3 Ways To Use CBD Salves & CBD Cream For Pain
Pain can stem from any number of sources, and sometimes it can be so bad that those suffering from it require some form of medical intervention to deal with it.
While some types of medications may be mild in nature, others can come with some serious side effects, including addiction.
Opioids, for instance, have become a major epidemic in the country, with an estimated 130 Americans dying from an opioid overdose every day, according to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Thankfully, there is another more natural alternative to traditional pain medication that may be just as effective at treating pain, without all the potential side effects: cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive (meaning you won’t get “high”) cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant that’s mainly used for its purported health benefits.
While the cannabinoid may be consumed orally to take effect, what many do not know is that the cannabinoid can be administered as a topical, too.
CBD creams and salves are widely used by many to treat localized pain effectively without having to wait until it has been metabolized in the body.
Instead, the application of CBD creams and salves can take a more immediate effect in the area of discomfort, making it a potentially ideal treatment for many types of localized pain.
CBD salves and creams go straight to the source of discomfort, focusing its effects directly to that particular area, which makes this method of CBD delivery ideal for managing different types of pain.
How Do CBD Creams & Salves Work to Alleviate Pain?
CBD-infused topicals such as creams and salves work by interacting with the CB2 receptors of the endocannabinoid system.
These particular receptors are found all over the body in our endocannabinoid system (ECS), and when activated or interacted with by the naturally-occurring endocannabinoids in the body, they help to produce a specific response.
The ECS is tasked with regulating a number of important functions in the body, including pain — and when its receptors are interacted with, pain can be reduced.
Furthermore, it is not just the naturally-occurring endocannabinoids that can interact with these receptors; CBD can also influence receptor activity and therefore induce similar responses, including reducing pain.
Cannabis CBD can be introduced into the body orally via edibles, tinctures, vapes, and capsules, however, many have found relief from pain by applying CBD topically, which is said to help infuse the cannabinoid directly through the skin.
Once the CBD-infused topical is applied, the cannabinoid is absorbed through the skin and interacts with the CB2 receptors in the body to help alleviate any pain or discomfort experienced.
Since CBD-infused topicals don’t have to be broken down in the body and digested in order to impact local pain, this type of CBD product can be a reliable and effective means to treat pain right away.
When it is applied directly to the affected area, the CBD can take effect right at the source. CBD is a known anti-inflammatory agent, and can effectively alleviate any inflammation you may be experiencing at the site that may be causing the pain.
Here are some different types of pain that CBD creams and salves may be able to help treat.
Cannabis’ CBD can be used as a topical agent to target joints in the body that are experiencing arthritis pain. Arthritis is a disease that causes inflammation of the joints, including the knees, soldiers, and hands.
While there are over 100 different types of arthritis, the two most common types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. The most common symptoms of this condition include pain, stiffness, and swelling.
Approximately 54 million adults are diagnosed with arthritis, and while it mostly affects the older population, arthritis is sometimes also seen in children.
People who suffer from arthritis may choose to take various types of painkillers to help reduce pain, and others take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to also target inflammation.
However, patients may also use CBD to target their arthritic pain. Studies have shown that CBD may be able to reduce and even prevent this specific type of discomfort.
More specifically, researchers have found that the cannabinoid may help to reduce joint inflammation while also protecting the nerves in the process.
2. Muscle Soreness
As mentioned, muscle aches and pains can come from any number of sources, including exertion during intense exercise and athletic performance.
While muscle soreness is part and parcel of physical activity, it can be so uncomfortable and painful that it can impede performance and force active individuals to have to rest for longer periods of time in order to fully recover.
Muscle soreness occurs during intense bouts of training or participating in athletic events because of microscopic damage done to the muscle fibers, which leads to muscle soreness and stiffness.
Sometimes the pain can be so severe that some may opt to treat their discomfort with NSAIDs to reduce inflammation and ease pain from muscle soreness.
But muscle soreness may be combatted by incorporating CBD into one’s recovery regimen.
In fact, an increasing number of athletes are implementing CBD into their routines in an effort to help them get back to the court or playing field without having to be held captive by ongoing muscle aches.
3. Pain From Surgery
Post-surgery symptoms typically include pain and inflammation. If there are any incisions made, this can aggravate the tissues of the body and cause inflammation and pain at the site of incision.
That’s why is typical for surgeons and physicians to prescribe anti-inflammatory and pain medication to help ease these symptoms and the discomfort experienced in the hours and days following surgery.
But CBD may also be an effective supplement to include in one’s repertoire of pain and anti-inflammatory agents.
The cannabinoid’s anti-inflammatory properties can help ease the inflammation that often accompanies post-surgery symptoms, and its ability to reduce pain by interacting with the CB2 receptors of the endocannabinoid system can help minimize discomfort and the need to rely on traditional pharmaceuticals.
It should be noted, however, that CBD may interact with other medications, so it’s important to speak with a healthcare practitioner before mixing cannabis’ CBD with other medications that may be taken following a surgical procedure.
How to Use CBD Creams and Salves To Manage Pain
Before lathering on a huge dollop of CBD cream, it’s important to test a small patch on the skin with a limited amount of the topical product before until you feel the desired effects of relief from the affected area.
Starting with a smaller dose might also be best because you don’t know how your body will react to CBD if you’ve never consumed this cannabinoid before.
For starters, it’s always possible for you to experience an allergic reaction, not necessarily to the CBD but to any other ingredients that may be present in the product.
Be sure to read over the list of ingredients in your products and only choose ones that contain CBD and a simple base carrier, such as hemp seed oil or coconut oil.
CBD For the Win?
Ongoing research of CBD has shown that this particular cannabinoid has a number of different applications in the health and medical realms.
And while cannabis’ CBD may have initially been consumed through tinctures and vapes, CBD creams and salves are increasingly hitting the market and being implemented in people’s daily lives as a means to treat pain and inflammation.
Whether the pain you suffer from is a result of arthritis, chronic overuse, muscle exertion, or a surgical procedure, the cannabinoid may be an effective agent to use a topical format to target specific areas of discomfort.
Again, it’s always best to start with a small dose of CBD, then work your way up incrementally until you reach an amount that provides you with optimal results.