Are you suffering from chronic pain?
CBD oil is a promising remedy to manage pain.
Living with pain is never easy. Finding a solution to help deal with chronic pain can mean the difference between a pleasant day, where you can function properly, and a nightmare of a day, just waiting to end.
Over the recent years, CBD oil has become a popular alternative medication for pain management. Many believe that it is very effective, that more and more doctors are recommending it instead of traditional painkillers.
The major advantage of CBD oil compared to cannabis or marijuana is that it doesn’t cause the high feeling. This is the reason why it is allowed in most places. This obviously depends on the type of extraction or strain.
Cannabidiol, commonly known as CBD, is the second most common chemical component in marijuana after Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Many people use CBD for its medical benefits. It is used as treatment for epilepsy and anxiety. CBD can also help treat pain associated with different medical conditions such as cancer and arthritis.
Scientific studies of CBD have shown that it is a safer alternative with very few and mild side effects as compared to other commonly prescribed pain medications such as opiates.
Unlike THC and marijuana, CBD does not have psychoactive effects, which means people can take advantage of its medical benefits without experiencing getting high or intoxicated.
Recent researches on CBD show that it is a promising treatment to many types of pain. Some evidences suggest that CBD is most effective in treating chronic and neuropathic pain. CBD has also shown to reduce inflammation and the pain that is associated from it.
Painful medical disorders that CBD can help treat:
Allodynia is a rare condition, wherein normally non-painful touch becomes painful. A 2007 study conducted on 125 patients found that Sativex, an extract containing THC and CBD, was able to reduce pain significantly in patients with allodynia.
Arthritis is an inflammatory joint disease that can result in pain. Many arthritis treatments have unpleasant side effects such as blood clots, and increase the risk of heart attack.
A 2016 study found that a topical CBD treatment applied to the affected area is effective in treating pain and inflammation caused by arthritis. CBD treatment was also reported to have very few side effects, especially CBD topicals.
A 2013 study found that treatment with Sativex resulted in a marked improvement in cancer-related pain. Patients also showed improvement in insomnia and fatigue symptoms, and the side effects were minimal.
Another study from 2014 found that CBD was able to reduce chemotherapy pain in mice without negative side effects.
A 2007 Italian study found that CBD can successfully reduce chronic pain in rats. Many scientific reviews agree that CBD can treat chronic pain that is resistant to other drugs, like opioids.
CBD also has relatively few side effects, and most people tolerate CBD medication well, making it an even more attractive treatment option for chronic pain.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an illness wherein the nerves in the brain and spinal cord become damage. MS patients can experience both acute and chronic pain.
In a 2013 animal study found that CBD help reduce inflammation. The researchers concluded that CBD is a promising treatment for multiple sclerosis.
Recently, a UK research team conducted a trial with patients suffering neuropathic pain from multiple sclerosis. The researchers found that Sativex treated pain effectively in these patients.
How Does CBD Work to Treat Pain?
Many pain medications like Aspirin and Advil are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). These medicines work by blocking the activity of certain enzymes, which are responsible for inflammation, swelling and pain.
Blocking these enzymes is an effective way to relieve pain, but it can also create side effects including risk of ulcers, stomach bleeding, heart attack, and stroke.
CBD works on a completely different pathway, which means it has a lower risk of dangerous side effects from long-term use.
CBD acts on the endocannabinoid system found throughout the body. CBD increases the levels of the body’s natural cannabinoids, such as anandamide.
CBD can act on vanilloid receptors. Scientists believe this is partially responsible for its pain-relieving effects.
CBD also turns on glycine receptors found on the spinal cord. When these glycine receptors in the body are less active than normal, they can cause chronic pain. A 2012 study found that CBD can treat chronic pain by turning on glycine receptors.
Is THC or CBD Better For Pain?
THC is a more established pain reliever than CBD because of its ability to activate CB1 receptors. THC can help treat many disorders that cause pain and other symptoms, including arthritis, migraines, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, and cancer.
While THC is effective, it also comes with psychoactive side effects. Many people do not want to experience a “high” from their pain medication.
CBD has the ability to temper the psychoactive effects of THC. So one way to get pain relief benefits from THC with less of a psychoactive high is to mix THC and CBD.
Sativex is a pharmaceutical drug that has equal parts THC and CBD. Research on Sativex as a therapy has shown that it can successfully treat pain from multiple sclerosis, muscle spasms, arthritis and cancer pain, among others.
A combination of THC and CBD such as Sativex seems to be superior to THC or CBD alone. This is because THC and CBD work together to treat pain effectively while minimizing side effects.
The best answer to this question is both. While each compound has pain-fighting properties of its own, two of them work best when they are consumed together. Both tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) work with each other synergistically, enhancing the overall pain-fighting effect of the herb.
The synergistic interactions between THC and CBD make up what is called the entourage effect. In theory, the entourage effect suggests that all of the various phytochemicals in the cannabis plant work together to produce beneficial effects.
Perhaps, this is why whole-plant cannabis buds and extracts are believed to be more helpful to patients than isolates.
Not only do THC and CBD interact with one another to fight pain, but these compounds engage with various terpenes too. Terpenes are aroma molecules found in the resin glands of plants.
These theories suggest that opting for a strain with a variety of cannabinoids and terpenoids would be highly beneficial for medical cannabis patients, including those seeking relief from chronic pain.
Some patients can access already a cannabis-based pharmaceutical for pain. In Canada, the GW Pharmaceuticals product Sativex is available for the treatment of pain associated with cancer. Sativex is a multiple sclerosis (MS) drug that contains a balanced ratio of THC to CBD with some beneficial terpenes.
Furthermore, there are more than 100 cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. Decades of research restrictions mean scientists have only really begun to study the cannabis plant in depth over the recent years.
Recent research shows that CBD can effectively treat chronic pain, neuropathic pain, cancer-related pain, and arthritis pain.
CBD acts indirectly on the endocannabinoid system, and activates other receptors in the body to exert its pain-relieving effects.
CBD is non-psychoactive, meaning many people can use it safely as a pain medication. This has made CBD an attractive option for doctors and patients who may be concerned about side effects.
More studies are necessary, but CBD could someday prove to be a safer and more effective option for pain treatment than currently prescribed medications.