What is the best CBD oil for pain? In this article, you will learn about the relationship of CBD and pain, how to choose the right CBD oil products suitable for your needs, some brands we recommend and more.
Quick CBD Overview
Millions of people tread through life on a daily basis tormented by the burden of pain. In the United States alone, 50 million adults suffer from chronic pain.
Most of these people turn to prescribed medication like opioids for relief. But these habit-forming medications can lead to more harm in the long run, so they are not the most ideal solution to pain. Thus, more and more chronic pain sufferers are looking into natural remedies.
One such remedy is CBD oil.
CBD oil is a thick, sticky oil made from cannabidiol (CBD). CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid which means it is an active chemical compound found in cannabis that does not give you a high.
The oil is widely used for therapeutic purposes like palliative care and neurodegenerative disorder treatment. CBD oil is typically extracted from the resin glands or trichomes of the cannabis leaves, buds and flowers.
Cannabidiol can come from either marijuana or hemp which are two related forms of the cannabis plant.
Cannabis is one of the oldest domesticated crops; civilizations have grown different varieties for medicinal and industrial purposes.
Tall and sturdy varieties were grown for foods, oils and textiles. This type of cannabis plant is what we now know as hemp.
Other varieties which were known for their psychoactive properties were bred for religious and medicinal uses. These varieties are now known as marijuana.
Compared to hemp, marijuana has much more THC or tetrahydrocannabinol which is the cannabinoid that is responsible for giving that high. Marijuana often has more CBD than hemp as well.
CBD is harder to extract from hemp because it has narrower and fewer leaves. Cannabidiol sourced from either cannabis types has the same chemical structure though, so the effect on the body is the same.
CBD and Pain
Different studies have shown that CBD helps reduce inflammation, which is one major cause for back pain. And another study has also shown that CBD can help treat symptoms of arthritis.
CBD also works to block neuro transmitting pain chemicals to the body. And in people who are suffering from multiple sclerosis, an oral spray called Sativex that is approved by the FDA can help treat symptoms of MS such as neuropathic pain, spasticity, and overactive bladder.
The Journal of Experimental Medicine published a study in 2012 which stated that CBD significantly lowered chronic pain and inflammation in some mice and rats. The study further suggested that the non-psychoactive CBD could be key to a new and natural way to treat chronic pain.
And indeed, almost a decade later, an increasing number of people with chronic pain is using CBD products to manage their symptoms.
But why is CBD so effective in reducing pain?
There is a system in the human body called the Endocannabinoid System (ECS). It is composed of cell receptors that interact with cannabinoids. These receptors are usually concentrated in the central nervous system but are also present in various organs like the reproductive organs, digestive tract and skin.
The ECS is responsible for mood regulation, motor control, appetite, sleep, memory, immune function, bone development, reproduction and pain perception.
When CBD oil is consumed, the cannabidiol will communicate with the receptors that make up the ECS, producing widespread effects which include pain relief.
How to Choose the Best CBD Oil for Pain
There are some factors to consider when choosing the best CBD oil for pain and these are:
- Method of extraction
- CBD source
- Third party testing
Method of Extraction
There are three ways to extract cannabinoids from the cannabis plant: solvent, olive oil and CO2 extraction. Of these three, the CO2 method is by far the best, but also the most complex and expensive. Many premium CBD products use this method to ensure high quality because the process of extraction using CO2 produces a final product that is pure, safe and highly potent. The other two methods – olive oil and solvent – are cheaper and easier, but the final product produced has very little potency and has a high chance of being impure or contaminated.
The CBD Source
The best CBD source is homegrown non-GMO hemp. Hemp is a bio-accumulator which means that it absorbs the traits of the organisms that reside within the soil it’s grown in. The source hemp must be naturally grown without the use of harmful pesticides.
In order to choose the best CBD oil for pain, you must understand the different spectrum classifications. These are:
- Full spectrum
- Broad spectrum
- CBD isolates
Both full spectrum and broad spectrum CBD products contain many other trace cannabinoids and other cannabis compounds like terpenes and amino acids. The difference is that full spectrum products also contain a legal amount of THC while broad spectrum products do not have THC at all. Isolates on the other hand are products that are just pure CBD and no other ingredients.
Full spectrum products are fast-acting and can offer relief from pain rather quickly. However, these products are likely to appear on drug tests despite the tiny amount of THC. This could be a problem if your work does drug tests regularly. Broad spectrum and isolates won’t show up on drug test results but they are not as potent as full spectrum ones and tend to take effect slowly.
Third Party Testing
Reputable companies send samples of their products to third-party independent laboratories for analysis. There, the products are tested for contaminants and potency. A trustworthy company would display the lab results of their various products on their website. Look for these lab reports to know exactly what you’re buying.
Now that you know these factors, you are better equipped at choosing the best CBD oil for pain relief.
The Best CBD Oil Products for Pain – Our Recommendations
There are many companies today that are making CBD oil products. However, for pain management, the products from the following companies are among the best and considered most potent.
CBDistillery is another company founded in Colorado by Colorado natives. They are committed to providing the highest quality hemp-derived CBD at the best price. Since its founding in 2016, CBDistellery is now considered as one of the best CBD companies today. They have created the hashtag #CBDMOVEMENT to help increase the public’s knowledge about CBD products.
