Overcoming Stress with the Help of Marijuana

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Garry Stewart
Written By Steve Brandon

July 11, 2024

cover image of a stressed man with the title 'Overcoming Stress with the Help of Marijuana' and relevant visual elements

Feeling overwhelmed by stress? You’re not alone. Many people in the United States, due to their sedentary lifestyle, are suffering from anxiety, and they are finding relief with marijuana as a natural remedy. Medical marijuana is often used to reduce stress and promote relaxation by acting on the ECS system of our body. Even the studies support this, but it’s important to note that the proper doses of marijuana are more effective.

In this article, we’ll explore how cannabis can help relieve stress and how to incorporate it into your wellness routine.

What do the studies have to say?

A team from Chicago investigated the stress-relieving properties of cannabis at different doses. They studied 42 healthy volunteers aged 18 to 40, all with some cannabis experience but not daily users. Participants were divided into three groups:

  • Low-dose: 7.5 mg THC
  • Moderate-dose: 12.5 mg THC
  • Placebo: 0.0 mg THC
participants divided into 3 groups: group 1 receiving 7.5mg THC, group 2 receiving 12.5mg THC, and group 3 receiving a placebo with 0.0mg THC, undergoing stress assessment
Prof. Childs explained that these doses are equivalent to a few puffs of a cannabis cigarette to avoid adverse effects from higher doses. The study was double-anonymized.

Testing Conditions:

Participants attended two four-hour sessions at the University of Chicago, five days apart. At each session, they took a few puffs and then relaxed for two hours to allow the THC to be absorbed into the bloodstream.

Task 1 (Stress-Inducing Tasks):

  • Preparation: Participants spent 10 minutes preparing for a mock job interview.
  • Mock Job Interview: A five-minute interview with lab assistants who did not provide feedback, while a video display showed their performance.
  • Cognitive Task: Participants were instructed to count backward from a five-digit number by subtracting 13 for five minutes.

Task 2 (Non-Stressful Tasks):

  • Participants talked about a favorite book or movie for five minutes with lab assistants.
  • Participants played solitaire for five minutes.

Participant’s stress levels and feelings about the tasks were recorded before, during, and after each activity. Blood pressure, heart rate, and cortisol (a key stress hormone) were measured at intervals.

image showing study results: participants in group 1, receiving 7.5mg THC, experience effective stress reduction and appear happiest; group 2, receiving 12.5mg THC, shows worsened stress levels; group 3, receiving a placebo (0.0mg THC), shows slight improvement in stress management with a mild smile

Results:

Low-Dose Group (7.5 mg THC):

  • Reported less stress after the public-speaking task compared to the placebo group.
  • Stress levels reduced faster after the task.

Moderate-Dose Group (12.5 mg THC):

  • Reported higher negative mood before and throughout the tasks.
  • Rated the tasks as more challenging and threatening.
  • Showed more pauses during the mock interview.

Placebo Group:

  • Showed no significant reduction in stress levels after the public-speaking task.
  • Reported more stable mood and stress levels compared to the moderate-dose group.

Physiological Measures: No significant differences in blood pressure, heart rate, or cortisol levels were observed among all three groups.

The study provides clinical evidence that low doses of THC can reduce stress, supporting the common use of cannabis for stress relief. However, higher doses may increase anxiety and negative mood, highlighting the importance of dosage.

What are the Benefits of Cannabis on Stress and Anxiety?

THC and CBD are the two active components of cannabis, and they affect the human body through the endocannabinoid system to keep one relaxed and have low-stress levels. Here are some key benefits of marijuana for stress relief.

man with arms wide open, cannabis medicine above with cannabis leaves falling towards him, looking enlightened; 5 benefits listed: reduces anxiety, improves sleep, enhances mood, relieves pain, promotes relaxation
  1. Reduces Anxiety: One of the symptoms that patients suffering from stress can manage is anxiety, and cannabis helps ease anxiety.
  2. Improves Sleep: Sleeping reduces stress, as it is recommended that a good quality of sleep for the body is one of the best ways to restore mental health. Depending on the type of cannabis consumed, particularly the one with CBD for stress, it helps improve the sleep cycle and hence improves stress.
  3. Enhances Mood: Cannabis can provide the desired effect of a ‘high,’ leading to positivity from stress. These positive feelings can assist you in combating stressful events in your life.
  4. Relieves Pain: Chronic pain is a significant source of stress. Cannabis has analgesic properties that can help reduce pain, thereby lowering stress levels associated with persistent discomfort.
  5. Promotes Relaxation: Marijuana’s calming effects can help you unwind and relax. This relaxation can reduce stress’s physical and mental symptoms, providing a sense of calm and well-being.

