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    by Jason Higgins January 13, 2021 4 min read

    Every day brave men and women put their lives on the line to help others. Some of them face lasting consequences for their selfless efforts — like PTSD, anxiety, chronic pain, insomnia and worse. CBD can help. Whether you’re a military veteran, first responder, police officer or another hero who puts service first.

    A Deepening Crisis

    Trauma-related health problems are widespread in the U.S. and getting worse. There are about 18 million veterans, many with service-related mental illness. Many more are coping with other challenges.

    • anxiety disorders in veterans rose more than 300% from 2000 to 2012
    • roughly 20% who fought in the Middle East have PTSD
    • many face chronic pain
    • over-prescription of opioids is common, and has led to side effects that can make PTSD symptoms worse
    • in 2016 66,000 veterans were treated for opioid addiction
    • in 2017 20 veterans a day committed suicide
    • about 37,000 are homeless
    military veterans getting on a plane

    A Stigma Around Treatment

    Veterans did whatever needed to be done, frequently at great cost to their physical and mental health. There’s a real attitude that “We give help. Not receive it.” Noble as that sounds, it creates a dangerous stigma around admitting we need help — let alone actually asking for it.

    • only 50% of veterans that are back in the US will ask for help
    • about half of those will get assistance that works
    • others take the “I can do it myself” path
    • can end up trapped in substance abuse and addiction
    • may face broken relationships and shattered family life

    A Possible Funnel of Death

    Most veterans come from a culture where alcohol use is common and accepted. Then they’re prescribed — or over-prescribed — medications by the VA and doctors.

    • Veterans are prescribed narcotic painkillers three times more often than civilians, on average
    • Hundreds of thousands of veterans are on opiates for pain
    • 1 in 3 veterans polled say they are on 10 different medications

    This can create a “funnel of death” — a situation that just sucks the life out of the veteran. He or she can’t seem to get on top of the PTSD. Instead of helping, the meds may make them feel worse. Alcohol can also exacerbate the issues. Some find themselves virtual shut-ins, depressed, defeated and too doped-up to even drive. It may seem that there’s no way out except death.

    It’s a tragedy made worse by the fact that these same people are often completely unaware of alternate medicines and practices that might keep this nightmare under control.

    man abusing prescription pills

    First Responders Share These Challenges

    We veterans are not alone in dealing with the fallout from our service. Many others also face traumatizing experiences that lead to troubling symptoms. I’m referring to law enforcement, paramedics, EMTs, fire-fighters … and I’m also including those who are treating the nation’s Covid-19 patients. Our chosen professions bring us:

    • PTSD
    • anxiety
    • depression
    • life-threatening situations
    • unrelenting stress
    • horrific sights and sounds that are nearly impossible to forget
    • nightmares and poor sleep
    • prolonged exposure to suffering and tragedy
    • acute and/or chronic pain
    • difficulty maintaining normal relationships and returning to “normal life”

    How CBD Can Help Veterans and First Responders

    Research points to CBD products as helpful for many of the challenges faced by veterans and first responders. CBD works with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which regulates numerous other systems in the body. It impacts:

    • feelings of well-being
    • immune system
    • memory
    • motivation
    • appetite
    • metabolism
    • and more

    When these systems get out of balance, CBD is a non-toxic way to bring back balance and stability. This can bring you:

    Reduced anxiety, including relief from sights and sounds that trigger traumatic memories. Even potential prevention of new traumatic memories if CBD is taken right away after disturbing events.

    Less acute and chronic pain, from combat or other injuries or from joint damage that results from prolonged sitting, crouching, etc.

    Reduced inflammation and its negative effects. Chronic inflammation has been linked to heart disease, stroke, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and certain types of cancer.

    Enhanced mood — better control of anxiety, improved anger management and potentially a more positive outlook on life in general.

    Better sleep, leading to better overall health, improved concentration and a feeling of being more able to cope. CBD has also been reported to reduce nightmares.

    All without the side effects of prescription opioids or sleeping pills.

    Without a “high.” Especially important if your employer does drug testing. Easy Day products contain either trace amounts of THC (0.3%) or none at all. In some states, even Police Departments allow use of CBD products.

    Without the need to seek treatment from anyone but yourself.

    military veteran holding a gun

    Another Act of Service and Selflessness

    There’s a saying, “You can’t give anyone a drink of water from an empty cup.” Sounds so obvious, I know. But none of us can serve anyone else unless we’re functioning well. Think of treating your symptoms as filling your cup. It’s an act of service to others. And maybe a life-changing act of service to yourself.

    After serving as a US Navy SEAL for a decade, followed by years as a CIA contractor in high-conflict areas, I know what I’m talking about. And I can imagine your situation very clearly. I lived it. I survived it. CBD has been a big part of getting my life back. And it can be for you, too.

    I applaud your service and I wish you much success with CBD. At Easy Day we understand how important it is to get CBD into the hands of people who need it most. As Veterans, we’re honored to extend a 30% lifetime discount to all veterans, first responders, EMTs and firefighters.

    Jason Higgins
    Jason Higgins

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