The new found fame of CBD (Cannabidiol) can be linked to the fact that the substance provides numerous therapeutic effects. It is widely used across the globe for its analgesic, anxiolytic, aphrodisiac, anti-inflammatory, and anti-depressive properties. This article will mostly cover the analgesic properties of CBD, its use, and benefits in treating chronic back pain.
CBD, short for Cannabidiol, is among the 100 plus naturally occurring cannabinoids found in cannabis. It is the second major constituent of the plant, accounting for almost 40% of the plant extract. CBD, unlike THC, is non-psychoactive, and therefore, doesn’t deliver any feelings of high or euphoria. In addition to this, CBD is legal and doesn’t show up on drug screening tests.
The cannabinoid is derived from the hemp plant and is available in different forms, which range from capsules to oils and tinctures, used accordingly by individuals as suiting their preferences.
CBD oil contains cannabinoid which is the second most essential element in Cannabis Sativa.
According to the studies, the cannabidiol is a type of potent agent which helps in relieving the symptoms associated with Degenerative Disk Disease.
Slowly, the science and studies are progressing regarding the CBD potential that how it aids in treating the medical conditions.
According to the reviews, the ingredient of CBD oil is recognized as the cannabinoid of therapeutic power. One such situation where CBD oil for back pain and degenerative disc disease is useful.
CBD oil serves as a perfect natural alternative to individuals suffering from back pain. The cannabinoid in CBD oil is a non-psychoactive agent derived from the hemp plant.
The back pain sufferers use the CBD oil for back pain to serve as an analgesic without any or few adverse effects.
Degenerative disc disease
The spine is an essential component of the human body as mentioned by H. Pilates, a German exercise legend.
The spinal cord maintains a vital role in the mobility and physical stability of an individual.
Degenerative disc disease is defined as a condition in which the intervertebral discs become damaged and compromised resulting in degeneration.
In some conditions, the disc degeneration is a part of the natural ageing process or either due to labour, physical trauma because of injuries, obesity or other reasons.
These conditions result in neck and back pain, leading to numbness or finally nerve damage. The degeneration might also occur in long-term complications such as:
- Osteoarthritis in which the vertebrae start rubbing each other,
- Spinal stenosis, i.e., the state in which the spinal canal where the spinal cord travels becomes smaller and might lead to compression of nerves and,
- Herniation in which the discs start bulging out resulting in compression of nerves.
What is Chronic Back Pain?
Chronic back pain is very severe, and it is unbearable for people suffering from it.
Many treatments are available for treating chronic back pain, but they result in damaging effects to the internal organs.
In most severe cases, the chronic back pain is treated with surgery after physiotherapy or Neurotherapy fails to address.
The commonly prescribed medicines for back pain include NSAIDs such as Voltaren, Ibuprofen, and Valium which are anti-inflammatory drugs.
They are specified as a muscle relaxant to patients suffering from back pain or bursitis and any other types of inflammatory conditions. The NSAIDS result in adverse effects such as stomach cramps, ulcers or constipation.
Back pain is amongst the most common problems facing our generation. An estimate shows that about nine out of ten adults have a chance of experiencing it at some point in their life. It has also been stated that up to 95% of Americans will have to deal with back pain once in their lives.
Moreover, Back pain has been attributed to the most common cause of job-related disability and a leading contributor to missed work days, with about five out of ten working adults facing it every year.
Back pain that persists for 12 weeks (3 months) or longer and even after an initial injury or underlying cause of acute back pain has been treated is defined as Chronic back pain.
Chronic pain is usually less directly related to identifiable tissue damage and structural problems and is, therefore, less understood compared to acute pain (pain that lasts less than three months).
Back pain is mostly mechanical and occurs due to general degeneration of the spine because of normal wear and tear that happens in the joints, discs, and bones of the spine as one gets older.
It can also begin abruptly as a result of an accident, inflammation, infection, and tumor or by lifting something heavy, overstretching or bad posture.
In some cases, the nervous system may be sending a pain signal even though there is no ongoing tissue damage. In these cases, the pain is the disease rather than a symptom of an injury and is termed as “chronic benign pain.”
Chronic Back pain is medically treated with prescribed medications such as Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), analgesics, anti-depressants, Anticonvulsants, and counter-irritants. It is also relieved with exercises, but in extreme cases, surgery may become an option.
Causes of back pain
The inter vertebral discs are cartilage discs which are located between the vertebrae of the spinal cord of mammals.
The purpose of intervertebral discs is to absorb shock and improve the mobility of the spine. However, if degeneration occurs, it results in chronic back and neck pain.
The leading causes of degeneration include oxygen deficiency, ageing along with inflammation of painful areas, lack of relevant content such as water and sugar.
Other reasons include disease or trauma. Most people suffer from back pain because of their working habits example from jobs that are physically demanding.
How does CBD oil work for back pain and degenerative disc disease?
Before the application of CBD oil is mentioned, first understand the potential of CBD oil. The cannabinoid in the CBD oil plays a vital role in the treatment of conditions such as chronic pain and Dravet syndrome along with other states.
