CBD is a natural remedy for chronic pain. Thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties, CBD can provide relief to those suffering from a wide range of pain symptoms.
Chronic pain is a debilitating condition that describes a wide variety of ailments, all of which are incredibly hard to treat. A 2016 study suggests that nearly 20% of American adults suffer from a chronic pain condition, and 8% have pain so severe that it limits mobility.
Doctors typically prescribe painkillers for these conditions, which have their own host of side effects. Patients also have to increase their dosage as their tolerance to the drugs increases. Considering this, it’s no wonder we have an opiate problem here in the states.
With so many looking for alternatives to manage their pain could cannabis provide a natural remedy? Studies have been promising, and legal hemp-derived CBD is available almost everywhere with the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill.
Prescription drug dependency is killing us. More than 17 million people take these drugs to manage their chronic pain. Side effects of these drugs include gastrointestinal bleeding, heartburn, stroke, dizziness, liver and kidney problems, leg swelling, high blood pressure, and the list goes on. As a result, 16,500 people are hospitalized every year due to the side effects of prescription drugs.
On the flip side, CBD does not carry the negative side effects of prescription drugs. Ongoing research has even shown that you do not build a tolerance to CBD in the same way patients do with prescription drugs.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are also prescribed to patients to manage pain. Inflammation causes a lot of pain in our bodies, but many of these drugs have been pulled from the market either due to drug companies over-promising results or the harmful side effects outweighing their potential for good.
Conversely, cannabis is a natural anti-inflammatory. People who introduce CBD into their diets have seen a decrease in inflammation and have been able to manage their pain that way.
Research has shown that CBD (and other cannabinoids like THC) can help stimulate or suppress components of the endocannabinoid system, which plays a part in our immune and neurological systems. Our bodies produce some cannabinoids naturally, like anandamide, a compound that regulates pain in the body. Introducing CBD has suppressive effects on anandamide and leads researchers to think it does in fact diminish pain.
CBD can also help chronic pain sufferers in other ways.
It has shown to promote better sleep, and getting a good night’s sleep is incredibly important for pain management. Lack of sleep prohibits the body from being able to heal itself naturally.
CBD also helps with depression and anxiety, which are common side effects to any disease that limits quality of life. CBD triggers the release of serotonin in the brain — the “happy” chemical that regulates mood. CBD also helps muscles relax, a huge benefit for those who suffer from Multiple Sclerosis and other pain disorders that involve muscles clenching or spasming.
For those who are tired of traditional prescription and over-the-counter pain medications, CBD is proving to be a promising natural alternative.
Anecdotal evidence suggests a multi-stage approach is best for chronic pain users. Start with a drop of oil under the tongue twice a day, apply lotions or salves as needed, and keep a vape pen when you need immediate relief.
As always, start small until you find the dosage that works for your personal pain.
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