Do Topical CBD Products Actually Do Anything for Pain?

CBD creams and oils are becoming increasingly popular as an alternative to traditional pain relief options. But do they actually work? In this article, we will explore the potential benefits of topical CBD products and examine the evidence to determine if they can help alleviate pain.

What is topical CBD?

Topical CBD refers to products that contain cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive compound derived from the cannabis plant. These products come in a variety of forms, including lotions, ointments, salves, balms and creams. They are applied directly to the skin for localized effects.

How does topical CBD work?

When applied topically, CBD interacts with cannabinoid receptors located in the nerve endings and subcutaneous tissue of the skin. This activates the endocannabinoid system, which helps regulate various bodily functions such as inflammation, pain perception and mood. As a result, topical CBD can effectively reduce inflammation and provide localized relief from certain types of pain.

Can topical CBD relieve pain?

There is currently limited research on whether topical CBD can effectively treat pain due to its complex mechanisms of action in the body. However, some studies suggest that it may have analgesic properties when applied topically for short periods of time. For example, one study found that the application of a CBD cream containing both THC and CBD significantly reduced the severity of arthritis-related joint pain compared to placebo treatment over a two-week period. In addition, another study showed that topical application of 10% CBG oil helped reduce muscle soreness after exercise in healthy adults. Taken together, these studies suggest that topical cannabinoids may provide some degree of temporary relief for acute or chronic pain conditions, but more research is needed before definitive conclusions can be drawn about their efficacy.

Are there any side effects from using topical CBD products?

The use of topical CBD products is generally considered safe, with few reported side effects when used properly according to the instructions on the packaging label. Some possible side effects include skin irritation or rash at the site of application and increased sensitivity to sunlight due to photosensitizing compounds present in certain types of cannabinoid extracts, such as hemp seed oil or olive oil-based extracts containing terpenes and flavonoids that are sensitive to UV rays. It is important to always follow the instructions carefully when using any product containing cannabinoids and never use them without first consulting your doctor if you have a pre-existing medical condition or are taking prescription medication, as interactions between these drugs could lead to serious adverse reactions with long-term implications.

Is it legal to use topical CBD products?

Yes, it is legal for most people in Canada, the United States and many other countries around the world to purchase and use topical CBD products, depending on local laws. Be sure to check the regulations carefully before purchasing any type of product containing cannabinoids so that you are in compliance with local regulations.

The bottom line

Although much more research needs to be done into exactly how cannabinoids interact with our bodies, it appears that there may be beneficial effects associated with using CBD-containing creams, lotions, balms, etc., topically for certain types of pain, such as muscle fatigue or arthritic joints. However, it’s important to note that these results should be taken cautiously given the lack of rigorous clinical trials proving the efficacy and safety of these applications; further investigation is warranted to understand the full potential impact of cannabis-related therapies in treating chronic diseases.

Written by 

John Willis is a graduate of Developmental Communication from the University of the Philippines. He works for as the editorial manager of the team.