Research on medical hemp and cannabidiol is starting to prove that they may be one of the most effective treatments in reducing pain from fibromyalgia. CBD, the hemp-derived compound, is a safe and natural pain relief alternative, without the side effects of more traditional pharmaceutical prescriptions or over-the-counter medications.
The FDA has not yet approved the medicinal use of CBD for fibromyalgia or other treatment. However, it is legal in some states for medical use, and the FDA did approve CBD in treating two types of epilepsy earlier in 2018, which is promising for future advancements in related testing.
Legalized or not, CBD does remain a popular choice for pain relief for fibromyalgia patients and anyone suffering from chronic pain.
Treatment of fibromyalgia begins with and is largely focused on, managing the symptoms. This disorder creates a string of tender points throughout the body, leading to an inability to sleep, pain, and general discomfort. These together can lead to poor quality of life, but with the right medication, the symptoms can be much better managed.
CBD is proving to be a great solution for fibromyalgia symptom management when compared to many of the available prescription drugs. Additionally, CBD provides a way for patients to cut down on the number of pills needed to function on a daily basis.
Fibromyalgia is a disease most commonly affecting the older population, with 80-90 percent of all cases being women. As it progresses, the symptoms worsen and can be aggravated further by weather, illness, and stress. CBD is well-suited to treat fibromyalgia, with both pain and stress relief qualities and has shown success in studies pairing a CBD rich oil with one that contains low THC for additional relief.
In a report from the National Pain Foundation and National Pain Report, medical hemp was rated as one of the most effective treatments in pain relief from fibromyalgia. A patient from the survey noted that there are more negative side effects associated with the FDA approved drugs than there are positive.
Of the respondents who had tried medical hemp in some form for their disorder symptoms, 62 percent identified it as being very effective, 33 percent said it helped slightly, and only 5 percent reported no relief at all.
In comparison, of the patients who had used Cymbalta, 60 percent said it did not work for them, 8 percent said it was very effective. Pfizer’s Lyrica also had similar results, again close to the opposite of those for medical hemp, with 61 percent reporting no relief, and 10 percent finding it very effective. The third drug involved in the study, Forest Laboratories’ Savella, was also poorly rated by respondents with 68 percent saying it did not work, only 10 percent responding that it was very effective.
A much larger percentage of patients have found that CBD is more effective than the other drugs available on the market for fibromyalgia.
The pain-relieving effects of CBD are still being studied, however, there are a few theories that might explain this process. One of these theories is in the ways that CBD affects the brain, possibly interrupting the nerve pathways that send pain signals between the brain and the body. CBD also has anti-inflammatory properties, which would help to reduce heat and swelling around injury or disease, leading to reduced pain. It has also been suggested that a lack of endocannabinoids, which are the neurotransmitters found naturally in our body that connect with cannabinoid receptors, may be at the root of chronic pain symptoms, so taking CBD could correct this deficiency.
Additional research is needed to fully understand the process of pain relief through CBD treatment, however, it has been shown to have promising results in reducing chronic pain for many patients in existing studies.
CBD is worth a try if you’re experiencing chronic pain or have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and are not finding relief from your current medication. CBD is not a cure, but it can help manage or eliminate daily symptoms.