Topical CBD Compounds for Chronic Pain Treatment

Posted on: 1 March 2017

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Topical CBD compounds have been explored regarding treatment for chronic pain. CBD is a by-product of both hemp and marijuana, but because it can be distilled from hemp, it is considered legal in most states. Topical CBD compounds are believed to reduce both pain and inflammation, which can be useful for many diseases -- but studies are still being conducted.

Topical CBD Ointments and Creams

CBD is distilled from hemp and then used in topical ointments and creams. It is believed to warm the area, stimulating blood flow. Many studies have also shown that it will reduce inflammation, making it particularly useful for joint problems such as arthritis. However, the mechanisms by which CBD dulls pain and are still somewhat mysterious. CBD is not a psychoactive part of marijuana; it does not cause any mood altering effects. Thus, CBD ointments and creams can be used without any type of impairment. CBD is also not known to have any serious side effects as a consequence of overdosing. 

Proper CBD Dosing

CBD products are generally rated as a number of milligrams per volume. As an example, a topical ointment could have 500 milligrams per eight ounces. The dosing of CBD purely depends on the individual and their level of pain, but it should be noted so that the individual can maintain medical treatment even if they switch to a different type of topical. When looking at CBD products, patients should always look for products that have been laboratory tested. Otherwise there may not be as much CBD as the product claims. 

CBD:THC Ratios 

Though CBD alone has been thought to be effective against chronic pain, other studies have shown that some amount of THC is also beneficial. Some studies suggest a one to one ratio of CBD:THC may actually be more effective than CBD alone. But because THC is a controlled substance in many states, topical compounds usually cannot be found there. In states where medical marijuana is legal, topical compounds including THC are often sold directly at dispensaries. THC generally cannot be absorbed through the skin in quantities high enough to mentally affect a patient.

Because CBD is still a component of marijuana, the laws have been shifting regarding its use. It's important for patients to check with their doctors for more information before beginning to use these types of products, both to make sure they won't interfere with their treatment and to make sure that it is legal in their area.