how do you use cbd oil for pain relief

CBD oil and pain

Pain affects more Americans than cancer, diabetes, and heart disease combined, according to one scholarly survey published in the “Journal of Pain”, about one-third of people who report pain experience their pain as disabling, severely impacting their daily lives.

For those living with chronic or acute pain, finding a safe, effective method of managing it is a key concern. Commonly used painkillers include acetaminophen, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and opioids. However, many of these medications carry side effects or lead to dependency stemming from long-term use.

Cannabidiol (CBD) oil is currently gaining traction as an alternative form of pain relief. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

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Cannabidiol (CBD) oil is currently gaining traction as an alternative form of pain relief. It is thought that CBD may work to alleviate pain by reducing inflammation in the body.

How might CBD oil help with pain management?

CBD is believed to help reduce pain in several ways. It stimulates the body’s endocannabinoid system, which is partly responsible for mood, memory, and how pain is experienced. A 2004 study published in the “British Journal of Pharmacology” reported that CBD relieved pain in rat subjects apparently through the TRPV1 receptors, which control functions such as inflammation, body temperature, and awareness of pain.

CBD has also been shown to inhibit glutamate levels in the brain and spinal cord of mice, which can be associated with increased sensations and transmission of pain. In human clinical trials, CBD has been shown to enhance anandamide signaling in the brain. Anandamide is often referred to as the “bliss molecule” and healthy levels of it are linked to feelings of well-being and happiness.

CBD oil is also rumored to help promote sounder sleep, which is helpful for those whose sleep patterns are disrupted by chronic pain. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

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Through modulation of the endocannabinoid system, the body is brought back into a state of homeostasis or balance. CBD oil is also rumored to help promote sounder sleep, which is helpful for those whose sleep patterns are disrupted by chronic pain. However, the studies on CBD as a sleep aid have produced mixed results. .

The studies

Research into the therapeutic potential of CBD for pain relief is increasing. However, many of the studies into CBD thus far have been conducted in non-human animals.

Studies have documented CBD oil as a potentially effective treatment for chronic pain conditions that are challenging to treat, such as neuropathic pain in multiple sclerosis (MS), and intractable cancer pain. Although CBD appears effective in alleviating neuropathic pain caused by conditions such as cancer or stroke, there are many different types of neuropathy, and more research is needed.

A 2013 research paper published in the “British Journal of Pharmacology” found that CBD extract seemed to alleviate severe neuropathic pain induced by chemotherapy in cancer patients. CBD may also help suppress inflammatory pain, which causes muscle cramps and headaches.

Topical application of CBD may be more effective than oral ingestion in cases where inflammation or pain is specific to one area, such as arthritis or muscular pain. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

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In a study performed on rats and published in 2016 in the “European Journal of Pain,” researchers found that CBD had limited oral bioavailability. Topical application of CBD may be more effective than oral ingestion in cases where inflammation or pain is specific to one area, such as arthritis or muscular pain.

Patient perspectives

Samantha Tucker was involved in a near-fatal motorcycle crash in 2010 that resulted in the amputation of her left arm from the elbow down. Her path to recovery was long, and in some ways, rendered more challenging after she took up archery following the accident.

She trained hard to win a place in the 2016 Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro, but the wear and tear of training and overuse of her shoulders and right arm and hand lead to aches, pains, and inflammation.

“When you’re in pain, you’re never able to perform at your peak ability and you’re always living ‘less than’, said Tucker. “I only have one life and it’s not going to be a ‘less than’ life.”

Hesitant to take pharmaceutical prescriptions as she feared they may impinge on cognitive function, she sought an alternative. “I use Kannaway’s Gold Oral Applicator every morning and Kannaway’s Premium Full Spectrum Oral Applicator every evening,” she shared with Weedmaps News.

“In addition to a reduction in daily aches I experience as I’m training for my first triathlon, I notice a lot less inflammation than I would normally have while exercising and training and an easier time bouncing back after a hard workout.”

Tucker also observed that her sleep quality has improved since taking CBD oil. “CBD is a natural way for me to achieve high performance and attain the recovery time I need.”