The CBD oil is accepted as an anti-inflammatory agent which is also gaining attention as an ingredient for mental health.
The CBD oil contains Cannabinoid which is a non-psychoactive agent with no known side effects.
It is not recognized as medicine in most parts of the world because the research on CBD oil is still ongoing due to the active ingredients THC and CBD. Among which THC is identified as the psychoactive agent leading to high feelings.
CBD is a rising star in the field of natural analgesics. While prescribed medicine may cause many side-effects, such as liver damage, gastrointestinal ulcers, bleeding and inconveniences during pregnancy, CBD is a relatively safer substance.
The entry of cannabinoid medicines such as CBD oil to the pharmacopeia has offered a novel approach to the issue of chronic pain management, giving new hope to many patients.
In a poll conducted by ABC News in the US, it was found that that 38 million (19% of adults) have chronic pain, and 6% (12 million) have utilized cannabis in attempts to treat it.
In another study that was conducted on mice in 2017, it was found that treatment with CBD helped reduce inflammation and treat pain. It was also stated that Prophylactic CBD treatment prevented the later development of pain and nerve damage in the subjects.
These findings suggested that CBD may be a safe, useful therapeutic substance for treating neuropathic and chronic pain.
So how is CBD able to deliver such spectacular pain-relieving effects? The answer lies in the fact that CBD, being a naturally occurring Cannabinoid, acts on the Endocannabinoid system (ECS) in our bodies.
This system is a group of receptors, cannabinoids, and nerve signalling pathways that help in maintaining our overall health, including our mood, digestion, stress levels, pain, and metabolism.
CBD interferes with the normal functioning of the ECS, promoting an increase in the production of natural cannabinoids of the body. CBD also inhibits neuronal transmission in pain pathways and helps limit inflammation in the brain and nervous system, which benefits people experiencing pain.
A new explanation of inflammatory and analgesic effects of CBD has recently come to light with the discovery that it can promote signalling of the adenosine receptor A2A by inhibiting the adenosine transporter.
In addition to this, it aids pain management by stopping the body from absorbing Anandamide, which is a compound associated with pain regulation. Higher levels of Anandamide in the bloodstreams lowers our perception to feel pain.
Effects of CBD oil according to the research evidence
The intervertebral discs comprise of the fibrous, cartilaginous tissue other than the most of the tissues of the body.
These intervertebral discs do not receive the adequate amount of blood flow because of which they cannot heal if once damaged.
It then further leads to the difficulties for an individual to regain mobility and repair fully. The primary troublemaker of disc degeneration includes swelling and inflammation which might occur due to different triggering agents.
A study 9was conducted in 2014, to determine the protective effects of CBD oil on degenerative disc disease.
The study was conducted on rats injured on tailbone through needles to mimic the degenerative disc disease, and all of them were divided into three groups, each one of them were introduced with different concentrations of CBD oil,i.e., around 30, 60 and 120 nmol.
Each group was then examined under microscope and MRI to get an accurate picture of CBD’s effects.
It was concluded that rats with 120 nmol of dosage displayed reduced damage due to the lesions. The effects of CBD oil showed up for 48 hours and above.
According to this research, CBD lacks the adverse effects making it a viable agent for degenerative disc disease and associated symptoms.
According to another study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, the cannabis helps in relieving the chronic pain in women and men.
The study involved 21 women and men who suffered from chronic nerve pain. All of them were administered with different concentrations of marijuana and various The potencies included the 9.4%, 2.5% and 6% THC.
It was noticed that patients who consumed the highest concentration of cannabis had a slight reduction in pain.
In Dec 2014 it was recommended that cannabis could be smoked in patients suffering from chronic pain.
The paper stated that the maximum recommended dose be around one inhalation, four times a day,i.e., around 400mg in a day including 9% THC from cannabis.
Psychological symptoms and management of pain associated with degenerative disc disease
CBD has a high potential for reducing pain serving as an essential ingredient for treating Degenerative Disc disorder.
The CBD oil can mediate the mild adverse effects of the prescribed drugs such as opioids which are utilized for the management of chronic and acute back pain.
These medicines are highly addictive posing more significant health risks to your body when compared to CBD or THC.
The patients suffering from severe forms of degenerative disc disorder or back pain often experience the psychological symptoms such as depression or anxiety.
Fortunately, CBD oil helps in relieving stress along with metal relaxation and physiological sedation.
The CBD oil has anti-inflammatory properties encouraging the natural suppression of inflammation serving as a promising supplement or alternative to the pharmaceutical drugs.
Effects of CBD oil
The CBD oil has two main components THC and CBD. The CBD content is highly useful as a non-psychoactive agent.
Many individuals experienced that THC serves as a psychoactive agent for beginners suffering from degenerative disc disease and back pain.
It is because if they dosed with high THC content in resting position, it resulted in a relaxed state while in standing position, the extreme shock was felt in legs due to compression of nerves.
However, the plants with a high content of CBD seemed extremely useful for relieving chronic pain. The CBD content allowed you to work regularly and carry out with your routine activities.
