None of this is to say trying CBD is off limits. “Cannabidiol is generally well-tolerated, which gives it a distinct advantage over other medications currently available for pain, including (and especially) opioids, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, steroids, anticonvulsant, and antidepressant medications,” says Seth Waldman, MD, anesthesiologist and director of the pain management division at the Hospital for Special Surgery. “I have seen a number of patients with difficult neuropathic pain syndromes who found it helpful.” (There’s also a study on this neuropathic pain—that burning-like sensation that affects the nervous system as Craft mentioned earlier. Research showed, though weak, it had a positive effect.)
Phytocannabinoids are the herbal, natural and classical cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. The glandular structure called the trichomes is where the concentrated viscous resin of the plant is found. There are over 60 cannabinoids that have been isolated from the plant. Tetrahydracannabinol (THC), Cannabidiol (CBD) and Cannabinol (CBN) are the most prevalent ones and have also been the most studied. Cannabidiol (CBD) accounts for up to 40% of the plant’s extract. It has been widely reported that CBD offers the greatest possible benefits of any of the extracts found in the plant. CBD can also be derived from hemp. Hemp and cannabis both contain large amounts of natural CBD, but hemp is naturally low in THC; thus, making it easier for manufacturers to create high CBD-infused products with low to non-existent THC levels. Since THC is (mostly) still illegal in the United States, most CBD items we carry are derived from hemp. Each CBD product varies in the amount of CBD and THC levels found in the product. No items we carry are over the legal limit of THC levels, which is 0.3%, according to U.S. Federal Law.
A clinical endocannabinoid deficiency has been postulated to be operative in certain treatment-resistant conditions (Russo 2004), and has received recent support in findings that anandamide levels are reduced over controls in migraineurs (Sarchielli et al 2006), that a subset of fibromyalgia patients reported significant decreased pain after THC treatment (Schley et al 2006), and the active role of the ECS in intestinal pain and motility in irritable bowel syndrome (Massa and Monory 2006) wherein anecdotal efficacy of cannabinoid treatments have also been claimed.
Science has confirmed that cannabis is an effective pain reliever, reinforced in a massive new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. But there's a big difference between ingesting cannabis or its individual chemicals orally and absorbing it through your skin. Here, the lowdown on this new crop (no pun intended) of pain relievers.
I’ve found the physical sensation of this one — warm and a little tingly, thanks to additives like nettle — is especially comforting in-flight, since I have a tendency to get goosebumps in that over-air-conditioned environment. Plus, unlike other CBD skin oils that typically come with an eye dropper, this one has a nice pump bottle. (I also have a tendency to spill all over myself, on planes and in daily life).
The reason so many people are interested in cannabis products that don’t make them high, proponents say, is that CBD helps with everything from pain and nausea to rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, Crohn’s disease, and dementia. CBD is anti-inflammatory, anti-anxiety, antibacterial, immunosuppressive, and more, says Joseph Cohen, D.O., a cannabis doctor in Boulder, CO.
The endocannabinoid system is tonically active in control of pain, as demonstrated by the ability of SR141716A (rimonabant), a CB1 antagonist, to produce hyperalgesia upon administration to mice (Richardson et al 1997). As mentioned above, the ECS is active throughout the neuraxis, including integrative functions in the periacqueductal gray (Walker et al 1999a; Walker et al 1999b), and in the ventroposterolateral nucleus of the thalamus, in which cannabinoids proved to be 10-fold more potent than morphine in wide dynamic range neurons mediating pain (Martin et al 1996). The ECS also mediates central stress-induced analgesia (Hohmann et al 2005), and is active in nociceptive spinal areas (Hohmann et al 1995; Richardson et al 1998a) including mechanisms of wind-up (Strangman and Walker 1999) and N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors (Richardson et al 1998b). It was recently demonstrated that cannabinoid agonists suppress the maintenance of vincristine-induced allodynia through activation of CB1 and CB2 receptors in the spinal cord (Rahn et al 2007). The ECS is also active peripherally (Richardson et al 1998c) where CB1 stimulation reduces pain, inflammation and hyperalgesia. These mechanisms were also proven to include mediation of contact dermatitis via CB1 and CB2 with benefits of THC noted systemically and locally on inflammation and itch (Karsak et al 2007). Recent experiments in mice have even suggested the paramount importance of peripheral over central CB1 receptors in nociception of pain (Agarwal et al 2007)
I have a slightly bulging disc in my back that has been causing neuropathy in my left leg for years. I’ve had several rounds of trigger point injections; see a physical therapist regularly, and lately a chiropractor as well. The next step for me would be to try an epidural pain block. Several of my other doctors are big proponents of the “inflammation as a cause of disease” theory and have really encouraged me to do things to reduce inflammation. Omega-3 fatty acids in particular help with this (as most Americans consume a poor ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 which can increase inflammation.) Hemp products contain phytocannabinoids, a substance that can help decrease pain and inflammation. This is full spectrum hemp oil derived from hemp seeds—meaning it contains all of the phytocannabinoids and not just one in particular. This is NOT CBD (cannabidiol) oil, although based on my research it likely contains low levels of CBD. CBD is the substance produced from hemp flowers (a plant with little to no THC—the substance that causes a high) (or marijuana flowers—a plant in the same family with significant THC) that is widely known to have medicinal purposes in pain relief, stopping seizures, etc.
The 2016 European Journal of Pain conducted a study on rat models to test the effectiveness of CBD against arthritis in order to see if it could serve as an all-natural alternative to the typical arthritis pain medications, which are often tied with numerous uncomfortable and frustrating side effects. The rats were treated for 4 days with 4 different doses of CBD gel, and the results were quite staggering.