Their CBD products are extracted from USA grown and organically farmed hemp. They use the CO2 extraction method for their products that range from full-spectrum to isolates. All their products are also third party lab tested and the full spectrum CBD oils contain less than 0.3% THC. With a wide product range, your options include 15ml to 30ml bottle sizes and 250mg to a whopping 5000mg CBD concentration. Aside from tinctures and softgels, they also have topicals that can be applied to directly target pain.
Other notable information about CBDistellery:
- Each product comes with a scannable QR code that directs you to the third-party lab results
- They are certified by the U.S. Hemp Authority
- Free shipping for orders over $75
- No money-back guarantee
- Cheaper price than most other brands
- Very responsive customer service
Affordability and high quality are two things that give CBDistillery products an edge over their competitions. Buying CBD oil from this reputable company ensures that you are getting a good product that helps with chronic pain without spending too much.
Receptra Naturals was founded in Colorado in 2015. With the mantra “truth is curative”, they are dedicated to continually produce effective and reliable CBD products from locally and organically grown hemp.
Their Serious Relief CBD tinctures and topicals are especially formulated to address various types of pain caused by illness, physical exertion or injury. They offer full spectrum (trace amounts of THC) and broad spectrum (0% THC) CBD products that are blended with natural and organic ingredients to promote bioavailability.
Other notable information about Receptra Naturals:
- Tinctures formulated for pain relief have turmeric added as well as a blend of carrier oils to promote absorption.
- Topicals contain arnica that help with soothing sore muscles and joints as well as camphor faster delivery.
- Their products are created following cGMP standards for dietary supplements (but are not FDA evaluated).
- Scannable QR code for lab test results on each product
- They offer a 30-day moneyback guarantee
- Free shipping in all 50 states
- 15% discount for all military personnel both active duty and veterans
NuLeaf Naturals was founded in 2014. They are considered one of the pioneers in the CBD industry.
From the planting of the hemp seed to cultivation, CBD oil extraction, and finally, to bottling and packaging of the CBD oil, NuLeaf Naturals’ entire operation is done in Denver, Colorado. In short, all of the CBD products that NuLeaf Naturals produces are all 100% American made.
Nuleaf Naturals offer their CBD oils in 240mg to 4850mg concentrations. These are full-spectrum with less than 0.3% THC with no foreign additives.
Other notable information:
- Their non-GMO hemp source are grown in licensed farms in Colorado
- Products are whole-plant extracts using the CO2 extraction method
- No flavoring added, so the oil has a strong, natural hemp flavor
- Consistent product quality with high potency for pain relief
- Third-party lab tested, link to test results available from each product listing on their website
- They ship to all 50 states
- Price tend to be higher than other brands with the same quality
This company’s CBD oil products are a popular choice for people with chronic pain. The high potency of their products could be owed to the fact that Nuleaf Naturals add no foreign ingredients whatsoever to their tinctures, so you only get the plant’s cannabinoids, terpenes and essential oils.
If you want tried and tested, fast-acting CBD oil for pain, we recommend trying Nuleaf Naturals. As their price is on the higher end, you can start with their smallest bottle. Potency of their product does not change with the size of the bottle.
What are the Side Effects of CBD Oil?
CBD does not have any serious side effects. In fact, in 2017, the World Health Organization (WHO) has acknowledged that cannabidiol does not have abuse potential nor does it cause harm.
However, you might still have a reaction after using a CBD product.
The most common reaction observed in people who have used CBD oils is dryness in the mouth. Cannabinoids have natural effects on salivation so this reaction is very common yet harmless. Ensuring that you stay hydrated after taking CBD oil will prevent this side effect.
If you take too much CBD, you may experience diarrhea and nausea because your body will work to flush out the excess. Avoid the discomfort by sticking to a sensible dosage to manage your pain.
Perhaps the more worrisome effect of taking CBD oil is the risk of hypotension. CBD lowers blood pressure so dizziness may also be experienced.
Finally, if you take prescription drugs, consult with your doctor first as CBD might interact negatively with your medication.
Testing positive for THC may be considered as a negative result of taking full spectrum CBD.
Full spectrum CBD oil products contain legal amounts of THC, however, though the amount is very small, there is still a chance that you will test positive for this cannabinoid.
But then again, drug tests are not all the same. Some are more sensitive than others. So you may or may not test positive of THC, depending on where or how you’re tested. It is your responsibility as an informed consumer of CBD products to know and understand the specific laws regarding CBD in your state.
CBD Oil for Pain Dosage
CBD product creators do not provide an RDI or a Daily Value for CBD intake because the FDA did not assign a Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) for this cannabinoid. Instead, their products come with a “suggested serving size” which widely vary and are there only to help you get to your daily CBD goal.
Like with most substances, people with greater body mass will need more cannabidiol to experience the compound’s effects. Therefore, a good way to start determining the ideal dosage for you is to estimate it based on how much you weigh.
The guys at Honest Marijuana created a table of dosage suggestions based on your weight and the severity of your pain. This is a good place to start with your own CBD dosing and you can adjust up or down accordingly.
Our short list of the best CBD oil for pain should be a good starting point for you to get acquainted with products that can help manage your pain and get much needed relief.
Although the science is still a bit lacking about the full potential of CBD, mostly owing to this cannabinoid’s confusing legal status, there are hundreds upon hundreds of anecdotal evidence that bear witness to the effectivity of CBD in dealing with pain.
The three companies we recommend all follow legal guidelines to produce safe and effective CBD oil products.