It’s estimated that 1.5 billion people worldwide are suffering from chronic pain. Can CBD help, and how? What to look for in a product? Learn the answers and get more information on CBD and pain in our handy guide.
Checking CBD content is a must when buying CBD oil for nerve pain, back pain, joint pain, and other types of pain. For CBD to be effective, it needs to have at least 5mg per serving.
CBD may be hailed as a “miracle cure,” but it usually works best when combined with other cannabinoids in the plant, even THC.
In fact, most of the research supporting the use of CBD for pain shows that the best results are achieved when all the plant components are used, making full-spectrum extract the most beneficial.
However, not everyone reacts well to THC (even if it’s undetectable). If you’re one of those, opt for broad spectrum, or CBD isolate products.
A simple formula of high-quality CBD for pain relief in the UK and an organic carrier oil can help aches disappear. Still, other ingredients can complement the properties of cannabidiol so such CBD oil for chronic pain can be even more beneficial.
Certifications are fine and dandy, but it’s lab reports from external sources that guarantee beyond a shadow of a doubt that the CBD you are using is safe, legal, and useful.
On that note, always opt for brands that display their Certificate of Analysis on their site or make it available upon request.
Is CBD Legal in the UK?
The use and possession of CBD oil is completely legal in the UK, as long as the product is derived from industrial hemp (containing 0.2% THC or less) or has 1mg of THC per package.
However, companies aren’t allowed to make official claims about the medical properties of their CBD products. For example, if you want to find CBD oil for joint pain in the UK, you’ll have to dig through ingredient lists and numerous reviews to see if the product is suitable for your condition. After all, CBD oil’s effects and how one hemp strain may affect a person can be rather individual.
Does CBD Oil Work for Pain?
The answer lies in CBD and other cannabinoids that interact with the ECS receptors in the brain, impacting their activity and reducing inflammation and pain perception.
CBD, in particular, binds to CB1 receptors (found in the brain and spinal cord) that affect the central nervous system and CB2 receptors (found throughout the body) that reduce inflammation.
This sounds a bit abstract; luckily, several studies provide rock-hard evidence on the link between CBD oil and pain relief.
These are some of the most common diseases and conditions CBD oil help with:
Several studies have explored the impact of cannabis on chronic pain.
One report found CBD use to considerably reduce pain levels, prompting the authors to recommend cannabis as an effective treatment for chronic pain symptoms in adults.
A different study supported these results and added that patients were not likely to develop a tolerance to cannabidiol; thus, the CBD oil dosage for pain relief needn’t increase.
Experiencing muscle spasms and stiffness, the most common symptoms of MS (and the most painful too), makes patients eligible for a prescription for medical cannabis in the UK, especially if other treatments have failed.
What’s more, the NHS has approved the use of Sativex, a cannabis-based medicine, to people with MS-related muscle spasticity. Sativex is one of the two NHS-approved CBD drugs in the UK.
According to a study in the European Journal of Pain, the topical application of CBD significantly reduced inflammation and signs of pain in arthritic rats.
Other evidence (scientific and anecdotal) suggests that CBD oil for joint pain could lower inflammation and pain levels in humans with this condition. However, more proof is needed to recommend CBD as a treatment for arthritis.
Cancer and cancer treatment have been the subject of many CBD studies and research.
Some studies point out that CBD could have tumour-shrinking properties; others that cannabis, combined with opioids, might be more effective in treating cancer pain than opioids alone. Evidence, however, is still inconclusive.
What we do know is that CBD alleviates chemotherapy side effects, such as pain, nausea, and lack of appetite. To that end, both Nabilone, a synthetic cannabinoid, and medical cannabis have been approved by the NHS as a form of relief from these symptoms.
Certain evidence suggests that CBD oil for pain relief could positively affect migraines, such as a 2017 study that showed that a THC-CBD combination reduced migraine attacks by a staggering 40.4%.
Several studies and surveys indicate that CBD could reduce fibromyalgia symptoms and the management of pain arising from this prevalent disease.
Although not officially approved, there is a long list of athletes who use CBD, such as George Kruis, James Haskell, Mike Tyson, and Megan Rapinoe.
Many of them even advocate for CBD use as a safer and healthier alternative to traditional pain medication, such as NSAIDs and opioids.
How to Use CBD Oil for Pain?
There are several ways to use cannabidiol for pain:
Oils and Tinctures
Consuming CBD sublingually or under the tongue is one of the quickest ways to get immediate relief as the CBD is directly absorbed into the bloodstream. Effects will take 5 to 15 minutes to kick in. One of the downsides is the taste, which could take some getting used to.
These include lotions, muscle rubs, creams, gels, massage oils, and patches. Topical application is considered the best in terms of CBD oil and back pain, muscle strains and joint pain — it allows users to apply the cannabidiol directly onto the affected areas. Plus, topicals have the longest-lasting effects — up to 6 hours.
Edibles are the most discreet method of consumption and are great for people who want a fixed dose of CBD. They are the slowest-acting, though, and it may take them 2 to 4 hours to start working, so they are not the most suitable for instant relief.
Unlike edibles, vapes take 15 to 40 minutes to kick in, making them the perfect choice for immediate alleviation. Yet, vapes aren’t that discreet, and their impact on the lungs is still not thoroughly researched.
When it comes to the issue of “how to take CBD oil for pain,” there are several aspects users need to consider: do you want immediate relief or a longer-lasting solution? Do you want to consume hemp at home, or do you wish to have a dose handy in your hour of need like with a CBD spray? What kind of pain are you treating?
Once these questions are answered, you can decide on the best method of cannabis consumption for you.