CBD oil and sciatica
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- Research overview
- The studies
- Patient perspectives
- What the experts say
- Bottom line
Spanning the length of the lower back to the legs, the sciatic nerve covers a large and sensitive area that can radiate intense pain when aggravated. Causes of sciatic pain include herniated discs or bone spurs in the spine, which may occur in tandem with risk factors such as obesity, prolonged sitting, advanced age, and diabetes. The resulting pain typically occurs on one side of the body, according to the Mayo Clinic, but there are exceptions.
Individuals coping with sciatica may find little relief in over-the-counter pain medications and seek out alternative treatments with few side effects. Research has emerged on CBD topicals and tinctures as complementary therapies for back pain and headaches.
Research has emerged on CBD topicals and tinctures as complementary therapies for back pain and headaches. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
Could CBD also help manage sciatic pain? We’ll delve into current research and hear what the experts say about CBD for sciatica.
There is a scarcity of studies regarding the effects of CBD for sciatica in either animals or humans. However, studies are emerging and recent research has indicated that CBD could offer modest relief for individuals with nerve-related pain, including sciatica.
A 2019 study in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology examined sciatic nerve injuries in mice. Mice were treated with oral THC or CBD, and CBD was mildly effective in reducing pain. The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Washington, used a unique method to administer CBD the same way that humans consume it; by voluntarily eating CBD-containing gummies. However, the rodent sciatic nerve injury model is not a basis of comparison to the human condition of sciatica, and researchers need to understand more about how CBD affects sciatic pain in people before drawing a concrete conclusion.
Despite limited research, many people have found pain relief with CBD. One Canadian woman who suffers from sciatica wrote an article for the Huffington Post titled, “Does CBD Really Help with Pain?” In the article, writer Fiona Tapp describes her life as a working mother who sits behind a desk all day and has been seeking relief for a long time. To address her sciatic pain, Tapp booked a massage in which the therapist used CBD oil to soothe her muscles.
After the CBD massage, Tapp described, “That night, I happily realized that the usual pain I feel when trying to get comfy in bed was missing and I fell into a deep sleep by 9 p.m.”
Was Tapp’s pain relief linked to the massage, the CBD oil, or a combination of the two? The answer is debatable, but medical experts advise against expecting CBD to heal sciatic pain.
What the experts say
According to Dr. Adie Rae, an assistant scientist at Legacy Research Institute in Portland, Oregon, and scientific advisor to Weedmaps, there is a lack of evidence that CBD oil is effective in treating sciatic pain.
Rae shared, “In general, CBD is an anti-inflammatory, and CBD can theoretically reduce swelling and inflammation, thereby reducing pain. This is purely hypothetical; however, there have not been any studies. There is lots of evidence that full-spectrum cannabis and THC are good for several kinds of neuropathic pain, but the evidence for hemp-CBD is sparse and weak.”
However, CBD may have the ability to exert a short-term effect on pain as Rae added, “CBD might help (mildly) with the pain, but likely will not improve the condition itself.”
CBD might help with the pain, but likely will not improve the condition itself. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
Therefore, some people may opt to try full-spectrum CBD oil to assess whether it has any effect on sciatic pain, even if the benefits are short-term.
If you are considering CBD for sciatica, you may have some questions:
How much CBD should I take for sciatica?
CBD is generally safe even in very large doses, but that doesn’t mean you should overdo the application of CBD oils or ingestion of tinctures. It is best to start with small, once-daily doses, such as taking a few drops of CBD oil under the tongue. It is important to talk to your doctor about your daily CBD regimen, especially if you are taking other medications. CBD can interact with some medicine, and your doctor can best help you monitor your health if they are aware of your CBD therapy.
What is the best treatment for sciatica?
As with many other conditions, positive lifestyle changes may be the best treatment for sciatica. Rae’s advice for people dealing with sciatica is clear: “Spend money on a good standing desk and a physical therapist. “
Stretching with the assistance of a physical therapist or at home may be the best natural alternative to painkillers for sciatica. Surgery is a last resort for most sciatica patients, especially those whose chronic pain is manageable.
CBD may be useful in providing minor, temporary pain relief for individuals with sciatica, but lifestyle changes are probably the most effective long-term treatment.
Could CBD help manage sciatic pain? We’ll delve into current research and hear what the experts say about CBD for sciatica.
CBD Oil for Sciatica: Does CBD Help, and Which Oil is Best?
Medically Reviewed By Kimberly Langdon M.D.
Chronic pain is a common symptom of many inflammatory issues. Inflammation causes swelling, pain, and aches, all of which can be treated with natural ingredients.
Sciatica is one of the most common types of leg and buttock pain caused by inflammation of nerves supplying the leg.
In this guide, we will cover:
- Why CBD oil for sciatica could relieve pain
- How to get relief from sciatica using CBD oil
- And which oil is best for sciatica and back pain
Around 40 percent of people suffer from sciatica during their life. Most people leave the issue untreated, which can cause the condition to return.
CBD oil is a popular product for pain relief and anti-inflammatory purposes. A growing amount of research has shown that CBD oil is an effective product for chronic pain and inflammation issues such as sciatica.
So, today we are sharing how CBD oil can help your sciatica – let’s dive in.
What’s in this Guide?
Can CBD Oil Help with Sciatica?
The sciatic nerve is a nerve that runs from your lower back to your feet. When this nerve is pinched or irritated, it causes sciatica. The nerve irritation causes pain along the entire nerve.
As a result, the lower back and legs become painful when a person suffers from sciatica.
Secondary to that, the pain can radiate into the hips and buttocks. These affected areas will feel achy, inflamed, and painful.
