How Cannabis can help in the healing process of PTSD

PTSD can be a debilitating condition that makes the individual unable to function in their daily life. This is due to how it manifests – nightmares, overwhelming and unpredictable emotions, self-destructive habits, hyper vigilance, social anxiety and more. PTSD can be a very serious condition that could lead to suicide in some cases. There have been a number of studies conducted on what helps PTSD and although they are non-conclusive, there is strong anecdotal evidence that shows that Cannabis helps greatly with PTSD.

Two recent studies bring forth the relationship between Cannabis and PTSD. Firstly, they say how Cannabis reduces activity in the amygdala, the part of the brain that when overactive can over emphasize the presence of a threat. Another study pointed to how Cannabis plays a role in eradicating the charge behind traumatic memories. Cannabis is shown to reduce heightened anxiety in threatening situations and this may be very beneficial to those struggling with PTSD.

THC lowers threat related activity in the amygdala and this leads to significantly lowered fear and anxiety in most situations. The authors conclude that the research suggests “that THC modulates threat-related processing in trauma-exposed individuals with PTSD” and add that the drug “may prove advantageous as a pharmacological approach to treating stress- and trauma-related psychopathology.”

Life can become very hard for those suffering with PTSD. For example, if a veteran has encountered a traumatic experience near a bridge, this neutral object can then trigger similar feelings even when there is no threat. When it comes to PTSD the fear is mostly irrational and therefore requires external intervention to help diminish the symptoms. Usually these fears subside in 6 months or so but if it becomes chronic then immediate help is required. “Extinction learning” helps override a triggering object like the bridge and render it neutral again. But with PTSD extinction learning does not take place and old memories continue to cause problems. This is where Cannabis helps again. It stimulates CB1 – a receptor in the endocannabinoid system which helps with the extinction learning process. THC combined with CBD helps greatly, both immediately and in the long run.

So if you know someone or are someone who struggles with PTSD, consult our doctors and get started on your journey to healing. There is hope and there is a way for you to get better. And guess what, it’s completely natural too!

 

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