How to Use Marijuana for Stress Relief ?

Choosing the Right Strain

As mentioned earlier, not all marijuana strains are the same. Some strains are good for reducing stress as compared to others. Here are a few recommendations: Here are a few recommendations:

  • Indica Strains: These are commonly used for relaxation. If you are in the mood to lay back and watch a movie or TV, this is the best strain to use.
  • Hybrid Strains: These are medium acting strains that have good properties of both Indica and Sativa cannabis strains.
  • CBD-Rich Strains: These strains contain a higher amount of CBD and a lower amount of THC, which naturally reduces stress.

Methods of Consumption

The ways of administration of marijuana vary according to the nature of the condition and the kind of outcome expected. Here’s how marijuana can be consumed and its benefits for stress relief:

ways to consume marijuana collage: smoking marijuana, edible gummies, oil ingestion, and cream application
  • Smoking and Vaping: It gives quick and instant relief from stress as smoking or vaping medical marijuana enables cannabinoids to be taken into the body’s bloodstream.
  • Edibles: In terms of feeling high, edibles give a more long-lasting high. Orally administered CBD first passes through the gastrointestinal tract, this makes the effect to be slower but longer lasting. This makes cannabis-infused foods, also known as edibles, a perfect approach to managing stress in that it is long-lasting.
  • Tinctures and Oils: Tinctures and oils administered under the tongue are more or less absorbed into the bloodstream via the sublingual gland. Compared to edibles, this can give faster relief and certainly help one calibrate the dosage. They have different concentrations, thus giving the user the best way to control the dosage depending on their stress level.
  • Topicals: Topicals are administered on the skin and are helpful in treating localized inflammation and pain. They can also help calm down the body when it is under stress.

These methods of consuming marijuana can be tailored to individual preferences and needs, providing versatile options for managing stress.

How MyMMJDoctor.com Can Help?

Taking the first step towards using marijuana for stress relief is easy with MyMMJDoctor. Here’s how you can get started:

  • Visit MyMMJDoctor.com: Access the website and learn about the benefits of medical marijuana.
  • Book a Video Consultation: Schedule an appointment with a licensed medical marijuana physician.
  • Get Your Recommendation: During the video consultation, the physician will evaluate your condition and, if appropriate, provide a marijuana recommendation.
  • Start Your Treatment: Use the recommendation to obtain marijuana from a legal dispensary and begin your stress relief journey.
a hand reaching out with a recommendation letter asking 'do you need cannabis for your condition?' with a 'get recommendation online' button

Legal Considerations and Safety

Before using marijuana for stress relief, it’s essential to be aware of the legal considerations. Cannabis laws vary by state, so make sure to check the regulations in your area. Additionally, start with a low dose and gradually increase to find what works best for you. Always consult with a healthcare professional, especially if you have underlying health conditions.

Conclusion

Stress can take a toll on your mental and physical health, but marijuana offers a natural solution to help manage it. Whether you’re dealing with anxiety, sleep issues, or chronic pain, cannabis can provide relief and promote relaxation. Remember to choose the correct strain and method of consumption, and consult with a healthcare professional to ensure safe and effective use. Embrace the benefits of marijuana and take the first step towards a stress-free life.

FAQs:

Q. Does weed help with stress?
Yes, as marijuana consists of compounds like THC and CBD, which, according to studies, help in calming the mind and, in turn, reduce stress.

Q. Is indica good for anxiety and stress?
Yes, The Indica strains are beneficial for anxiety and stress because of their relaxing and calming effects.

Q. What strain of weed is good for anxiety and stress?
Strains that are commonly recommended for anxiety and stress include:

  1. Indica
  2. High-CBD
  3. Sativa

These strains are known for their relaxing and calming effects.

Q. Is sativa or indica better for anxiety and stress?
Indica is generally considered better for anxiety and stress due to its relaxing and calming effects. Sativa strains can sometimes increase anxiety in some individuals.

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