According to a survey, about 55 million adults have been diagnosed with arthritis. The disease occurs due to inflammation of the joints. Arthritis can affect one or more joints in different regions of your body. The most common arthritis symptoms are joint pain, stiffness, swelling, and even decreased mobility. The symptoms of arthritis can appear when there is a reduction in the typical amount of cartilage tissue.
Recent studies have brought to our knowledge that cannabinoids can be very beneficial in managing inflammation and pain related to arthritis. This discovery has made topical CBD supplements like CBD Creams and oils quite popular among patients. This article explores the credibility of such studies and discusses how CBD cream is beneficial for arthritis.
Osteoarthritis, one of the most common form of arthritis, occurs when the natural breakdown rate of the cartilage tissues gets aggravated due to injury or infections. Another common type of arthritis is Rheumatoid arthritis. It is an autoimmune disorder that occurs when the body's immune system automatically attacks and breaks down the cartilage tissue in the joints.
The usual symptoms of arthritis are:
Redness and swelling around the joints
Stiffness and reduced functionality of the joints
Patients with Rheumatoid arthritis may experience loss of appetite, fatigue, anemia, and fever.
Treatment of arthritis primarily involves managing pain and improving joint function. Doctors usually prescribe pain-relieving drugs and immunosuppressants to reduce joint inflammation. Physiotherapy is also beneficial. But when the disease becomes severe, the patient may have to undergo surgery like hip replacement.
Recent investigations also suggest that CBD creams can have therapeutic effects. Let's see how CBD cream works to alleviate pain and inflammation associated with arthritis.
CBD cream is made from cannabinoids, an active ingredient obtained from the Cannabis Sativa plant. A carrier oil like coconut oil and hemp seed oil is blended with the CBD extract to make a thick cream.
The CBD cream is known to have various beneficial properties like anti-inflammatory properties, anti-microbial properties, antioxidants properties, etc., and is used to treat several diseases. Other botanical compounds are also often added to this cream to boost up its therapeutic potential. For instance, the CBD Cream from CBDNorth is infused with Rosehip, Jojoba, and Calendula oil that boosts its healing properties.
Besides the cannabinoid obtained from plants (phytocannabinoids), it is also present in all mammalian bodies as a part of a complex biological system called the Endocannabinoid System or ECS.
The ECS has been a topic of extensive research over the past few decades. Experts have found it to be associated with almost all vital bodily functions. They found that the ECS correlates to our cardiovascular system, immune system, central and peripheral nervous system, digestive system, mood and memory, and bones and joints.
As per studies, the endocannabinoid system is associated with the pathophysiology of rheumatoid arthritis. Scientists also found that the erratic behavior of the endocannabinoid system can be correlated with the joint pain and inflammation associated with osteoarthritis.
Building on this notion, scientists have found that manipulating the ECS can have therapeutic effects on Rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. It has been seen that massaging topical CBD supplements like CBD creams or oil over affected areas can effectively help in managing the symptoms of arthritis.
The endocannabinoid system comprises two fundamental receptors: CB1 and CB2. The CB1 receptors are usually present in the central and peripheral nervous systems of our body. These receptors impact memory processing, motor control, and pain regulation in our bodies. The CB2 receptors are connected to the immune system and influence the inflammatory responses throughout our body.
As the CBD cream is applied to the areas of the body affected by arthritic pain and inflammation, it penetrates the skin layer and stimulates the endocannabinoid receptors associated with the skeletal system and immune system. Consequently, it alleviates joint inflammation and helps in relieving pain, thereby improving joint functions.
According to a survey, Arthritis affects about 54.4 million people in the United States alone. The Arthritis Foundation states that investigations conducted over the years have found anecdotal evidence which suggests that CBD can be very promising in managing arthritis. However, we only have animal studies to validate the findings.
A study was conducted, in the year 2000, on mice with laboratory-induced arthritis. Scientists found that oral CBD supplements work better than CBD cream in reducing the inflammatory responses associated with arthritis.
A study conducted in 2011 demonstrated that CBD could help relieve inflammatory pain in rats by manipulating the receptors that respond to the pain stimuli.
A study from 2016 concludes that topical CBD could have a remedial effect on pain and inflammation of arthritis. A year later, another animal study affirmed that CBD is a safe and valuable treatment alternative for arthritic joint pain.
We lack solid scientific evidence that will help us to understand how CBD can be beneficial for humans with arthritis. However, a small-scale study conducted in 2006 to assess the effectiveness of a Cannabis-based mouth spray called Sativex in arthritic pain concluded that CBD could help manage arthritis in humans.
CBD cream is usually well-tolerated by people of all skin types. However, some allergic reactions have been noticed in a few individuals. Thus, we always recommend performing a patch test on the inside of your elbows at least 24 hours before you start to use CBD cream for your arthritic pain. Chronic use of CBD supplements may also lead to side effects such as:
Nausea and vomiting
Change in appetite.
However, these side effects are less likely to occur when using Topical CBD.
The Food and Drug Association does not approve any CBD supplements like CBD cream and oil. Thus, you must be careful while choosing a CBD cream for treating arthritis. Though CBD and its products are legal to use in almost all Canadian provinces.
Research also suggests that CBD can adversely interact with certain drugs used for treating arthritis. We recommend you consult your physician before adopting CBD supplements if you are already under medications like corticosteroids, naproxen, tramadol, celecoxib, etc.
Investigations have shown that topical CBD can be very effective in managing arthritis-related joint pain and inflammation. However, all the evidence regarding its therapeutic effects is gathered from animal studies. Further research is necessary to understand the effectiveness of CBD in treating arthritis in humans.
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