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Is CBD Effective for Pain Management:
What You Need to Know

CBD Pain Management

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a type of cannabinoid, a chemical that occurs naturally in cannabis plants (marijuana and hemp). CBD does not cause the "high" feeling often associated with cannabis. That sensation is caused by tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a different type of cannabinoid.

Some people with chronic pain use topical CBD products, especially CBD oil, to manage their symptoms. CBD oil can reduce:

  • ache
  • inflammation
  • general discomfort related to a variety of health conditions

Research on CBD products and pain management has been promising. 

CBD may offer an alternative for people who suffer from chronic pain and rely on medications, such as opioids, to create habits and cause more side effects. However, more research is needed to verify the pain-relieving benefits of CBD oil and other products.

Epidiolex, a prescription drug for epilepsy, is the only CBD product on the market that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved.

There are no FDA-approved non-prescription CBD products. They are not regulated for purity and dosage like other drugs.

Read on the blog post from CBD Queen to learn more about the potential benefits of using CBD for pain. You can also speak to your doctor to see if it's an option for your condition.

CBD for chronic pain relief

Each has a cellular signalling system known as the endocannabinoid system (ECS).

Some researchers think CBD interacts with a critical component of the ECS: the endocannabinoid receptors in the brain and immune system.

Receptors are tiny proteins attached to your cells. They receive signals, primarily chemical, from different stimuli and help the cells to respond.

This response creates anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects that aid in pain management. This means that CBD oil and other products can benefit people with chronic pain, such as chronic back pain.

A 2018 review evaluated the effectiveness of CBD in relieving chronic pain. The review looked at studies conducted between 1975 and March 2018. These studies looked at various types of pain, including:

  • cancer pain
  • neuropathic pain
  • fibromyalgia

Based on these studies, the researchers concluded that CBD was effective in general pain management and caused no adverse side effects.

CBD to relieve cancer treatment

Some people with cancer also use CBD. Most human studies have investigated the role of CBD in cancer-related pain management and cancer treatment.

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) Trusted Source has pointed to CBD as a possible option to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy, such as:

  • ache
  • He retched
  • lack of appetite

In a 2010 cancer-related pain study, study subjects received oral sprays of a combined THC-CBD extract. THC-CBD extract was used in combination with opioids. This study revealed that using the extract provided more effective pain relief than using opioids alone.

A 2013 study of THC and THC-CBD oral sprays had similar results. Many researchers from the 2010 study also worked on this study. Further evidence is still needed.

CBD for migraine pain relief

Studies on CBD and migraines are limited. Currently, existing studies also look at CBD when paired with THC, not when used alone.

However, the results of a 2017 study indicate that CBD and THC can lead to less acute pain and less severe pain for people with migraines.

In this two-phase study, some participants took a combination of two compounds. In this study, 9% CBD and 19% THC were taken orally with two different dosing schedules.

In phase I, there was no pain effect when doses were below 100 mg. When the doses were increased to 200 mg, acute pain decreased by 55 per cent.

In phase II, participants who received the combination of CBD and THC compounds saw the frequency of their migraine attacks decrease by 40.4 per cent. The daily dose was 200 mg.

The combination of compounds was slightly more effective than 25 mg of amitriptyline, a tricyclic antidepressant. Amitriptyline reduced migraine attacks by 40.1 per cent in study participants.

Participants with cluster headaches also found pain relief with the combination of CBD and THC compounds, but only if they had a history of migraines in childhood.

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