No pain, no gain…Not so! Sure, there’s something to be said for “true grit” and pushing through the pain, but why? We now live in a world that’s full of so many viable options for reducing and relieving pain, why not take advantage of these developments and stop suffering in pain.
There are essentially two types of chronic pain:
- Nociceptive pain – this pain stems from tissue that is damaged and becomes inflamed (think bee stings, burns, sprains) or even chronic conditions like arthritis. This is a throbbing type of pain and often connected to a certain position or movement of the affected area.
- Neuropathic pain – comes from damage to nerves, such as pain from sciatica, shingles, multiple sclerosis, and chemotherapy treatment. This type of pain is clearly identified by sharp, shooting, or even burning sensations.
Over the counter pain relief takes up a whole aisle in any local pharmacy around, and for many, the first go-to is to pop a pill to make the pain go away. Then there’s the “other stuff”—rubs, balms, gels, ointments, and patches, to name a few (you likely remember that product grandma uses, and lingering menthol smell that hangs around in the house for days afterwards). Joining ranks with those familiar topical pain relief products on the market, CBD creams and other topical CBD products seem to be gaining in popularity as an option for pain relief, simply due to the number of products entering the market and the plethora of articles found in health and wellness magazines and online blogs and newsletters.
CBD (cannabidiol) is derived from the cannabis plant. It’s a natural substance that’s currently used in hundreds of products like oils and other ingestibles to reduce pain and impart a feeling of calm. It is also known to lower anxiety and stress. And unlike its relative THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), it’s not psychoactive, so it does not alter or affect a person’s mood or behavior, and does not lead to dependency or addiction to the CBD product. When produced as a topic cream, CBD is often blended with other therapeutic herbs, like arnica or lemongrass essential oils, that are also popular pain relievers.
To date, CBD products aren’t yet approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) which means they are not regulated for purity and dosage. Due to the lack of regulation, the amount of active CBD found in topical products does vary dramatically, as does the quality of the CBD itself that is being infused. That’s why you need to do your homework and choose a high quality CBD cream from an established, reputable company.
According to research, CBD interacts with pain receptors in the brain which creates a pain relieving experience for many users. Topical CBD products work with your body’s own similar functions, rather than masking them. Rather than ingesting CBD orally and allowing it to travel throughout the body, CBD cream delivers the healing benefit directly to where pain is occurring. Since they’re formulated to be topical and not transdermal—which would pass through the skin and into your bloodstream—there’s no risk of getting high. These benefits have made CBD creams a popular choice by tattoo artists. Professional tattoo artists who use and recommend Hustle Butter CBD Luxe have repeatedly shared that when used as recommended, it reduces pain and inflammation and calms the skin.
Harvard Health Blog explains that further research in humans is needed to substantiate these findings, but there are already indications that CBD cream is a desirable option for treatment of specific types of chronic and inflammatory pain. Particularly since it only reaches within 1 centimeter of the skin’s surface to impart it’s healing properties, it serves as a great option for tattoo after-care. Combined with it’s analgesic properties, a high quality CBD cream may now offer a better overall healing process after getting inked.
Based on its popularity to date, no doubt there are dozens (if not more) of researchers taking a closer look at the efficacy of CBD-infused creams for pain relief in humans.
So is this just the latest hype, or is this legit? Hard to say with 100% certainty but there’s plenty of logic in the findings to date— increasing your natural endocannabinoids, decreasing your inflammatory response, and desensitizing your pain receptors. Makes sense, right?
Thanks to its overall safety and lack of psychoactive effects, CBD cream offers a very viable alternative to those tubes of topical analgesic heat rub that may still be hanging out in grandma’s medicine cabinet. Since the research done on humans is still nominal, the jury may still be out whether topical CBD creams definitively deliver pain relief or if it’s only a placebo effect. Regardless, there’s certainly still inherent benefit if you feel better from using it. Essentially, the best way to determine if CBD cream will work for you? Give it a try!
About the author: Yaffa Baslaw (@yadeinu) is a Freelance Writer with over a decade of experience copywriting and blogging compelling content. She has written for more than 20 companies in the fields of healthcare, skincare, and retail.