Rachael Carlevale, founder or Ganjasana Yoga, a cannabis-centered yoga practice, had been suffering from painful uterine and fibroid tumors that caused extreme pain and bleeding. In a bid to find a natural method of relieving the pain, she began using full-spectrum USDA-certified organic CBD oil.

“In utilizing the CBD oil, I was able to relieve my pain and shrink the tumors. I had surgery, and rather than take the prescribed fentanyl, I used CBD (and THC oil) to heal. I continue to take the oil daily for prevention,” she explained to Weedmaps News.

“I also want to note that not all CBD oil helped, and that it was only organically grown cannabis, made via solventless methods that truly brought relief to my suffering.” Carlevale pointed out that there is an abundance of products on the market that contain carcinogenic ingredients such as propylene glycol, and she avoided using these products.

What the experts say

Stasia Woodcock is a pharmacist with Curaleaf New York who specifically endorses CBD oil as a form of pain relief for conditions that cause inflammation or nerve pain.

“The current research shows that CBD is a very potent anti-inflammatory agent, which can help decrease pain where inflammation is a key factor, such as arthritis or colitis,” Woodcock explained. “CBD has also been studied in the prevention and treatment of neuropathy, or nerve pain.”

The current research shows that CBD is a very potent anti-inflammatory agent, which can help decrease pain where inflammation is a key factor. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

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Woodcock also emphasized that CBD is unique because it assists with an array of symptoms associated with pain. “CBD is a huge multitasker. Whereas most medications typically work on only one symptom, CBD can help with multiple facets of pain, including inflammation and the anxiety constant pain can cause, in addition to the pain itself.”

She points out, however, that severe pain, such as the pain associated with fibromyalgia, endometriosis, or musculoskeletal pain such as severe back pain, benefits from the entourage effect of CBD in conjunction with THC. “The research also indicates that higher doses of CBD (between 100-200 mg per day) are often needed when CBD is used without THC to bolster its effects.”

Woodcock underlines that, thus far, there is no clinical evidence that CBD causes any serious side effects. “It doesn’t cause stomach issues, itching, or constipation the way anti-inflammatories and opioids can. When a medical cannabis product is dosed properly, it can provide powerful pain relief without any [intoxication], which is not typically the case with opioids.”

Lastly, Woodcock cautions that verifying the source and potency of CBD oil is critical. “Medical cannabis products are highly regulated and tested, whereas hemp CBD products are not required to be regulated,” she said. Buyers should be aware that many hemp products might not contain what they promise, and may even include harmful substances in their formulation. Buying third-party tested products can help ensure you receive the CBD you are paying for.

Bottom line

Those who suffer from inflammatory or neuropathic pain may find CBD oil helpful in alleviating pain and treating associated symptoms such as depression or anxiety.

How to Use CBD Oil for Runners: Pain Relief, Mood, Athletic Performance

CBD oil for runners isn’t just a sneaky way to use marijuana (I know you’re wondering about that!), it’s an effective tool for improving recovery which means better training and bigger results.

A few years ago, I started hearing whispers of ultrarunners crushing their uber long trail workouts thanks to the now legal Colorado trade of marijuana. I was intrigued, but not really sure how getting baked at 5AM to run before a full day of work was supposed to go.

Plus let’s be honest, I’m the girl who won’t even take a pain pill after knee surgery because I didn’t like feeling out of control. Marijuana was just not going to be part of my sports nutrition plan.

Does CBD help athletes?

So I set that potential run enhancer aside and went about my training.

Which lead to A LOT of research and testing all kinds of pain relief methods. I was injecting platelets, trying energy medicine and giving my knee pep talks daily.

Eventually that research lead me right back to what those ultrarunners were sort of tapping in to…CBD, it won’t get you high, but gives you the benefits portion of marijuana.

  • It is not a performance enhancer like a steriod
  • It can enhance performance by reducing nerves

Why is CBD for athletes so popular?

