If you’re looking for a natural way to find some potential relief from aches and pains, CBD topical solutions might be just exactly what you’ve been looking for.
CBD works with the body’s own natural physiological activity by binding and activating several nervous receptors in the body, rather than masking them to help facilitate relief to those suffering from pain. CBD topical products work by penetrating the layers of the skin, which means you get the benefits and relief without actually ingesting anything sublingually. Let’s take a look at this popular CBD product and you can see if it is right for you!
What are CBD Topicals?
At this point, you’re probably wondering: What exactly is are CBD topicals? And how do they work?
These creams, gels and ointments are infused with cannabidiol (CBD), which is a compound in the cannabis plant that interacts with the body’s system. Unlike the cannabis compound THC, CBD is non-psychoactive but for some, it has been helpful in alleviating pain from things like muscle soreness and arthritis.
CBD ointments, roll on oils, and topical creams are made by infusing CBD with different types of emollients. The emollients vary by manufacturer. The oil is often blended with other therapeutic herbs and essential oils that are known for their pain relieving properties, creating an all-inclusive effect. For example, one of CBD for Life’s PURE CBD Rubs is infused with lavender essential oils to facilitate a calming effect on sore muscles.
How Do They Work?
Now that we know what these topical preparations are, let’s explore how exactly these unique products work.
It seems pretty crazy that something could bring about relief just by being rubbed into the skin–but this isn’t a new concept. There are plenty of ointments you can apply to the skin for pain relief, from prescription strength NSAIDs to milder gels and creams you can pick up over-the-counter at your local pharmacy.
Topical cbd products work by absorbing into the varying layers of the skin, as opposed to being absorbed transdermally. A topical application can be applied directly to the site of the discomfort for a more localized, targeted relief. A transdermal application on the other hand, means that the product enters the bloodstream by being applied on areas of the body with thin skin and veins close to the surface. Great spots for transdermal application include inside of the wrist and top of foot.
For those who are concerned with getting “high” as a result of using cannabis-based products, CBD topicals pose no risk of producing any psychoactive side effects from the small amounts of THC that sometimes come along with CBD.
The truth is, topical CBD for the use of pain relief is still a fairly new concept. While research continues to be done on this product, at this point, the method behind the madness is still a little bit fuzzy.
For some people, it has been helpful in reducing pain. Here are a few of the ways topical CBD achieves this:
The Endocannabinoid System
Hemp-derived products work by affecting the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) which regulates things like pain, hunger, mood, and memory. By elevating our natural levels of pain-relieving endocannabinoids, CBD is thought to provide relief from aches and pains.
Cannabis has long been recognized for its anti-inflammatory properties, so this doesn’t exactly come as much of a surprise. Inflammation usually happens as a result of some irritation or damage to the muscles somewhere, which causes us to feel pain. Some believe that CBD is able to work by quieting those signals, without stopping the healing process.
Desensitization of Pain Receptors
Last, but not least, is the idea that CBD interacts with your body’s natural pain receptors. The idea is that CBD hyper-activates them for a period of time, which causes them to become extremely, and then desensitized.
What the Research is Saying
What we know is limited, but as we said, the research continues to teach us more about what CBD can do for us in the world of pain relief. For a rat with arthritis, CBD worked. Will it have the same effect for you? We can’t say for sure, but we think it’s worth a shot. We’ll let you decide.
Here’s some of the research that’s been done on CBD and CBD topicals:
Can it Help Arthritis?
Topical products are meant to penetrate skin to varying depths and relieve muscle soreness and inflammation mainly associated with exercise or mild daily physical wear and tear.
For example, Mary’s Muscle Freeze product penetrates the first four layers of skin and provides a cooling effect while relieving muscle soreness from exercise. Mary’s Elite Compound penetrates 5 layers of skin and will help with soreness of arthritis. Mary’s Relief Cream is the “big dog” for chronic pain and penetrates all the way to the bone. All of these products are designed to be localized or targeted and have the ability to provide potential pain relief.
In 2015, researchers studied the use of topical CBD for pain and inflammation related to arthritis in a rat. During the study, CBD gel was applied for four days in varying strengths. The results showed that CBD was able to provide therapeutic effects for the rat. The kicker? It was able to do so without any psychoactive side effects, even though it worked by entering the bloodstream.
CBD and the Pain Receptors
As we mentioned earlier, there is a belief that CBD works by desensitizing the body’s pain receptors. Information has been published as recently as 2019 that supports this theory. Ultimately, the evidence shows that repeated treatment of CBD worked to relieve pain through the pain receptor TRPV1. The study also found that low-dose CBD had a positive impact on mood, reducing anxiety-related behaviors and influencing serotonin.
So, Should I Try a CBD Topical?
If you’re considering trying CBD, the general consensus is that overall–it’s pretty safe. And for the most part, experts don’t caution people away from trying it. That being said, if you’re not finding relief from some of the more common options out there, it might not hurt to give CBD topicals a shot.
In terms of effectiveness, the results for everyone will be different. You might experience the same results with your typical over the counter pain relief creams and ointments, but you also might find more relief from a CBD topical with less unwanted side effects.
That being said, one of the upsides to CBD-infused topicals is that they’re a natural alternative to other pain relief creams and ointments you would find in the pharmacy. If you check out the ingredients, the majority of them should be earth-based and organic – if they aren’t, we suggest maybe looking into buying from another brand. If you’re anything like us, the natural route is more comforting and feels safer than some products that contain a lot of chemicals and additives.
The great news is, there are a ton of options out there for you to sample. As always, do your research when it comes to determining which option is best suited to you and your symptoms. Here at More Than Hemp, we have CBD creams, ointments, and other topicals from a number of trustworthy brands and manufacturers.
Our goal is to educate you on the effects of CBD and the different CBD products on the market so that you can buy hemp derived CBD oil – and other CBD products easily and with confidence.
Disclaimer: These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. CBD products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The information presented on this website is not advice and is not a substitute for advice from a healthcare professional. Information provided does not constitute a professional relationship with Dr. Leigh Randa, PhD. Always consult with your doctor before combining CBD with your current treatments or medications. CBD should not be used as a substitute for medical treatment.