CBD Oil For Pain: A pain management treatment worth considering
There are a number of conventional treatments available to deal with pain. However, some of these medications create undesired side effects, like substance dependence. In other cases, patients using them for a considerable period find that they are no longer able to manage their pain with their current medication.
CBD oil, an extract from the Hemp/Cannabis plant, might be a viable alternate treatment for pain management.
Similar to those in CBD products, including oils, our bodies produce cannabinoids that are called endocannabinoids. The human body possesses a complex signaling system, which plays a vital role in how individuals perceive, feel and react to pain-causing situations. One of the signaling systems is the Endocannabinoid System (ECS), which collects, decodes and forwards various messages from cannabinoids all over our bodies.
In addition to its role in various pathological and physiological functions, such as immunomodulation, food intake, analgesia, addictive behavior and inflammation, one of the functions of ECS is to help modulate pain. Cannabinoid receptors located in the central nervous system and the peripheral nervous system, help relay signals through the pain pathways, and to our brain. So, when we experience a painful situation, the body has a built-in mechanism to try and fix the situation.
Our ECS is managed through endocannabinoids chemicals. These are “fixers”, that immediately go into action when they detect that the body is in stress or is experiencing pain. It does this by regulating endocannabinoids, which restores the balance after a traumatic episode or even when faced with chronic pain. CBD is believed to also work as a pain-reliever by activating a serotonin receptor.
However, sometimes the body’s own endocannabinoids aren’t sufficient to deal with the effects of pain. And that’s where CBD has been known to help. This extract from the Cannabis plant has active components that mimic the body’s own endocannabinoids. When used in an appropriate form, and in the right dosage, CBD can boost the pain-fighting capabilities of the body’s own endocannabinoids.
Common CBD Pain Relief Applications
Because of it’s ability to boost the capabilities of the body’s natural endocannabinoids, and because of the vital role that endocannabinoids play in how pain signals are managed by the body’s Endocannabinoid System (ECS), CBD oils are an effective tool in pain management therapies.
CBD Oil and Arthritis
Some statistics indicate that 1 out of 5 individuals (i.e. 21% of the adult population) worldwide have been diagnosed as suffering from some type of arthritis or related condition. Arthritis is a very painful condition, largely leading to painful inflammation and stiffness of the joints. Arthritic pain is often crippling, and a life-altering condition. Because it is excruciatingly painful to move or perform even the simplest acts of daily living, patients are often immobile. This then leads to other secondary conditions, such as obesity, painful sores and an unhealthy lifestyle.
The cannabinoid receptors in our bodies have been found to be vital in pain reduction related to inflammation associated with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
The use of transdermal cannabidiol (CBD) has proven to deliver pain relief from arthritic pain. Because of it’s anti-inflammation qualities, it helps arthritic patients feel pain relief in a way that they can regain enhanced mobility. More importantly though, since the use of CBD oil does not cause mood changes or cognitive impairments (I.e.: You don’t get “high” from using CBD oil), this is an ideal therapy for individuals who don’t want to suffer psychoactive side effects.
CBD Oil and Cancer
Cancer can be a very painful disease to live with. This is especially true in cancer patients who are undergoing advanced treatments, like chemotherapy, or who are recovering from painful surgical interventions. Studies have shown that CBD oil can be a useful ally in fighting cancer-related pain, and in providing pain-relief to patients who might be undergoing painful cancer treatments.
In combination with other medication, such as Opioid-based drugs, CBD oil has proven highly effective in pain management for patients battling cancer and/or dealing with the painful side effects of other related therapies. For instance, patients with recurring solid tumors have been treated by spraying Cannabidiol (CBD) in their mouths.
A combination of cannabinoids, including CBD and THC, have also been administered as oral sprays to treat recurring glioblastoma multiforme. Patients suffering from acute GVHD (graft-versus-host disease), a cancerous condition leading to painful blisters, skin rash and jaundice, have benefitted from Cannabidiol (CBD) treatments.
There have also been documented cases where patients being treated for cancer-related pain, by solely using strong opioids, have not had as much pain relief as those using lower dosage cannabinoid sprays.
In addition to being used as a pain management therapy, CBD has also been clinically proven to actually fight some types of cancer. For instance, in controlled studies of 34 cases of glioma tumor, the use of cannabinoids has proven effective in killing the cancer cells in 33 cases, without impacting the healthy cells.
Other CBD Oil and Related Product Uses
In addition to arthritic pain and cancer-related pain management, CBD-based products have also been found to be highly effective in treating other conditions – some of them pain-related. CBD has been found to help with neurodegenerative disorders like Huntington's disease. It has also proved effective in dealing with Epileptic seizures.
The use of CBD medication has also shown to help manage pain in patients suffering from neuropathic pain, specifically in conditions like multiple sclerosis. Cannabinoids like CBD are also being used to treat chronic pain, glaucoma, sleep disorders, schizophrenia and eating disorders.
CBD oil side effects
While there are a number of active studies ongoing, CBD-based products are definitely a viable alternate for pain-management therapies. Produced from a non- psychoactive extract of the Cannabis plant, CBD Oil does not have any significant side effects, nor does it pose any serious risks to its users. However, like other cannabinoids, users may experience some effects, which might include:
- Sleep disorders
Due to its non- psychoactive properties, patients using CBD-based medication might not suffer as severe withdrawal symptoms as others using tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) based products, which are also produced from Hemp plant cannabinoid extracts.
Care must be exercised when using CBD oils or related products for pediatric applications. While the efficacy of CBD Oil for such treatments is still unknown, pediatricians are concerned about the side effects that could have bearing on brain functionality and the development of the child’s brain.