Why Topical CBD May Be A Better Option
You can take an extract, or swallow a pill … there are so many different ways to take CBD, but some people find CBD is best applied directly to the skin.
We were curious to learn more about why some CBD consumers are choosing topical applications, such as lotions over other forms of this supplement and found a surprising number of ailments it may help.
While CBD oil, a non-psychedelic extract of industrial hemp, seems to offer healing benefits when ingested almost any way, for some types of chronic pain, skin conditions, and other localized problems, topical applications allow users to go right to the source. Topical CBD can also work faster, since it doesn’t have to travel through the digestive system first.
Just as with our investigations into whether CBD can help chronic painand anxiety, we’ve looked at the scientific literature on the topic but also looked at reports from everyday people who’ve benefitted from hemp extract.
‘THERAPEUTIC POTENTIAL FOR RELIEF OF ARTHRITIS’: SCIENCE EXAMINES TOPICAL CBD
In July 2016, a team of 7 researchers from the University of Kentucky published the results of their successful study of CBD for relieving arthritis symptoms in rats in the European Journal of Pain. Scientists artificially induced arthritis in the rats’ knee joints, then studied whether CBD improved their mobility and reduced their pain.
“Transdermal CBD gel significantly reduced joint swelling,” the researchers wrote, noting other indicators of pain, including how the rats positioned the affected joints, also seemed improved.
“Exploratory behaviour was not altered by CBD indicating limited effect on higher brain function,” they added, further evidence that CBD has few side effects.
“These data indicate that topical CBD application has therapeutic potential for relief of arthritis pain-related behaviours and inflammation without evident side-effects,” the scientists concluded.
Although perhaps less applicable to everyday applications, other animal studies suggest CBD could reduce many different kinds of inflammation. It’s also worth noting that there are already at least two patents on specific formulations of topical CBD.
‘IT’S REASONABLE TO THINK CBD MIGHT HAVE BENEFITS’ BUT MORE RESEARCH NEEDEDAn April 2016 investigation into topical CBD and cannabis by Medical Marijuana, Inc. summed up some other promising research. “The topical application of cannabinoids allows them to be absorbed directly into the affected area for faster and more focused relief.”
One benefit, the site noted, was that even topical formulations based on psychoactive cannabis are not mind-altering, because they “bind to CB2 receptors near the skin, activating the endocannabinoid system, and are never absorbed into the bloodstream.”
Beyond simple chronic pain issues, “the topical use of a combination of THC and CBD has been reported as effective against the ‘central pain of multiple sclerosis.'” It may also help with skin conditions, including “burns, rashes, eczema, psoriasis, and skin infections.”
But Medical Marijuana, Inc. also admitted “little research has been done into the application of cannabinoids transdermally.”
TOPICAL CBD NEEDS MORE RESEARCH, BUT DON’T WAIT TO TRY IT YOURSELF
Many people have already experienced the benefits of CBD, but science is clearly still catching up. Unfortunately, that’s not unusual: the medical establishment is also still arguing about whether CBD can benefit epilepsy sufferers despite decades of positive research.
That shouldn’t stop you from giving topical CBD a try if you think it might benefit you.
As with all CBD products, it’s important to investigate your source and make sure they have a proven track record of offering reliable supplements. Whether you have chronic pain, post-workout soreness or just want better skin, we hope you’ll give hemp and CBD a try.