In 2017 millions of Americans are in pain. An estimated 25 million adults experience chronic pain and another 40 million suffer from severe pain. So, if 65 million American adults are hurting, we have a problem. Chronic pain is defined as lasting for longer than 12 weeks. That means 25 million people are suffering day in and day out with no hope of respite. They wake up and go to sleep pain in their bodies, but there is hope. Now researchers are focused on cannabinoids and their pain management properties.
For the last few decades the primary source for pain management has been opioids. That hasn’t worked out so well. Currently, America is in the midst of an opioid epidemic that is taking the lives of almost 100 people a day. But the people who overdose aren’t the only ones suffering the effects of this painful epidemic. NBC recently did a story about all the grandparents raising their grandchildren while absentee parents throw their lives away to opiates. It’s time for a more natural and less addictive solution to pain.
Hard working people know that pain can be a part of life. But, that doesn’t mean every day has to be painful. One of the primary problems with opiates as painkillers is that they’re just that:painkillers. They’re a band-aid on a bullet wound. Numbing your body to the pain doesn’t help your body to heal itself of the actual condition causing the pain. When the body is in pain, its systems are inflamed and the body is out of homeostasis. For those who aren’t familiar with the term, homeostasis is our body’s natural balanced state. In homeostasis all of our bodies systems are working together in harmony and our bodies can heal, rest, digest, and we can enjoy life.
One British study shows that CBD can help to regulate homeostasis. More of these studies need to be done on a larger scale to confirm their effects, but anecdotal evidence combined with early studies suggest that CBD oil has a promising potential to alleviate pain. People all over the world are telling stories about using CBD oil to get off painkillers. Clearly, in the United States, we need to get people off of painkillers. Families need to be reunited, children need their parents.
What are the first steps to incorporate CBD or other cannabis products into a pain management strategy? Firstly, consult a physician. Then a variety of scenarios unfold. Are you in a state where marijuana is legal recreationally? Are you in a state where marijuana is legal medically? Are you in a state where marijuana isn’t legal at all? If you’re in a state where marijuana is legal recreationally you have the widest variety of treatment options, largely because you can incorporate THC into your treatment strategy as well as CBD. The two compounds work synergistically, or in other words they enhance each other’s effects. There is actually a prescription medication called Sativex that combines THC oil and CBD oil at a 1:1 ratio and has been proven to have powerful pain relief effects for cancer patients.
If you’re in a state where cannabis is only legal medically, you still have a wide variety of treatment options. However, you’re still limited to what a doctor can prescribe you and not all chronic pain conditions are recognized medically. The good news for people who don’t live in a recreational or medical state is that CBD is legal in all 50 states. “But how? Doesn’t CBD come from marijuana?”
Yes. And no. Marijuana is part of the cannabis plant family. Just as there are different strains of corn, wheat and other agricultural commodities, there are different varieties of cannabis. Amongst them is a plant called hemp. It looks exactly like marijuana but hemp is grown with different genetics. These genetics cause hemp to have less THC. For hemp to be legal in the United States it must contain less than 0.3% THC, so strains that fall under that THC content are the most popular currently. So long as the plant meets these THC standards then it is considered an agricultural commodity and it can be transported across state lines. This is why there are an abundance of options online to purchase CBD products.
The bottom line is, the consumer is winning. Everybody, everywhere can now have access to the powerful healing effects of CBD oil! So, you want to buy some CBD oil products. You’ve done a Google search and you’re overwhelmed. What should you be looking for? The quality control aspects are important. There are a variety of extraction processes that turn Hemp into CBD oil, and the method that a company chooses is important. Why? One word: solvents. Solvents are transient ingredients in processes that produce a consumable end product, but for some reason they are not required to be listed on the label. Try to find CBD oils that use a clean CO2 extraction method, as this usually doesn’t leave residual solvents in the product that can hamper the powerful innate healing effects of CBD oil.
Elixinol has a wide range of high quality products, and they’ve been in the hemp business since 1991. Their quality standards are transparent and that’s always a good sign. They actually manufacture in a facility in Europe before sending the product stateside. Medical Marijuana Inc also has high quality standards and provides a range of product offerings. No matter who you choose for your provider, by taking a step away from big pharma and a step towards healing your body and not just covering your pain, you’re making a good decision.
There are far too many people using cannabis as medicine for it to not work. Cannabis has passed the test of time, people still use it. Simply put, when things don’t work we stop using them. Marijuana has survived as a medicinal option through centuries of cultivation and technological revolutions across continents. Though it has yet to have its share of modern clinical trials, the benefits are evident. Now it’s time for the pharmaceutical community to catch up to history and perform a few studies that prove once and for all how powerful marijuana and its cannabinoid compounds are medically.