- Cannabidiol is an active chemical compound in the Cannabis sativa plant or commonly known as marijuana or hemp.
- Some animal studies suggest that arthritis can provide pain relief and reduce inflammation.
- The benefits of cannabidiol in human arthritis is yet to be validated.
The cannabis plant (popularly known as marijuana) contains the cannabidiol compound believed to have anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. Cannabidiol has effects on the brain and may cause drowsiness.
Studies on animals may indicate that it can relieve pain and inflammation, but these effects are not yet established among the human population. There is still a lot of ongoing research on cannabidiol’s safety and efficacy on arthritis.
Below are the known facts about cannabidiol’s action on arthritis.
Most people with arthritis claimed that upon taking cannabidiol, they experience pain relief, reduction of anxiety, and sleep improvement. But without evidence from registered clinical trials, these claims cannot be considered valid. With such, doctors cannot suggest as to what population and at what dose is cannabidiol safe and effective for arthritis use. Also, cannabidiol is not recommended as a substitute treatment for inflammation.
As of now, little information is known on the safety of cannabidiol, and there is still ongoing research about it. What is known so far is that cannabidiol used in moderate doses is safe. It might also have the possibility to interact with drugs commonly taken for arthritis, fibromyalgia, and depression. Some of these drugs are celecoxib, tramadol, corticosteroids, citalopram, fluoxetine, sertraline, gabapentin, and pregabalin.
Cannabidiol products are no longer prohibited and considered Schedule I drugs under the Federal Controlled Substances Act. Different states also have various laws and regulations in using and purchasing products containing cannabidiol. They are also available online, and if you want to buy or use cannabidiol-based products, it is better to check first with your states’ laws and regulations.
Purchasing and selling cannabidiol products in the US is still unregulated, which lead to mislabeling and low-quality products. Some of these products may have mislabeled dosages and strength, more active ingredients, and contaminants. To be sure that you are buying good quality and effective products, you should:
- Choose products coming from domestically grown ingredients.
- Buy from FDA approved companies with certificate of analysis.
Before trying any products with cannabidiol, you must first consult your physician who manages your arthritis. Together with your doctor, you can decide how to include cannabidiol products in your arthritis treatment plan. Track also your symptoms and if it is being resolved upon using the products. Cannabidiol-based products are too costly, so it is advisable to consider all factors before deciding to use them.
Cannabidiol has different preparations and can be taken:
Upon swallowing, cannabidiol is slowly absorbed through the digestive tract and takes effect after one to two hours. Efficacy is affected by recent meals and other factors. Cannabidiol products that are edible are not recommended because the dosing is unreliable.
You can also use a liquid spray or tincture to be sprayed or dropped under the tongue. Its effect can be felt after 15 – 45 minutes of administration and can be absorbed directly by the bloodstream.
These kinds of products are applied over a painful joint. It also contains ingredients like camphor and menthol.
Products containing cannabidiol can be inhaled through a vaporizing pen or vape. This method has many risks, including pulmonary diseases, and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention is now discouraging this administration route.
Source: Arthritis Foundation