In recent years, CBD has enjoyed tremendous popularity, frequently mentioned in the media and appearing in products ranging from ice cream to lotion. What exactly is CBD, and why is it being hailed as a miracle ingredient?
CBD, the abbreviation for cannabidiol, is one of many active chemical compounds found in the hemp plant and cannabis plant. While CBD is a prevalent component in cannabis plants, it is not psychoactive, so it does not get people high when used.
Because of this, CBD is an increasingly popular choice for people seeking pain relief without the habit-forming nature and side effects of marijuana or prescription drugs.
Research on the use of CBD for pain management has shown promise, particularly when used topically, such as a cream, oil and/or bath soak. Researchers believe that CBD interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, or ECS, which is an internal signaling system. The ECS produces our own cannabinoids, which send signals to the body in relation to moods, digestion, and pain. CBD works with the ECS by naturally boosting the production of cannabinoids, which creates pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory responses.
A study from the European Journal of Pain showed, using an animal model, CBD applied on the skin could help lower pain and inflammation due to arthritis. Another study demonstrated the mechanism by which CBD inhibits inflammatory and neuropathic pain, two of the most difficult types of chronic pain to treat.
Researchers in Serbia looked at over 1,000 studies on the effectiveness of CBD for pain that had been done between 1975 and 2018. They found that CBD is not only effective in treating cancer pain, chronic pain, and neuropathic pain, but that it does not have any adverse side effects. Another study done by the European Journal of Pain found that CBD decreases inflammation caused by pain, primarily by inhibiting neuropathic pain — widely considered one of the most difficult types of pain to manage.
Being that inflammation is one of the leading contributors to back pain, CBD — particularly in a topical form such as a cream or oil — is a highly effective option for people who suffer from chronic or severe back pain.