The Science Behind CBD Oil's Pain-Relieving Properties
16 May 2023
Cannabidiol, commonly known as CBD, is a naturally occurring compound found in the Cannabis Sativa plant.
Unlike its infamous cousin, Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is known for its psychoactive effects, CBD does not induce a "high." This key difference between CBD and THC is primarily due to their distinct interactions with the body's endocannabinoid system.
While THC binds directly with the cannabinoid receptors, leading to the well-known euphoric effect, CBD has a more indirect interaction, which contributes to its therapeutic benefits, including pain relief.
The Science of CBD
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a complex cell-signaling system in our bodies that plays a crucial role in maintaining physiological homeostasis. It is involved in regulating a wide range of functions, including mood, appetite, sleep, immune response, and pain sensation.
The ECS consists of endocannabinoids (naturally produced cannabinoids in the body), receptors, and enzymes. CBD interacts with this system not by binding directly to the receptors but by influencing them to utilize more of the body's own endocannabinoids.
In essence - when You are giving CBD to Your body, You are giving it the correct fuel to run in the best way. Even further, similar fuel exists in the body already, it just needs some stimulation!
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CBD and Pain Management
Pain can be broadly categorized into two types: acute and chronic. Acute pain is a direct response to injury or disease and usually subsides with treatment or over time. Chronic pain, on the other hand, persists for months or even years, often resistant to conventional treatments.
CBD oil alleviates pain by interacting with the ECS and other brain signaling systems. It reduces inflammation, a key contributor to both acute and chronic pain, and influences the receptors to manage the body's pain perception.
iCBD Global recommends the following products for pain management:
Research on CBD and Specific Types of Pain
Several studies have explored the potential of CBD in managing different types of pain.
For instance, research indicates that CBD may help reduce arthritis pain by decreasing inflammation.
Hammell, D. C., Zhang, L. P., Ma, F., Abshire, S. M., McIlwrath, S. L., Stinchcomb, A. L., & Westlund, K. N. (2016). Transdermal cannabidiol reduces inflammation and pain-related behaviors in a rat model of arthritis. European journal of pain (London, England), 20(6), 936–948.
In the case of neuropathic pain, which is often chronic and arises from nerve damage, CBD may help by interacting with the glycine receptors in the brain, which regulate the speed at which nerve signals pass between nerve cells.
Xiong, W., Cui, T., Cheng, K., Yang, F., Chen, S. R., Willenbring, D., Guan, Y., Pan, H. L., Ren, K., Xu, Y., & Zhang, L. (2012). Cannabinoids suppress inflammatory and neuropathic pain by targeting α3 glycine receptors. The Journal of experimental medicine, 209(6), 1121–1134.
Preliminary studies also suggest that CBD may help alleviate cancer-related pain, often considered one of the most challenging types of pain to manage.
Johnson, J. R., Burnell-Nugent, M., Lossignol, D., Ganae-Motan, E. D., Potts, R., & Fallon, M. T. (2010). Multicenter, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, parallel-group study of the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of THC:CBD extract and THC extract in patients with intractable cancer-related pain. Journal of pain and symptom management, 39(2), 167–179.
The Bioavailability of CBD
Bioavailability refers to the proportion of a substance that enters the bloodstream when introduced into the body and is able to have an active effect.
The method of CBD consumption significantly impacts its bioavailability and, consequently, its efficacy in pain relief.
For instance, inhalation provides a direct route into the bloodstream, offering high bioavailability and quick onset of effects.
In contrast, oral consumption has lower bioavailability due to the "first-pass effect," where the concentration of CBD is significantly reduced before it reaches systemic circulation.
Potential Side Effects and Risks of CBD Oil
While CBD is generally considered safe, it may cause side effects in some people, including fatigue, diarrhea, and changes in appetite or weight.
It can also interact with certain medications, potentially altering their effects.
Therefore, it's crucial to consult with a healthcare professional before starting CBD, especially for individuals on other medications or with underlying health conditions.
The Future of CBD for Pain Relief
Ongoing research continues to explore the potential of CBD for pain relief.
Future developments may include personalized CBD treatments, where the dosage and method of administration are tailored to an individual's specific needs and conditions. As our understanding of CBD and its interaction with the body's endocannabinoid system deepens, we may be on the cusp of a new era in pain management.
Team iCBD Global