Mental Health Awareness Month is observed every May as a way of encouraging people to open up about their struggles with mental illness and help reduce the stigma that surrounds mental health.  Mental Health Awareness Month started in the United States in 1949, as the National Association for Mental Health aimed to educate the public about mental illness and the importance of treatment. According to recent statistics by the National Institute of Mental Health, more than 50% of Americans will experience a mental health illness at some point in their lifetime, highlighting the critical need for public education and awareness about mental health. Stigma continues to be a significant barrier to people seeking treatment for mental illness, and Mental Health Awareness Month provides an opportunity to reduce this stigma by increasing public understanding. As we celebrate Mental Health Awareness Month, it’s essential to recognize how far we’ve come in advancing awareness about mental health, but there is still much work to be done. By recognizing our inherent worth and value, we can take action towards improving our mental health and the health of our communities. Let’s make Mental Health Awareness Month a time to inspire hope, change, and education about mental health.


The Potential Mental Health Benefits of CBD


The cannabis plant has been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years. It has been used to treat conditions such as pain, inflammation, epilepsy, and anxiety. Recently, however, the focus has shifted towards cannabidiol, or CBD, a non-psychoactive compound found in the plant. CBD is believed to have numerous health benefits and is gaining popularity as a treatment for various conditions. We will explore the potential mental health benefits of CBD in reducing anxiety, depression, sleep issues, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other neurological disorders. 

CBD for Neurologic Disorders: 

CBD may reduce seizures in people with epilepsy. Research suggests that it works by increasing the level of a neurotransmitter called GABA, which suppresses excessive neuron activity in the brain. CBD has also been explored as a potential treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson’s disease, and Alzheimer’s disease. Studies have found that CBD may help with neuroprotection and alleviate symptoms such as spasticity, tremors, and cognitive decline in people with these conditions. 

CBD for Anxiety: 

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental health condition in the United States, affecting millions of people annually. CBD is believed to reduce anxiety and improve mood by modulating the activity of the neurotransmitters serotonin and GABA. In a 2019 study, researchers found that CBD reduced anxiety in people with social anxiety disorder. Another study found that CBD decreased symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in adults. CBD may also help with other anxiety-related disorders, such as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and panic disorder. 

CBD as an Antidepressant: 

Depression is a common mood disorder affecting millions of people worldwide. CBD may help to alleviate depressive symptoms by interacting with serotonin receptors in the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that regulates mood, sleep, and appetite. CBD has been shown to increase the level of serotonin in the brain, which could improve mood and reduce symptoms of depression. In a 2018 study, researchers found that CBD had a rapid and sustained antidepressant-like effect in rats. More research is needed to understand the effects of CBD on human depression. 

CBD for Sleep Issues: 

Many people struggle with sleep issues, such as insomnia, sleep apnea, and restless leg syndrome. CBD may help to improve sleep quality and reduce the time it takes to fall asleep. It works by reducing anxiety and promoting relaxation, leading to improved sleep. In a 2019 study, researchers found that CBD significantly improved sleep quality in patients with insomnia. Other studies have also shown that CBD may improve sleep in individuals with chronic pain and anxiety-related disorders. 

CBD for PTSD: 

PTSD is a condition that occurs in individuals who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event. It is characterized by symptoms such as flashbacks, nightmares, and hypervigilance. CBD has been explored as a potential treatment for PTSD in combination with psychotherapy. In a 2019 study, researchers found that CBD reduced anxiety and improved sleep in patients with PTSD. Another study found that CBD decreased the frequency and intensity of traumatic memories in people with the condition. 


CBD has potential mental health benefits in reducing symptoms of anxiety, depression, sleep disorders, PTSD, and other neurological disorders. While research is still ongoing, current studies suggest that CBD is a promising treatment option for individuals struggling with these conditions. As with any new or alternative treatment, it is important to consult with a healthcare provider before incorporating CBD into one’s treatment plan. Future directions for research should focus on understanding the optimal dosing and long-term effects of CBD on mental health. 


Mindfest: A Celebration of Mental Health Awareness


Please come say hello to 502 Hemp’s Owner, Dee Dee Taylor, from 12pm to 6pm at the Mindfest Mental Health Festival May 21, 2023 at Roots 101 Museum. Mindfest is an event created to promote mental health awareness and provide resources to those who need them. It’s an annual celebration of mental health that includes music, art, and community-based activities. The event aims to create a safe space for discussion, education, and connection among individuals who have experienced mental health issues and affiliated professionals. Mental health awareness is essential, and events like Mindfest have a significant impact in promoting education and breaking down stigma. Together, we can help create a future where mental wellness is valued as highly as physical wellness.


*The statements made regarding these products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products has not been confirmed by FDA-approved research. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. All information presented here is not meant as a substitute for or alternative to information from healthcare practitioners. Please consult your healthcare professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before using any product. The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act requires this notice.