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CBD for Major Depressive Disorder

Written by Michelle Pugle

Depression manifests itself in many different ways and each is unique. The most commonly diagnosed form of depression is Major Depressive Disorder. It affects millions of Americans each year and can have truly disabling consequences like impairing one’s ability to sleep, make decisions, and focus. It can also encourage thoughts of self-harm.

While treatment options include therapy and pharmaceutical prescription medications, it’s worth considering CBD as a natural and powerful remedy for this debilitating disorder.

How CBD can help

There is conclusive evidence that suggests CBD has anti-depressant-like abilities1. It works directly with the brain’s serotonin and dopamine receptors to enable the release of these ‘happy’ chemicals throughout the body.

CBD also works to foster a better night’s sleep by lowering the levels of anxiety that prevent them from falling asleep2.

The best part? CBD doesn’t come with the same side-effect potential as pharmaceuticals commonly prescribed to treat depression, and you don’t need to worry about dependency.

Things to keep in mind

First and foremost, you should always talk to your doctor before starting a new treatment plan. You should never stop a medication and start another—even if it is a natural alternative—without professional guidance.

When developing a CBD wellness plan, you should consider it as a dietary supplement that helps to both prevent future depressive episodes and treat ongoing symptoms. You will derive the maximum benefit of the plant’s healing abilities by keeping a steadily maintained dose in your system at all times.

Key to Cannabis suggestsa wellness plan that includes both CBD oil and gel capsules. They also encourage you to start with a small dose and work your way up from there, if necessary: “We suggest those suffering from depression start with 5-10mg per day of CBD. If relief is not felt at this dosage, we suggest increasing by 5-10mg until the desired effects are achieved.”


  1. Zanelati et al. Antidepressant-like effects of cannabidiol in mice: possible involvement of 5-HT1A receptors.Br J Pharmacol. 2010;159(1):122-8. DOI: 10.1111/j.1476-5381.2009.00521.x.

de Mello Schier et al.Cannabidiol, a Cannabis sativa constituent, as an anxiolytic drug. Scielo. 2012;34(1). DOI: 10.1590/S1516-44462012000500008.

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Michelle Pugle

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