Arthritis affects about 54 million adults in the U.S., and those are just the ones who have been officially diagnosed by a doctor. Once thought to be a consequence of getting old, arthritis is now known to impact people of all ages, including approximately 300,000 infants and children in the U.S. Some people take NSAIDs, anti-inflammatory drugs, steroids, or even opiates to treat their arthritis, but more natural options are available. One treatment that’s showing tremendous promise is cannabidiol, or CBD.
CBD is extracted from the cannabis plant. It’s completely separate from THC (the psychoactive compound in cannabis), so it doesn’t get the user high. According to a growing body of research, CBD may be an excellent option for remedying inflammation, chronic pain, and arthritis.
One 2016 study published in the European Journal of Pain has proven especially intriguing. For four days, researchers gave a topical CBD gel to laboratory rats. The researchers noticed a substantial drop in inflammation and pain signals, and the rats experienced no side effects. Although the study was done on animals, it reinforces the conclusions of many earlier studies indicating that CBD relieves pain and inflammation. The researchers ultimately concluded that “topical CBD application has therapeutic potential for relief of arthritis pain-related behaviors and inflammation without evident side effects.”
For anyone interested in trying a CBD preparation for their arthritis and inflammation, a number of delivery methods are available. The following may be some of the most effective for arthritis pain:
The aforementioned study recommended topical treatments as being especially effective for arthritis treatment, as the pain is localized and the treatment is more bioavailable than other delivery methods. The only disadvantage is that lotions are applied to the surface of the skin, so they don’t penetrate as deeply or work as long. Frequent applications are recommended.
Vape oils are heated and consumed through a vape pen or other vaporizer device. The advantage is that they work almost instantly; the vapor bypasses the liver and is absorbed straight into the respiratory system, where the receptors are transferred throughout the body. This method requires that you already have vaping equipment and a basic understanding of how the vaping process works, so it may not be ideal for casual users. For those who already enjoy vaping, though, CBD vape oils may be the optimal way to go.
Like vape oils, edibles are known to have long-lasting results. They do take longer to work, though, so it’s important to note that the results are not instantaneous. When combined with lotions, CBD edibles may enhance the relief and provide more noticeable results.
Find the Method That Works for You
No two people are exactly alike, so it may be a good idea to explore different CBD products and determine which ones are ideal for your convenience and comfort level and which ones provide the best results. The research continues to reveal exciting things about CBD’s potential for arthritis treatment, and it may be a worthwhile pursuit for anyone who’s tired of living with chronic pain.