Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can be hard to treat. PTSD is a mental health condition triggered by a terrifying event, either by witnessing it or experiencing it. Recurring nightmares, severe anxiety, and flashbacks are key symptoms of this condition, all of which can cause significant problems in all aspects of your life, from the workplace to your intimate relationships.
Doctors usually use psychotherapy and antidepressant medications to treat PTSD. However, these treatments don’t always work.
Fortunately, as more studies come out about the positive effects of cannabis on people with PTSD, doctors are increasingly looking towards medical cannabis as an effective way to treat PTSD.
How Can Cannabis Treat PTSD?
Recent studies have shown that cannabis treatment can alleviate many PTSD symptoms, such as panic attacks and overwhelming emotions. Specifically, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)–the psychoactive compound in cannabis that gets you high–can help reduce feelings of anxiety and depression.
According to this study, cannabis treatment can impact the amygdala response of people with trauma-related anxiety such as PTSD. Compared to the control group, those exposed to THC – which is the psychoactive compound in cannabis that gets you high – had lowered threat-related amygdala reactivity.
This means that participants exposed to THC were measurably less anxious and fearful in frightening situations. Since some participants exposed to THC had PTSD, this suggests that cannabis treatment can alleviate at least some PTSD symptoms.
A second study further suggested that cannabis treatment can help lower the intensity of emotions associated with the traumatic memories that caused their PTSD.
Recommended Cannabis Strains for PTS
There are a few strains of cannabis that you can include in your PTSD recovery process.
- Sativa: This is a strain that reduces aggressive behavior, improves focus, relieves chronic pain, and heightens your creativity.
- Blue Dream: One of the most popular strains around, this is a Sativa-dominant hybrid that calms and energizes you.
- Dakini Kush: If you have anxiety and pain, this can relax your body, reduce pain, and elevate your mood.
- Pineapple Express: This is a hybrid strain that has a much higher THC content (around 27%) than most cannabis strains and will give you the energy you need for socializing.
- OG Kush: Possibly a mysterious blend of Hindu Kush and Chemdawg, this strain is ideal for people with PTSD since it gives a euphoric feeling and calms your entire body.
Final Thoughts about Cannabis and PTSD
While cannabis is not a cure-all treatment for PTSD, recent research has shown that cannabis treatment can alleviate many symptoms of PTSD, especially anxiety and depression.
While the scars left by PTSD may never fully fade away, cannabis treatment for PTSD can provide comfort when little else does. However, before you decide to use cannabis to treat your PTSD symptoms, you should consult a medical professional for advice, since some strains of cannabis high in THC may increase your anxiety levels.