Luckily for those suffering, mental well-being has taken centre stage as one of the main issues affecting the day-to-day lives of a lot of people in recent decades. Businesses use mental health as a marketing concept, employers work to alleviate any ill mental health triggers from workplaces, and friends are urged to check on one another.
What other methods could be tried to help? Could cannabis provide a solution for those who live in areas where it is legalised?
How could cannabis help mental well-being?
There is no wonder drug for all kinds of illness, but many would prefer opting for natural remedies for their mental well-being rather than pharmaceuticals. While research volume has increased due to changing attitudes, growing support, and legalisation or decriminalisation, there is still a long way to go in identifying exactly how cannabis could benefit mental well-being.
So far, the findings indicate that cannabis helps stimulate the release of endorphins, which can alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression. The byproducts of cannabis, including CBD oil, have a positive relationship with serotonin receptors in the brain.
As serotonin largely controls our mood, helping improve these receptors could lead to alleviation in depression and anxiety and other symptoms of low mental well-being. Changing attitudes and growing legalisation have combined with the problem of prescription pills that are also growing in the US.
Arguably, people largely want to find natural cures for their ailments and avoid where possible taking prescribed medication. Further research is needed into serotonin and cannabis, but the preliminary findings seem to reinforce how it could help those with depression or anxiety symptoms.
How is cannabis grown?
As legalisation for either personal or medicinal use spreads to a majority of states, people have begun researching how best to grow cannabis in order to benefit from its CBD by-products. The cultivation process for cannabis depends on a multitude of factors – from the kind of cannabis strain you are planting to the method of growing the plant you opt for.
The major strains are cannabis indica, cannabis sativa, and their hybrids. What’s more, the difference in strains results in a different appearance of the plant, but more research is still needed into exactly how each strain could benefit health.
While the methods for cultivation include anything from hydroponic systems that require liquid only to coco-coir growing which utilises coconut shells, and both indoor and outdoor growing methods, some people opt for a greenhouse.
Each method will depend on how much cannabis is being grown, how quickly you want results, and how much you need to be able to control heat and light. Once grown, the essence of the plant is then cultivated and often used to produce CBD oil, which has a range of health benefits with many studies reinforcing their efficacy.
As talks around cannabis legalisation across the board – Canada is already there – combines with a real push to help eliminate some of the anxiety and depression that modern life can cause, it’s likely that more people may turn to cannabis to improve their mental health.
James Wallace has been an advocate for mental health awareness for years. He holds a master’s degree in counselling from the University of Edinburgh.