Have you ever been doing a workout, running, swimming, or walking, and realized how badly your muscles were going to hurt the next day—or two? Or maybe you have a chronic pain condition that interferes with life’s quality and you want it relieved. Thanks to Cannabidiol (CBD), pain doesn’t have to be as lengthy or as painful.
Cannabis (hemp) use for pain relief dates back to ancient China. Hemp oil is believed to help relieve chronic pain by reducing inflammation. Also, CBD oil is said to encourage sounder sleep and in turn, to treat sleep problems typically encountered by people with chronic pain.
NOTE! In this article we will use words hemp oil and CBD oil for the same thing. While hemp oil does not necessarily have CBD in it, in this article we are referring to a hemp oil that has been made from a whole hemp plant – seeds, flowers and leaves. And that means that it contains all the spectrum of cannabinoids (such as CBD, THC, CBG, ..) found in hemp plants.
Keep reading to learn more about the potential benefits of the hemp (CBD) oil regarding its abilities to heal the pain, and how to use the CBD oil for pain management.
What is hemp (CBD) Oil?
Cannabidiol (CBD) may be a present compound, found within the resinous flower of hemp (or other cannabis varieties), but a plant has an upscale history as a medicine going back thousands of years. Today the therapeutic properties of CBD are being tested and confirmed by scientists and doctors around the world.
A safe, non-addictive substance, CBD, is among other 100+ “phytocannabinoids,” unique to cannabis and it endows the plant with its robust therapeutic profile. Oil which is made using the whole hemp plant is known as full-spectrum CBD oil, and it is becoming more and more popular these days because of the debates surrounding medical marijuana. It’s also available in all manner of forms, from lotions and oils to CBD-infused food and drink. But does it work?
A 2018 survey of 132 original studies published in Frontiers in Neurology shows that CBD from a tested, high-quality source can help reduce inflammation in the body and improve pain and mobility in patients with multiple sclerosis. “[CBD] is anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-emetic, anti-psychotic and neuroprotective,” wrote the authors.
How Does Hemp Oil Work with Pain and Pain-Related Symptoms?
1. There are two cannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are mainly located in the central nervous system (CNS, nerves connected to the spinal cord and across the brain). They are predominantly responsible for the neurological and emotional benefits of marijuana, as well as our sense of pain. CB2 receptors are more prominent in our peripheral nervous system (PNS, outer nerves beyond the spinal cord and brain, such as those in your arms and legs, but these receptors can also be present in our CNS) and your immune cells.
2. Endogenic cannabinoids: are the cannabinoids that your body produces.
3. Enzymes: These encourage the breakdown and use of cannabinoids.
Our natural endocannabinoids work on demand, which means that when our body feels inflammation or needs to return to homeostasis (a stable state of balance), it releases endocannabinoids that bind to cannabinoid receptors.
CBD does not bind to receptors but is believed to function by inducing other components of the cannabinoid system.
Body Chemistry Matters:
In fact, CBD has a wide range of effects on the central and peripheral nervous systems of the body, as well as on the immune system. It acts in combination with our endocannabinoid mechanism to serve as an antioxidant, to minimize inflammation and to act as a pain reliever. CBD can also slow down the development of osteoarthritis and avoid nerve damage.
Because of the way the endocannabinoid mechanism operates, the bioavailability of CBD is a significant factor in how you react. Bioavailability is the quantity of a substance that has successfully penetrated into the bloodstream and has an effect. Think of how certain medicines need you to take them with food or drink, or on an empty stomach. The amount of CBD that you really ingest when you take a CBD product depends on:
- The type of food you take: For example, CBD edibles may be better absorbed when taken with food, particularly fatty foods.
- Your weight and cannabis tolerance: Like any drug or medication, you may want to take CBD as per your weight. However, two individuals of the same sex and weight can react very differently to the same dose due to factors such as metabolism, body structure and history of use of marijuana products. A conventional rule of thumb is to start with a small dosage, such as 2 mg, and increase by 2 to 5 mg after weeks. The product you prefer will also matter to you. For example, edibles take more time for your body to digest, and you do not experience the results for hours. In the situation of edibles, it is sufficient to select 1 dosage per attempt and not take more if you do not notice the results after 3 to 4 complete hours.
- Your habits: Whether you’ve eaten, slept, or been nervous, it can all influence how the body reacts to CBD.
How to Use Hemp Oil for Pain?
Hemp CBD oil is accessible as a liquid or as a capsule. CBD oils are also available in ways such as cartridges that allow consumers to vaporize them. Below we’ll explain the various forms and how to use hemp oil for pain relief.
