Bring it to Barb

Barb Rock

Dear Barb,
I have anxiety and PTSD and I am a mother of twins! I have been using CBD edibles and gummy bears with 10 mg CBD for anxiety and PTSD. I found that they helped me somewhat until a friend had me try the CBD-oil pen. At a moment when I was starting to bug out about being late to our movie, within less than a minute I felt a de-escalation, and after a few hits from the pen felt noticeably calmer. Why would there be such a difference? Since then I have been vaping in the morning to organize my day. The CBD also helps with the dramatic intrusive thoughts that come with my PTSD.

Anxiety is My Middle Name

Dear Anxiety,

The vape-oil pen is a device with a battery to heat up the cartridge, vaporizing the oil for infusion. It can be very effective. The difference is that when you vape, 50 percent of the product gets utilized. With edibles, it’s between 10 percent and 20 percent and it takes longer to kick in because your body must metabolize it.

Be cautious because CBD quality varies widely depending on the manufacturer, so it’s buyer beware. A 2017 Journal of the American Medical Association study found that 43 percent of the CBD products the researchers ordered online had more CBD than indicated, while 26 percent had less. Some even had more than a trace of THC. There is a 75 percent chance of getting a product ordered or available online where the CBD is mislabeled. One clue is cost: If it’s too cheap, it may not be the real deal. A half-gram vape cartridge is $50, but it lasts a while, and a small price to pay to be able to enjoy your life and your children.

“Our bodies produce endocannabinoids every day,” says clinical professor Joseph Marron, MD. “These bind to receptors all over our bodies. It may be that people who don’t produce enough cannabinoids themselves are the ones who benefit from taking CBD, thus helping with pain and inflammation, antibacterial and more.”

Tip#1: If you purchase CBD oil in the U.S. from one of the 10 states where both recreational and medical cannabis use is legal, there is a better chance that you’ll get a higher-quality product than from abroad. This is according to Martin Lee, director of Project CBD.

Tip#2: There is no definitive amount that’s appropriate for everyone. The ratio of CBD to THC will indicate how psychoactive the product is. The more CBD compared with THC, the less of a high, and vice versa.

Doctors in states where cannabis is legal are hearing positive reports from their patients about CBD helping with anxiety and scientists feel confident that it is not dangerous. “It won’t damage vital organs even at doses as high as 5,000 mg a day” according to Jahan Marcu, PhD, director of experimental pharmacology and behavioral research at the International Research Center on Cannabis and Mental Health in New York. “Nobody has died simply from overdosing on a cannabis product, including marijuana.”

Relief from using CBD oils or edibles can vary depending on the needs. Most cannabis shops have trained workers who can provide additional information for the best dosage and offer an individual the correct necessary relief.

Barb Rock is a mental health counselor and the published author of “Run Your Own Race: Happiness after 50.” Send any questions related to mental health, relationships or life issues to her at



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