Arthritis and other forms of rheumatic disorders affect about 300,000 children and 54 million adults just in the United States alone. It is believed that the number is nearly 91.2 million including unreported cases1)https://www.rheumatoidarthritis.org/cbd-oil/.
That number is predicted to grow by 49 percent by 2040, according to Dr. Jennifer Freeman. Another interesting statistic is that about 1 percent of the people all over the world reportedly suffer from some form of arthritis or joint disorders 2)https://www.rheumatoidarthritis.org/ra/facts-and-statistics/
These reports claim that the risk factors include genetics from first-degree family members, lifestyle like a history of smoking, hormonal especially for women, and environmental exposure to chemicals, pollutions, or traumatic events 3)https://www.rheumatoidarthritis.org/ra/facts-and-statistics/.
Some of the current conventional treatments include:
- Ibuprofen or other Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, or NSAIDs
- Physical and/or occupational therapy
- DMARDs, Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs
- Healthy diet and exercise programs
- Biologic response modifiers
- Joint replacement
Now, there are previous and current studies that show some promise with CBD oil for arthritis. Studies are ongoing for this treatment for arthritis. More human clinical studies are needed.
CBD oil for arthritis Studies from 2006, 2008, and 2017
- Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases, Blake DR, Robson P, McCabe CS, Jubb RW, Ho M, NLM.NIH.gov: “Preliminary assessment of the efficacy, tolerability, and safety of a cannabis-based medicine (Sativex) in the treatment of pain caused by rheumatoid arthritis”, 2005, November 9 4)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16282192
- Russo, Ethan B, NLM.NIH.gov: “Cannabinoids in the management of difficult to treat pain”, 2008, February 4 5)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2503660/
- Philpott HT, O’Brien M, McDougall JJ, NLM.NIH.gov: “Attenuation of early phase inflammation by cannabidiol prevents pain and nerve damage in rat osteoarthritis, 2017, December 6)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28885454
What is arthritis?
Dr. Jennifer Freeman defines arthritis as the breakdown of cartilage within the joints. There are more than 100 forms of arthritis 7)https://www.rheumatoidarthritis.org/psoriatic-arthritis/symptoms/, but the most common are psoriatic arthritis, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
CBD oil for arthritis makes sense due to the nature of cannabinoids.
What is CBD oil?
CBD oil also referred to as cannabidiol oil, is extracted from the cannabis plant, usually hemp. CBD oil for arthritis will not make you high like medical marijuana which contains THC that produces psychotropic side effects because there are only trace amounts of THC in them. The federal legal limit is 0.03 percent where it is legal in the United States 8)https://www.pbs.org/newshour/science/is-cbd-legal-heres-what-you-need-to-know-according-to-science.
Cannabidiol is most commonly derived from the hemp plant due to the lower amounts of THC in the plant. The marijuana plant has significantly higher amounts of THC. That is something to be aware of when reading labels for CBD oil for arthritis, especially since this supplement is no as well-regulated as other kinds of medications and drugs 9)https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321501.php.
How does CBD oil for arthritis work?
The “how” of CBD oil works is not yet completely understood. What is known is that somehow it interacts by attaching to your own CB1 and CB2 receptors (your naturally occurring cannabinoids) to help you produce more of your own natural cannabinoids.
The CB1 and CB2 receptors in the human body are related to movement, pain, coordination, the immune system, and your emotional response. This could be why people with inflammatory conditions are relieved by CBD.
The primary cause of arthritis and joint pain is inflammation. By working with your own CB receptors, CBD oil for arthritis is believed to reduce inflammation, thereby reducing pain. The efficacy of CBD oil may be especially helpful for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) since this is an autoimmune type of arthritis.
How is CBD oil for arthritis used and what are the side effects?
The most common forms of CBD oil are tinctures, capsules, topical creams or lotions, or liquids. It can be applied topically or taken orally along with food or beverages except for alcohol 10)https://creakyjoints.org/alternative-medicine/cbd-oil-for-arthritis-pain/.
Some mild side effects of CBD oil may include fatigue, nausea, vomiting, bloating, or other digestive discomforts. Otherwise, the side effects have mostly been related to drug, food, or supplement interactions 11)https://www.rheumatoidarthritis.org/cbd-oil/. For instance, it is advised to avoid grapefruit when using CBD oil 12)https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319796.php.
According to docwire.com 13)https://www.docwirenews.com/docwire-pick/rheumatology-picks/arthritis-foundation-issues-cbd-guidelines/, CBD oil for arthritis is not intended to replace medications or treatments used to prevent future bone loss or joint damage. They also advise that starting with a low dose is wise before gradually increasing your dose. Always talk to your doctor before starting any new treatment for arthritis.
What should you look for in quality CBD oil for arthritis?
The first element to look for in a quality CBD oil product is whether it has been tested and has labeling that includes some regulatory body. In the United States, there are currently more laws being created and implemented as the legalization of marijuana and hemp oil progresses. This is crucial to this kind of product. You should find out if CBD oil for arthritis is legal in your state, territory, or region.
The biggest problem right now is the danger of not knowing what is in your CBD oil because the regulations have yet to catch up with the legalization. You must be cautious about your CBD oil for arthritis selection because some are much higher in THC and that can affect job drug urine tests. If your workplace performs random drug testing, it is wise to either get a doctor’s note for taking it or avoid taking it until you know it will not affect your drug test 14)https://creakyjoints.org/alternative-medicine/cbd-oil-for-arthritis-pain/.
Studies on animals between 2011 and 2017 15)https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319796.php suggest that CBD oil or arthritis could be a potential treatment for arthritis, but especially for osteoarthritis (OA). The properties of CBD oil as mentioned in this article are what makes it effective for inflammatory and immune-system conditions like arthritis.
There is still a lack of conclusive scientific proof of the efficacy of CBD oil in humans for arthritis pain and inflammation. There is still much work to do and many clinical human studies and research to conduct before definitive answers are discovered. Though the findings thus far have been promising, it will take time to draw expert conclusions.
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