According to the American Chronic Pain Association, 6-12 million people have fibromyalgia. 90% of those people are females, and the rest are males. Even though it affects both men and women, it seems to affect women far more.
CBD oil has created a massive buzz over the years. It's known for treating things like pain, stress, sleep problems, and more. The big question people have is, will CBD oil help with fibromyalgia? Well, yes, but there are a few things that you should know.
All we have right now is mostly anecdotal evidence. CBD is also an unregulated market, so it's essential to understand the quality of products that exist today.
Keep reading, and we will share three real benefits that you can expect to see with a good CBD Oil product if you have fibromyalgia.
What Will I Find Out?
What is Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia is a condition that affects your bones and muscles, which causes pain. People who suffer from this are often misdiagnosed and misunderstood until a doctor highlights it.
The primary symptom of fibromyalgia is pain. You ache all over.
- Muscular burning sensation
- Tender points in the body and low pain tolerance
- Fibro fog - unable to concentrate and memory is affected
- Insomnia or trouble sleeping
It's scary that there isn't any cure. The symptoms are usually treated with anti-depressants and anti-seizure medications.
Even though you may not have depression, symptoms of fibromyalgia cause pain. The purpose of anti-depressants is to raise levels of serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain so that it can manage pain.
Sometimes doctors even prescribe off-label medications that aren't specifically approved for treating fibromyalgia. Over time, these medications give you a list of unwanted side effects, both short term, and long term.
However, something like CBD oil may be a natural alternative for treating fibromyalgia. A woman from the UK said that cannabis had been the only thing that has helped her with her symptoms.
What is CBD oil?
First, let's dive into what CBD is and how CBD oil is made.
The Cannabis plant
The cannabis plant has hundreds of different cannabinoids, but the main two are THC and CBD. Different strains have different cannabinoid profiles. An example of a cannabinoid profile would be 5% THC and 20% CBD.
Cannabis can be described as either marijuana or hemp. Marijuana has higher levels of THC and lower levels of CBD. Hemp is the opposite. It has higher levels of CBD and little to no THC.
When you buy CBD oil, it will usually derive from hemp because it has less than 0.3% THC. When it's sold as a product, it will be labeled industrial hemp.
If you remember this rule, you'll understand the differences between marijuana and hemp.
Marijuana - Has MORE than 0.3% THC
Hemp - Has LESS than 0.3% THC
Effects of THC
THC is the psychoactive chemical that gets users high. The main effects of THC are:
- Strong pain reliever
- Mild anti-inflammatory properties
- Reduces muscle tension
- Improves sleep quality
Effects of CBD
CBD has almost the same chemical structure as THC, except it doesn't stimulate the CB1 receptors the same way as THC, which is what gets you high. CBD only increases the endocannabinoids in the body and changes the structure of CB1 receptors. This makes the effects of THC more effective by reducing it's side effects such as paranoia.
The main effects of CBD are:
- Mild pain reliever
- Strong anti-inflammatory
- Relaxes the body
- Helps insomnia
- Reduces stress
- Reduces PTSD symptoms
- Lowers fight or flight response
- Reduces seizures
How cannabis affects the body
Both CBD, THC, and all other cannabinoids interact with our Endocannabinoid System (ECS). The ECS consist of CB1 and CB2 receptors.
CBD doesn't bind directly with either receptor. Instead, it stimulates them and regulates balance in the body.
THC, however, binds directly to the CB1 receptors and stimulates them, which is why you feel the psychoactive effects.
Type of CBD oil for fibromyalgia
To get a better understanding of how CBD oil can help with fibromyalgia, you must first know what CBD oil is and how to get the best product.
Cannabis oil Vs. CBD oil
CBD oil is not the same as cannabis oil.
Cannabis oil has more than 0.3% THC, so that it will be sold as a cannabis product. If you are in a legal country, you would need a prescription to buy cannabis oil.
However, CBD oil has less than 0.3% THC, which makes it legal to be sold as industrial hemp. You quickly buy it without needing a medical card because it's marketed as a supplement.
Types of CBD oil
When cannabis goes through an extraction process, the compounds in the plant are separated from the plant material. At this point, it's a full-spectrum extract. After this point, it may go through distillation to separate cannabinoids to create different types of CBD.
