Approximately one in five adult Americans live with chronic pain conditions according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This includes experiencing long-lasting back pain, muscle pain and soreness associated with diseases such as fibromyalgia, and inflammation-related joint pain that occurs with numerous forms of arthritis.
This continuing pain makes it harder to participate in everyday home and work activities. The CDC adds that it also makes you more prone to anxiety and depression, reduces your quality of life, and increases your reliance on opioids.
Using opioids to help reduce pain is problematic because the National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that 21 to 29 percent of patients prescribed this category of drug wind up misusing them. This leads to approximately 128 people dying daily due to overdose. It is also one of the main reasons many patients are seeking inflammation and pain relief alternatives via natural ingredients like CBD.
CBD for Pain & Inflammation
CBD stands for cannabidiol, one of many cannabinoids found in hemp plants. Its analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties provide relief by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system in a way that creates a reduced pain response.
Research published in the journal Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management further indicates that cannabinoids can be especially helpful for “difficult to treat pain.” A study in the European Journal of Pain shares that a number of “treatment-resistant patients” also find relief after taking cannabinoids.
The one concern that can prevent patients from seeking pain and inflammation relief from CBD is that this type of product will cause them to feel high. However, unlike tetrahydrocannabinol, which is more commonly known simply as THC, CBD does not create a psychoactive effect.
Even CBD products containing THC don’t alter cognition because, under the Farm Bill of 2018, THC content of hemp plants is limited to 0.3 percent. THC extracted from other varieties of cannabis plants can be much higher.
CBD products come in many forms. This includes tinctures, gummies, edibles, vapes, and more. Another option that can provide relief is CBD topicals.
Benefits of CBD Topicals
One benefit of using a topical CBD is that it enables you to apply the product directly to the affected area. If you feel joint pain in your elbow, apply it there. If you feel discomfort in another area of your body, use it there instead.
Another advantage of CBD topicals is that many contain other natural ingredients designed to help provide even more relief. For instance, camphor—a terpene extracted from the camphor tree that is used in many lotions, creams, and salves—has long been used to help treat inflammation, pain, irritation, and infection.
CBD topicals also sometimes contain menthol, a chemical found in the peppermint plant. A study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research noted that, after using a topical cream containing menthol for one week, participants had lower levels of pain. They also had increased function, range of motion, and strength in the affected area.
Other natural ingredients found in topical CBD products include:
- willow bark – good for swelling and inflammation
- eucalyptus – provides pain relief
- shea butter – has anti-inflammatory properties, promotes healing
- aloe vera – good for injuries to the skin and treating skin conditions
- vitamin E – moisturizing to the skin, often found in skincare products
- cocoa butter – also moisturizing, helps rehydrate and nourish the skin
- coconut oil – acts as a salve, good for skin-related wounds
What Makes a Good CBD Topical?
Not every topical cream, lotion, or CBD salve is created equal. What separates some of the best CBD topicals from products that fall woefully short in providing pain and inflammation relief?
For starters, full-spectrum products are preferred over CBD isolate. An isolate is a CBD oil that contains only one cannabinoid: CBD. A full-spectrum CBD is a CBD that, in addition to cannabidiol, also contains other hemp plant extracts. This includes THC, but also terpenes and flavonoids.
Harvard shares that medical marijuana, which contains THC, can be helpful for pain relief, muscle relaxation, and to help manage nausea. Medical News Today reports that terpenes—which give cannabis plants their smell and, therefore, are often used in essential oils—help improve symptoms while also lowering side effects.
All of these together create what is called an entourage effect. The philosophy behind this effect is that, though each substance on its own offers users benefits, when combined, these benefits become even stronger and more powerful.
The best CBD creams, lotions, and salves also contain extracts from high-quality hemp plant strains. The informational marijuana site Leafly explains that a cannabis sativa strain generally creates an uplifting effect whereas an indica strain is usually more relaxing or sedating. When these strains come from plants grown in the best soil conditions with the proper nutrients, you wind up with a higher quality, more effective product.
It’s also important that the hemp extract manufacturer tests its products in a third-party lab. This ensures that the product contains the mg of CBD it says on the label. It also ensures that the topical CBD cream does not contain any potentially harmful substances, such as heavy metals. Choosing hemp products that contain only organic ingredients can protect against this as well.
Best CBD Lotion for Pain (Hint: It Contains an Ancient Flower)
If your goal is to reduce pain, inflammation, or both, the best CBD lotion available today is Spruce Deep Chill. Spruce Deep Chill is a full-spectrum CBD designed to help relieve joint and tissue pain. In addition to containing cannabinoids, this product also contains menthol, camphor, shea butter, and coconut oil, leaving you with smooth and nourished skin. But what sets Spruce Deep Chill apart from many other types of hemp cream is that it has one additional ingredient: Arnica montana.
A yellow-orange flower sometimes referred to as a “mountain daisy,” arnica contains two chemicals that MedicineNetsays not only assist with pain relief, but also act as an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory.
The Pharmaceutical Journal adds that “there are significant pharmacological data to justify the herbal use of arnica.” This includes a study of 79 patients with osteoarthritis of the knee. After 3-6 weeks of treatment with an arnica gel, participants had lower levels of pain and stiffness.
All of Spruce’s CBD oil products are made in the USA and free from artificial fragrances, dyes, parabens, and other potentially harmful substances. The company also offers a 100% money back guarantee.
To learn more about Spruce Deep Chill CBD lotion, visit the website at takespruce.com