The cannabidiol (CBD) revolution shows no signs of slowing down. Few imagined that when cannabis made a comeback, it would be non-psychoactive products that created the most interest. Indeed, few people had any idea that there was such a thing as non-psychoactive marijuana.
In the same vein, cannabis and hemp have historically been viewed as substances that are consumed in the form of an oil, or by smoking the flower. Only recently have topical products – such as creams and lotions – started to make an impact. Much of this can be attributed to the major advancements that have occurred in cannabinoid science. Cannabinoids in hemp and cannabis plants had been thought to interact through unique pathways. But this has only been known for sure since researchers happened across the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
This discovery has taught us many things about cannabis, with one such significant revelation being that the system works in the skin. Cannabinoid receptors that make up the ECS are active in the skin, and are involved with pain management, controlling inflammation and more. CBD creams, made from hemp, are now popular as natural solutions for a range of conditions. And we’re going to explore many of these in this post, including:
- How CBD can be used to relieve arthritis
- The effectiveness of CBD creams for neuropathic pain
- Why CBD topicals may help with aging and wrinkles
- CBD’s potential for acne, psoriasis and eczema
- Using CBD cream for hemorrhoids
CBD arthritis creams
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that 23 percent of American adults – more than 50 million people – are affected by arthritis. Nearly half of those are limited in their day-to-day activities because of the condition. Osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are the most common types of arthritis. The causes of OA and RA are somewhat different, but both are notorious for impacting joint functioning, and bringing about severe pain.
An active lifestyle, a healthy diet and mitigating risks by protecting your joints can all help to reduce arthritis. But many who suffer need treatment on top of that. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are used to relieve RA. Regular opioid pain-relievers may also be available on prescription. However, these are not risk-free solutions, due to side effects, and, in the case of opioids, tolerance, dependence and overdose risks.
But why should you take CBD for joint pain, instead? Firstly, the cannabinoid is well-suited to tackling immune system issues, as there is a direct pathway between the immune system and the ECS. CBD’s regulating influence in the ECS in effect helps with immune system regulation, too. This could be revolutionizing in treating RA, which is an autoimmune disease.
Treating osteoarthritis with CBD
Managing OA successfully involves limiting pain and the destruction of joint cartilage due to inflammation. With OA, painful and stiff joints may be accompanied by tenderness and swelling. The natural chemical compounds in a CBD cream soothe the inflammation triggering these symptoms. Moreover, cannabinoid receptors have been found in human osteoarthritic joint cartilage. This suggests that CBD treatment may work to slow or even halt joint cartilage deterioration. Topicals are especially good, since they directly interact with the aforementioned receptors.
The next step is for researchers to conduct a large clinical trial on OA patients with CBD. Such a study would help determine the cannabinoid’s true therapeutic value, and whether it’s worth prescribing CBD creams – or any other CBD product – to OA patients.
CBD cream for pain
Many CBD products help to manage pain. It’s the number one reason for taking CBD according to available research. A much safer painkiller than opioids, CBD from brands like Green Roads and CBDfx are changing how we think about treating pain. But while edibles, e-liquids and oils are certainly popular for treating pain, topicals are awesome, too.
CBD creams for back pain, neck pain, knee pain and more have emerged following the legalization of hemp-infused products in 2014. These are quite similar in their effects to the various magic sprays and Deep Heat products used for pain relief. A CBD cream or salve can be massaged into any part of the body, to manage pain at the source. For those with severe symptoms, extra strength products – possibly made with other natural ingredients – work great.
Some users like this form of CBD alone, while others get better results by taking it in combination with another CBD product. Much depends on the type of pain you have to deal with. A CBD cream for neuropathy may be analgesic, but without the instant relief provided by a tincture or vape juice, its overall effectiveness may be diminished. Creams tend to kick in faster than edibles, but nothing compares to smoking or vaping for immediate effects. Not sure what you need to reduce your pain? Why not start with a cream, and then bring in other products if necessary.
CBD cream for wrinkles
Just because we eventually start to feel older doesn’t mean we want to look older. There are two aging processes that have an effect over time. Intrinsic aging is one, and a process we have very little control over. With age, production of collagen and elastin, two important proteins for youthful and vibrant skin starts to decline. This inevitably leads to some sagging, wrinkling, deep lines and crow’s feet.
However, extrinsic aging is the result of external factors, and pesky compounds called free radicals. These nasty chemicals are present in industrial chemicals, air pollutants, cigarette and cannabis smoke and ultraviolet rays. They can also be picked up from x-rays. These have a destructive effect, wrecking skin DNA and possibly accelerating aging in the process. The best antidote for free radicals are antioxidants – and CBD is a powerful antioxidant.
