CBD products seem everywhere—from online promotions to doctor’s offices. You may even find CBD oil at your local convenience store.
CBD oil is one of the most popular products for pain management.
In fact, CBD retail sales surpassed $1 billion in 2019, a 133% increase over the prior year.
The truth is pain management and drugs have a rocky history. One of the leading causes of opioid addiction stems from people using drugs to manage pain.
The ongoing opioid epidemic has caused many to have reservations about the use of CBD.
The confusion around CBD oil is growing almost as fast as its sales. Whether you already use CBD oil for pain management or want more information about getting started, we can help.
Keep reading to learn more about CBD oil for pain management and how it relates to addiction.
What Is CBD?
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, CBD (short for cannabidiol) is a chemical found in the Cannabis sativa plant, also known as marijuana or hemp.
CBD is primarily extracted from the hemp plant for products like oils and gummies that the general public can legally purchase in stores.
How Does CBD Work?
Unlike THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol), the primary active ingredient found in marijuana, CBD does not cause a “high” for the user. Instead, CBD calms and relaxes the body and mind by stimulating the endocannabinoid system.
The endocannabinoid system contains many receptors and neurotransmitters responsible for keeping your body balanced. It focuses on improving communication between the central and peripheral nervous systems and the immune system. It also regulates vital body functions like sleep, mood, pain, and immune response.
By ingesting CBD gummies or using another product like CBD oil, CBD causes the endocannabinoid system to create more cannabinoids to help ease your mind and relax.
Is CBD Oil Safe?
In short, CBD oil is generally safe for most people.
Given its relation to marijuana, CBD oil worries many people about drug misuse and addiction.
Even though some minor side effects, such as dry mouth and lightheadedness, have been reported, CBD oil is not toxic.
Before you use CBD oil for pain management, it’s essential to talk with your doctor first. This is especially important if you are currently in recovery.
Is CBD Oil Addictive?
CBD is not believed to be physically addictive. It does not produce the same addictive properties or dependency as other substances like opioids or nicotine.
According to the World Health Organization, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of dependency potential.
That said, it is essential to note that individuals can develop a psychological dependence or habituation to any substance, including CBD oil. This psychological dependence is more related to individual behaviors, patterns of use, and personal tendencies rather than the direct addictive quality of CBD oil itself.
It is always recommended to use CBD products responsibly and in moderation. If you have concerns about addiction or dependence, consult a healthcare professional who can provide personalized advice based on your circumstances.
Can CBD Replace Painkillers to Prevent Opioid Addiction?
A key reason why there is ongoing research on this topic is that CBD could serve as a healthier alternative to prescription painkillers.
In 2018, nearly 70% of the 67,367 overdose deaths in the country included an opioid, stressing the need to curb the opioid epidemic and find a better way to treat people experiencing chronic pain.
In a 2017 study, researchers found that the overwhelming majority of their participants rated cannabis as being just as effective as their prescription painkillers but without adverse side effects. While promising, it’s unclear if CBD can have these same effects or if larger amounts of THC are also needed to help people manage their chronic pain.
Does CBD Oil Help With Pain?
Besides allowing the endocannabinoid system to manage biological functions throughout the body more effectively, there is additional evidence that CBD oil can help relieve pain.
First, research suggests CBD keeps the body from absorbing a pain-regulation compound called anandamide. The more this compound is found in the bloodstream, the less pain an individual feels.
Second, CBD also decreases the amount of inflammation in the brain and nervous system, which can help with pain relief.
Types of Pain CBD Oil Is Used For
CBD oil has been shown to help with a full range of pain, including
- Chronic pain (arthritis, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis)
- Inflammatory pain (rheumatoid arthritis, IBD)
- Musculoskeletal pain (muscle soreness, strains, sports injuries)
- Neuropathic pain (diabetic neuropathy, nerve damage)
- Migraines and headaches
- Cancer-related pain
It’s important to note that while there is some evidence and personal anecdotes about CBD’s effects on pain, more research is still needed. What may be effective for one person may not be effective for another, and scientists are still working to understand better how CDB can aid pain management.
CBD Oil and Substance Use Disorder Treatment
Due to the increased and effective use of CBD oil for pain management, there is renewed interest in finding other uses for this natural pain reliever.
CBD oil is now being tested to help manage cravings and relieve withdrawal symptoms in substance use disorder treatment.
If found successful, CBD oil may become an alternative way to treat substance use and limit people’s discomfort when struggling with cravings and withdrawal. While this testing is still early, and the long-term effects of CBD oil aren’t entirely known, it has the potential to become a natural pain reliever and tool for trying to find lasting recovery from addiction.
The Raleigh House Uses Holistic and Evidence-Based Treatment for Your Recovery
If you or your loved one is suffering from a substance use disorder, The Raleigh House can help.
At our serene wellness lodge, just 15 minutes outside of Denver, we use the most evidence-based and holistic treatments possible. This approach includes individual and group therapy sessions, experiential therapy, and a natural, healthy pro-recovery nutrition regimen.
At The Raleigh House, we know how difficult it can be to ask for help. But with the right treatment program and support team guiding you every step of the way, you can achieve sobriety and work towards lasting recovery.
Our friendly admissions team is ready to hear your story and help you get your treatment and recovery started. Contact us today or call us directly for more information.