CBD for pain
CBD

CBD for pain management: Is it time to move away from opioids?

Pain is a challenging health condition to manage. Sometimes, it’s tough for both patients and doctors to understand the root cause and subsequent solution for the pain. All types of pains affect our body and mental state in many different ways. Even for an expert treating a person suffering from, let’s say, chronic pain may not be a cakewalk. The reasons are simple: each individual has a unique biology. They are born and brought up in different environments and have a different history. This is why it becomes an arduous task to get proper treatment. Sometimes, it takes years to get cured of a certain type of pain. But what if CBD can provide a solution to your pain? Let’s learn more.

Finding a proper treatment to manage pain

It’s tough to find a suitable pain reliever that guarantees 100 percent benefit and comes with negligible side effects. For years, people across the world used opioids to treat chronic pain. It benefited them but also came with consequences. Opioids are narcotic pain relievers that may cause addiction and nausea, drowsiness, mental confusion, constipation, and breathing issues. These challenges have forced healthcare experts and patients to look for safer alternatives that can replace opioids. This has given rise to the popularity of cannabidiol or CBD. Early user experiences suggest CBD works the best when it comes to pain management. Unlike opioids, it doesn’t cause high or intoxication, and it’s also not addictive. Anecdotal evidence says CBD can be a panacea for many health issues, including chronic pain, seizures, anxiety issues, depression, and sexual complications.

CBD oil for pain

Why should you use CBD oil for pain management?

Cannabinoid or CBD is extracted from a hemp plant, a variety of cannabis, or marijuana. For some people, it is like a ‘wonder drug’ with no psychoactive effects of opioids. People are not only amazed after experiencing complete recovery from pain using CBD but have also become its most vocal proponents. Animal studies have also proved the pain-relieving capabilities of CBD products. The US, Canada, the UK governments are easing curbs around cannabis, and more specifically, CBD, to understand it more deeply. This has also opened new doors for researchers and businesses to enter a new thriving medicine segment. 

Why are CBD and THC not the same?

Both CBD (Cannabidiol) and THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) are the leading compounds found in a cannabis family. CBD is extracted from hemp, while THC from cannabis. Hemp has negligible THC content (less than 0.3 percent), while cannabis has reasonably ‘high’ THC content. THC is responsible for causing high and intoxication. CBD has overtaken THC in popularity because of this reason only. Despite belonging to the same family of plants and having the same chemical formula, they work differently in our bodies. They also affect the same organism in our body called the Endocannabinoid system but in a different way. The body’s Endocannabinoid System regulates everything from your appetite, memory to sleep and even reproduction. CBD binds with Endocannabinoid to soothe the nervous system without giving you a high. It provides relief from consistent pain and helps you relax.

Why has CBD emerged as an attractive candidate?

There are little chances of its abuse because CBD is a non-psychoactive substance. This means that even if you consume it regularly, you will not be addicted. High-level research is indeed required to understand its overall effects fully. But there’s enough evidence to suggest CBD is an idea whose time has come. Ever since the US and other governments relaxed norms around cannabis, CBD is selling like hotcakes online and offline stores. From people suffering from mental health issues to chronic pain – it’s working for everyone. This has also led to widespread experimentation on a personal level.

People are trying CBD to treat almost everything from diabetes to depression and even cancer. The US FDA has already approved CBD as an adjunct therapy to treat patients who have epilepsy. Canada has given its nod to a combination of CBD and THC in a 1:1 ratio to treat a certain kind of neuropathic and cancer pain that’s not curable via other therapies.

How does CBD oil work as a pain reliever? 

CBD is the most prominent way to manage pain, including chronic pain. CBD oil interacts with all kinds of pain types in the same way. Those with acute pain who have undergone surgery or childbirth or some minor injury can use CBD oil to get instant relief. People suffering from chronic pain — which is any kind of pain lasting for over six months — have found it quite useful. Those who were suffering from mild to severe pain for several years have been able to recover.

People are also using CBD oil to recover from arthritis, headaches, and back pain. CBD has anti-inflammatory properties that help alleviate pain. Although most of these are personal experiences, there’s some evidence that points towards CBD’s authenticity. A study conducted by the American Society of Anesthesiologists said 75 percent of respondents who used CBD oil for pain relief got the desired result without any side effects. Over 75 percent of youngsters surveyed said they used CBD (or THC) oil for pain relief rather than opioid products.

CBD oil

If CBD is so good, why isn’t it sold like food?

CBD’s popularity has gone through the roof, thanks to some nations opening up towards cannabis, seeing its immense potential in treating various illnesses. But it’s also true that CBD is yet to gain the kind of acceptance it deserves. Its magical properties to treat major health issues have forced authorities to rethink about removing curbs. 

Despite its benefits, some claims also suggest that CBD could have potential risks to the liver. It can also interact with existing medications, which sometimes can do more harm than good. However, this is one area where more research is required. 

As governments move on to bring cannabis into the mainstream, CBD’s effects on children, senior citizens, and pregnant women also need to be studied thoroughly. In essence, CBD has immense potential, but the need is to have an open discussion around its impact on humans.

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