When CBD face creams and eye creams, they act as a protective layer against free radicals. Antioxidants allow the free radicals to pair off with another electron, so they don’t steal them from elsewhere and cause damage. CBD anti-aging creams are often made with apple stem cells, too. Some studies show that these stimulate human stem cell growth. Such an effect protects from oxidative stress and UV damage, two causes of aging.
CBD cream for hemorrhoids
Hemorrhoids, or piles, are an unpleasant condition that causes veins to swell in the anus and lower rectum. Hemorrhoid pain can be very uncomfortable, itchy and irritating. Hemorrhoids have no known cause and are, therefore, not easy to treat. Doctors recommend exercise, a healthy diet and eating foods rich in fiber. But it seems that CBD creams could be a good hemorrhoid treatment as well.
CBD cannot prevent hemorrhoids, but it makes them easier to deal with. CBD has an anti-inflammatory effect that helps with swelling, and the pain that results from it. Infused CBD creams are effective, although it’s feasible that a product which incorporates THC and CBD may be better still. Whatever cannabis or hemp extract you choose for hemorrhoids, make sure you use a cream. CBD-infused pain relief creams can be safely applied to sensitive parts of the body, as is required when treating hemorrhoids.
CBD topicals for skin conditions
CBD creams for skin disorders are becoming more popular. The compound is safe and very unlikely to cause aggravation. However, those with very rare conditions may want to consult a dermatologist before using CBD topicals. While many find them effective, CBD creams are yet to receive FDA approval, so should be used with some caution.
CBD cream for eczema
Eczema causes dry, cracked and itchy skin. This skin condition is prominent in children, but can extend into – or even start – in adulthood. Symptoms tend to subside and then flare-up unpredictability. This can make eczema a difficult condition to cope with mentally. The causes of eczema are uncertain, but allergies are thought to play a part, and the disorder appears to be hereditary. Eczema patients are advised to moisturize the skin with emollients, and to refrain from itching.
CBD creams may spark a revolution for eczema, even if the herbal treatment isn’t a cure. Topical products have a moisturizing effect, and the anti-inflammatory properties reduce the desire to scratch and itch. CBD also has antimicrobial properties which could be beneficial. However, it’s important to remember that very little research has been done in this area.
CBD cream for psoriasis
Psoriasis has some similarities with eczema. The condition causes dry, flaky and reddened skin, which has a drastic effect on appearance. Psoriasis affects around one in 50 people, and symptoms can appear all over the body. Most people only suffer from psoriasis in isolated areas, although the condition can be more widespread. Psoriasis may cause soreness and itchy skin. Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease, and this is key to why CBD is creating such interest as a treatment.
Symptoms occur due to the proliferation of skin cells in the epidermis, the skin’s surface layer. Psoriasis patients suffer from an accelerated skin cell life cycle. Cells accumulate too quickly at the surface. The normal rate of shedding skin cells isn’t fast enough to stop the build-up, and this causes patchy skin. CBD likely treats this by regulating the immune system, setting the skin cell life cycle back to normal.
Treating acne with CBD creams
Acne is perhaps the most notorious of all skin disorders, due to the sheer number of people it affects, and the demographics which are most susceptible to it. Teenagers are impacted by acne more than any other age group, and as the condition affects the face, by making the skin oily and dirty, it can be devastating for appearance and confidence. All kinds of acne treatments have emerged on the skin care scene. Companies are no doubt aware that those affected will go to extreme lengths to get their acne under control. Unfortunately, this means some pretty dangerous products, such as Accutane, have come and gone over the years.
CBD is much better than Accutane and many other acne remedies. The difference with CBD creams is that their role isn’t to dry up the skin, but to regulate the production of sebum. This skin-based oil is important for our health, but in acne sufferers, it is over-produced due to increased activity in the sebaceous glands. CBD has a neutralizing effect, treating the excessive oil production, without causing dry and cracked skin.
CBD creams for cold sores
Cold sores are not a major concern, and will usually go away in just over a week. But they are contagious, and can be painful and irritating. Doctors often recommend antiviral creams for those who suffer from cold sores a lot. But CBD hemp oil lip balms may do the trick as well.
CBD moisturizes the lips, and the analgesic and anti-inflammatory qualities help tackle the pain, and any swelling and redness that may occur. The CBD will also help to strengthen your immune system.