Pain is a debilitating condition that can severely reduce your quality of life, take away simple life pleasures, and cause permanent discomfort, lack of healthy sleep, and mood swings. Thus, living with pain is a serious challenge many people address with expensive and addictive painkillers, which may also pose hazardous side effects.
Because of the ills of medical treatment, many users have resorted to herbal alternatives for pain management, one of which is weed (or CBD contained in weed, to be more precise). CBD has recently become highly popular among users with various health concerns, including chronic or acute pain. The primary benefit of this isolated cannabinoid is its ability to bind to the human endocannabinoid system and deliver relief without the intoxicating effect of marijuana.
But is CBD that effective for pain? Is there enough evidence besides anecdotal accounts of CBD’s miraculous painkilling properties? This article examines the facts about CBD and pain to give an informed, balanced view of CBD use prospects with various types of pain.
How Can CBD Deal with Pain?
The use of CBD has become popular only recently due to the advancements in CBD extraction and infusion of regular products with CBD concentrate. This way, retail users have received access to CBD-infused oils, tinctures, edibles, pre-rolls, and even skincare products. It’s a regular matter to use a CBD pain relief roll-on among athletes, and CBD teas or bath bombs are frequently used as mild sedatives before bedtime.
So, what’s the ground for relying on CBD for various health challenges? There has been much progress among scientists in proving that CBD indeed works with pain:
- A 2020 study by Mlost et al. found that cannabidiol is efficient in treating neuropathic, inflammatory pain, osteoarthritis-related pain, and other kinds of pain, with various mechanisms of action enacted in the human organism.
- Boyaji et al. noted that there are still no pharmaceutical CBD products for chronic pain management, but nabixomols (products with a THC/CBD ratio of 1:1) are clinically proven effective for pain.
- Serpell et al. found their patient sample with peripheral neuropathic pain responsive to the treatment with THC:CBD stray. The researchers observed sizable improvements in the patients’ pain, sleep quality, and perceived improvements in their condition. Still, they noted that such a treatment option should be used with otherwise treatment-resistant patient populations.
This quick intro to the CBD research on pain shows that CBD is generally effective, with and without THC, and that its ability to bind to the human endocannabinoid system may be the reason for positive effects on pain intensity. Let’s consider more evidence for each specific pain type.
CBD and Chronic Pain
Chronic pain is the type of pain that a person experiences regularly and that doesn’t go away after several months. Chronic pain may result from permanently damaged joints or tissues, spinal cord injuries, multiple sclerosis, or cancer-related pain. All these conditions require permanent medication intake, but a significant danger related to this approach is growing dosage and addiction to painkillers.
A CBD alternative for pain may be less pronounced in action but less addictive overall, coming with fewer side effects for the patients. One of the officially licensed CBD-infused medications for chronic pain is the Sativex spray; it contains CBD and THC in a 1:1 ratio and is recommended for patients with cancer-related pain in Canada.
CBD and Arthritis/Joint Pain
Another type of pain CBD can help you with is joint pain and arthritis-related discomfort. Patients with these health conditions often have inflamed, swollen joints and experience stiffness and pain when moving. The worst thing about arthritis and joint discomfort is that it progresses if not treated properly. For many older adults, joint pain is the primary cause of deteriorating mobility and worsening quality of life at the end of their lives.
CBD can be effectively applied to reduce the pain and discomfort associated with arthritis and joint problems. According to the results of a poll held by the U.S. Arthritis Foundation, 29% of patients with arthritis use CBD to alleviate their symptoms and report positive outcomes, such as improved physical function, better sleep, and higher well-being. Many patients with this condition use a CBD heat relief roll on pain cream, which is a popular method for topical pain management. When you use a CBD roll-on, pain relief lasts longer than with oral CBD administration. Thus, it makes sense to try various CBD products for arthritis pain management and see which one works better (check https://askgrowers.com/cbd/cbd-roll-on-for-pain for a variety of high-quality pain relief products).
CBD and Neuropathic Pain
Neuropathic pain relates to the chronic pain sensations connected with nerve damage in various parts of the human body, resulting from injuries and neurodegenerative diseases. As a result of nerve damage, people may feel abrupt tingling and numbness, as well as shooting and burning pain. Neuropathic pain is also an outcome of the multiple sclerosis condition, which destroys the nerve cells’ myeline. As a recent study by Xu et al. revealed, CBD proved effective for neuropathic pain conditions as well. Thus, patients may no longer be in despair about the discomforting neuropathic pain conditions, as CBD medications, CBD oils, and topical CBD remedies can effectively reduce these sensations’ intensity and frequency.
So, Is CBD Worth a Try for Pain Management?
As it comes from the presented evidence, CBD is actively researched by scientists across the globe in terms of its effect on pain of various etiologies. The ease of CBD research is in its non-psychoactive nature, which makes clinical trials more ethical and manageable. Thus, the recent findings about CBD’s impact on painful sensations suggest that patients respond positively to CBD treatment, while the most effective medications still apply CBD and THC in 1:1 proportions. With many studies ongoing, we’re sure to get more insights into CBD’s mechanism of action on pain and a variety of novel CBD applications for more efficient pain mitigation.
This text was prepared for you by Tia Moskalenko, a full-time cannabis writer at AskGrowers. Tia is primarily interested in interviewing renounced cannabis experts and brands, but she also prepares research-based materials to keep CBD users informed about the ins and outs of the CBD market.