If you have a lack of interest in activities you used to love or been feeling sadness you can’t seem to shake, you could be suffering from depression.
Depression is an umbrella term for more specific types such as persistent depressive disorder, postpartum depression, bipolar disorder, psychotic depression, season affective disorder, and manic-depressive disorder.
More than 300 million people of all ages suffer from depression across the globe, according to the World Health Organization. Depression is the leading cause of disability and is a significant contributor to the global burden of disease.
Symptoms of Depression
As mentioned above, feelings of emptiness or sadness that stay longer than a few weeks may be a sign of depression. Other emotional symptoms include the following:
- Anxiety and restlessness
- Loss of interest in favourite activities
- Extreme irritability over minor things
- Fixation on things that have gone wrong or on the past
- Anger management issues
- Thoughts of suicide or death
Some physical symptoms include the following:
- Unexplained aches and pains
- Debilitating fatigue
- Difficulty making decisions or concentrating
- Increased or decreased appetite
- Insomnia or sleeping too much
- Weight loss or weight gain
In children, depression may cause them to refuse to go to school and cling to their parents. Teens may be to avoid activities and friends and become excessively negative.
Depression can be a little more difficult to spot in older adults. Common signs may include withdrawal, sleep problems, or unexplained memory loss.
Causes and Risk Factors
There is no sole cause of depression. Genetics, hormones, and brain chemistry may all play a role. Other risk factors for depression may include the following:
- Alcohol or drug abuse
- Chronic diseases like cancer, multiple sclerosis, or diabetes
- Certain prescription medications
- Low self-esteem
- Family history of depression
- Sexual or physical abuse
- Post-traumatic stress disorder, borderline personality disorder, anxiety disorder
If depression goes untreated, it can lead to serious complications that could put your life in danger. Luckily, most people can be treated.
Cannabis and Depression
Cannabis oil is a quicker alternative to antidepressants. It triggers the endocannabinoid system and accelerates the growth and development of nervous tissue with little to no side effects. Treating depression with cannabis oil is a natural remedy that provides patients peace of mind. It also helps to battle stress by relieving anxiety, combating insomnia, inducing hunger, providing energy and focus, and enhancing mood.
A 2006 study found that with occasional or daily use of cannabis consumers have decreased levels of depressive symptoms than those who did not use cannabis. Another study found that the THC in cannabis oil can change an individual’s response to negative emotions or images by triggering the endocannabinoid system in the brain.
Because stress is one of the leading causes of depression, using cannabis moderately appears to stabilize moods and alleviate stress.
(Updated 2020) What research says about cannabis oil and depression
A study from 2014 exhibited CBD’s anti-anxiety and antidepressant effects in subjects. The experiments showed non-activation of CB1 and CB2 neuroreceptors. The study also showed a positive interaction between CBD and the 5-HT1A neuroreceptor.
Another study from 2018 revealed significant antidepressant effects after just a single dose within 30 minutes of it being administered. This is in stark contrast to the presently available antidepressant medications that have a significant time lag in therapeutic response and are generally considered inefficient. CBD was found to offer a promising therapeutic, fast-acting antidepressant treatment option.