Did you know that the number one reported condition for medical marijuana cards is pain? In Colorado, 92% of patients, over 86,000 people, use cannabis to treat their chronic pain. Research on CBD and pain management has shown great promise and people are increasingly turning to cannabinoid therapy as the harms of opioids garner more attention and scrutiny.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 116 people died every-day from opioid-related drug overdoses in 2016. Forty percent of these deaths involved a prescription opioid and in 2017, the government declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency. Opioids are prescribed by health care providers as a way to manage and treat pain. But what if there was a better solution?
Why people are turning to CBD oil for pain
People are turning to CBD oil to treat their pain more and more. Whether acute to chronic, pain can be located in different areas of the body and may be experienced at different intensities. This may call for different types of treatment that are more comprehensive than swallowing a prescription pill. CBD can be applied topically or consumed orally. Furthermore, CBD can be taken sublingually, smoked, eaten, or vaporized, depending on the product. In this way, CBD can treat pain very specifically. For some, a sore muscle on your lower back may feel better after using a CBD patch. For others, a headache might respond well to a CBD tincture. Pain is a universal feeling, but we respond differently and our bodies react in different ways depending on our overall health. The variety of ways in which CBD is consumed allows customers to pick a method based on their specific condition and their personal preference. For example, someone with sensitive lungs who doesn’t like smoking may prefer treating their pain with CBD capsules. Someone who takes a lot of pills, in general, may enjoy the experience of vaporizing. CBD is a naturally occurring chemical compound found in the cannabis and hemp plants. It does not produce the difficult side effects that those on prescription opioids commonly experience.
What symptoms people are seeking relief from
People seek CBD products to treat all different types of pain. Common conditions treated include anxiety, arthritis, cancer, inflammation, seizures, and more. CBD binds to the endocannabinoid system creating the desired analgesic effects, but without the addictive or disruptive side-effects of opioids.
Chronic pain can be nociceptive or neuropathic. Nociceptive pain is the most common and is caused by tissue damage and inflammation. It’s characterized by throbbing, aching, and sharp pain. Neuropathic pain is caused by damage to the nervous system and can feel like stabbing, burning, or tingling pain. Studies on cannabinoids and pain demonstrate that CBD can treat both types of pain.
The author of a Harvard-led systematic review of 28 studies examining the efficacy of exo-cannabinoids (cannabinoids formed outside of the body, i.e. from the plant or synthetically made) to treat pain and other medical issues concluded, “the use of marijuana for chronic pain, neuropathic pain, and spasticity due to multiple sclerosis is supported by high-quality evidence.”
All of the studies that examined general chronic pain and neuropathic pain found significant improvement in symptoms among patients. In addition, a 2016 University of Michigan study found that cannabis reduced use of opioids on average by 64% and improved quality of life.
Anecdotal evidence from patients is becoming increasingly widespread as well. Morgan Freeman suffers from pain and he was quoted saying, “I have fibromyalgia pain in my arm and the only thing that offers any relief is marijuana.” Whoopi Goldberg also uses cannabis to treat her daily pain from glaucoma and has even launched a line of medical cannabis products geared towards women suffering from menstrual pain.
In an interview with the Herald Times Online, Dr. Gary Gettelfinger, who practices out of the Indiana University Health Pain Center, said he is thrilled with Indiana’s new law allowing CBD to be legally sold in Indiana. “I’m excited for my patients,” Gettelfinger said. “The fact of the matter is, (CBD) is working, and nothing good ever came without a fight.”
Using CBD for pain is personal and requires patience as you determine the best form of consumption for you. If you’re new to the world of CBD, talking with other patients is a great way to get information about products and to connect with a community of like-minded individuals. Some companies offer money-back guarantees if you’re not satisfied with the product. This may be a great way to comfortably try products. We believe that one critically important criteria when shopping for CBD products are considering the quality of the hemp or cannabis used and whether or not the product has been lab tested. You can learn more at CannaInsider.com/reviews.