Is CBD Oil Good For Arthritis? Here’s What The Science Says
Is CBD oil good for arthritis? It seems to be a question on a lot of people’s minds. After all, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 67 million in America will be diagnosed with arthritis by 2025.
Numerous studies have already drawn attention to the anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties of cannabidiol (CBD). If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance that you or someone you know has arthritis. There are dozens of varieties, the common ones being rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, gout, and osteoarthritis.
This chronic condition makes day-to-day life more challenging, if not intolerable. Constant pain in your hands, knees, hips, jaw, and joints isn’t what you signed up for, but neither is being fogged out on painkillers for days on end. Luckily, there’s hopeful research to suggest an alternative to opioids—CBD for arthritis pain.
Is CBD oil good for arthritis?
Before we go any further, let’s be clear: CBD oil could help folks living with acute to severe arthritis. What’s the catch?
For starters, there’s not a whole lot of testing going on with human test subjects. The bulk of what we have comes from animal studies, specifically from rats with induced arthritis. Results from these studies suggest that CBD topicals may reduce swelling and inflammation.
The lack of FDA oversight means that there are no clinical guidelines to inform dosage, according to the Arthritis Foundation. So, what does that mean for CBD for arthritis?
Nothing’s been ruled out and the preliminary research is beyond hopeful.
Evidence of effectiveness of CBD for arthritis
In 2017, researchers gathered once more to test the effect of CBD topicals on rats induced with osteoarthritis. For the first time, this study showed that CBD inhibited pain and inflammatory response in rats with established osteoarthritis.
You might not find this news as exciting as we do, because rats? Ew. Obviously, human-based trials still need to happen before we draw any further conclusions, but listen to this: CBD is well-tolerated in humans and has a small side effect profile.
This matters because CBD has the potential to help wean people off of opioids for chronic pain. We’re not saying it’s strong enough to replace painkillers, but for now, CBD research is showing promise.
How does CBD work for helping with chronic pain?
Your body naturally produces endocannabinoids and works to maintain homeostasis, thanks to the ECS (endocannabinoid system). The ECS is a collection of receptors, enzymes, and proteins throughout the body, diffused throughout the central nervous system and immune system.
The ECS modulates processes such as sleep, appetite, mood, and chronic pain. Understanding the potential benefits of CBD for arthritis is impossible without a brief biology lesson. It turns out that the ECS is the place to look when it comes to assessing pain associated with osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
There are two main receptors in the ECS: CB1 and CB2. Researchers know that THC makes people “high” because it binds to CB1 receptors in the central nervous system. CBD doesn’t work the same. Instead, CBD has an agonizing effect on CB1 and CB2 receptors, which means it slows down chronic inflammatory responses. How it works is still under debate in the scientific community.
In the meantime, you can try a broad-spectrum CBD tincture, such as NYOS, for potential pain relief. As always, we recommend you speak to your doctor if you’re considering CBD for arthritis, especially if you’re taking prescribed medications.
To sum it up
Anecdotal evidence suggests that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel for people managing arthritis pain with CBD. We still need clinical trials with humans to understand how CBD reduces joint and bone pain.
In the meantime, you can experiment with CBD at home to test its effectiveness and form your own opinion. CBD isn’t a cure-all solution, but the promise of a brighter future where people have access to affordable therapies is enough to make us feel hopeful.
How long does it take for CBD to work on joint pain?
It depends on how you take CBD. If you smoke it, the effects could be immediate. With topicals, joint pain could ease up within minutes. These products also tend to feature cooling ingredients like menthol to enhance the pain-relieving effects of CBD.
How to use CBD oil for pain?
You can try CBD topicals for localized relief or CBD tinctures for improved wellbeing. The way you consume CBD matters, based on how the liver metabolizes and reduces CBD concentration. That said, topical and sublingual delivery methods for pain could be more beneficial than edibles.
What are the pros and cons of CBD oil for pain?
Pros: Using CBD oil for pain could provide relief from throbbing, pulsing, shooting, or stabbing arthritis-like pain. Additionally, people with chronic pain may find that CBD is more favorable than opioids.
Cons: Research is far too early to say anything for sure.