Are you often unwell and sick and feel the need to take anti-inflammatories regularly? If so, moving to an alternative medical treatment with CBD may be beneficial. Check out the anti-inflammatory benefits of CBD detailed in this article.
A vast number of us resort to common anti-inflammatories like Ibuprofen when experiencing back pain, headaches, or a cramp in our leg. However, are you aware there is another option that can help?
When it comes to relieving pain or combating inflammation, CBD oil and other CBD-based products can provide relief comparable to other prescription or over-the-counter medication. Indeed, users have experienced such satisfaction with CBD-based products that many have even given up the use of stronger pain-killer drugs like Vicodin.
What is CBD?
As you may already know, CBD is a naturally occurring cannabinoid found in cannabis. Though part of the plant, CBD does not have the same psychoactive properties found in THC – another popular, naturally occurring cannabinoid.
To put it in another way, CBD offers several of the medical benefits of THC, but minus the euphoric effects that THC users expect. CBD users have vouched that CBD-infused products help them cope with most everyday health problems like pain, anxiety, etc.
The CBD & Inflammation Connection
CBD’s pain-reducing benefits stem from its anti-inflammatories properties. The human nervous system contains two cannabinoid receptors known as CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are located mainly in the spinal cord and brain, triggers sleep and appetite, and influences memory, mood, and perception. In contrast, CB2 receptors are simply a part of the human immune system.
Early researchers were of the opinion that CB1 receptors reacted to THC, while CBD triggered them to ward off inflammation as part of the normal immune response of the body. However, more advanced studies have disputed this claim.
More recent research has proven that THC is able to trigger both CB1 and CB2 receptors while CBD does not have any interaction with either receptor whatsoever. However, CBD activates other receptors in the body including Seratonin, Vanilloid, and Adenosine receptors.
When activating these receptors, CBD assists in controlling pain, temperature, inflammation, etc in the human body. Additionally, CBD is able to limit the ability of THC in activating the body’s CB1 receptors. This helps control the ‘euphoric’ effect of cannabis consumption.
What About Regular Anti-Inflammatories?
While CBD is a great anti-inflammatory, why should you switch from your regular, traditional anti-inflammatories to a CBD-based product?
In most cases, over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication like naproxen and ibuprofen should be fine when dealing with severe pain. However, what happens when you are forced to take these medications consistently? Reports show that more than 15% of users end up over-consuming these medications. When this happens, a serious side-effect is not a long way off!
Studies have shown that over-consumption of anti-inflammatories and Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatories can lead to serious health problems.
Why are Anti-Inflammatories Effective?
Anti-inflammatories block COX-1 and COX-2 enzymes in the body. These enzymes trigger a hormone called prostaglandins which is the trigger for inflammation and pain signals.
What are the Long-Term Effects?
The disadvantage of using traditional anti-inflammatories to block enzymes like COX-1 over an extended period of time is the exposure of the stomach to ulcers and bleeding. This is because, besides triggering inflammation, prostaglandins also plays a critical role in protecting the stomach lining from the acid present in the stomach.
Long-term NSAID users are vulnerable to gastrointestinal problems, ulcers, and injuries to their small intestine. A study has concluded that more than 70% of people taking NSAIDs for more than 3 months suffered from visible injuries in their small intestine that ranged from minor abrasions to severe ulcers.
What are the Long-Term Effects of CBD?
Long-term use of NSAIDs have some serious side-effects, but what about CBD? What are the side-effects of using CBD over an extended period?
Despite the fact that the popularity of CBD in terms of pain-relief and its anti-inflammatory properties is growing, it is still not considered as a mainstream treatment. Though studies are underway every day, there is still no specific research that looks into the long-term effects of using CBD for its pain-relieving properties.
However, it can be safely concluded that, unlike traditional painkillers, CBD is not an addictive drug. Also, there are no apparent, unpleasant side-effects that come with CBD consumption. There have also been no reports so far of people having fatally overdosed while using CBD.
Using CBD to Fight Inflammation
When it comes to fighting inflammation, CBD can be consumed in a variety of forms while benefiting from its pain-alleviating properties. These include oil, capsules and soft gels, edibles like gummies, smokables, creams, and topicals, etc.
Vaping or smoking CBD allows users to feel the effects almost immediately. This is perhaps the most direct form of consuming CBD. An alternative is to use a CBD-based cream or topical. A number of users also prefer creams and topicals as they can be applied instantly to the painful spot.
Consuming CBD orally, like CBD oil, a soft gel, capsule, or through edibles like gummies also work, though the effects are not felt as directly due to the time taken in the digestion process. A number of users are of the opinion that the effects of CBD are a bit weaker when consumed in this fashion.
That said, the oral consumption of CBD is not a waste. Far from it. CBD can be safely consumed orally as a preventive measure. Users can turn to other forms of CBD when required to deal with severe pain.
CBD products that are derived from Hemp and contain less than the prescribed .3 percent of THC are legal per federal law. However, certain state laws may still deem it illegal.
CBD products that are derived from Marijuana are illegal per federal law but remain legal under laws of certain states.