Is Using CBD for Arthritis a Good Idea?


woman rubbing sore neck with a marijuana leaf imposed

CBD oil contains extracts from cannabis plants. Recent studies suggest that it could play a role in relieving pain linked to chronic conditions like arthritis. However, there are many questions on whether CBD for arthritis is effective.  what the correct dose is, and whether there are side effects or not; all of these need some answers.

What is CBD & How Can It be a Helpful Remedy for Arthritis?

Also known as cannabidiol, CBD is one of the many cannabinoids that are found in the cannabis plants like hemp and marijuana. This chemical compound works by interacting with the endocannabinoid system to help with conditions like pain, sleep disorder, anxiety, and more.

Unlike medical marijuana, CBD is non-psychoactive, meaning that it doesn’t get you high. This is because it doesn’t contain a large portion of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) which is a chemical compound found in marijuana that makes people high.

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CBD has been linked to several health benefits, one of them being arthritic pain management. Arthritis has been associated with many cases of disability in the United States, and it has two types:

  • Osteoarthritis (OA) – This is a common type of arthritis that is related to injury, overweight, and aging. This degenerative disease often affects the bones and joint cartilage including the knee, hip, and thumb joints.
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) – This type of arthritis is autoimmune which occurs when the immune system attacks the joints, particularly the thin tissue lining. RA usually affects the joints of the hands and feet, causing them to be warm, swollen, and red.

In both cases, CBD can be used to alleviate joint pain without any evident side effect. As for OA, research has shown that CBD can relieve the pain, damage, and inflammation that comes with it. On the other hand, patients of RA benefit from pain alleviation and reduced immune damage. This is because CBD also acts as an immunosuppressive agent.

Taking a Deep Dive: How CBD Interacts with the Human Body?

Although research for CBD continues, it has been determined that it reduces pain both directly and indirectly. After interacting with the human endocannabinoid system, CBD attaches to the cannabinoid receptors found in the body. 

It specially attaches to the CB1 and CB2 receptors. The CB2 receptor particularly plays a role in the immune system in terms of managing inflammation and pain.

Researchers also believe that CBD can produce natural cannabinoids that may attach to the CB2 receptors. They believe that when it enters the body, CBD can affect how the receptors respond to the signals they get. This may help in the reduction of pain and inflammation. 

Moreover, CBD can work by altering the shape of the receptor juts a little bit. This change prevents the transmission of pain to the brain. 

What Do the Researchers Say?

There are several animal studies that suggest CBD can be used for arthritis pain. According to a 2017 study that was published in the Journal of Pain, CBD was found to reduce joint inflammation and pain in rats. The study found that it helped with symptoms of pain and neuropathy in the rats.

A 2006 study found that a CBD mouth spray known as Sativex helped alleviate arthritis pain. Additionally, a 2018 compilation of studies showed that there is a large body of evidence suggesting that CBD can be used for different clinical conditions like pain, sleep disorder, inflammation, and others. 

According to a 2019 review by Harvard Health Publishing, studies on CBD have reportedly revealed how CBD hinders neuropathic pain and chronic pain. The Harvard Health Report also suggests that CBD applied on the skin could help lower inflammation and pain that is associated with arthritis. 

However, the report says that there’s a need for more human studies to establish the effects of CBD for arthritis. More studies are also required to establish a safe and correct CBD dose for arthritis patients.

Best CBD Products for Arthritis to Look Out for

CBD comes in various forms including CBD oils, creams, gummies, and tinctures. You can search online review for each item to understand their benefits, side effects and more. Also, you will be aware of the best cbd brands out there in the market as most of the reviews are unbiased specially if they are from reputed website or blog.

How to Use CBD for Arthritis Relief

Because of the wide variety of CBD products, it may not be very clear how to properly apply CBD for arthritis patients.

Arthritis patients can get great relief by taking CBD oils which offer long-lasting relief. It is highly recommended to take CBD oil products sublingually under the tongue as it has a higher rate of absorption than taking CBD products orally. 

While CBD gummies come in precise doses, they may have long-term effects and bioavailability problems. This makes it difficult for the body to use and absorb all the CBD content found in them.

People with arthritis can also apply CBD creams or take CBD as oral spray or in its capsule form. In addition, it has been found that combining different CBD products can provide greater relief for arthritis patients. For instance, you can combine a CBD oil with CBD cream for enhanced effectiveness.

In terms of the dosage, experts suggest starting with a low dose and see if you experience results. If not, slowly increase the dose weekly. 

Are There Any Side Effects Involved with CBD for Arthritis

Some studies have shown that most people tolerate CBD well. However, some users report mild side effects like:

  • Dry mouth
  • Drowsiness
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Change in weight
  • Change in appetite

Before taking CBD, it is important to consult your doctor, especially if you are taking it alongside certain medications. This is because it may interfere with prescribed medications and over-the-counter dietary supplements.

Final Thoughts

Although CBD oil is still a topic for research, it is still considered an effective and safe treatment for arthritis. High quality CBD oil affects the brain receptors to reduce pain and inflammation that are linked to arthritis. For best results, it is advised to take a tincture sublingually and slowly increase your dosage until you attain your desired effect. 

 

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