According to the CDC, approximately 1 in 4 American adults have arthritis. 60% of those adults with arthritis are between the ages of 18 and 64. Arthritis pain can range from minor discomfort to excruciating. The pain can interfere with everyday life, making it difficult to go up the stairs, cook, and more. Traditionally, arthritis has been treated with medications and self-care. Some may find relief with gentle exercises such as yoga, acupuncture, physical therapy, or medicated creams. Another option to consider for your arthritis pain is cannabis topicals.
What Is Arthritis?
Arthritis is a term is that refers to over 100 joint conditions pain, stiffness, and swelling. Some people with arthritis develop deformities. Types of arthritis include:
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Psoriatic arthritis
- Reactive arthritis
Arthritis commonly affects the hands and feet, but they can impact other joints in the body as well, such as the knees, hips, shoulders, and elbows. Osteoarthritis is one of the most common types, and most people referring to arthritis are talking about this type.
What Are Cannabis Topicals?
While there are no cures for arthritis, the condition can be managed. Doctors prescribe various treatments including NSAIDs, prescription pain medications such as tramadol and oxycodone, corticosteroids, and physical therapy. For some, therapies such as acupuncture, treatment with ice and heat, or gentle exercise like yoga may be recommended. In more severe cases, invasive treatments may be required, such as joint surgery or joint replacement.
Cannabis topicals provide an alternative to conventional treatments. Topicals are balms, lotions, or creams that are infused with cannabis. Instead of being ingested or inhaled, the cannabis in topicals absorbs into the skin where they’re applied to provide localized relief from pain and inflammation.
Like cannabis that’s smoked or ingested, there are strain-specific topicals, which provide differing ratios of THC and CBD, as well as an array of other cannabinoids. The topicals also contain other ingredients such as essential oils, cayenne, and mint to provide additional pain relief. Topicals can be used to treat a variety of conditions, such as muscle pain, psoriasis, cramps, headaches, inflammation, and arthritis.
Why Use Cannabis Topicals for Arthritis?
Cannabis topicals provide an effective alternative to more conventional treatments. A study published in Rheumatology found that patients with arthritis had an abnormally high number of CB2 receptors in their joints. When cannabis topicals are absorbed into the skin, the cannabis activates the receptors and helps to combat inflammation.
One of the biggest benefits of topicals is that you don’t have to take oral medication. There are none of the side effects that traditional medications may have. At the same time, you don’t have to worry about the high that’s typically associated with cannabis. This is because cannabis doesn’t travel into the bloodstream. You can safely use the topical to treat your arthritis without fear of the treatment interfering with your day.
Other benefits of using cannabis topicals to treat arthritis include:
- Reducing your arthritis pain almost immediately
- Reducing inflammation associated with arthritis
- Helping to restore the joint mobility
Cannabis topicals are an effective treatment for helping individuals suffering from arthritis to manage their pain. It provides you with an alternative to conventional medications, allowing you to avoid potential unwanted side effects while still alleviating your discomfort and allowing you to live and move more comfortably.