As research grows around the relationship between cannabis and anxiety, marijuana is proving to be an all natural remedy that can help ease certain types of anxiety with specific types of cannabis strains. Anxiety, stress and panic attacks can come in many shapes and forms, effecting people differently depending on the individual and their specific condition. Traditionally those who are suffering from anxiety, depression or panic attacks are prescribed antidepressants from their doctor, with some using therapy sessions to also aid in their recovery. With the legalization of cannabis in full force, many are turning to alternative methods such as THC and CBD cannabis strains to help manager their anxiety. Here we’ll look into the best strains for anxiety, best Indica strains for anxiety and the best strains for anxiety and panic attacks.
Before We Get Started
Anxiety is different between each individual, some may have experience anxiety which can lead to debilitating panic attacks while others might have a low level anxiety that causes acne or nausea. Anxiety can come in many shapes and forms, with some being manageable while others a form of medication or therapy is needed. For many who would prefer not to take potentially harmful medications, there are many marijuana strains for anxiety that can help alleviate certain anxiety symptoms. But before we jump into the best strains for anxiety you should get to know what the specific cannabinoids sound best for your condition. Whether you’re looking for the best indica strains for anxiety or the best strain for anxiety and panic attacks, do your homework and sample various strains to know what best suits your needs.
THC VS CBD
THC strains are the most common type of cannabis strain available. THC produces the euphoric feeling of being “high” that is commonly associated with smoking cannabis. When consuming THC many people get a relaxing laid back feeling where you can sit back, relax and feel happy. But for others, THC can actually do the opposite and trigger a wave of anxiety, therefore enhancing anxiety. This can be especially true in cannabis strains with high levels of THC.
When looking for marijuana strains for anxiety, CBD strains however are known to interact with various avenues in the brain to reduce or stop anxiety in its tracks. CBD strains are usually recommended when dealing with anxiety and can be a perfect place to start when trying to find the best strain for anxiety and panic attacks. CBD provides very little euphoric attributes which is what increase anxiety in some people who smoke THC. CBD is great for those who have lower experience with cannabis and want to try to relieve their anxiety.
What the science says
THC is an active compound in marijuana that is what gives cannabis users the effect of feeling “high”. When consumed THC binds with certain receptors in the brain, similar to CBD but different receptors. THC binds with receptors that can be found in the amygdala, which has a primary function for processing fear. When you become scared, your amygdala becomes alert and triggers our fight and flight response in the hypothalamus. When this happens the body responds with a heightened heart rate and respiration which can be a trigger for anxiety. THC has also been known to over stimulate neural pathways leading to heightened senses causing anxiety and paranoia.
Studies on CBD are in the beginning stages, but so far the research looks promising. When taking CBD it has shown to have anti-anxiety effects on our brain due to the fact it directly interacts with our neurotransmitters like serotonin and anandamide. When CBD is consumed it blocks the enzyme that degrade anandamide in our body. Anandamide is a fatty acid, hormone and neurotransmitter which acts as a natural anxiety reducer in the body’s nervous system. When CBD blocks the enzymes it helps our body to fight anxiety in a natural way, while also helping with things like sleep and decreasing pain. CBD also binds an important serotonin receptor known as 5-HTIA. 5-HTIA is often the receptor that is targeted when people take antidepressants that target anxiety. CBD helps boost the signals to specific serotonin receptors such as 5-HTIA which helps alter moods faster, similar to some antidepressants but without the side-effects.
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The Mysterious World of Terpenes
Terpenes are found in the same glands that produce both CBD and THC, they are aromatic oils that provide cannabis with their distinct colors and flavors. With over 100 different terpenes discovered to date, there is a suggestion that terpenes can influence the effects you get when you smoke cannabis. It is suspected that terpenes can promote certain things like relaxation, stress relief, focus and much more, certain terpenes can possibly change when interacting with other compounds which is known as the entourage effect. Research has shown that there are three strong candidates of terpenes that can relieve stress.
Some studies suggest that limonene has the potential as an anti depressant while boosting both serotonin and dopamine in the brain. Limonene can be found in certain rich strains, it provides a citrus terpene which can remind some of tart lemons. It has been known to provide a calming sensation along with a solid euphoria.
Like all terpenes, myrcene can be found in an assortment of non cannabis plants, from wild thyme to ylang-ylang. It is one of the most common terpenes found in cannabis strains, offering sedative and anti-inflammatory effects, making it a hit for those looking shed some anxiety.
Contains pain-relieving properties that combine with the brains CB2 receptors in our endocannabinoid system. Found in cloves and black pepper strains rich with lessen the effects of things like pain.
Best Strains For Anxiety
Now that you better understand THC, CBD and Terpenes, let’s dive into what the best strains for anxiety and how you can start to blow away all your anxious feelings.
This sativa-dominant hybrid strain is known for having a high percentage of CBD, with CBD levels above 10% and THC levels on the lower end around 4-6%. Harlequin contains both the terpene myrcene and CBD, helping to reduce anxiety and provide relaxation without the heavy sedation of THC. Commonly chosen by those with anxiety due to it’s 5:2 CBD to THC ratio.
This is one of the highest CBD strains available. The ratio of CBD to THC is 20:1 which CBD levels reaching as high as 20%. Due to the low levels of THC and the high levels of CBD, ACDC is popular choice for those looking to relieve their anxiety levels, and feel both relaxed and happy.
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This strain is packed with mood enhancing abilities, due in large part to the fact it contains the three anti-anxiety oils: myrcene, limonene and caryophyllene. This powerful anti-anxiety strain provides mood boosting qualities along with a tranquility like feeling, making it one of the most sought after anti-anxiety strains available.
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An OG strain that has been around for a long time, White Widow contains both caryophyllene and myrcene at high levels making it a go-to for those looking to relieve stress and anxiety. With a big boost of euphoria, White Widow helps stop stressful thoughts in its track.
Known for getting rid of mental burdens, this is a common strain for those looking to help with mental relief and feeling relaxed. Packed with the terpene caryophyllene, it will stop anxiety and built up stress in its track.
It’s in our name, Haute is all about your Health. Can’t find what you’re looking for? Our industry experts can help find the best marijuana strains for anxiety and are available 24/7. Simply drop them an email on our Contact Page and they will get back to you will everything you need. When dealing with anxiety it’s best to buy a variety of different strains and find out what works best for you and how you react when consuming it. We have hundreds of cannabis strains, shatter, vape pens, edibles and much more. If you’re looking to try a few strains we recommend singing up for Haute.Health where you will get 20% off your first order and $20 in credits for becoming a member.