Everyone has the occasional aches and pains. These can be caused by getting an injury, sleeping in the wrong position, and general aging. But some people experience pain that persists and continues for three to six months or longer.
Called chronic pain, this has many causes and impacts people’s daily lives. To help manage this continuous pain, people will work with their medical physicians to create a regimen that often includes working out and medications to treat the underlying condition.
But more and more people are looking for natural ways to relieve chronic pain and turning to CBD. Or more specifically, CBD patches.
A Look at Chronic Pain
Doctors define chronic pain as pain that persists for three to six months and longer. And this pain can have many underlying causes, such as:
- Previous injuries
- Nerve damage
- Back problems
The cause of your pain will play a part in determining the specific symptoms you experience. But chronic pain can extend beyond just physical discomfort; it can even impact your mental health. And symptoms can range from mild to severe. Chronic pain can:
- Feel like a dull ache.
- Cause throbbing and shooting.
- Leave you feeling stiff and sore.
- Cause fatigue and mood swings.
- Impact your sleep.
- Cause muscle weakness.
- Make daily life difficult.
The effects of chronic pain are far-reaching, making managing your pain essential in maintaining a high quality of life.
What Is CBD?
CBD, or cannabinol, is a compound found in cannabis plants. Cannabis plants are made up of more than 100 different compounds, called cannabinoids. These compounds work together to give each cannabis strain its unique makeup, taste, aroma, flavour, and effects. Of these compounds, there are two that are most prominent: THC and CBD.
CBD offers many benefits and is known for helping people feel relaxed and calm. It can alleviate anxiety and even regulate sleep. But there is one component that makes CBD products so popular among cannabis users and people who haven’t used cannabis as well. That is the fact that CBD won’t get users high.
THC is the compound responsible for the high that people experience when using cannabis. CBD can actually counteract the effects of THC and temper the high that people experience.
So much of CBD’s popularity stems from the fact it offers many of the same benefits of cannabis without the worry of getting high. This makes it ideal for those who are hesitant to get high or who may need to use cannabis frequently to alleviate issues such as chronic pain.
CBD can be extracted from cannabis plants to create CBD-only products or products that contain only trace amounts of other compounds and THC. These extracts are then used to make everything from CBD edibles to CBD oils and even CBD patches.
CBD and Pain Relief
Before we look at what CBD patches are and how they work, let’s first look at the impact CBD can have on chronic pain. CBD has three properties that can play a role in helping users manage chronic pain naturally.
- Though the exact way CBD interacts with the various systems in the body is still being studied, we do know that it interacts with our endocannabinoid system. When interacting with this system, CBD can block receptors for various types of pain, helping users feel better.
- CBD is an anti-inflammatory. So, if your chronic pain is caused by inflammation, like arthritis, CBD can help reduce the inflammation and thus, reduce the pain you may feel from it.
- It is antioxidative. This CBD property helps reduce systematic inflammation and fight oxidative stress. This, in turn, can help calm inflammation caused by some autoimmune diseases.
It is important to note that CBD won’t cure the underlying cause of your chronic pain. But rather, it can be implemented as part of your pain management regimen. You’ll want to work with your doctor to create a plan that works best for you and treats your underlying condition.
CBD Patches for Chronic Pain
As we learned earlier, CBD comes in many different forms. One of the newest trends is CBD patches.
These are very similar to nicotine patches, which smokers use to help them give up cigarettes and nicotine. The patch is applied directly to the skin and delivers nicotine in smaller doses throughout the day, thus curbing the urge to smoke.
CBD patches work in much the same way. They, too, are applied directly to the skin and deliver doses of CBD throughout the day. But unlike nicotine patches, CBD patches are applied to the area that needs treatment. So, if you have back pain, you would want to place your patch on the back. These CBD products are designed to allow CBD to be absorbed into specific areas that are causing concern and pain.
Our skin does a lot to keep us protected and is very adept at keeping certain toxins from entering our skin, and in turn, our bloodstream. This can include CBD. So, to ensure that CBD from the patch can enter your body, these patches will be made up of more than just CBD.
CBD patches will typically contain:
- CBD to help alleviate pain.
- Permeation enhancers give CBD the ability to enter the bloodstream through our skin.
- Gel or oil, which CBD is infused into.
While CBD, in general, is well-tolerated by the vast majority of people, if you have allergies, you’ll want to look at what these patches are made from. For example, if you are allergic to the adhesive on Band-Aids, you will likely react to the adhesive used on these patches. This adhesive may also cause skin irritation if you have sensitive skin.