I thought this was a fantastic question because it certainly seems like you heard about it a little and now there are tons of companies popping up. I think there are a few things happening:

  1. Success always encourages others to jump in to a market and it’s currently projected to be over 1 billion by 2020.
  2. Changing regulations are making it easier to sell these products even though CBD isn’t a banned substances.
  3. There are more studies now around it’s usage.
  4. Those changing laws are also making people more comfortable with these products
  5. It’s a non-addictive pain relief option, without some of the issues we know exist with others if taken before workouts

✅ Resilience CBD is what I recommend if you don’t want to read more! And if you’re ready to test it out use code AMANDA20 to get a 20% discount on your first order.

What is CBD oil?

Cannabidiol oil is extracted from the hemp plant

In fact, our bodies produce certain cannabinoids already!

CB1 receptors: deal with mood, hunger, coordination and is affected by marijuana
CB2 receptors: deal with the immune system and pain.

CBD appears not to attach to either, but instead to encourage your body to use more of it’s own cannabinoids.

Hemp Oil vs CBD Oil: They aren’t the same.
Ok this can get confusing, so let’s try to break it down:

  • Both come from the hemp plant
  • Hemp oil is used in shampoos, lotions, etc for its high vitamin content
  • Hemp oil is extracted from large industrial plots cultivated to have low to no traces of CBD or THC
  • Hemp seeds contain no THC
  • Hemp oil is basically like coconut oil, you can cook with it or eat it
  • CBD is extracted from hemp grown specifically to be high in CBD
  • Cannabis is the same plant that creates hemp and marijuana, just different species

Will CBD make you high?

Nope, it’s nothing like that. You’re thinking of THC which is the active component of the leaf.

Now as you’ll see below some products do contain a very small trace amount of THC (.3%) in the pain relief cream because there is some research that you need the full source for maximum benefits. Kind of like not taking vitamin C alone, but rather eating the whole orange.

That minuscule dose will not give you the effect often discussed with edibles or smoking, where you will often find up to 30% THC.

In FACT, the results of CBD work on the same system that produces your very natural runner’s high!

What are the benefits of CBD oil?

Now let’s dive in to the fun stuff, we know what CBD is and how to use it, but why? Why are so many athletes turning to this new tool and does it really work?

One 2016 study in arthritic rats, found that it significantly reduced joint swelling and pain ratings, without the side effects of other drugs! Nice.

Of course that’s just one study, but there are many more underway like using CBD to reduce anxiety without the high. Which is actually something that many consistent users often report. Knowing that there’s more work being done, I’m listing here the reported benefits from both brands and those who’ve tried it.

CBD Benefits

  • natural pain relief
  • reduced anxiety
  • improved sleep
  • potential to reduce inflammation of Type 1 diabetes reduction
  • promotes heart health
  • promotes bone growth (healing stress fractures!)

How to use CBD oil?

Honestly, once I decided to dive in I was a little confused by the CBD sublingual drops, the creams, the lotions and the salves. What did I need, how much and when!

Let my confusion, which lead to research save you time!

  1. Consistency: This isn’t a use it one day and magically all things are better. You need to use it consistently for you to continue reducing inflammation or improving sleep, which then leads to all kinds of other good benefits.
  2. Sublingual drops (under the tongue) are great for helping to reduce total body inflammation, calming, mood, etc. When taking it sublingual, let it basically absorb in your mouth, don’t just swallow it.
  3. Creams are ideal for localized areas of pain.
  4. Lotions are an alternative to the sublingual drops as you can absorb the CBD through the skin.

CBD For shin splints?
Yes, it’s going to help lessen the inflammation and allow your muscles to relax. But then you have to do the work to recover from shin splints!

CBD for Plantar Fasciitis?
Yes, it can also help here with lowering inflammation. But again it’s not magic, you have to work on those foot muscles and do the plantar fasciitis exercises to fully resolve it.

When to take CBD Oil for runners?

1. Take it Nightly
Most people will take the sublingual drops a night to help them wind down and have a good night of sleep. We know that quality sleep is one of the key components to good health and workout recovery, so this can help with that while also working on inflammation.

2. Try it Pre-Workout
I started to wonder about pre-workout usage based on the original stories of ultra runners and their edibles. A little self testing and research lead me to find it can be a great option for prior to long runs as a way of getting in to a flow and

Now others might find it makes them too sleepy for a great workout and I wouldn’t use it before a speed session, but worth knowing so you can decide what’s best for you.

