What is Social Anxiety Disorder?

Social Anxiety Disorder is a social phobia that affects roughly 12% of the American population, and it is characterized by an irrational fear of being scrutinized by others in social situations. Common symptoms include nervousness, sweating, panic attacks, and difficulty speaking.

How can marijuana help?

Most people assume that marijuana can be the cause of social anxiety, but when marijuana is properly recommended to someone suffering from Social Anxiety Disorder, the effects can be positive and life-changing. THF is the main phytocannabinoid responsible for cannabis’s euphoric effects, and is known to have antidepressant qualities. If patients consume too much THC, however, they can become overwhelmed and schizophrenic - in effect, worsening their social anxiety. A great way for patients to ensure that their condition won’t be exacerbated by the THC is to medicate with a strain that is also high in CBD, which reduces schizophrenic episodes by regulating the effects of THC. In a double-blind study, a group of researchers decided to test CBD’s effectiveness at treating social anxiety disorder by using functional neuroimaging. Their test showed that CBD significantly reduced anxiety by interacting with the limbic and paralimbic brain areas. Another double-blind, randomized study published in 2011 tested the real world effects of CBD on 24 never-before-treated SAD patients by requiring them to give an oral presentation. The 12 who received CBD before giving the speech had “significantly reduced anxiety, cognitive impairment, and discomfort in their speech performance,” compared to the 12 who did not, proving that cannabis with a high CBD count can be used to negate the symptoms of social anxiety disorder.