Without the right help, sciatica can last 4 to 6 weeks. In some cases or without any support, sciatica can last longer.
Relieving sciatica pain is not an easy task, but some studies have found CBD oil to be an effective remedy for relieving inflammation.
The results of the study indicate that there are benefits of CBD oil for sciatica pain because the inflammation of an irritated nerve is what causes discomfort.
- Not sure what else CBD could help with? OurBenefits of CBD Oilguide will give you the latest info.
How Does CBD Oil Work for Sciatica?
CBD is an extremely versatile ingredient. It can be taken orally or applied directly to the affected area. As sciatica affects joints and nerves on the lower body, sufferers may find massaging CBD oil into the skin helps relieve their pain.
CBD oil might help you reduce sciatic pain and issues in several ways.
First, if you’re unsure how CBD interacts with the body, this handy video might help:
CBD oil reduces inflammation
The sciatic nerve becomes inflamed when it is under compression. Inflammation of the nerve can be reduced or prevented with the use of CBD oil.
One study found that when CBD oil is applied to the skin, it can reduce or inhibit inflammation and pain.
CBD can relieve pain
Reducing inflammation will effectively and naturally reduce pain. Yet, CBD oil itself is effective for pain relief.
Research suggests that CBD for pain relief is highly effective. Many patients can use CBD as an alternative to other medications or treatments, or in addition to mainstream medicines.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a system of cell receptors which contributes to homeostasis – the body’s way of staying healthy and in balance. Signals are sent all around the body via the ECS.
Scientists believe that CBD interacts with the ECS to create pain-relieving effects.
It helps the mind and body to relax
Stress is a common cause of sciatica or other forms of chronic back pain.
Many scientists have found that CBD oil can relieve stress and anxiety. As a result, CBD oil could be useful for relieving sciatica pain caused by stress.
Patients with trouble sleeping due to pain will also benefit from CBD oil use as some studies show it can help you relax before bedtime. It is safe to use morning, noon, and night so if you have trouble sleeping, a bedtime dose is a good option.
Try adding a drop or two to your tea or juice before sleeping to reach ultimate relaxation.
CBD oil can generate an overall state of relaxation for the mind and body, which is essential for treating or inhibiting sciatica.
Want to know how to use CBD oil for sciatica? Let’s take a look at the dosage recommendations and how to take CBD oil.
Sciatica effects everyone, but desk job workers are at a high risk
How To Use CBD Oil for Sciatica
Dosages vary depending on the type of CBD product you choose. For oil, the typical dosage, to begin with, is 10 to 20 mg per day.
With oil, it is easier to adapt to how much you use due to its dropper applicator.
After adjusting to the effects of CBD, you can increase the dose. It can sometimes take a while for improvements to be noticeable.
When using a dropper, you can apply the CBD oil directly to the affected areas or orally. For sciatica patients, the affected areas that can benefit from oil application are the legs, buttocks, lower back, and hips.
Simply massage the oil on these areas and wash hands after use – or use a CBD balm for an alternative topical treatment.
When using the oil orally, drop the desired dosage onto your tongue using the dropper applicator. Or, you can mix it with drinks.
Mixing CBD oil with tea or coffee is a popular choice and an easy way to add it into your lifestyle routine. Alternatively, you can buy hemp teas directly.
- Top tip! If you add CBD to your tea or coffee, make sure to bind it with a fat first such as butter or coconut oil, otherwise you lose the benefits. Check out our guide toCooking with CBD Oilto find out more and get some easy recipes.
Using it on your skin or orally should help reduce the pain and inflammation that sciatica causes. If, after a week or two, you have no side effects, it is safe to continue with daily use.
Like most things in life, there are pros and cons to CBD oil for sciatica. Let’s dive in to see if CBD oil is suitable for you.
The method of taking CBD oil for sciatica is a personal choice
How long does it take for CBD Oil to work for Sciatica?
Mostly, CBD oil offers positive effects on reducing or treating medical conditions. It has been a popular alternative to prescription medications for decades for those who suffer from anxiety, neuro-diseases, sleeplessness, and pain.
A number of scientific studies to be effective for these health issues.
Any medicinal ingredient, natural or artificial, often has potential side effects. It is important to be aware of these to ensure complete safety when using the product.
Side effects are rare but can occur, especially during the first few weeks of use. When your body adjusts, the side effects should no longer occur.
CBD oil can cause the following side effects for general consumers:
- Low blood pressure
- Weight changes
Sometimes, CBD can interact with various medicines. For sciatica patients that are taking dietary supplements or prescriptions, it is crucial to seek advice before using CBD.
If side effects or interactions do not occur, it is safe to continue using CBD oil for sciatica pain. It can take up to 14 days to show noticeable improvements.
What’s the Best CBD Oil for Sciatica?
CBD is available in numerous forms, including topical creams, capsules, and gels. But, a broad spectrum CBD as an oil form is the most popular due to its high efficacy and more comfortable use.
The oil form of CBD, sometimes referred to as a CBD tincture, is extracted from hemp (or sometimes cannabis) and suspended in an inert oil or distilled alcohol. The reason for suspending CBD in a secondary oil or alcohol is to preserve and enhance the CBD’s life.
The oil version is more versatile than gels and creams. Due to its dropper application, the CBD can be tailored to you, making it easy to adapt. Thus, you can consume CBD in varying doses instead of a set dose from a gel or capsule.
There are many CBD oils that claim to treat sciatica, as well as other medical concerns. We have detailed for you the best CBD oil for sciatica on the market that will help with your sciatica.
With this information in mind, we hope you’re more equipped to make good choices about CBD oil.
Using CBD oil for sciatica pain is something more and more people are considering. But does it work? And can you get immediate relief from pinched nerve pain?