5 Benefits of Using CBD Patches
These sticky applications are just as effective as CBD that is eaten via an edible or taken orally via oil or a capsule, but they offer many specific benefits to people using CBD for chronic pain.
- They deliver CBD to the body over a longer period. Some CBD patches can be applied and left on for days, while others may only be recommended for one-day use. Whichever type of patch you get, you will get a steady dose of CBD delivered to your problem area. This means you’ll have long-lasting relief, often relief that would last longer than using another product, like an edible, which generally only lasts six to eight hours.
- They offer convivence. When using a CBD topical like a lotion or oil to help relieve pain, you have to keep applying it, which means you’ll need to carry the product with you. Patches allow you to put one on and go without the worry of re-applying products or remembering to take the product with you as you travel.
- CBD patches offer discretion. Unless you are using one to relieve pain on your arms or high on your neck, most people can hide their CBD patch under clothing. This provides users with a discrete way to use CBD, even if they go out and about while wearing their patches. Though CBD has become more widely accepted, some people may still prefer to keep their CBD usage a secret from those around them.
- They offer a taste and smoke-free way to use CBD. CBD and weed, in general, can have a particular taste that some people don’t enjoy. Plus, some products, like CBD oil, can have a texture that some find off-putting. And for those with chronic health issues, smoking CBD is not an option. CBD patches offer a different way to use CBD without the unique taste and smoke that can irritate your lungs.
- CBD patches allow you to target specific areas, instead of taking CBD and letting it flow throughout your body. This can offer increased relief to the areas you need. Taking CBD via an edible may not offer as strong of relief to the area of concern as applying a topical or patch directly to the area would.
Choosing the Best CBD Patch for You
Like any other product, when it comes to buying CBD patches, you have options. You’ll find different brands and patches made with different permeation enhancers, gels, and oils. They will even have different amounts of CBD within them.
As you search for the best CBD patch for your use, you’ll need to do a little research to make sure you are getting the best product for you.
You’ll want to first look at the ingredients contained in the patch. Is it made with oil or gel? What type of adhesive is on the patch? If you have allergies, you will want to make sure nothing used in the patch will cause an allergic reaction.
As the CBD market continues to boom, many companies are jumping on board. But they may not offer quality CBD products, or their products may not contain as much CBD as they claim. Because CBD is not regulated by the FDA, you will need to do research to ensure each product contains what it says it does.
To check the CBD content of your potential new CBD patch, you will want to look for third-party testing results also found in a certificate of analysis. These can be found on the manufacturer’s website, and some CBD patch packaging may even contain a QVR code you can scan to access these results. Look at the CBD found by the third-party lab and compare it with what is listed on the label.
Be sure to also read the product’s label for specific instructions on how to use it. Though it may seem intuitive, the label will show you how long you can leave the patch on for optimal results as well as other important information.
Beyond CBD Patches
If you find it difficult to locate CBD patches to buy for pain relief, there are other options. Though they won’t have all the benefits, such as the convenience of patches, they can still offer some relief from chronic pain and make a nice addition to your pain management regimen.
Other CBD products you may want to explore include:
- CBD oils and lotions, which can also be applied topically but will need to be re-applied more frequently.
- CBD edibles, which such as gummies and sweets, do not allow you to target specific areas but instead offer general relief.
- CBD capsules, which are similar to edibles but can be taken in one swallow.
If you try other CBD products, you’ll need to keep an eye on how much CBD you are consuming by looking at the dosing information. You should plan to start with a lower dose and slowly increase it until you get the effects you want.
Final Thoughts on CBD Patches and Chronic Pain
Chronic pain can have many causes, from old injuries to medical issues like arthritis. This pain can range from mild to severe and can impact more than your physical health. Dealing with chronic pain can make enjoying life’s activities difficult and even lead to mental health issues like depression.
To manage chronic pain, your doctor will need to treat the underlying condition and may suggest a regimen that includes medications, exercise, and even diet changes. But as more people look for natural ways to relieve pain, CBD has come into the spotlight.
CBD’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, as well as the way it interacts with our endocannibal system, all can help alleviate pain. Thus, CBD can make a valuable addition to your chronic pain treatment plan.
CBD patches have become a popular way for those with chronic pain to find relief. These are applied directly to the area in question and provide a steady stream of CBD to the targeted area. This provides users with long-term relief that can last all day, as opposed to just a few hours.
As you buy your CBD patch, be sure to research it to ensure it contains no allergens and the amount of CBD the package claims.