Stress affects everyone! From worrying about your job, finances, relationships, the list is endless. When stress becomes chronic or excessive, it can have negative effects on emotional and physical wellbeing. With respect to mental health and emotional wellbeing, stress can manifest in many different ways, such as irritability, aggression, exhaustion, or fatigue1,2. Overtime this can lead to anxiety or depression3–5. Stress also has numerous effects on physical health, this includes but is not limited to unhealthy eating, increased likelihood of heart disease, gastrointestinal issues, reproductive health issues etc6–10. Approximately 21-28.4% of Canadians aged 18-64 reported quite a bit or extreme perceived life stress most days. These proportions were slightly higher in women than men11.
Recently, stress levels have increased during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic with uncertainty about job security, finances, social isolation, physical wellbeing, etc. Approximately 32% of individuals reported that pandemic-related stress interferes with their ability to make basic decisions12.
There is strong interest in whether cannabis can be an effective pharmacological treatment option for those suffering from stress. In fact, various studies have reported that cannabis is used as a tool to reduce stress13,14. In one study, adult cannabis consumers reported cannabis use provided an escape or relief from problems13.
What is Stress and What Causes It?
Stress can be either physical or mental15. There may be a one-time or short-term stressor, or it may occur repeatedly over time. Symptoms include irritability, disruptions in sleep, difficulty concentrating, anhedonia (the inability to feel pleasure) and changes in appetite16. Chronic stress can contribute to conditions such as heart disease, mental health issues, irritable bowel disease and disruptions in immune function16–18.
Women and men have been shown to experience stress differently. Compared to men, women were more likely to report money and economy as sources of stress; whereas men were more likely to report work as a source of stress. These differences between men and women also extended to the types of symptoms they experienced from stress19. For example, women were more likely to report headaches, having felt as though they could cry, or having had an upset stomach or indigestion19.
Studies Show Medical Cannabis Can Help With Stress
A study looking at sample of adults found that stress relief was the primary benefit of medicinal cannabis use for 24.9% of the individuals42. Clinical investigations support these results.
One study looked at the effects of THC on responses to an acute psychosocial stressor in healthy individuals43. Participants were randomly divided into three groups and received either: a capsule containing 0, 7.5, or 12.5 mg of THC under double-blind conditions (neither the researcher nor participants knew who was in each group) about 2.5 hours before testing on a psychosocial stressor (mock job interviews, mental math challenges, etc)43. They found that 7.5 mg THC (a low dose) significantly reduced distress and reduced the appraisal of a psychosocial stressor as threatening and challenging43.
Similarly, a different study examined the efficacy of cannabis use in stress management, anxiety, and depression from combustion/inhalation methods44. Medical cannabis users perceived a 50% reduction in depression, and a 58% reduction in anxiety and stress following cannabis use44. Both high CBD and high THC cannabis produced the largest perceived decreases in stress44.
Likewise, in support of the efficacy of high THC for stress, Stith et al. (2020) examined which characteristics of cannabis flower were associated with changes in distress-related symptoms among 670 individuals. They found that mid-and high THC levels were the primary independent predictors of increased symptom relief45.
Various other studies have demonstrated the stress-relieving and relaxation properties of medicinal cannabis46–48.
We offer a large number of low THC, high THC, and high CBD products. Some of which include:
Low THC products
Luminarium Softgels (THC: 4-6 mg/cap; CBD: 0 mg/cap)
Aurora THC Softgels (THC: 6.5-9.5 mg/cap; CBD: 0 mg/cap)
High THC products
Lemovura dried flower (21.2-24.6% THC; 0-2%CBD)
High CBD products
Vespera dried cannabis (0.4-2.5% THC: 11-13% CBD)
Tower dried cannabis (0.3-2.5% THC: 8-10.3% CBD)
To explore our full range of medical cannabis products, click here. We recommend you consult with your healthcare provider to ensure the product you choose is right for you. Similar to other prescription medications, dosing cannabis should be done with the careful supervision of your primary healthcare provider. Effects may vary on an individual basis.
Have Questions About Medical Cannabis & Stress?
• If you still have any questions about how to use cannabis or want to learn more, you can call our Client Care team at 1-877-928-7672 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
• If you are looking to get a prescription, you can book an online appointment with our clinic partner, Canadian Cannabis Clinics. You can also talk to a cannabis educator in the appointment for any cannabis specific questions.
• A qualified healthcare practitioner can determine if medical cannabis is right for you through a free online consultation and fill out your medical document. It’s quick and easy - you can book your appointment right here.
