Fibromyalgia is characterized by chronic musculoskeletal pain, sleep problems, and mood changes. Its causes are varied, including exposure to emotional, physical, and psychological stress, ad managing it can be quite hard. It leads to a chain of many other conditions, so it calls for fast treatment. Meanwhile, the hype around CBD is picking up every day, and the cannabinoid seems to help with any condition. Can it treat fibromyalgia? Current studies show that CBD oil might help people handle sleep issues, mood changes, and pain with fibromyalgia, but the cannabinoid cannot treat the condition. Here is everything you might want to know about CBD for fibromyalgia.
What Are CBD and Fibromyalgia?
CBD is a non-psychoactive compound and one of the many cannabinoids in cannabis plants. Although it is abundant like THC, another cannabinoid, CBD does not have THC’s psychoactive effects, and taking it will not make you high. CBD has been touted as safe for any condition and well-tolerated, especially in small dosages, so many people are embracing it. You can enjoy CBD in its three types (isolate-based, full- and broad-spectrum) and various products, including tinctures, vapes, capsules, topicals, and edibles.
Fibromyalgia refers to constant pain in the musculoskeletal system that may last for long, making it chronic. It has many causes, with exposure to physical, emotional, or psychological stress, PTSD, underlying conditions like arthritis, genetic factors, not moving enough and embracing a sedentary lifestyle, anxiety, and depression, and gender-related factors being the main causes of the condition. Alongside the chronic pain with fibromyalgia, one has to bear with stress, mood changes, and sleep problems. The conventional management methods for the condition include talk therapy, stress reduction, and sleep supplements. They are not everybody’s cup of tea, primarily because they could be expensive, and some might not help the condition. Can CBD help?
CBD for Fibromyalgia- What Studies Say
Since 2018 when the Farm Bill was passed to allow growing industrial hemp and producing CBD with less than 0.3% THC, most states have made CBD partially or wholly illegal. More people are using the product, with some taking it to help with chronic conditions like fibromyalgia. Can CBD treat fibromyalgia? There is not enough evidence to prove these. However, existing studies show that people with fibromyalgia can experience improvements in the symptoms accompanying the condition, especially when THC is combined with CBD and not CBD alone. As such, we do not recommend CBD for treating or healing fibromyalgia.
How CBD Might Improve Fibromyalgia Symptoms
You might not treat or heal fibromyalgia with CBD, but there is hope that you can manage fibromyalgia symptoms using CBD. For instance, Sagy et al. (2019) published a study in the Journal of Clinical Medicine that showed that CBD might help fibromyalgia patients experience some improvements. The study showed that with CBD, fibromyalgia patients seemed to experience less pain and their life quality also seemed to improve.
Earlier on, Vučković et al. (2018) published a review in the Frontiers Pharmacology that looked at various studies on CBD for chronic pain. The review established that CBD might help reduce pain from various conditions, including fibromyalgia. Apart from pain, fibromyalgia patients have to deal with sleep issues. Some even suffer nightmares, especially if PTSD worsens the condition. Yet, Shannon et al. (2019) recorded that CBD might help improve sleep problems. CBD promises to help people with fibromyalgia deal with the symptoms that come with the condition. More studies are needed before recommending CBD for fibromyalgia patients, either for the condition or the symptoms that come with it.
Choosing CBD for Fibromyalgia
The CBD market is unregulated, and it is possible to come across substandard products. The FDA does not monitor CBD production. Do you want to try CBD for fibromyalgia? The following factors will help you increase your chances of landing quality CBD products.
- The extraction method is employed in stripping CBD from the hemp surfaces matters and tells whether the extract and the final product will be pure or contaminated. Most brands that use CO2 extraction methods deal in uncontaminated products as this method barely attaches any solvents to the extracts.
- The source of CBD; CBD can come from hemp or marijuana plants, but the former sounds better, especially because its CBD will less likely have more than 0.3% THC, which harmonizes with the Farm Bill requirements for legal CBD.
- 3rd party testing; reputable brands with quality CBD conduct 3rd party tests on their products to reveal their cannabinoid profile and purity against standard contaminants such as heavy metals, filth, foreign matter, and toxins.
- Critical certifications; when shopping for CBD, pay attention to brands that use organic products, are US Organic-certified, and operate in GMP-certified labs.
Should You Use CBD for Fibromyalgia?
Using CBD for fibromyalgia is an individual choice. There are limited studies on CBD for fibromyalgia, and the available ones do not look at CBD alone. No study has proven CBD to be safe in the long term. You need to consult your doctor before using CBD.
Studies show that CBD might help people manage the pain, mood issues, and sleep problems that come with the condition. Still, we cannot say that CBD can treat fibromyalgia. It is worth noting that CBD studies are limited, and there are many knowledge gaps around the cannabinoid, which is why you need to consult your doctor before trying it for fibromyalgia or something else.
Sagy, I., Bar-Lev Schleider, L., Abu-Shakra, M., & Novack, V. (2019). Safety And Efficacy Of Medical Cannabis In Fibromyalgia. Journal Of Clinical Medicine, 8(6), 807.
Shannon, S., Lewis, N., Lee, H., & Hughes, S. (2019). Cannabidiol In Anxiety And Sleep: A Large Case Series. The Permanente Journal, 23, 18–041. Https://Doi.Org/10.7812/TPP/18-041.
Vučković, S., Srebro, D., Vujović, K. S., Vučetić, Č., & Prostran, M. (2018). Cannabinoids And Pain: New Insights From Old Molecules. Frontiers In Pharmacology, 1259.
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