Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is one of the most complicated mental health issues Americans face. The disorder stems from war, childhood trauma, car accidents, abductions, and other traumatic experiences. Sufferers experience feelings of guilt and shame for having survived the terrible experiences that led to the disorder while regularly experiencing nightmares, depression, anxiety, panic, and flashbacks. The reality of living with PTSD is beyond imagination for those who have never experienced the disorder.
Most drugs for the disorder only treat one symptom and come with negative side effects. Marijuana and hemp oil may offer the treatment sufferers need to get through their daily lives without the side effects, leading more people with anxiety and PTSD to buy hemp oil. This is great news since many of the drugs on the market create even bigger problems and sometimes don’t address the effects PTSD has on daily life at all.
Living with PTSD
What is life like with PTSD? There are four main symptoms of the disorder, though individual experiences vary. They include intrusion, avoidance, negative cognitions, and arousal or reactivity. Intrusion involves reliving the devastating experiences such as bad memories, nightmares, or intrusive images. Avoidance is exactly what it sounds like: avoiding people, thoughts, situations, and feelings that serve as reminders of the trauma.
Negative cognitions and moods often manifest as feelings of detachment and negative emotions like shame, anger, numbness, distrust, and a lack of interest in activities. Hyperarousal includes hyper-vigilance, anxiety, aggression, and excessive response when startled. Living with PTSD is living with trauma. Experiences others have are heightened by the past and each day has its own set of trials and tribulations due to the anxiety and pain that come from these traumas and memories.
The Good News in Hemp and Hemp Oil
The effects of hemp for PTSD have backing from recent studies. Previously, opiates were readily prescribed, particularly to veterans, for the symptoms of PTSD. Opiates are not only unhelpful for the effects of PTSD but they’re downright dangerous. The opiate epidemic in America is at an all-time high and with 8% of having some form of PTSD, that can be a staggering fact. It is estimated that 70% of all Americans will or have experienced at least one traumatic event in their lifetime. Throwing opiates at these experiences will only worsen the problem with opiates in America.
THC has been championed as a potential PTSD treatment. It has many positive effects on the disorder but there is a lot of limitation associated with it. For one, many sufferers can’t have the mind-altering effects during their normal lives. Even more problematic, at least 19 states don’t have any type of access to marijuana. Hemp extract from hemp, however, is legal in nearly all states. You can even buy hemp oil online easily and affordably.
Unlike THC, hemp oil has no psychoactive effects and there is no THC-induced paranoia or anxiety, which has been an issue from some treating their PTSD with marijuana. Those suffering from the disorder may express lower levels of anandamide. The molecule, which is known to promote feelings of happiness, is released when we exercise and is decreased during times of depression. Studies have suggested that hemp oil can work as a replacement for the molecule since they have very similar chemical and structural properties.
Benefits of Hemp Oil
Research has backed a lot of the findings for hemp treatment, but what exactly can someone suffering from PTSD expect from hemp oil? After all, the treatment isn’t a cure and mental health requires a lot of work. There is no pill or resource that will take away or cure PTSD, but hemp products can help manage a lot of the symptoms.
Hemp oil can target chemical responses such as the ones that create stress, anxiety, and depression. This can mean better natural sleep hormones, regulated stress hormones, fewer flashbacks, improved extinction learning or reprogramming the brain’s response to stressful situations, and elevated moods.
How long hemp oil takes to work depends on the individual person. As a guideline, it typically takes between 20 and 40 minutes to kick in. It may be difficult to really feel it kick in since, unlike THC, there aren’t any effects that feel like a “high.” However, users do begin to feel more relaxed around half an hour after ingesting hemp extract.