cbd oil for headheach

CBD for Migraines

A migraine is a severe type of a headache which is felt as an intense pain on one or both sides of the head. People who experience migraine can also have other symptoms. Some people experience nausea, vomiting, or they cannot stand light and sound. It is more common than one may think considering that 1 in 5 women and 1 in 15 men experience migraines.

Why Does CBD Work for Treating Migraines?

Common treatments for migraines are pharmaceutical painkillers, anti-emetics (to stop nausea), or triptans (triggering the brain to reverse migraines). According to some studies, CBD can be a promising treatment 1 . CBD is made from the cannabis plant, which is known to have a reputation as a very powerful natural painkiller. Nonetheless, CBD has no intoxicating effect.

Migraines typically start in a part of the brain known as the hypothalamus. A migraine can be triggered as a response to extreme stress. Despite the cause, the majority of people suffering from migraines have the neurotransmitter serotonin in levels that are rather unbalanced.

Having serotonin in low levels might cause the dilation of blood vessels which increases the cases of migraine attacks. Cannabis has shown to increase the levels of serotonin by preventing dilation of the blood vessels 2 . Increased levels of serotonin will decrease the onset of migraine attacks.

Moreover, in another study published in the The Journal of Experimental Medicine, 3 it is put forward that CBD serves as a painkiller for chronic pains, in general.

An explanation of how CBD actually works and fights the pain caused by migraines has been given by Dr. Ethan Russo in his theory of Clinical Endocannabinoid Deficiency 4 . This theory suggests that particular diseases are the cause of particular deficiencies in the endocannabinoid system. This is a biological system which functions as a responder to the types of cannabinoids called endocannabinoids, which naturally occur in the body, but could also be supplied by ingesting hemp product.

The deficiency of these biological endocannabinoids in one’s body may cause chronic pains, including migraines. According to the neurologist Russo, CBD regulates and triggers the receptors of the endocannabinoids system and eases the pain.

What are the Side Effects of Using CBD to Treat Migraines?

While CBD is generally considered safe, some people will experience some side effects. The side effects include nausea, diarrhea, drowsiness, change of appetite, and a dry mouth. The symptoms are rare, though, and not as severe as the ones caused by the conventional drugs used to treat migraines.

Vaping, similarly to every other product which requires inhaling, might be a cause of lung irritation and make you cough. Therefore, vaping is not recommended if you suffer from any lung disease. If you have never had problems with your lungs it most probably will be very safe. However, discuss with your doctor before deciding to vape and to use particular amounts of the CBD oil.

CBD Dosage for Migraines

We recommend the step-up method of Leinow & Birnbaum to determine the ideal dosage. In their book “CBD: A patient’s guide to Medical Cannabis” 5 Leinow & Birnbaum suggest that migraine patients should begin with a microdose.

For more details on dosage and microdose read our article on CBD dosage.

How Can I Use CBD to Treat Migraines?

If you choose to take CBD oil orally in order to treat migraines, simply put some drops underneath your tongue and hold it until it gets fully absorbed in your mouth. Don’t swallow it right away, rather wait for it to be absorbed. This makes digestion and absorption much easier. You can also take it as capsules or mix it with a drink.

Other methods of taking CBD oil is by vaping it. It can be taken using vaporizers or different inhalers. This method is one of the fastest and has an instant effect. It is recommended more if you have severe migraines so their pain will be relieved right away. However, do not vape if you have asthma or any other lung disease or if you are a beginner as it can be too much for your body at first due to its instant function.

CBD oil can also be directly applied to the skin since it comes as a lotion or balms, or creams. You can always try different ones and figure out which one works better and is easier to be used by you. It highly depends on your lifestyle and body.

What is Research Saying About Using CBD for Migraines?

Neuroscientists, such as Ross and Russo, have worked and continue to do so on showing the benefits of using CBD oil for migraines. Russo has explained its effects based on the Clinical Endocannabinoid Deficiency 6 whereas Ross has used it herself to treat her migraine and is using her nonprofit to help in more researches and its legalization.

