Over 50 million adults in the U.S. have been diagnosed with arthritis, making it one of the most common conditions in the country. Conventional treatments include steroids and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, like ibuprofen, and topical treatments like Icy Hot. But since medical cannabis was legalized, arthritis is finding its way onto more and more approved conditions lists, making cannabis a popular and accessible choice for treating arthritis pain.
Arthritis is a generic term used to describe a number of conditions that cause joint pain, swelling and stiffness. Chronic arthritis can become debilitating by limiting mobility, range of motion and causing pain in the joints we use the most: fingers, wrists, hips, knees, elbows, and shoulders.
But luckily for people who live with the condition, the anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties of cannabis are well documented, so even though, in many cases, we don’t know what causes arthritis, we do know what works to stop the pain. Research in the journal Rheumatology shows that certain cannabinoid receptors are prolific in the joints of people with arthritis. The abundance of these receptors makes arthritis pain uniquely suited to respond well to treatment with cannabis products.
If you’re interested in testing your arthritis pain against the anti-inflammatory power of cannabis, here are a few tips to get you started:
Try high-CBD tinctures a few times a day to keep your pain levels in check. Once pain gets started, it’s tough to get under control, so by taking regular doses, you’ll have a steady supply of pain-relieving goodness in your system and can avoid flare-ups.
If you do experience pain, try massaging the area with a topical product like a lotion, massage oil or balm. The formulations of these products allow THC and CBD to provide localized relief, but not enter your bloodstream. As with other topical pain treatments, onset may take some time and relief may not be complete, but cannabis topicals should help take the edge off between tincture doses.
If you’re interested in trying cannabis flowers to relieve arthritis pain, an indica strain can help you sleep through pain. THC in general can help mask pain and discomfort, allowing you to move easier and be more comfortable. Smoking cannabis also results in a quick onset, so if you need immediate relief, flower are the way to go.
If you’d like to know more about using cannabis for arthritis relief come by our brick and mortar store and let the helpful Caliva budtenders answer all your questions!