Back pain is one of the most common health conditions. Not only can it be challenging to exercise and do other physically demanding activities, but you may also have difficulty with everyday functional movements, like getting up from a chair or reaching up to grab items from a cupboard.
If you’re not at the point of needing surgery, then your doctor has likely recommended medications to help alleviate your pain. Many people choose CBD as a natural alternative, avoiding medications with drastic side effects that can potentially damage your body. Determining if CBD can be an alternative for you or your loved one with back pain requires some research. First, let’s review the facts.
CBD is the abbreviation for cannabidiol. CBD is one of over 80 cannabinoids that exist in the hemp plant. Hemp contains more CBD and is commonly used to derive the highest quality products with less than 0.3% THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). THC is the chemical responsible for the “high” feeling, CBD does not get you high.
CBD has been widely researched in terms of its effects on pain and inflammation. CBD could be exactly what you are looking for to provide relief from your back pain.
Understanding Back Pain
Everyone can experience back pain from time to time, with lower back pain being the most common complaint. But if you have ongoing issues that last more than three months, then your doctor will most likely diagnose you with chronic back pain. In such cases, you’re likely to experience back pain on more days than not, often without much relief.
Common causes of back pain may be caused by one or more of the following:
- bulging, or herniated discs
- muscle strain
- spinal stenosis
How CBD Helps with Back Pain
Early research is showing promising results¹ that CBD can help reduce inflammation and benefit aches and pains. Therefore, CBD can potentially relieve your back pain, allowing you to enjoy normal daily activities.
We all want to alleviate back pain and return to normal activities. While CBD may not be a cure for your back pain, it could potentially provide significant relief of your discomfort.
Understanding the Science
The results of a 2009 study¹ concluded that CBD suppresses the body’s inflammatory response and symptoms by acting on multiple anti-inflammatory pathways. In a study on cannabinoids² (the natural chemicals from the hemp plant), researchers found that cannabinoids lower inflammation by binding with certain receptors. This regulates the immune system’s production of numerous cell types that are involved in the inflammatory response. These cell types include T-helper cells, T-regulatory cells, and pro-inflammatory cytokines.
Cannabinoids, including CBD, are shown to alter the amounts of inflammation cells in several ways. The chemicals suppress the production of some, increase the production of others, and kill off the unnecessary cells via a process called apoptosis³.
WHAT THE RESEARCH SAYS ABOUT CBD FOR BACK PAIN
While CBD has become more mainstream in the last few years, the research behind the mechanisms on pain relief has been ongoing since the beginning of the century.
- In early 2018 the Journal of Pain Research⁴ published a study about chronic pain in patients who didn’t respond to back surgery. Researchers found that both CBD and THC significantly helped reduce pain in study participants.
- January, 2019 study⁵ demonstrated that CBD has potential as an effective alternative for chronic pain management. The study showed that CBD alleviated chronic pain by binding to receptors involved in the sensations of pain (vanilloid TRPV1). It was also observed that CBD regulates the absorption and increases the number of other chemicals flowing through the body that reduce the perception of pain.
- A 2014 study⁶ using animal test subjects demonstrated that CBD reduced the severity of injury damage and the effects caused by disc degeneration in the vertebrae.
- A study⁷ published in the Journal of Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management evaluated the effectiveness of CBD in overall pain management. The research reviewed dozens of studies and clinical trials from the 1980s to 2007. The data showed great promise for CBD helping neuropathic pain, insomnia, and multiple sclerosis.
- Researchers from the University of Kentucky8 applied a CBD-based topical gel to animal subjects with arthritis. The results of the experiment showed a significant reduction in signs of pain and inflammation, without adverse side effects.
- A team of scientists9 concluded in a 2012 study that “administration of cannabidiol (CBD), a major non-psychoactive component of cannabis, significantly suppresses chronic inflammatory and neuropathic pain”.
Even government agencies are publicly commending CBD’s potential effects, but with caution. The National Institute on Drug Abuse⁵ testified to Congress in 2015 about the slew of benefits of CBD, including pain relief.
Using CBD with Other Medications for Back Pain
CBD is unlikely to react with other medications you take. This is particularly the case if you apply CBD cream directly to your back.
It’s always a good idea to talk to your doctor first. They may make specific recommendations for proper dosing based on your condition. You might start with a low dosage, if taking it orally, then gradually increase as you observe how your body reacts to the substance. When taken orally, CBD is typically used twice per day.
CBD may be used with other alternative back pain relief methods, such as:
- physical therapy
- spinal manipulation
- therapeutic massage
- yoga, tai chi, and other strengthening/flexibility exercises
HOW TO TAKE CBD FOR BACK PAIN
CBD for back pain seems to work best in a topical cream. The CBD is mixed together in the form of an ointment or cream that is applied directly to the site of pain. Apply the CBD infused cream liberally and often (2 to 3 times per day) the first week of use. Once you notice relief reduce as needed to maintain relief and promote healing. Topical CBD is also a nice complement for a therapeutic massage or chiropractic adjustment.
Adding a CBD product to take orally, like CBD Oil sublingual, can aid the bodies overall wellness and provide some relaxation from pain. Daddy Burt Hemp Co. offers standard strength CBD oil, lite strength, and a big 1500mg bottle of CBD.
When it comes to chronic back pain, CBD is showing promise in terms of symptomatic relief. Research of CBD’s anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects is ongoing, and there are minimal noted side effects. All in all, CBD is definitely worth talking to your doctor about if you’re not experiencing pain relief from other sources that you’ve tried.
If you are ready to purchase a CBD product, check out our online store!