What do I recommend?

First a few things you need to know if you’re going to ignore my recommendation!

Buyer Beware
A 2017 study showed over 70% of CBD products are over or more commonly underlabled, meaning they don’t contain what you’re paying for! Again that’s why I’m excited to share Resilience CBD with you because they do a lot of testing to ensure product quality.

Additionally, it’s really important to all my fellow Amazon lovers to know what you see on Amazon isn’t CBD. It’s not allowed to be sold there, which means you’re buying hemp oil.

Look for Studies
The brand I recommend below is very open about all the studies they’ve done and you want this in any brand you choose. Of course I’m trying to save you that hassle by just sharing a great option!

Resilience CBD

Now, having tested out three different varieties of drops, a few different creams and salves over the last year, my ultimate choice is Resilience CBD.

✅And if you’re ready to test it out use code AMANDA20 to get a 20% discount on your first order.

Let me tell you why it’s my personal choice.

Resilience CBD Oil Drops
For all over inflammation fighting, relaxation, taking sublingual drops is ideal. The way to get the most from them is to hold it in your mouth for 60 seconds where it essentially absorbs under your tongue. In the previous brands I tried, I needed to put it in and take a flavored drink to get past the taste, gag.

Not so with Resilience!

Also compared to the others, I noticed an actual difference when taking it. So much so that during a few days of super high stress, I took an extra dose during the day, which I never even pondered with the others.

If you want to ensure you are getting 0 THC (for a work drug test or anything else), opt for the Resilience Isolate, instead of the full spectrum drops.

**Update: I’ve had a number of private messages asking about the 300mg vs the 600mg. That’s just telling you the size of the bottle, it doesn’t change the potency. I’d say the 600mg lasts just over a month if you use 1 dropper full daily

Resilience CBD Sports Cream
Smelling like my 90 year-old grandmothers old nursing home isn’t high on my list of to do’s. BUT most pain relief creams have that odor due to menthol and the first CBD one I tried was intense. Like so intense I wouldn’t use it if I was leaving the house that day and needed to wash any clothing that touched my skin where I’d put it on my knee!

With Resilience Sport Cream, you notice the smell for about 2-3 minutes a max. Meaning it genuinely vanishes unlike some of the others that claim to. Maybe that doesn’t matter to you, but matters to me!!

Again, I also appreciate that they do test to prove exactly how much CBD is in their product. And this cream will last a very long time because you aren’t gooping it on.

As a reminder creams aren’t a cure all, but used in conjunction with all our other injury prevention techniques it helps.

Ordering Tips
Two tips for ordering! One is to use my code AMANDA20 for 20% off and the second is if you’re unsure, pair up with a friend. Here’s what I mean!

Resilience Give and Rise Project is all about reminding us all to come together to push each other to our best. After you’ve used the product for 30 days, they’ll give you the opportunity to give a friend a FREE product! What?!

Yup so why not buddy up, one of you try it first then the other…I mean you’ll both be convinced you need it forever after 30 days, but this feels like an easy way to start!

My Experience with CBD Oil

All right, I’ve told you the basics of why I like these specific products, but I also want to talk about what I noticed from using them consistently.

The products arrived during a particularly stressful period for me and I found after using it for a few nights, I also opted to take a half dose of the drops early in the day and used the cream consistently on my knee.

  1. I had my longest run by 2 miles since my knee injury started in 2016 (I took .5 CBD before the run)
  2. I finished that 15 miles without knee pain
  3. I proceed the rest of that week to continue having not just good runs, but faster and better feeling
  4. We went through the time change and I found myself adjusting more easily
  5. I’d been having some knee pain post shorter runs and that is continuing to diminish again
  6. The skin issues that had suddenly started in my late 30’s are absolutely better

This is just what I found within the first month of using the product, so I’m quite excited to make Resilience CBD a standard part of my training leading up to my next race!!

My only complaint is that now I want travel sizes from them because I know these are must have’s around race day and when traveling! And auto-refill seems like a must!

Have you tried CBD?

Any questions left unanswered?

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This post is sponsored by Resilience CBD, but all opinions and testing results are my own.