We all have stress to some degree. Stress isn’t always a bad thing. Sometimes it can ignite mental and physical processes that motivate healthy forward progression, but most of the stress we experience in modern society is not healthy. Recent polls show that about 3 out 4 people in the U.S. experience regular stress every day and that the most stressed in 2017 are educated young black Americans living in cities.
According to data compiled by the Statistic Brain Research Institute, 33% of people in the U.S. are living with extreme stress. Half of those with stress report it’s increased in the last 5 years, and 3 out of 4 of those with stress reported money and work issues as the leading cause of their stress.
Seventy-three percent of people with stress in the U.S. report experiencing psychological problems associated with their stress such as anxiety, depression, and migraines. Stress causes fatigue, headache, gastrointestinal disorders, muscle tension, and changes in appetite and sex drive. For those with heart disease, sudden emotional stress can trigger heart attacks, arrhythmias, and even sudden death.
The biological response to what we believe can harm or negatively affect us is called stress. One example of a natural stress response is the flight-or-flight response, in which biochemicals and action potentials are readied and await our decision on whether we should stand and fight or run away from what we believe to be a threatening or challenging situation.
There are various ways for the body and the mind to be stressed. Just watching the news or advertising can be stressful these days. Being threatened emotionally or physically may induce a sudden stress response. Being overworked, overly tense, and worried greatly increase stress. Events and information that are mentally or emotionally disruptive can cause us stress.
Essentially, our mind’s ability to process information through thinking, beliefs, and assumptions is reflected in the neurological activity of our brain. The brain manages the “data” that our mind creates and tries to understand and organize it. In doing so, there is a correlated brain/body response to the thoughts, beliefs, and assumptions of the mind.
Structuring time to relax and learning new mental and physical approaches to unpredictable stress triggers is key to learning how to manage stress responses. Managing stress is an important ability. Teenagers, who don’t learn healthy stress management, are more likely to develop problems due to stress, as they grow older. Healthy management of stress includes regular exercise, meditation, and other relaxation techniques.
Often people suffering from stress turn to pharmaceuticals to address the off-shooting symptoms of anxiety or depression. Stress can cause insomnia, eating disorders, or all of these conditions together. Many of these medications simply numb the physical and emotional senses, damage the brain and body, and some are dangerously addictive and habit forming. New reports suggest 1 in 5 people in the U.S. has taken or is taking, some type of psychiatric medication. This is directly related to the data on stress levels in the U.S.
It’s important to remember that we’re all going to experience stressful responses to events in the course of our lives. Tolerating chronic stress, not releasing the build-up of stress responses, and managing stress with drugs, alcohol, eating, or anger are all ways that can worsen the anxiety or depression caused by stress. Learning how to manage trigger/response stress cycles with mental practices along with healthy management of stress is key to prevention and treatment.
It’s no secret that medical marijuana patients utilize the properties of cannabis to manage their acute and chronic stress-related conditions. “Getting high” has been equated throughout pop culture with various things, but marijuana is pretty much synonymous with relaxing.
In 2015, the Director of the National Institute on drug abuse, Nora D. Volkow, gave an amazing presentation on the biology and potential therapeutic effects of [Cannabidiol]. In her speech to the U.S. Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control, she says,
“Preclinical research (including both cell culture and animal models) has shown CBD to have a range of effects that may be therapeutically useful, including anti-seizure, antioxidant, neuroprotective, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, anti-tumor, anti-psychotic, and anti-anxiety properties.”
Interesting new research on marijuana and stress came out of the University of Chicago this year when they studied the effects of [THC] dosage on psychosocial stress responses. In the study, they found that low doses of THC does in fact aid in reducing emotional stress responses. However, their findings on the 42 participants also indicated at higher doses of THC, participants were actually more stressed by tasks like counting backward by thirteen from a five-digit number for 5 minutes. The study isn’t conclusive evidence, but it’s notable enough for habitual cannabis consumers to consider.
Marijuana will affect individuals uniquely depending on their temperament, strain, dosage, and a variety of other factors. Consult with a physician and medical marijuana professional about using cannabis and find linked below strains that have been reported to alleviate stress responses and associated conditions.
· [[Animal Cookies]]
· [[$100 OG]]
· [[Ace of Spades]]
· [[Afghan Diesel]]
· [[Alaskan Thunderfuck]]
· [[Alice in Wonderland]]
· [[Apollo 13]]
· [[Banana Candy]]
· [[Berry Noir]]
· [[Big Wreck]]
· [[Black Betty]]
· [[Blackberry Kush]]
· [[Blue Bastard]]
· [[Blue Bayou]]
· [[Blue Champagne]]
· [[Blue Goo]]