Pain — And How CBD Could Help You Escape It
Pain is growing more prevalent. The good news is, so is CBD oil. Could it be the perfect natural antidote? Maybe so...here’s how CBD could help you.
Pain is on the rise. In the last twenty years, chronic pain’s prevalence has risen by nearly 50 percent. It now impacts a staggering 41% of the US adult population.
With this rising tide has come devastating downstream effects: runaway medical debt... rampant opioid addiction...widespread despair.
Despite all this, chronic pain continues to be misunderstood. Harvard medical school calls it the “invisible disability;” Medscape’s educational branch calls it “A Potential Crisis.”
But we call it an area where CBD could shine. It’s true: of all the natural solutions out there, CBD has perhaps the greatest chance to revolutionize our understanding of pain. With CBD, pain is no longer inevitable or inescapable. As anesthesiologist and CBD expert Dr. James Taylor has testified, “hemp offers hope.”
What is pain?
What is CBD?
The Most Natural Solution
A Step Forward
We’ll get to what makes CBD so good for combating pain soon — but first, some fundamentals. After all, sometimes the most complex concepts are comprised of the most simple parts...
What is Pain?
Here’s how pain is defined by Mirriam-Webster:
“a localized or generalized unpleasant bodily sensation or complex of sensations that causes mild to severe physical discomfort and emotional distress and typically results from bodily disorder (such as injury or disease)”
Like many parts of the human experience, experiencing pain isn’t necessarily a bad thing in and of itself. No, pain only becomes problematic when its cause remains unsolved — when it persists and turns into what’s called chronic pain.
Even in light of the nice definition above — and the fact that it’s been well over 300 years since scientist René Descartes first clearly described pain — an agreement on what defines chronic pain still hasn’t been reached. Some consider pain to be chronic when it lasts for three months, others require a six-month duration to be deemed chronic. Either way, chronic pain isn’t good.
What is CBD?
CBD, as you may have heard, is the primary cannabinoid found in the hemp plant. Hemp’s active ingredient, if you will; like what vitamin C is to oranges. You can also think of CBD as an essential oil made from hemp, though the nature of its extraction means it’s actually slightly different.
True to the dualistic nature of our world, CBD — like opioids or pain — has enjoyed a huge swell in popularity recently. Good thing, too, because CBD seems able to reverse the very things pain tends to cause in the first place!
For example, research shows CBD to be powerfully anti-inflammatory , anti-neuropathy , and anti-nociception . The ways in which CBD reduces inflammation are truly fascinating, as we’ll soon see...
Most pain begins as inflammation. The body has an immune response — whether to outside stress, or, in the case of autoimmune disease, against itself. This results in inflammation in the affected areas. And while a little inflammation isn’t a bad thing (it actually helps with recovery), chronic inflammation is.
CBD is unique in that it doesn’t just help block the body’s perception of pain. It goes one step further and reduces inflammation, too— inflammation that is usually a root cause of pain to begin with.
For those who’ve already spent years suffering from chronic pain, things may be a little more complicated. Nerves might already be damaged. The myelin sheath might have been worn down enough that the nervous system loses some of its conductivity. That’s something often seen in MS patients, and it can lead to serious side effects, like numbness, paralysis, epilepsy, and mental and emotional changes.
This level of neuropathic damage is thought to be one of the most painful things out there. The TRPV1 system, which is also responsible for regulating the perception of heat and body temperature, can reduce neuropathic pain when CBD is thrown into the mix. In his study Cannabinoids in the management of difficult to treat pain, pioneering researcher Dr. Ethan Russo reports that yet another “new explanation of inflammatory and analgesic effects of CBD has recently come to light” — CBD can modulate adenosine receptors, too.
The Most Natural Solution
You might be surprised to learn that pain isn’t just a physical sensation; in ways that often still confound modern science, it can also inhabit the mind.
Thankfully, nature has provided us the perfect antidote. CBD offers a truly holistic approach for both body and mind. By attacking pain from various angles, CBD is able to gently reduce symptoms with a minimum of side effects. Indeed, CBD seems to address both chronic inflammation and nerve pain amazingly well.
The ways you use CBD can be holistic, too. Many users find their best results by complementing their CBD oil intake with CBD topicals. The more severe one’s pain, the more CBD will be needed to compensate — usually. Even though CBD’s been in the spotlight for several years now, dosing it remains more of an art than a science!
A Step Forward
With the crisis of pain still raging, it’s clear we as a society need to take action. Our inefficient healthcare system is failing us, opioid abuse continues to rise; chronic disease is rampant. More and more people have been failed by modern medicine — and with that can come hopelessness and desperation.
Some individuals fight back by pursuing Chinese medicine, trying out acupuncture and similar alternatives. Others eventually resign themselves to a life of suffering. Still others integrate their diagnosis into their identity. But are any of those choices really the best option?
For those who have fallen through the cracks, the battle against pain often turns inwards. Change only comes when the question is internalized: what can be done!?
The only option left is to take your health into your own hands. Thankfully, CBD provides the freedom to do just that. By restoring endocannabinoid health and limiting inflammatory factors, it could the right solution for obtaining a pain-free life.
And while we can’t definitively promise that CBD will take away your pain, what’s stopping you from trying it and seeing? Recent surveys show that pain is among the average consumer’s top three reasons for taking CBD — and only 5% of these consumers don’t find what they’re looking for.
The rest? They walk away happy...and probably in less pain.
Written by Thomas Wrona, Natural Systems Consultant and Copywriter.