If you are suffering from inflammation or chronic pain, you might have had people recommend that you try CBD oil or CBD pills.
CBD, otherwise known as cannabidiol, is a compound produced by plants from the cannabis family. Though CDB is found in the hemp plant, it does not have psychoactive properties, so it will not get high.
What is CBD, and is it safe?
CBD that is used for therapeutic purposes is usually derived from the hemp plant. The hemp plant is a plant from the cannabis family and is, in essence, a “cousin” of marijuana.
While the marijuana plant does contain CBD, CBD is totally different from THC, which is the compound that gives marijuana its psychoactive effects. It is THC that makes you get “high” from marijuana, not CBD.
The World Health Organization itself, after an extensive study, published a report in 2017 that “CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential.” That means that there is no evidence that CBD is an addictive substance.
CBD is non-addictive is especially important when we look at its ability to help with chronic pain. This means that it can be a safe alternative to opioids, which are very addictive.
However, if you are thinking of taking CBD pills or oils, you need to ensure that it is legal in your area. There is still a lot of misinformation about CBD, mostly associating it with marijuana, which makes its use subject to some restrictions.
Also, as with any supplement, there is a chance that it might interact with certain other medications that might cause an adverse reaction. Side effects of CBD are usually nausea, fatigue, and irritability. It is probably best that before you add CBD to your therapeutic routine, you inform your doctor of your plans.
How does CBD help with pain?
Some studies have found that CBD inhibits your body’s absorption of anandamide, a compound associated with regulating pain. Increased levels of anandamide in your bloodstream may reduce the amount of pay you feel.
Since CBD keeps your anandamide levels high, it provides pain relief. There is also some evidence that CBD limits inflammation on your brain and nervous system, offering pain relief.
What is CBD oil?
One of the most common ways to use CBD for pain and inflammation relief is to take it topically in the form of an oil.
CBD oil is obtained by extracting CBD from the hemp plant rather than diluting it by adding a carrier oil, such as coconut oil or hemp seed oil.
To use CBD oil, you apply the oil to the affected area, then rub it in. Most CBD oils come in bottles with droppers, so all you have to do is place a few drops onto your skin and massage the oil in.
There is also CBD cream for pain. This is basically a cream that contains CBD oil. If you use CBD cream, you basically place a generous amount of the cream on the affected area and rub it in. Some people prefer cream as they find it less potentially “messy” to use.
Can I take CBD orally?
For therapeutic use, CBD pills and oils are also available. There is also a wide variety of CBD edibles, such as gummies and cookies.
Basically, these CBD edibles have a dose of CBD oils inside, and you inject them to get your dose. The pill or gummy is broken down in your digestive tract, and the CBD oil they contain gets absorbed into your bloodstream.
While edibles are an effective delivery system of CBD, there is some evidence that absorption through the digestive tract is a little slower than via your skin. This could result in a delayed effect, which is not something you really want if you are using CBD for pain relief.
What are the other uses of CBD?
One of the well-studied therapeutic benefits found from CBD use has to do with childhood epilepsy. CBD has been found to reduce seizures in children who otherwise don’t respond to other antiseizure medications.
CBD is being studied for the benefits it might have on those suffering from neurological disorders and has been found to reduce muscle spasticity in multiple sclerosis people. There have also been studies that show that it could improve the sleep quality and general quality of life of those who have Parkinson’s disease and prevent cognitive decline in those who have Alzheimer’s.
Some studies have shown that CBD can alleviate cancer symptoms and alleviate the side effects of cancer treatments.
CBD can provide pain relief for cancer patients and reduce nausea and vomiting among those undergoing chemotherapy.
It is also used to treat insomnia and address both anxiety and depression. The stress and anxiety-reducing properties of CBD might also help lower blood pressure, but this is still being studied.
What is the proper CBD dosage?
If you are wondering, “home much CBD should I take,” well, it’s probably best to consult a medical physician as the answer is “it depends?”
As we noted, CBD doesn’t have hallucinogenic or addictive properties, and taking “too much” will not result in death. What might happen is you might feel sleepy or end up with diarrhea or nausea.
However, there are no established clinical guidelines on using CBD for pain, which means there’s no specific agreed-on dosage. Finding the right dosage for you might require some experimentation, so that’s why it might be smart to work it out with your doctor.
The smallest recommended daily doses are usually around the 20 to 40mg range, and depending on your reaction, you can either stick to this or increase it by about 5mg a week till you find the dosage that works for you. Most legal CBD products will have dosage amounts and recommendations clearly printed, so you should read those and work along with those parameters as well.