- Leggett AN, Zarit SH, Kim K, Almeida DM, Klein LC. Editor’s choice: Depressive Mood, Anger, and Daily Cortisol of Caregivers on High- and Low-Stress Days. The Journals of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences. 2015;70(6):820. doi:10.1093/GERONB/GBU070
- Nordman JC, Ma X, Gu Q, et al. Potentiation of Divergent Medial Amygdala Pathways Drives Experience-Dependent Aggression Escalation. Journal of Neuroscience. 2020;40(25):4858-4880. doi:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0370-20.2020
- Hammen C, Kim EY, Eberhart NK, Brennan PA. CHRONIC AND ACUTE STRESS AND THE PREDICTION OF MAJOR DEPRESSION IN WOMEN. Depression and Anxiety. 2009;26(8):718. doi:10.1002/DA.20571
- Wiegner L, Hange D, Björkelund C, Ahlborg G. Prevalence of perceived stress and associations to symptoms of exhaustion, depression and anxiety in a working age population seeking primary care - an observational study. BMC Family Practice. 2015;16(1). doi:10.1186/S12875-015-0252-7
- Fan LB, Blumenthal JA, Watkins LL, Sherwood A. Work and home stress: associations with anxiety and depression symptoms. Occupational Medicine (Oxford, England). 2015;65(2):110. doi:10.1093/OCCMED/KQU181
- Pimple P, Shah A, Rooks C, et al. Association between Anger and Mental Stress-Induced Myocardial Ischemia. American heart journal. 2015;169(1):115. doi:10.1016/J.AHJ.2014.07.031
- Qin HY, Cheng CW, Tang XD, Bian ZX. Impact of psychological stress on irritable bowel syndrome. World Journal of Gastroenterology : WJG. 2014;20(39):14126. doi:10.3748/WJG.V20.I39.14126
- Wang L, Wang X, Wang W, et al. Stress and dysmenorrhoea: a population based prospective study. Occupational and Environmental Medicine. 2004;61(12):1021-1026. doi:10.1136/OEM.2003.012302
- Steptoe A, Kivimäki M. Stress and cardiovascular disease. Nature Reviews Cardiology 2012 9:6. 2012;9(6):360-370. doi:10.1038/nrcardio.2012.45
- Stress effects on the body. Accessed January 13, 2022. https://www.apa.org/topics/stress/body
- Perceived life stress, by age group. Accessed January 4, 2022. https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/t1/tbl1/en/tv.action?pid=1310009604&pickMembers%5B0%5D=1.1&pickMembers%5B1%5D=3.2&pickMembers%5B2%5D=4.5&cubeTimeFrame.startYear=2020&cubeTimeFrame.endYear=2020&referencePeriods=20200101%2C20200101
- Stress relief is within reach. Accessed January 5, 2022. https://www.apa.org/topics/stress
- Hendin H, Haas AP. The adaptive significance of chronic marijuana use for adolescents and adults. Advances in alcohol & substance abuse. 1985;4(3-4):99-114. doi:10.1300/J251V04N03_05
- Lee CM, Neighbors C, Woods BA. Marijuana Motives: Young Adults’ Reasons for Using Marijuana. Addictive behaviors. 2007;32(7):1384. doi:10.1016/J.ADDBEH.2006.09.010
- NIMH » I’m So Stressed Out! Fact Sheet. Accessed January 4, 2022. https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/so-stressed-out-fact-sheet
- Mental Health - Coping With Stress - Canada.ca. Accessed January 4, 2022. https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/healthy-living/your-health/lifestyles/your-health-mental-health-coping-stress-health-canada-2008.html
- Institute of Mental Health N. 5 Things You Should Know About Stress. Accessed January 5, 2022. www.nimh.nih.gov/copingwithtrauma
- Frasquilho D, Matos MG, Salonna F, et al. Mental health outcomes in times of economic recession: A systematic literature review Health behavior, health promotion and society. BMC Public Health. 2016;16(1):1-40. doi:10.1186/s12889-016-2720-y
- 2010 Gender and Stress. Accessed January 13, 2022. https://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/stress/2010/gender-stress
- Ware MA, Wang T, Shapiro S, et al. Smoked cannabis for chronic neuropathic pain: a randomized controlled trial. CMAJ : Canadian Medical Association Journal. 2010;182(14):E694. doi:10.1503/CMAJ.091414
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- Webb CW, Webb SM. Therapeutic Benefits of Cannabis: A Patient Survey. Hawai’i Journal of Medicine & Public Health. 2014;73(4):109. Accessed September 19, 2021. /pmc/articles/PMC3998228/
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- Aggarwal SK, Carter GT, Sullivan MD, Zumbrunnen C, Morrill R, Mayer JD. Prospectively Surveying Health-Related Quality of Life and Symptom Relief in a Lot-Based Sample of Medical Cannabis-Using Patients in Urban Washington State Reveals Managed Chronic Illness and Debility. American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine®. 2013;30(6):523-531. doi:10.1177/1049909112454215
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- Sexton M, Cuttler C, Finnell JS, Mischley LK. A Cross-Sectional Survey of Medical Cannabis Users: Patterns of Use and Perceived Efficacy. Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research. 2016;1(1):131-138. doi:10.1089/can.2016.0007
- Lee C, Round JM, Hanlon JG, Hyshka E, Dyck JRB, Eurich DT. Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-Item (GAD-7) Scores in Medically Authorized Cannabis Patients-Ontario and Alberta, Canada. doi:10.1177/07067437211043393
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