Moreover, the European Academy of Neurology, in summer 2017, published a study 7 concluded that CBD oil had more effect than prescription drugs in decreasing the chronic migraines pain. In this study, there were 121 participants. After 1 month, a vast majority of 85% claimed that they had fewer migraines while they were on the study and were using CBD oil. Another study conducted by the researchers of Colorado found out that cannabis helps in easing the pain of migraines.

To sum up, there are multiple studies and proof by doctors and researchers that CBD is one of the best pain relievers, especially when it comes to chronic pain such as migraines. It increases the serotonin in the body of the taker and also triggers the receptors of the endocannabinoids system by thus easing the pain. It comes from the cannabis plant but it does not get you “high” since it does not have the component of cannabis which causes that, the THC.

Medical Cannabis for Migraines

Far worse than just a headache, migraines are categorized as major headaches that cause throbbing pain and even pulsing sensations on one or both sides of the head. Often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and extreme sensitivity to light and sound, migraine attacks can last for hours to days and the pain can be so intense that it interferes with your daily activities.

There are several types of migraines that have different symptoms associated with them and are categorized using the word aura. The term aura is used to describe certain symptoms that one may experience before having a migraine. Individuals who experience aura may suffer from flashes of light or blind spots and sometimes even difficulty speaking. With an extensive list of possible causes and triggers, it can be hard to pinpoint the root cause of migraines. Some individuals may experience a migraine without an aura or experience aura symptoms without the headache.

Migraine headaches can be extremely hard to treat, even with the help of prescribed medicines. If traditional methods do not work, there are alternative modes of medicine such as medical cannabis which may help treat migraines. Aside from helping to ease the symptoms, some studies show that cannabis oil for migraines might even help keep them from flaring up in the first place.

Relationship Between Medical Cannabis and Migraines

The concept of using medical cannabis for migraines is becoming increasingly accepted, but in order to understand how cannabis treatment for migraines might be effective, we need to understand the science behind it.

According to a study published in the Journal of Pain, the use of cannabis might be beneficial since it may reduce headache and migraine pain, with cannabinoids playing a central role. Another study by Washington State University even indicated that inhaled cannabis might reduce migraine severity by up to 49%.

The Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Colorado studied the effects of inhaled and ingested medical cannabis in migraine sufferers, and their results only supported what other studies unearthed. Out of 121 adult participants, almost 40% reported positive effects with 19.8% claiming that it helped prevent migraines. Up to 85% of the test subjects reported that medical cannabis for migraines reduced the number of attacks per month.

How Medical Cannabis Can Help Treat Migraines?

Medical cannabis works on migraines via the endocannabinoid system, assisting with the reduction of inflammation in the protective dura mater tissue that covers the brain. This, in turn, minimizes the release of pro-inflammatory substances. Cannabis treatment for migraines targets inflammation, which is one of the main contributing factors of the pain associated with migraines. As migraines have such a complex set of underlying causes, triggers and symptoms, cannabis might be an ideal migraine medication since it contains diverse compounds and can have widespread roles in issues associated with migraines and pain. Medical cannabis for migraines is an anti-inflammatory agent and has analgesic and anti-emetic properties. CBD, one of the two main compounds of cannabis, is also a known anxiety-reducer, which might be ideal to treat stress-induced migraines.

How to Get Medical Cannabis for Migraines in Canada

If you’re contemplating trying medical cannabis to treat your migraines, we can help start you off on your journey towards Better Days. Canadian Cannabis Clinics offer in-depth consultations with all patients, ensuring that each and every individual is as informed as possible when it comes to aspects like product selection and condition-specific dosage. We offer both in-clinic and virtual appointments. Virtual appointments are conducted through a secure and private video call with a healthcare practitioner and medical cannabis educator.