August 23, 2022 5 min read

DOES CBD BALM HELP WITH INFLAMMATION?

CBD products have been on the rise recently because it's an easier option than other medical treatments offered to patients, such as opioids and drugs.

CBD products are mainly available as edibles where a patient might take them indirectly, but that is just one way of taking CBD products. CBD topical- CBD products applied to the skin- are on the rise too. These CBD topical are easy to apply, and for those with the fear of taking in capsules or vaping, a much relief. Is it true that it might help in inflammation? Read more on this article to find out.

A Brief History of Cannabis

Although Cannabis was at first put in the same cluster as other drugs, such as heroin, in a very restrictive regime (Schedule 4), medical practitioners and researchers enjoy much freedom in the availability of Cannabis for research today. However, the USA overturned the strictest laws on Cannabis as Cannabis has had its days of glory; in 1970, the USA placed Cannabis in schedule 1, allowing more plant research.

Over 100 cannabinoids have already been found in the plant since extensive studies were made at the start of the 20th century. But Cannabis didn't start there; According to Crocq (2022), cannabis has been used around the world in parts of Central Asia- particularly around the Altai Mountains. This led to a global spread of the use of the plant in Africa and America for recreational purposes rather than just for its fiber or as a supplement for food.

In China, some records suggest the medicinal use of Cannabis started in the Common Era in china and has been mentioned in Greek philosophy. Zeus's daughter Helen used to serve "nepenthes," a mixture of wine and herbs, as a means to calm soldiers who had cases of posttraumatic disorders, possibly from witnessing their comrades slain in battle, according to Homers Odyssey.

CBD products and THC

The research on Cannabis has had much success, with over 100 cannabinoids isolated from Cannabis. Two main compounds, Cannabidiol (CBD) and THC were found in Cannabis. Barrus et al. (2016) established that THC is the most commonly used one and is responsible for the 'high' effect users generally get when they vape or smoke Cannabis. CBD is much different from its cousin THC and has no toxic traits that are common in THC, which is why it’s a favorite ingredient to many researchers and medical practitioners.

However, approved CBD compounds must have a THC level of about 0.3% for them to be legally used. With a THC level of this percentage, CBD compounds will not give the user the 'high' effect that Cannabis does on smokers, so you don't have to worry about getting high. 

Dr. Raphael Mechoulam earned the title 'Godfather of Cannabis' because he conducted extensive research on the structure of CBD and THC a year later. These discoveries led to more understanding of our bodies and how the body receptors react to CBD. These endocannabinoids producing receptors in the body helped us discover and understand how CBD interacts with the body to control pain, appetite, and our sleep routine.

In recent days there have been many varieties and products of CBD; there are three main types of CBD products according to their components;

Full-spectrum

As its name suggests, it contains all the parts of the cannabis plant, although it still contains under 0.3% THC level. So taking this type of CBD product wil not make you feel ‘high’ although if taken in a reasonable larger quantity will give you the feeling if you take in enough THC quantity.

Broad-spectrum

This type of CBD has fewer amounts of THC compounds, although it has most of the cannabis compounds.

CBD Isolate

With this type of CBD, the components are selected carefully and contain CBD only.

Aside from CBD types, it’s relevant to know what forms these CBD products might be in. The most famous form of CBD is oil; these oil products can be placed under the tongue and swallowed. You can also give CBD in the form of edibles; these edibles or gummies are available in different tastes and shapes to help give a variety to the user. CBD can also exist in balms, lotions, or creams; these are called topical. These can be easily applied to the skin for those who don't like ingesting other products directly.

CBD Balm

This CBD form is infused with CBD compounds applied to the skin. According to Pellati et al. (2018), these products give relief when in pain or having an inflammation. However, many of these topical products contain more than just CBD compounds; they are usually paired with other products such as oil to naturally nourish and moisturize your skin.

Brady (2018) commented that these CBD balm products work by inhibiting the glutamate levels in the brain that are responsible for the body's sensation and transmission of pain. They also limit the body's inflammatory response to muscle injuries. They decrease the number of cytokines in the affected area, giving the user less pain sensation due to inflammation.

The human skin absorbs almost anything; when using CBD balms or topical in general, it is important to note that CBD topical too might interfere with orally ingested drugs. It would be best to remember to tell your doctor that you are using CBD supplements for pain.

CBD balm uses the body's natural receptors to offer relief for pain and inflammation in the affected area. Just clean and rub your topical on the area of disturbance and let it do what it does best- relief.

Conclusion

Although there has been a lot of discovery in cannabis medication, there is much more to discover. However, CBD products offer an alternative to common pharmaceutical Drugs; they are proving to be the better alternative for many arthritis patients. They come with other skin refreshing compounds for healthier skin. When picking out a CBD topical product, it all comes down to what you prefer; try these CBD products yourself to find your favorite.

Reference

Barrus, D. G., Capogrossi, K. L., Cates, S. C., Gourdet, C. K., Peiper, N. C., Novak, S. P., ... & Wiley, J. L. (2016). Tasty THC: Promises And Challenges Of Cannabis Edibles. Methods Report (RTI Press), 2016.

Brady, B. D. D. CBD, And Anxiety.

Crocq, M. A. (2022). History Of Cannabis And The Endocannabinoid System. Dialogues In Clinical Neuroscience.

Pellati, F., Borgonetti, V., Brighenti, V., Biagi, M., Benvenuti, S., & Corsi, L. (2018). Cannabis Sativa L. And Nonpsychoactive Cannabinoids: Their Chemistry And Role Against Oxidative Stress, Inflammation, And Cancer. Biomed Research International, 2018.