRI medication to reduce their symptoms of depression, without making the side effects more detrimental.
CBD on the Body
The liver contains many enzymes that help to break down or alter substances that we ingest and then eventually the enzymes prepare the substances for elimination from the body. The CYP450 pathway is located in the liver and is home to many enzymes such as CYP3A4 and CYP2D6 that are responsible for the metabolism of substances and medications.
Studies have found that introducing CBD oil into the body has an inhibitory effect on the enzymes CYP3A4 and CYP2D6. Many medications are quickly metabolized by the CYP2D6 enzyme, making the medication less effective. However, by adding CBD oil into the body, patients are able to slow down their medication metabolism rate and significantly increase the amount of medication that’s circulating through their body. Further studies need to be done to conclude whether this bodily interaction happens because of the dosage of CBD oil or the method of ingestion.
Conclusive CBD Research
The use of CBD products is still relatively new and the research is still limited. However, the research into the healing effects of CBD for anxiety and expression are expanding as the natural substance becomes more popular. During a small public speaking test, CBD was used to suppress the effects of anxiety and proved to be a great success, in comparison to the public speakers that were given a placebo. This shows the power of CBD and how it can be used to tackle anxiety in people that experience it within social situations.
Despite the majority of CBD research being done on animals, studies have proven the effects of CBD on the endocannabinoid system to reduce the symptoms of pain. Furthermore, the limited studies into CBD and the treatment of depression have found that CBD activity within the brain has a beneficial impact on depression.
Can I Use CBD Instead of Antidepressants?
Always check with your physician before making any drastic changes to your antidepressant regimen. After discussing your options, it may be more beneficial for you to use CBD without antidepressants. Here are a few things to consider before making the switch.
Preparation Is Key
If you’re opting to take CBD oil instead of antidepressants, it’s important to understand your current medication. Please speak to your physician about lowering your dosage and slowly removing these medications, as opposed to cutting them off in one go. If you take multiple antidepressant medications, mitigating withdrawal symptoms can be achieved by slowly decreasing one medication at a time. While the process may seem slow, it will ensure a smoother transition into using CBD oil to treat your depression.
The Dangerous Effects of Immediately Stopping Your SSRI's
It can be dangerous and detrimental to your health to go cold turkey on your SSRI antidepressant medication. By immediately ceasing all medication, you can put yourself at risk of withdrawal symptoms and making the depression symptoms worse. The withdrawal symptoms of SSRI medication can cause disturbances in sleep, mood swings, stomach upsets and flu-like symptoms. After taking SSRI medication, your body becomes used to its effects, that’s why it’s important to gently ease the medication away to cope with the body’s dependency on it.
Finding the Right CBD Oil Dosage for Me
It’s difficult to gauge the right dosage of CBD, without a little trial and error. It’s also important to note that your body may respond better to certain brands, as opposed to others. The doses may also need to be tweaked and adjusted as the antidepressants leave your body. It’s important to source your CBD oil from a reputable source and to find a knowledgeable supplier that can help you choose the best dose for you.
Are There Any Risks of Replacing Antidepressants with CBD Oil?
CBD is a natural product that comes from plants, however, there are drawbacks in comparison to antidepressants. The lack of regulation on websites and in countries that legally sell CBD make it difficult to control the quality of finished products. Furthermore, it’s difficult to test the products for the current dosage because of the lack of regulation around CBD oil and other CBD products.
The research on CBD products is still a little inconclusive. While genuine research has proven the health benefits, there’s not enough supporting evidence to support that CBD oil improves everyone’s mental health over the use of antidepressants. This can make it difficult to find suppliers that understand the vast benefits of CBD and how to take it appropriately.
As we broke down earlier, it can be detrimental on the body to completely stop antidepressants. The withdrawal symptoms can often make the effects of anxiety and depression worse so it’s very important to plan ahead and seek guidance from a qualified physician.
Why You Should Try CBD Oil
You may have suffered from depression and anxiety for some time and struggled to find a suitable solution that helped or doesn’t have side effects. With the assistance and guidance of a knowledgeable CBD supplier, you can potentially reduce the symptoms of anxiety and depression, while eradicating the need for antidepressants.
It’s important to create a plan before making any decisions to take CBD oil, instead of antidepressants. Seeking the assistance of a qualified physician or your doctor is an important step to reduce your antidepressant dosage and minimize the risk of gaining withdrawal symptoms.