The 10 best cbd oils for pain for 2018 rave reviews

Living with pain is a major challenge for millions of Americans. With over 50,000,000 people suffering from long-term pain, it’s even been called an epidemic. And with it have come other, secondary epidemics. We’re all familiar with opioids and the carnage that that particular form of treatment has left in its wake.

In fact, cannabis plants have a long history as a pain reliever. Whether or not it’s true that Queen Victoria took CBD-rich cannabis to help with menstrual cramps, it is certainly true that her royal physician, Sir J. Russell Reynolds, listed cannabis as “ one of the most valuable medicines we possess .” Victorian doctors aside, there are also ancient Assyrian and Ayurvedic manuscripts that recommend cannabis for pain.

In the last century, though, cannabis has had a checkered history.


Without going into too much detail, a combination of the quest for high-THC strains of cannabis (because lots of people want to get high) and the war on drugs, CBD-rich strains of the plant practically disappeared for a long time.

The cannabinoid CBD was actually discovered in the 1940s, but it took a long time for scientists to begin to learn how it worked. That’s not to say that CBD is new. It’s just been a relatively slow process from discovery to production and intensive scientific research.

And we have a long way to go before we fully understand the relationship between CBD and pain regulation. But strong anecdotal evidence, combined with multiple lab tests and even some clinical trials, have established that CBD holds a lot of promise for pain relief. Or in science-speak , CBD “represents a novel class of therapeutic agents for the treatment of chronic pain.”

But scientists have found that CBD doesn’t bind well with endocannabinoid receptors. Instead, CBD influences the system indirectly. This creates many benefits, which is why you’ll hear of CBD as a treatment for so many different medical conditions. And, unlike THC, it won’t make you high.

When it comes to pain, we know that CBD has multiple functions. First, it influences neurotransmitters and receptors. One receptor known to be involved with pain and inflammation is called TRPV1 — also known as a vanilloid receptor. CBD binds to the TRPV1 receptor, influencing the way you perceive pain. CBD can also affect the production of neurotransmitters like serotonin and glutamate, which are related to pain sensation.

No pain, no gain — or so they say. Pain is a major part of any athlete’s life , whether it’s muscle pain at the end of a good workout or the acute pain of an injury. Many serious athletes depend on drugstore pain relievers like ibuprofen, both for their anti-inflammatory properties and for pain relief.

But CBD has recently become a major player in the world of athletics for two reasons. First, it has proven anti-inflammatory properties. This has been pretty firmly established through a number of studies. For example, in a 2009 lab study , researchers found that CBD significantly suppressed chronic inflammatory pain by activating glycine receptors at the spinal level.

CBD is also a known analgesic , meaning it has pain-relieving properties. Many athletes use CBD after intense workouts to help manage pain from aching muscles and joints. And recently, the World Anti-Doping Agency removed CBD from its list of banned substances, opening the door for professional athletes to make use of the extract for pain relief. CBD for Pain: Headaches

Everyone gets the occasional headache, but if you suffer from them chronically, then you’ve run into the inevitable question of treatment. Too little medication and you’re in pain. Too much medication, too frequently, and you run the risk of experiencing rebound headaches . This has led more and more people to turn to CBD for relief.

The studies on CBD for headache pain are still in their infancy, but with promising results so far. A 2017 study published in the Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research Journal worked with 26 people who were experiencing rebound headaches. The pain management results were better for the cannabis-nabilone formula over either ibuprofen or nabilone alone. (As a nerdy side note, the article is a great read if you’re interested in the history of cannabis as a pain reliever.)

You’ll notice that neither study looked at CBD in isolation from other cannabinoids (which is an issue with a lot of research on CBD and pain). Truthfully, the research on CBD alone just isn’t sufficient to make any pronouncements about its effects on headache pain.

Our joints connect our bones together and allow us to move. But the older you get, the more likely it is that you know someone whose joints are making movement painful. The CDC estimates that almost 23 percent of American adults suffer from arthritis alone.

Ranging from irritating to debilitating, joint pain can be tricky to treat. If your pain is mild, ibuprofen or acetaminophen might be adequate. But the worse it gets, the more likely you are to be prescribed antidepressants, muscle relaxants, or even opioids.

These studies also point to the variety of effective ways to take CBD. This is an important point to keep in mind if you find yourself shopping for CBD products and wondering if the best CBD for pain is a topical, a tincture, or a vape product. CBD for Pain: Nerves

There’s a growing consensus that cannabis is a highly effective treatment for many kinds of neuropathic pai n . A 2015 study published in Neurotherapeutics states, “Clinical studies largely affirm that neuropathic pain patients derive benefits from cannabinoid treatment.”

But much of the human-based research (like this study ) on CBD and nerve pain has centered around the efficacy of the FDA-approved medication Sativex, which includes both THC and CBD. Research on the best CBD for pain isolated from THC is still limited when it comes to neuropathic pain. There are exceptions, though:

• This 2017 article reviews the pre-clinical research of CBD and the neurological field. The authors conclude that CBD can produce beneficial effects , due to its strong anti-inflammatory and anti-seizure properties. But the researchers ultimately call for more clinical studies.

That’s not to say that THC is bad. It’s developed a stigma because it makes you high, which makes people think of hippies and the sixties and maybe your perennially stoned neighbor who clearly doesn’t have his stuff together. But THC also comes with a pretty respectable list of benefits. These range from antiemetic (anti-nausea) and anti-inflammatory effects to appetite stimulation.

Luckily, it’s possible to procure CBD oil that has no THC in it . Products made from CBD Isolate or Broad Spectrum CBD can be good options if you want to avoid THC. In fact, some of the best CBD products for pain include topical salves that can be made from isolate CBD oil. Just be sure to check out third-party lab reports to ensure you’re getting exactly what you pay for.

So you’ve read the research and are ready to give CBD a try, but what’s next? Because CBD is a relatively new industry and basically unregulated, it can be hard to know how to proceed. Here are a few tips to help you navigate the world of CBD.

• Talk to your doctor. Don’t skip this step — especially if you’re already taking medications for pain (or any other condition for that matter). CBD has a good safety profile , but it can interact with other drugs. Your doctor can help you manage those issues and decide if it’s a safe treatment for you.

• Research CBD companies . If you want to find the best CBD for pain, you can’t avoid due diligence. Look for reputable companies who have undergone third-party testing — with results that they’re willing to share. (We talk more about this in our product reviews above.)

• Try only one treatment at a time. This will help you isolate what is actually working for you. There are lots of ways to get CBD into your body, but if you start with too many products, it will be impossible to know which one is doing what. If you’re spending time and money to get the best CBD for pain, you need to know what’s working for you.