A grieving widow has credited cannabis oil with saving her life, after suffering with severe anxiety.
Dianne Pilling, 61, from Staffordshire, was already struggling to adjust to life after losing her partner of 10 years, Richard, when the coronavirus pandemic hit, and her mental health worsened.
Her GP prescribed her anti-depressants, but she says this only exacerbated her depression.
At her lowest point, Dianne was rapidly losing weight and was unable to get out of bed, feeling hopeless and alone, Stoke on Trent Live reports.
But she claims that all changed when she tried CBD oil to help her adjust as coronavirus restrictions eased.
Explaining her path to trying CBD oil, Dianne said: “I’d heard of CBD before. During his illness Richard used it to help manage his pain.
"The doctors gave him strong painkillers, but he had always hated taking tablets, so he tried CBD in a bid to avoid taking them. I was sceptical but it really worked for him.
“It was amazing really. He would take the CBD oil in the night if he was woken by the pain.
“It was around this time that I began to get very anxious. Because Richard was so poorly, I worried a lot and sometimes I didn’t sleep. When you go to the doctor all they want to do is put you on anti-depressants. I did try CBD at the time, and it definitely took the edge off my nerves.
“Then I lost Richard. And it was a very hard time for me.
“Richard passed in the autumn and then coronavirus hit during the winter. I was furloughed in March and for a long time I was in the house on my own, I became very anxious and lonely.
“Even that I got used to, but what really hit me was when I had to go back to my job after four months off.
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“Lockdown really knocked my confidence. When I went back to my job as a receptionist everything was different.
"We had to wear masks and there were screens up. I felt like I had forgotten everything, and I got very upset at work."
Despite being put on anti-depressants, Dianne's friend ended up taking her to the Royal Stoke University Hospital after becoming concerned for her.
Dianne added: "I phoned the doctors, and they gave me anti-depressants to try but they made me feel terrible.
“I was so poorly – I got terrible side effects. I wasn’t eating, I lost half a stone within about three or four days. My nerves were terrible. I was scared to go out.
"I couldn’t get up and downstairs and I’m not that kind of person. I don’t lie in bed, I like to be up and out doing things, but I just couldn’t get out of bed.
"When I spoke to my doctor, he said I needed to give the tablets a chance to work but honestly, I just knew I couldn’t go on feeling this awful, even if it was just a few weeks.
“In the end, my friend was so worried about me that she ended up taking me to the hospital. The doctors there told me to stop the tablets. He said: ‘You aren’t depressed, you don’t need anti-depressants, with everything you been through it’s perfectly normal to feel low and anxious.”
It was at this point Dianne decided to give CBD oil a try.
She added: "I was still anxious and then I remembered how CBD had helped me when Richard was poorly.
"It worked really quickly for me; I’d say almost instantly. It doesn’t get rid of all the feelings, but it helps me manage my mood.
"I still get anxious and nervy; I still cry, but it takes the edge off so I can cope with the grief a bit better.
“I’m a strong person, but with everything that’s happened it was no wonder I felt how I did.
"CBD has helped me get my life back together. I still miss him (Richard) every day and I don’t think I’ll ever get used to life without him, but with the help of CBD oil I am able to cope much better.”
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