CBD topicals are any CBD products you can use on your skin: lotions, creams, balms, roll-ons, and salves that have CBD in their formulations. CBD lotions, creams, and balms are typically not edible and are intended to be applied directly to specific affected areas of the skin.
In a CBD topical, the base, whether it is oil, cream, wax, or something similar, works as a carrier agent. If you recall our other discussions of how cannabinoids work, you remember that THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids bind with fatty acids. This is why carrier oils are so common.
What type of product will work best for you? There are pros and cons for both oral and topical CBD products—so if you apply a tincture or oil to your skin, do you get the same benefits of CBD you’re used to?
Can You Use Oral CBD Oil Topically?
We already know that cannabis sativa has anti-inflammatory properties. CBD topicals may help manage inflammation and pain associated with arthritis more effectively by avoiding the GI system, resulting in more constant plasma levels.
The ECS helps achieve and maintain homeostasis in the human body—or in some cases re-establish it. Homeostasis is the balanced, healthy zone within the bounds of which biological systems stay well-regulated. Imagine a human body with ideal blood pressure, blood sugar levels, etc.
A lot of this is related to the endocannabinoid system (ECS), a biological system all mammals share. The ECS is mostly composed of enzymes, endocannabinoids, and CB1 and CB2 receptors for the endocannabinoids. The ECS regulates many functions in humans, including memory, appetite, pain sensation, mood, reproduction, and sleep.
When you use a CBD tincture, you just place several drops or whatever your serving size is under your tongue. Hold it there for at least a minute, if you can, to hasten the benefits, which you can feel in minutes.
CBD is available topically in the form of oil, ointments, creams, lotions, patches, balms and salves. Each of these topical methods allow for CBD to be absorbed into the skin and can begin providing treatment as promptly as one to 48 hours depending on the dosage, frequency of use and the severity of the condition receiving treatment. According to a study published in 2018, the most common medical reason leading consumers to turn to CBD is to manage chronic pain, followed by arthritis or joint pain. These ailments can be approached with treatment from both the inside out and on a surface-level alike depending on preference and circumstance.
Topical CBD products are often combined with other ingredients commonly found in pain-relief creams, such as arnica,
menthol, camphor, turmeric, ginger, comfrey, lemongrass, coconut oil, capsaicin, calendula or MSM. Each of these agents has scientifically proven healing benefits independently, including helping to aid acute pain, relieve muscle soreness and showcase anti-inflammatory properties. When combined with CBD, users may experience an enhanced result due to the increased abundance of natural and organic ingredients. Other common ingredients added to CBD topical products include essential oils such as eucalyptus, tea tree oil, peppermint oil, and lavender. The incorporation of essential oils also helps relieve pain and discomfort, all while making the experience of utilizing a topical CBD that much more enjoyable and relaxing. In addition to different ingredients working to potentially increase the efficacy of CBD, topicals are often massaged into the area during the application process, which can also help improve circulation and reduce muscle spasms or tension.
Due to its anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antispasmodic properties and its ability to enhance circulation and cellular regeneration, the topical application of CBD oil is becoming increasingly popular.
CBD, a compound found in the cannabis plant, has been heralded as a promising homeopathic approach to improving the quality of consumers’ daily lives and overall well-being. The cannabinoid offers a range of therapeutic benefits and shows immense potential as an all-natural approach to healing. CBD is utilized to treat numerous common conditions, such as chronic pain, inflammation, seizures and mental disorders, including anxiety and depression. Due to its anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antispasmodic properties and its ability to enhance circulation and cellular regeneration, the topical application of CBD oil is becoming increasingly popular.
Research surrounding the endocannabinoid system, which is the regulatory system that helps our bodies naturally react to cannabinoids like CBD, shows that the body has receptors throughout, including in the skin. This helps explain why CBD has shown to be effective as a topical agent, providing targeted, concentrated relief to intended areas needing some care and attention.
Without sufficient high-quality evidence in studies conducted on humans specifically, it is difficult to draw definitive conclusions regarding the efficacy of CBD when combined with other topical agents. Due to CBD being available as an unregulated supplement in today’s current legislative climate, it is important to be mindful of the ingredients listed on the label and to take the time to research the company supplying the specific topical, especially if the intended consumer has skin sensitivity or any known allergies. As we learn more about how to best utilize CBD, especially in conjunction with other topical agents such as arnica, we can better understand how to utilize nature’s medicine to improve the day-to-day lives of consumers.