Nerve pain, or nerve damage, impacts over 20 million people in the United States alone. Pain can be constant or intermittent, severe or minor, and it can be caused by a variety of conditions from diabetes to spinal injuries. CBD for nerve pain is a promising solution that alleviates pain for many people with nerve damage.
CBD can be taken orally or applied topically. When taken orally, it’s impossible to target the pain directly, although the CBD can still reduce pain. Applying the CBD with a cream allows for direct relief which, as numerous studies show, provides optimal pain relief.
Studies on CBD and Nerve Pain
Numerous universities worked together on a study, released in the Journal of Experimental Medicine, in 2012 to determine if cannabinoids suppressed neuropathic pain. The study wanted to test if cannabinoids, or CBD, were able to help patients suffering from chronic pain.
The study notes that chronic pain is difficult to treat using traditional forms of medicine.
Traditionally, conventional treatments only provide partial relief to chronic nerve pain sufferers. The percentage of people that find relief for nerve pain with conventional treatments is also low, at 40% to 60%.
Any relief, even if it’s mild relief, is a bonus.
Researchers found that, in rats, CBD was able to reduce:
- Chronic pain
- Inflammatory pain
Chronic neuropathic pain was also reduced in the study. Measuring the reduction in pain is difficult when the studies are not performed on human participants.
November 2017 Study
A 2017 review was conducted and evaluated 16 studies, including over 1,750 participants. The range of the studies lasted between 2 and 26 weeks and compared cannabis medications on nerve pain.
Numerous studies combined THC and CBD, but we’ll focus primarily on the CBD-only studies.
The studies found that:
- Low to moderate pain relief was higher in participants taking CBD compared to those taking a placebo
- Sleep problems resolved with CBD
- Pain intensity was reduced
Side effects were mild, including dizziness, which is the most common.
The Pain Journal released a study in 2019 on the impact of CBD on pain. Rats were the participants of the study, which aimed to link serotonin receptors with neuropathic pain. When a person suffers from neuropathic pain, the body’s natural serotonin function is disrupted.
CBD was found to restore the body’s natural serotonin function.
Additional studies, published in Brain Research, also demonstrate the connection between CBD and serotonin receptors. Researchers are still conducting additional studies on humans, but it is believed that CBD can have a positive impact on people suffering from diabetic neuropathy.
2017 Study on Nerve Damage and Arthritis
Osteoarthritis is one of the key reasons people suffer from nerve pain. A 2017 study looked at CBD’s ability to prevent pain in rats. The study found that cannabidiol was able to help the rats in a few key ways:
- Pain was blocked
- Nerve damage was prevented
The study has a lot of potential because actual damage to the nerves leads to long-term pain. Preventing the damage from occurring in the first place has the potential for a happier, pain-free life for sufferers of osteoarthritis.
Many people are taking pain treatment into their own hands by using CBD and other natural forms of pain relief. One survey on patients suffering from Lupus found that a large percentage, 96% of people that responded, did not talk to their doctor before using CBD.
This figure is important because it demonstrates that a lot of pain sufferers are seeking alternative forms of pain relief on their own.
Of the respondents of the survey, 83% said that they would recommend CBD to others with lupus. Topical CBD usage is most common for chronic pain sufferers that have lupus.
How CBD Helps Alleviate Nerve Pain
Studies are still being conducted on CBD for nerve pain. According to current theories and research, CDB may help with pain for a few key reasons:
- Studies on rats show that the number of immune cells that build up in the spinal fluid is reduced
- Inflammation levels are reduced, allowing for less discomfort and pressure on the nerves
- Neuroprotective benefits were also witnessed in one study
Researchers have studied the efficacy of CBD on rats, but there are few complete studies conducted on humans. The studies on rats are promising, and some nerve pain sufferers have been able to find relief with CBD.
Applying a cream to the impacted area daily may begin to reduce inflammation and pain is as little as one to three days.
Higher dosages can be taken to amplify the benefits of CBD for nerve pain. Start with a modest amount of cream and apply more as necessary. Creams that include additional pain relief ingredients can further amplify the pain relief.