The final extract is then placed into a carrier oil such as hemp seed oil so that it can help with the absorption.
Each type is different and will change your experience if you have fibromyalgia.
Full-spectrum - Has all the cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, nutrients.
Broad-spectrum - THC is removed completely.
CBD isolate - Only CBD is present.
What happens when you consume cannabis that has all the compounds present? Well, it gives you optimal effects.
Take an apple, for example. It has vitamin C, potassium, fiber, and more. If you were to remove vitamin C, it would have fewer benefits. The same thing applies to cannabis.
Cannabis is much more effective when everything is present. So if you're looking to get the best experience with CBD oil, it's best to get a full-spectrum product.
You'll soon discover what the best products are, but let's move onto how it can help with fibromyalgia.
Will CBD oil help with fibromyalgia?
A lot of people are turning to CBD oil because it seems to treat many of the symptoms that people with fibromyalgia have such as:
- Chronic pain
- Anxiety and depression
- Sleeping problems
If you are relying on CBD oil to get rid of all your problems magically, then you have massive expectations.
How CBD oil works are, it interacts with our endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system consists of cannabinoid receptors that are found throughout the body.
This means that whenever you take CBD oil, these receptors are activated. When they activate, it puts your body into homeostasis, meaning it keeps your body balanced. If there is anything out of place, then CBD is supposed to help balance things out.
So someone with fibromyalgia will see benefits in treating their symptoms, but it won't eliminate the problem. In other words, if you're going to be using CBD oil, you need to use it for a while.
CBD oil can be a great natural alternative to a lot of medications out there, but be sure to speak with your doctor when taking CBD oil.
CBD effects on fibromyalgia
1. Treating insomnia
Fibromyalgia can cause hypervigilance that prevents you from falling into a deep sleep. Deep sleep (REM sleep) is an essential part of our sleep cycle. This is what allows us to feel restored after a good night's sleep.
Not getting enough sleep can lead to a foggy mind and fatigue. CBD helps you with the deep sleep process, so this can be a game-changer for those who have fibromyalgia.
2. Reduces anxiety
Fibromyalgia can cause the nervous system to go out of whack. CBD oil can be a gentle anti-anxiety treatment that keeps you calm.
3. Treats muscle tenderness, pain & inflammation
Even while sleeping, parts of the body are usually quite tight, which leads to sensitivity, pain, and swelling. CBD is known to reduce inflammation, and it aids as a muscle relaxant.
What CBD oil is best for fibromyalgia?
As CBD isn't FDA approved, there are a lot of companies selling fake CBD products. When it comes to buying CBD, you should also make sure they are lab tested. A lab test is 3rd parties that prove for potencies of CBD and other cannabinoids present in the oil.
When it comes to treating symptoms of fibromyalgia, you want to get CBD oil that isfull-spectrum. This means that it contains 0.3% THC, which is only a trace. A trace of THC will not get you high, but it will give you the entourage effect. Even a hint of THC makes a massive difference when it comes to treating pain, especially.
CBD dose for fibromyalgia
So will CBD oil help with fibromyalgia? The answer is yes. CBD is an analgesic, so it will treat chronic pain and inflammation that is associated with fibromyalgia. It also helps with a good night's sleep, which will leave you refreshed for the next day.
Dosages for everyone are different. The general rule of thumb is, the heavier you are, the more you'll need. You can start small but eventually, increase your dosage.
It's important to know which products on the market are of good quality because CBD is an unregulated market with lots of bad products. You can see our list of the best CBD oils here.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does it take for CBD oil to work for fibromyalgia?
The effects of CBD oil work within minutes and can last for 4-6 hours long. The best way to get instant relief is to drop the oil under your tongue for 30-60 seconds before swallowing. This is important because if you swallow it straight away, it will take longer to reach your bloodstream.
What CBD oil is good for fibromyalgia?
All CBD oil products are not made equal. In fact, there are more bad quality products on the market compared to good ones. The FDA does not regulate CBD, so this opens the market for untested products for potency. Getting the right potency is key to feeling the effects, especially when treating chronic pain.