Many people take CBD oil for joint pain or even muscle soreness, but most would suggest that they are not as soothing or fast-acting as applying a topical CBD cream directly to the site of pain or soreness. Using a topical CBD cream for muscle soreness is also effective due to the simple mechanical effects of massaging. When you massage sore muscles, what you’re actually doing is stimulating the fibers in the contractile tissue to engage in capillary action; in other words, the fibers are actively exchanging expended blood and replenishing themselves with a new, freshly-oxygenated supply from arterioles.
For pain management, both topical and oral CBD work well, typically proving the most effective relief when utilized together. Oral CBD also assists in the diminishing of symptoms from anxiety, depression and other mental disorders, as well as insomnia. Topicals work brilliantly at reducing inflammation, arthritis, headaches, cramping and migraines, and some evidence has shown that it can also heal eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis and itching.
But, uh, what is it that CBD is supposed to do? I visited a cannabis dispensary in Boulder to find out what the hype was all about. After passing an ID check, I was introduced to a “budtender” who pointed me to an impressive array of CBD products — tinctures, skin patches, drink powders, candies, salves, massage oil, lotions, “sexy time personal intimacy oil” and even vaginal suppositories to treat menstrual cramps.
In fact, the law is pretty unclear when it comes to CBD’s state-by-state legality and people (mostly people of color, because a hard-to-interpret law is ripe for racist mishandling) are occasionally charged with possession for carrying CBD. There is a bill in the works (spearheaded by Senator Mitch McConnell, no less) that seeks to get rid of hemp restrictions federally, which would make at least one facet of the law easier to interpret. But TBD on what that means for CBD. So unless you live in a state where marijuana is cleared for recreational use and you’re over the age of 21, the answer to whether or not CBD is legal where you live will vary. And avoid transferring even the most harmless of CBD over state lines. Per Quartz:
Every field of interest comes with its own terminology. In the world of CBD, it can seem like there are many terms that are being thrown out there, such as CBD oil, hemp oil, THC oil, cannabis oil, and marijuana oil. With the vast amount of information being introduced, it is easy to confuse one term from the next. We have received numerous questions in regards to the difference between all of these terms.
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Using an oil tincture, Jamroz devised a crude, homemade CBD coffee concoction back in 2012 in order to find daily pain relief from a couple of slipped discs that he suffered during a snowboarding mishap. While the brew was relatively effective in terms of pain management, he claimed that the original cup tasted something like “hot, grassy swamp water.”
CBD does not appear to have any psychotropic ("high") effects such as those caused by ∆9-THC in marijuana, but may have anti-anxiety and anti-psychotic effects. As the legal landscape and understanding about the differences in medical cannabinoids unfolds, it will be increasingly important to distinguish "medical marijuana" (with varying degrees of psychotropic effects and deficits in executive function) – from "medical CBD therapies” which would commonly present as having a reduced or non-psychoactive side effect profile.
Up until recently, it was the psychoactive component of cannabis, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which received most of the attention for its medicinal benefits, as well as its ability to produce psycho- tropic effects. Now, with medical marijuana gaining ground across the country, researchers are discovering the amazing properties of additional cannabinoids. But what makes CBD so special?
Pro skateboarder Matt Miller, who started CBD brand Miller Healer, turns to CBD sports salve and patches as his primary medicine. Stacy Verbiest, who founded therapeutic women’s cannabis line Wink with creams and tinctures, says CBD helped her friend manage the pain of cancer treatments. Pet owners buy cat and dog treats with the hopes of helping their best friend feel happier and more comfortable.
Almost overnight, CBD oils have become an interesting combination of popular holistic medicine, miracle cure, and a natural answer to the synthetic drugs dominating modern medicine. With CBD, patients receive the promise of being in control of their own ailments, and no longer feeling at the mercy of their treating physicians. This has turned out to be a particularly powerful message. Many patients use CBD oils freely for ailments both confirmed and self-diagnosed, and the rapid innovations with CBD products have actually been quite impressive. But while new CBD products keep entering the market virtually unchecked, effective regulatory control of these products has stayed far behind. As a result, unknown risks about long-term effects remain unaddressed, especially in vulnerable groups such as children, the elderly, and the chronically or terminally ill. It should be noted that this discussion goes well beyond CBD only, as new products containing additional cannabinoids like CBG, THCV, and acidic cannabinoids are following closely behind. We know even less about these compounds than about CBD, and very limited human safety data are available.
CBD oil derived from whole-plant marijuana has seen promising results for numerous medical treatments, including treating children with epilepsy. (In 2013, CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta introduced the world to a child who after using CBD oil went from having 300 seizures a month to only two.) On April 19, the AP reported that an FDA panel is reviewing a a pharmaceutical-grade CBD oil made from whole-plant marijuana called Epidiolex, a possible treatment for rare forms of pediatric epilepsy. If approved, it would be the first marijuana-made medication sold on the U.S. market. A day later, on the marijuana community’s “high holiday,” April 20, New York Senator Chuck Schumer introduced legislation to decriminalize marijuana on the federal level. Forecasters are predicting that legal cannabis in the U.S. will be outselling soda by 2030.
Though a CBD latte might not do much for you — at least not beyond what caffeine and the placebo effect combined can do, which isn’t nothing — it’s also probably harmless in most cases, says Carson, and may even have positive benefits we aren’t yet aware of. “I suspect there’s probably some antioxidant benefit to CBD like there is with coffee,” says Carson. “There’s tons of good things in coffee that we still don’t fully understand, and I think the marijuana plant is much the same way.”