Orally: You can add hemp oil to your diet or drink and consume orally. This can take longer for the body to digest, based on things like your weight, your appetite, or the food you’ve consumed. It can take between 15 minutes and 2 hours. CBD oil is also present in pill form, and you can consume them the same way as you would take vitamins. Just take the capsule and consume it with water.
Sublingually: Taking hemp oil under the tongue is one of the easiest ways to feel the benefits. The active ingredients (CBD and other cannabinoids) are diluted straight into the bloodstream and take between 5 and 15 minutes. However, you’ll need to get used to the flavour.
Topically: You can infuse lotions with hemp oil so that they can be applied directly to areas of discomfort. You can reduce pressure and inflammation and treat stiff, achy joints by applying locally. The therapeutic salve is also often available, which is also applied directly to the body.
Finding an Effective Dose:
Finding the correct dosage will require a little trial-and-error. While patients may start with as little as 2.5 to 5 mg CBD, most patients begin with doses as high as 100 mg for oral administration (although possibly less).
The same recommendation goes for THC and CBD. Start low and go slow. If you do not feel relief at 25 mg, increase your dosage steadily by 5 or 10 mg amounts until you find your balance point. Some patients need up to 200 mg a day or more. You also might want to consider using CBD oil with THC as many professionals say that the two compounds function better together than on their own.
Advantages of Utilizing Hemp Oil for Pain Relief:
More than 5,000 published medical and scientific reports have demonstrated the health effects of CBD. And we have listed five unique benefits of hemp’s natural constituent – CBD, for pain and muscle recovery.
1. Hemp oil can minimize inflammation of the muscles:
CBD can help reduce inflammation, making it a vital component of post-workout healing, because rubbing ice to avoid or reduce inflammation after a workout is not enough. Those who work hard or are athletes require more pain relief. That’s when the CBD comes into play. You will reduce the inflammation that has already arisen by inhaling, ingesting, or adding hemp oil to the skin, providing you with faster healing time. According to the research, CBD prevents some inflammatory compounds, decreases healing time, and reduces stress and inflammation in the tissues.
2. CBD is helpful to limit muscle stress:
Post-workout muscle pain is typically an indicator of tissue damage. If this has been occurring to you, you know how traumatic it can be. So intense that you need to take something to help reduce the discomfort. Many athletes resort to muscle relaxers for this kind of pain. These muscle relaxers are benzodiazepine medications that have side effects such as depression, shaking, dizziness, confusion, and sedation. On the other hand, CBD is thought not to cause any side effects and is all-natural. CBD is useful for the management of post-workout muscle pain.
3. Hemp oil can help to alleviate pain:
CBD is believed to be an effective painkiller. A natural alternative, CBD can relieve pain by three pathways by blocking the propagation of pain in the brain and spinal cord, decreasing inflammatory messenger activity, and reducing muscle ache sensitivity.
4. CBD can improve sleep:
Sleep is essential for good health, including muscle healing. With quality sleep, you can enhance your fitness level by recovering your muscles. The body goes through many processes during sleep, including repairing damaged proteins, eliminating cell debris, transforming lactic acid to glucose in the liver, and stimulating stem cells’ differentiation into muscle fibres. On the other hand, sleep deprivation can advance cortisol levels, reduce the insulin growth factor, and reduce testosterone production. CBD can help with these processes, resulting in better sleep quality.
5. Hemp oil can improve energy levels:
For fitness lovers and athletes, being in low energy can be harmful to them. CBD acts in combination with its endocannabinoid pathway with its cannabinoids to maintain and control the body’s normal equilibrium or homeostasis. This process ensures steady, increased energy, helping you to perform more efficiently.
Although research on the effectiveness of hemp oil as a natural pain reliever is still in its early stages, several studies have demonstrated that hemp oil’s active ingredient – CBD, can help alleviate pain. Many cannabis (hemp) patients often swear by CBD as an antidote to commonly used artificial, potentially addictive painkillers.
Although there is no ideal form of hemp for pain relief, many people think that vaping CBD or using CBD sublingually is the fastest way to get started. Both have a combination of ease of use, comfort and optimum absorption.
To get the most out of CBD as a form of pain relief, begin with a mild dose and change your use depending on your body’s reaction. With time, you may find that hemp can help you alleviate chronic pain more efficiently than other alternatives.
Bear in mind that while CBD can have certain advantages, it is not a cure-all and should not be used as an alternative to other pain-care therapies. Instead, CBD should be considered as a supportive drug to add to your pain relief toolbox.