CBD is being promoted as a remedy for just about any ailment. It is claimed that it reduces blood sugar, delays Alzheimer’s disease, treats cancer, and relieves a wide range of psychological issues, including anxiety, sadness, PTSD, and psychosis. However, little research on cannabis and CBD for pain has been conducted to demonstrate its efficacy.
CBD is supposed to aid with chronic pain relief by lowering inflammation. Furthermore, CBD is supposed to promote sounder sleep and, as a result, address sleep disturbance, which is frequent in persons with Chronic Pain. It’s worth noting that many CBD products are free of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the chemical that causes the “high” associated with marijuana use. Cannabidiol, unlike THC, is non-intoxicating and has no psychoactive effects.
How Can CBD Relieve Pain?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is the second most prevalent active ingredient in cannabis. But researchers aren’t sure how CBD works to relieve pain in the body, but they do have a few possibilities. CBD was shown to suppress the release of glutamate and other inflammatory chemicals in preclinical experiments using rats, dulling neuropathic pain sensations such as prickling, tingling, and burning (the pain caused by damage to or inflammation of the nerves).
Antioxidants may neutralize tissue-damaging molecules that cause inflammation, and it’s regarded to have more antioxidant potency than ascorbic acid (vitamin C) or tocopherol (vitamin E). Furthermore, CBD is claimed to promote sounder sleep, which may help to reduce the sleep interruptions that persons with chronic pain are prone to.
CBD may also interact with CB2 receptors in the brain, which are mostly present in the immune system and are responsible for the body’s reaction to pain and inflammation. THC, on the other hand, binds to CB1 receptors in the brain, which are involved in cognitive functions such as coordination, mood, thinking, memory, and hunger (this is why smoking marijuana, which is high in THC, affects users on a cognitive level). Doctors may prescribe a mix of CBD and THC for even more pain relief, depending on the ailment.
What Forms Are Most Effective for Pain Relief?
CBD oil from top brands for pain is applied under the tongue and it is the most effective since it is concentrated and acts rapidly, usually in under an hour. CBD ingested through capsules, food, or beverage is absorbed through the digestive tract, and absorption is slower, lasting one to two hours on average but with a longer duration of impact. Topical treatments, such as lotions, gels, and balms, have been shown to lessen inflammation when applied to the skin over a sore joint.
Which Types of Pain Can CBD Help Relieve?
While every expert will tell you that more study is needed, many people are confirming that CBD can assist with pain from a number of ailments. Here’s a rundown of everything we’ve learned thus far.
Arthritis is the biggest cause of disability in the United States, characterized by joint pain, swelling, stiffness, and a restricted range of motion. Arthritis affects around 50 million people and 300,000 children. The Arthritis Foundation conducted a survey of arthritis sufferers and found that 29% of those polled use CBD to relieve their symptoms.
CBD is supposed to aid by reducing inflammation in joints and protecting nerves. CBD even prevented arthritic pain in mice, according to research. Topical CBD gel dramatically decreased joint edema, discomfort, and inflammation in rats with arthritis, according to the European Journal of Pain. Yes, these experiments are conducted on little fuzzy rodents rather than humans, however, because animal research is the starting point for many experiments.
Migraines, a neurological illness that produces painful headaches as well as other symptoms such as visual abnormalities, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, increased sensitivity to sound, light, touch, and smell, and tingling or numbness in the limbs or face, are reported by the Migraine Research Foundation to affect 39 million individuals in the United States. The majority of (small-scale) research has looked at the combined benefits of CBD and THC as a therapy, including a study published in Headache that revealed that combining THC and CBD decreased migraine episodes and pain by more than 40%.
While CBD in most forms is a top-to-toe treatment, meaning it can’t target particular portions of the body, there’s solid evidence that CBD creams, gels, and salves for back pain are more effective. They not only alleviate inflammation and neuropathy (nerve dysfunction) but may also be used as an on-the-spot therapy by placing them directly on the problematic areas. They’ve also been shown to lower pain-related anxiety and aid relaxation, both of which can be challenging for chronic back pain sufferers.
Muscle soreness and discomfort go hand in hand with exercise, as any active person knows. Because CBD has been demonstrated to reduce inflammation, which is the source of muscular soreness, putting a CBD salve directly to the affected region focuses the therapy and can help alleviate the pain.
Multiple Sclerosis Pain
Sativex, a cannabis-derived oral spray containing equal parts THC and CBD, is licensed in 25 countries, including the United Kingdom and Canada, for treating spasticity, the painful chronic muscle stiffness and involuntary spasms that plague roughly 80% of MS patients. Sativex is hypothesized to suppress nerve impulses in the central nervous system and immune cells by binding to cannabinoid receptors. Patients reported improved symptoms and a higher quality of life after only 12 weeks, according to studies. Sativex is now being tested in the United States, despite the fact that it has not yet been authorized by the FDA.
Who Shouldn’t Use CBD for Pain Relief?
The following are some of the most common CBD side effects:
- Stomach upset
CBD interacts with other drugs, such as those for heartburn, migraine, hypertension, and other disorders, are the main source of worry. This has to do with how a set of enzymes known as CYPs metabolize CBD in the liver. Cannabidiol inhibits the CYP enzymes’ ability to metabolize other medications.
CBD has been shown to interact with a variety of different pharmaceuticals, including ibuprofen, acetaminophen, several anti-seizure medications, statins, anti-diabetic medications, and more. If you’re on any other drugs, check with your doctor before using CBD to be safe.
CBD’s usefulness for a variety of illnesses, including Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, anxiety, and depression, is still being studied.
Other studies will need to figure out what dosages are suitable, as well as long-term adverse effects and harmful medication combinations.
Preclinical animal research suggests that CBD may have moderate pain-relieving effects for neuropathic pain without the cannabinoid-like side effects, but there are currently no large, well-designed clinical trials (the type of research you want to see before you put your full faith in a treatment) that confirm these effects.