How to use CBD for Chronic back pain- proper dosage and administration?
The CBD oil serves as a useful natural alternative for the management of pain.
It aids in relieving pain associated with various disorders such as fibromyalgia, diabetic neuropathy, and other conditions where conventional pharmaceutical medicines are not sufficient.
There are many ways to consume CBD for Chronic back pain. It could be taken orally in the form of capsules or mixed with food and drinks. It can also be taken in the form of oils and tinctures or could be applied to the skin topically, which helps to relieve pain that is more targeted.
The best way of administration for pain, however, is to spray the product onto the sublingual glands in the mouth (below the tongue).
This is because oral administration provides only 6-15% bioavailability, while sublingual use can provide as much as 35-40% bioavailability, due to which oral methods tend to be the least cost-effective, as much more product is required to get the same results.
Another important point to note in CBD administration is that the user has to wait for the CBD to absorb into the bloodstream before swallowing it immediately.
Regarding this, a user on Reddit suggested “Many people make one common mistake I see all the time: only keeping it under the tongue for 30 to 90 seconds. You need to leave it there for at least 5 minutes to get optimum bioavailability”.
When asked about dosage, many people had varying views, but an average estimate of dosage that could be derived from user experiences was in the range of 40-60mg on a daily basis.
One user commented “That process of finding the right dose takes some time. You creep up on it, and then have to back down when you go over what your body likes the best. It’s a bell curve type of thing.”
The use of CBD oil increases the quality of life and allows you to rest pain-free.
Other uses of CBD oil include:
- Chronic pain
- Back pain
- Multiple sclerosis
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Psychosis and Schizophrenia
- Serves as a muscle relaxant
- Sleep heals
- Anxiety relief
- Reduces the fear of touch
- Easy to use and does not feel like a medicine
Best strains for degenerative disc disease and back pain
There are a variety of strains available of medical marijuana which are beneficial in treating the patients suffering from back pain.
Each strain works accordingly, but the strains with a high content of THC are chosen for combating the back pain. CBD is handy in reducing the inflammation leading to reduced pain.
Some of the best Marijuana strains include:
Other treatment options for back pain and degenerative disc disease
The following medical treatments are utilized:
- NSAIDs, pain medicines, rest, stretching, exercises for strengthening the muscles of the neck, back and stomach, physical therapy, steroid injections and last option surgery.
The alternative and supportive therapies include:
- For nutritional purpose vitamin B, magnesium, Bromelain, Serrapeptase, Glucosamine Sulfate.
- According to homeopathy, you can use Traumeel, Zeel, Hypericum, and Symphytum.
- You can opt for acupuncture, massage therapy, chiropractic or Rolfing which is a deep tissue massage.
Why choose the natural approach to degenerative disc disease and back pain?
As you can notice, that there are varying options for treating the back pain associated with degenerative disc disease, but the naturally available alternative is the best option with mild side effects such as nausea, irritability, dizziness, stomach issues and others.
Cannabis is gaining popularity in today’s world, and some countries have legalized the use of marijuana due to the importance of CBD oil in patients suffering from underlying medical conditions.
The CBD oil is a type of low-risk treatment option which serves as an analgesic agent.
Patients are suffering from degenerative disc disease experience pain due to inflammation. However, CBD oil helps in treating the pain as it serves as an anti-inflammatory agent.
Cannabis is an excellent source of treating chronic pain, so it is not surprising at all that CBD oil aids in managing the back pain and degenerative disc disease.
Consult your doctor before the use of traditional and alternative methods for curing the back pain and degenerative disc disease.
User reviews regarding the use of CBD for Chronic back pain
When asked about the use of CBD for chronic back pain, many users on the social forum, Reddit, had positive comments about the substance. Users expressed that CBD had proven as a very effective remedy to cure back pain, something that even medicines had failed to accomplish.
A user commented “I have a great deal of back pain. Mine is a degree 10 with no medications that help. I do use a long-term, low dose opioid & it doesn’t take pain below a 6-7. I started on CBD tincture, 75mg a day, & I made an e-juice with isolate & it helps greatly if I do it all day. Pain is bearable then.”
Another user stated “I had nagging lower back pain for several months. After using CBD consistently (full-spectrum tinctures and occasional capsules), I began to feel less discomfort and started exercising more vigorously. Within a week, my lower back pain was COMPLETELY gone. Zero pain, zilch. I’m a new man.”
Users also suggested that Full spectrum CBD worked better for pain management compared to CBD isolate products. This is because the different Cannabinoids found in full spectrum CBD work synergistically to produce the entourage effect, which can deliver better properties.
When asked about dosage and consumption, many users expressed that they preferred sub-lingual sprays over topical creams, as they were more effective and efficient.
A user stated “I have many problems with my spine & have chronic pain associated with it. I am 54. I discovered CBD, and I use a high potency tincture for me, I take 60mg a day which is high for most, but works to help cut the pain. It also relieves inflammation, which in turn helps in diming the pain.