PTSD

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is considered the fourth most common psychiatric disorder, affecting 10% of all men and 18% of women. [30] The incidence is higher in “at risk” populations such as veterans, the underprivileged, and women. It takes a significant toll on the physical, mental, and emotional health of patients and is difficult to treat, with 1 out of 3 people who develop PTSD never recovering. [64]

PTSD and Your Endocannabinoid System

The endocannabinoid system maintains homeostasis in the brain, and PTSD appears to be related to an imbalance in the ECS. [64]

The brains of individuals with PTSD have 20% more CB1 receptor availability as well as lower levels of anandamide (our own natural form of THC). This imbalance may be part of the root mechanism of PTSD. [43]

Adults with PTSD are three times more likely to be dependent on cannabis than those without PTSD. This could be self-medication. [64]

Endocannabinoids are crucial for the extinction of aversive memories. [34] CB1 receptors are distributed throughout the brain, and appear in abundance through the areas of the brain implicated in fear, memory, and PTSD. [31, 40]

 

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Medical Cannabis Guidelines

Many PTSD patients have benefited from cannabis medicine, however it is important to be aware that the intoxicating effects of THC can exacerbate symptoms. CBD can help mitigate effects of THC. Finding the right dose and medicine in a safe, controlled environment is crucial.

DOSING STRATEGY

Start low and go slow, particularly when managing anxiety or panic with THC. Microdosing may be beneficial for some patients.

 

Desired Effect

Memory Extinction

Active Compound

THC [43], CBD [17]

Delivery Method

Pulmonary, Sublingual
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Desired Effect

Anxiety Relief

Active Compound

CBD [15, 16, 60], THC Low Dose [31, 43, 60]
Linalool [53], Limonene [53]

Delivery Method

Pulmonary, Sublingual, Oral
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Desired Effect

Depression Relief

Active Compound

THC [8, 31, 68], CBD [31, 68]

Delivery Method

Pulmonary, Sublingual, Oral
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Desired Effect

Sleep--Falling Asleep

Active Compound

THC:CBD Balance [6], THC [6, 64]

Delivery Method

Pulmonary, Sublingual
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Desired Effect

Sleep--Staying Asleep

Active Compound

THC:CBD Balance [52], Myrcene [53],
Linalool [53], Nerolidol [53],
CBD Low Dose (Based on clinical observation)

Delivery Method

Pulmonary, Sublingual, Oral
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Desired Effect

Stress Relief/Mood Enhancement

Active Compound

THC (Based on clinical observation)

Delivery Method

Pulmonary, Sublingual, Oral
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Desired Effect

Panic Relief

Active Compound

CBD:THC 2:1 Ratio
(Based on clinical observation)

Delivery Method

Pulmonary, Sublingual
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Desired Effect

Decrease Need for Rx Medication--PTSD

Active Compound

THC, CBD (Based on clinical observation)

Delivery Method

Pulmonary, Sublingual
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