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Taking CBD Immediately May be an Effective Way to Treat PTSD

Researchers at two universities in Brazil have found preclinical evidence that "when given immediately after a fearful event, CBD can significantly reduce the conditioned fear expression and fear generalization and the relative resistance to extinction of the fear memory," according to In other words, when CBD is taken immediately after a traumatic or fearful experience, according to their research, the chance of developing post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, may decrease, substantially. This apparently works because:

Their research suggests the mechanism of action is through CBD’s known effects on increasing the endocannabinoid, anandamide, which activates CB1 and CB2 receptors to disrupt the consolidation of different fear memories.

Importantly, however, to be effective in preventing the PTSD, the CBD must be taken immediately after the traumatic event.

A  growing body of research has developed on the interplay of CBD, PTSD, anxiety, and depression over the past few years. An article on ProjectCBD, published in 2015, reported on the relationship between CBD and PTSD, and on endocannabinoid deficiency as a cause of various symptoms that are the hallmarks of PTSD.

The researchers found that people with PTSD had lower serum levels of anandamide, an endogenous cannabinoid compound, compared to those who did not show signs of PTSD after 9/11. Innate to all mammals, anandamide (our inner cannabis, so to speak) triggers the same brain receptors that are activated by THC (tetrahydrocannabinol: The High Causer) and other components of the marijuana plant.

Concentrated in the brain and central nervous system, the cannabinoid receptor known as CB-1 mediates a broad range of physiological functions, including emotional learning, stress adaption, and fear extinction. Scientists have determined that normal CB-1 receptor signaling deactivates traumatic memories and endows us with the gift of forgetting.

But skewed CB-1 signaling, due to endocannabinoid deficits (low serum levels of anandamide), results in impaired fear extinction, aversive memory consolidation, and chronic anxiety, the hallmarks of PTSD.

CBD, such as these DiamondCBD gummies and other edibles, is potentially effective at treating various medical conditions because it can be used to compensate for endocannabinoid deficiencies in the body. Much more research is undoubtedly needed, but considering that marijuana is often smoked informally as a home remedy for stress, anxiety, and even PTSD, either with or without a doctor's approval, the results so far are indeed promising.

Photo by Stijn Swinnen on Unsplash.