Does CBD Help with Arthritis?
Arthritis is a very common condition all over the world, with an estimated 10 million people affected within the UK alone. With symptoms including joint pain and stiffness, it can be a difficult disorder to live with and can make day-to-day activities much harder than they need to be. As such, people living with arthritis may be interested to learn about the effects of CBD oil.
While research into CBD oil and arthritis is still in its early stages, an increased number of people with the condition are using it to manage their symptoms. Many are finding that taking the cannabinoid – whether in the form of a capsule or coffee – makes their pain easier to manage and their swelling less prominent.
If you or somebody that you love has arthritis and would like more information on how CBD oil could help, this handy guide could give you some of the answers you are looking for.
What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is actually an umbrella term for around 100 types of joint pain and joint diseases. However, there are two strains of the condition that are much more common than the others: Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Osteoarthritis is the most common of the two, affecting around 9 million of the 10 million sufferers in the UK. The exact cause of osteoarthritis is unknown, but a person is more likely to develop the condition if they are in their 40s, if they have had a previous joint injury, are overweight, or have a history of the illness in the family. Women are also more likely to suffer from osteoarthritis than men.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a little more understood within the medical community. It is a chronic inflammatory and autoimmune disease, caused by the immune system attacking the cells that line the joints. It affects around 400,000 people in the UK, and as with osteoarthritis, patients are most likely to be women aged 50 or above with a family history of the condition. Smoking is a lifestyle factor that can also increase a person’s chance of developing rheumatoid arthritis.
While we often think of arthritis as a disease of older people, it can actually affect children, teenagers and younger adults.
Side Effects of Arthritis
Arthritis is generally felt in areas where the bones connect, such as the hips, knees, wrists or fingers. Common symptoms are:
- Trouble or discomfort moving
- Tenderness of joints
- Redness or warmth at joints
- Swollen or stiff looking joints
For some people, the pain and discomfort caused by arthritis is constant, but for others the symptoms can come and go. A lot of people find that it’s also worse in cold climates, and so the winter can be a particularly challenging time. People living with rheumatoid arthritis often experience flare-ups, and so having an additional aid during these times could be extremely beneficial.
Arthritis is an inflammatory disease that has two chief impacts: pain and inflammation. The inflammation and pain combine to reduce the mobility of joints, meaning it can be a debilitating condition as well as a painful one. Therefore, if something such as CBD oil can help relieve the symptoms then people with arthritis could find life much easier in terms of getting around and looking after themselves.
Why Could CBD Help with Arthritis?
There are two main properties of CBD oil that make it effective for those suffering from arthritis. Firstly, CBD has been known to help reduce the response of the central nervous system to pain receptors. As most arthritis sufferers have to deal with regular, chronic pain, this can make the condition substantially more manageable and improve users’ quality of life on a day-to-day basis.
Secondly, CBD oil contains cannabinoids that are reported as having anti-inflammatory qualities. It’s suggested that these can slow down the effects of autoimmune diseases, of which arthritis is one. For arthritis sufferers in particular, the cannabinoids can also help to calm inflamed joints, making them less tender and stiff.
Using CBD for Arthritis
As discussed, two of the main effects of CBD oil are that it relieves pain and also acts as an anti-inflammatory – both of which are brilliant side effects for those suffering with arthritis. However, there are further secondary results that could also be of interest. These include:
- Improved sleep – as to be expected from such a painful disorder, many people with arthritis struggle to sleep – especially if they are having a bad flare up. CBD oil is thought to help people get to sleep more quickly, and also have a better quality of sleep
- Aiding in weight loss – as osteoarthritis is more likely to affect people who are overweight, losing weight can be a good way to both control and prevent the condition. CBD oil has been linked to weight loss due to its role as an appetite suppressant, meaning it could help people to control their cravings. Losing weight naturally also puts less strain on the joints, which could also help those with arthritis
Another reason people may use CBD oil when they have arthritis is how quickly it gets to work. The cannabinoids engage with the receptors present in the brain, the endocannabinoid systems and the immune system, which generates both positive effects (anti-inflammatory and pain-killing) instantly.
Which CBD Products Should I Use?
When it comes to CBD oil, there are a number of different ways it can be taken. Finding the best option is usually a matter of personal preference, and many users like to try a few different products before settling on the one that suits them the best.
At Greenlife, we have a range of products containing CBD that could easily fit into an arthritis sufferer’s lifestyle. These include:
- Capsules – our soft gel CBD capsules can be taken in the same way as other vitamins and supplements as part of a healthy lifestyle. They are simply swallowed with water and have quick absorption rates
- Tea and coffee – whether you’re more of a tea or coffee fan, you can easily substitute your morning cup with one from our range of infused drinks. As well as being highly effective, they also taste great – making them an enjoyable way to unwind
- E-liquids – for people who already vape using e-cigarettes, our e-liquid capsules are an easy and effective way to take CBD. With smoking being one of the causes of rheumatoid arthritis, switching to e-cigarettes could have other health benefits for sufferers
In addition to these, we also have a wide selection of organic CBD oil products that can be applied to the skin rather than ingested. These include balms, massage oils and even bath bombs. Explore our Shop for more.
CBD Oil and Arthritis: A Summary
With the pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory nature of the product, it’s easy to see how CBD oil could appeal to someone suffering with arthritis. While the scientific research around the relationship between the two is still in its early stages, there are many anecdotal cases of people with arthritis using CBD and enjoying improvements in their levels of comfort and mobility.
The secondary effects of CBD – including improved sleep and appetite control – are further reasons why an increasing number of people are trying this method for a more comfortable way of life.