When most people think about health, they commonly think about their physical state of wellbeing. However, there is another area of substantial importance that is often overlooked, and that is mental health.
The Mental Health Landscape
The landscape of mental health encapsulates a wide range of conditions and diseases. While anxiety and sadness may be normal emotions and feelings that almost everyone will experience at some point in their lives, remaining in either state is not. Anxiety and depressive disorders, however, are not the only conditions that affect our mental state. The mental health landscape also includes conditions that fall within the categories of neurodevelopment, bipolar, obsessive-compulsive, trauma, neurocognitive, and personality disorders, among others. Mental health conditions also include things such as sleep-wake disorders, gender dysphoria, eating disorders, sexual dysfunctions, and more.
Signs Of Mental Health Disorder
While the signs of specific mental health disorders will come with varying symptoms, there are some common signs that you can watch out for and should be aware of. Some of the most common symptoms of a mental health disorder include but are not limited to the following;
- • Confusion
- • Excessive fear or worry
- • Extreme anger and hostility
- • Extreme mood changes
- • Fatigue
- • Feelings Of anxiety and depression
- • Significant changes in eating and sleeping habits
- • Substance abuse
- • Suicidal thoughts or tendencies
- • Withdrawal from friends and activities previously enjoyed
When Should You Seek Help for Mental Health?
If you or a loved one are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above, seeking help from a mental health professional would be a suitable next step. Mental health disorders do not commonly go away or improve on their own, thankfully, there are a plethora of resources available for those in need.
How are Mental Health Disorders Diagnosed?
To diagnose a mental health disorder, several things will first occur. A physical exam is first performed to rule out any other diseases or conditions that may result in an altered mental state. Lab tests are also commonly performed to check for deficiencies in thyroid function, hormonal imbalances, or signs of substance abuse. Patients typically undergo a psychiatric evaluation so that healthcare professionals can paint a better picture of their overall lifestyle, medical history, habits, and other aspects to help them pinpoint the underlying cause of the issues a patient is experiencing with their mental health.
The Endocannabinoid System & Mental Health
Plant therapies are thought to regulate the body’s endocannabinoid system, which in return may result in viable treatment options for various diseases, including mental health disorders. A study published in 2018 suggests that a deficient endocannabinoid system could result in the development of different mental health conditions. Cannabinoids such as THC and CBD are at the forefront of research pertaining to plant therapies and their potential therapeutic value in mental health treatment.
Traditional Treatments for Mental Health Conditions
The traditional treatments for mental health disorders vary depending on the diagnosis, the preferences of the mental health professional, and the patient’s response to therapies thus far. In general, however, the most common treatments received for mental health disorders are medications that include antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, antipsychotics, and mood-stabilizing formulas, in addition to psychotherapy.
Australian Clinical Trials – Plant Therapies for Mental Health
There are anecdotal stories attributing the success of plant therapies in treating various mental health disorders. Additionally, the research performed to-date regarding plant medicine for mental health disorders provides hope. There are several ongoing trials in Australia investigating the use of plant therapies for conditions such as anxiety.
CA Clinics Observation Study, in conjunction with Applied Cannabis Research, has launched a study for all patients that are undergoing treatments at CA Clinics. CACOS aims to collect data on plant based therapies which include medicinal cannabis for a range of hard-to-treat conditions through a series of surveys. These surveys will record a patient’s treatment progress throughout a 12-month period, reporting on side effects, dose taken and treatment satisfaction. To learn more, click here.
To see if you are eligible for plant based therapies, you can book a telehealth appointment with one of our specialist doctors through Cannatrek Access.