Cannabis Oil for Arthritis treatment: In Greece, about a quarter of the population experience arthritis and rheumatic diseases, while in Europe, nearly 120.000.000 people have joint disorders. Arthritis and Rheumatism International (ARI) established World Arthritis Day in 1996 on the 12th of October, a day dedicated to awareness and education. How does such a severe disorder correlate to cannabis (CBD)? Maybe the cannabis plant is no panacea. However, scientific studies show positive data concerning easing symptoms with cannabidiol CBD and cannabinoids generally.
What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is a general term to describe more than 200 joint disorders. It is an inflammation affecting one or more joints manifesting pain, swelling, stiffness in various body parts, redness, and limited mobility. A person who experiences such symptoms because of a similar disorder suffers from everyday pain, altering the quality of their private and social life. There are different kinds of arthritis, including joints and other body organs, while the symptoms appear suddenly or gradually.
We refer to rheumatic diseases or rheumatism when the affected area covers the joints, tendons, muscles, bones, and fibrous ligaments. Arthritis causes, such as genes, a person’s health condition, and various environmental factors, are multifaceted. Arthritis is a disorder observed mainly in adults, although it is a disorder that can also affect infants. Scientists divide arthritis into several categories depending on its features: degenerative, inflammatory /immune, or metabolic.
Which are the most common arthritis disorders?
- Osteoarthritis (OA)
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Psoriatic arthritis
- Post-traumatic arthritis
- Juvenile idiopathic arthritis
- Septic arthritis
- Ankylosing spondylitis
- Reactive arthritis (Reiter’s syndrome)
The symptoms may vary depending on the type of arthritis. Hence the most common are: joint pain in different measures according to the arthritis type, swelling, stiffness, and limited mobility. Other symptoms include:
In all disorders, a valid diagnosis contributes to effective therapy and better life quality for the individual. A physician prescribes the necessary checkups to determine the arthritis type. The kind of treatment can also vary depending on the arthritis. It can be physiotherapy, acupuncture, medical prescription, surgery, and a switch of daily habits. A balanced diet and exercise program contribute to mood improvement, low-stress levels, and pain soothing.
A study published in 2004 in the scientific journal Arthritis and Rheumatology reports that 60% of people with arthritis followed a sedentary lifestyle. The research concludes that constant and updated information about the benefits of body exercise is crucial, especially in people experiencing arthritis. Concerning diet habits, the individual can include the use of several herbs. Cannabis plants are one of them contributing to the decrease of the symptoms. Besides, it is not by chance the term medical or therapeutic cannabis.
Cannabis Oil (CBD) for Arthritis: How can cannabidiol and cannabinoids contribute?
Recent and older research reports the crucial cannabis, cannabidiol (CBD), and cannabinoids contribution to the symptoms soothing of several arthritis types. The scientific interest keeps a keen eye on cannabidiol because of the anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antioxidant effects of those elements. Besides, all the data show that cannabidiol doesn’t have dangerous side effects as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or opioids may have.
Research and polls on the use of CBD cannabidiol
According to a Gallup conducted in 2019, about 14% of Americans use cannabidiol products to ease the pain. In another survey by Arthritis Foundation, 29% of the participants admitted the use of CBD products ( oil / sublingual or topical use), while 80 % of the respondents reported that either they use cannabidiol products, either they used in the past, or they are considering the CBD use. Those who stated that they already use cannabidiol observed improved physical condition and better sleep. Furthermore, the Arthritis Foundation reported that 94% of people with arthritis use CBD to soothe the pain. In the above inquiry, 67% of the participants noted mood progress.
A study published in 2020 on Pubmed, a free American National Library of Medicine, examines cannabidiol as an alternative cure for arthritis and joint pain. The research concluded that there is a connection between cannabidiol use and symptom improvement in patients while observing the reduction of other prescribed medicines. Also, it underlines that future studies should focus on CBD use benefits stating more clinical data.
The charitable organisation Arthritis New South Wales in Australia refers that 53% of patients reduced or eliminated prescribed opioid use after eight weeks of using cannabis extract with high CBD concentration. Additionally, cannabidiol side effects are far less than chronic opioids or other prescribed drugs. Also, cannabidiol seems to be a safe alternative treatment with potential therapeutic effects in soothing arthritis pain. Evidence shows that the maximum dose is 150mg per day.
What is the global community’s opinion on CBD for joint pain?
According to the global community, a training center on the endocannabinoid system, WeCann Endocannabinoid Global Academy, the cannabinoids proved safe and valuable in easing joint pain. In particular, full-spectrum oil use is remarkably effective than isolated cannabinoid use. The reason leans on the synergistic phytocannabinoids effect when combined with other chemical compounds, like flavonoids and terpenoids. Regarding joint pain, the most effective result came from products received sublingually or products of topical use.
Research published in 2022 about osteoarthritis reports the therapeutic effect of CBD oil and CBG oil that decreases pain and inflammation while improving mobility. Also, the study found that cannabigerol CBG has chondroprotective effects encouraging future debate.
How Cannabidiol Soothes Arthritis Pain?
As we already referred to in older documents, cannabidiol CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, detected in several body parts, such as the brain and spinal cord, responsible for the sense of pain. Additionally, cannabidiol presents similar chemical properties to the endocannabinoids, anandamide, and 2-ag (2-arachidonoylglycerol).
At the same time, it is a compound 10 times more active than morphine in terms of its effect on nerve cells responsible for the sensation of pain.
The scientific data show that cannabidiol has an intense antioxidant effect, superating vitamins C and E, resulting in being the first endocannabinoid modulator for pain relief.
CBD is also a TNF-a (tumor necrosis factor-alpha) inhibitor, reducing the risk of further gastrointestinal problems and vascular diseases. Plus, the increase of the adenosine signals reduces inflammation and relieves pain.
What product should I use for arthritis pain relief?
At this point, depending on the product we use, the effect duration will be different. That means that depending on how quickly an effect we desire, we should use a suitable medical/therapeutic cannabis product. The various hemp edibles containing CBD have an effect that starts around 30 minutes to 1 hour. Sublingual use with CBD oil, which is the most common way of use, takes effect in 15-30 minutes. Vaping CBD flowers take 1 to 3 minutes to take effect. Cannabis cosmetics and topical creams start working in about 10 minutes.
Arthritis is a disorder that provokes much pain in the individual affecting the physical condition, psychology, and social or work relationships. Prevention is a significant ally to dealing with the symptoms, but if the disease appears, then communication with the physician is essential for adequate symptom relief. To conclude, medical/therapeutic cannabis, according to the data, is a promising alternative with impressive results.