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CBD Oil for Arthritis: A Natural Treatment [Backed by Research]


For those struggling with arthritis, there’s a natural remedy that could aid them. Clinical research has found that CBD for arthritis has positive results.

CBD Oil for Arthritis: Frequently Asked Questions

CBD Oil for Arthritis: The Highlights

  • Arthritis means inflammation of your joints. This term describes more than 200 conditions affecting joints and tissues surrounding the joints.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports 54.4 million American adults are diagnosed with some form of arthritis.
  • Many clinical trials and studies performed on CBD and arthritis have produced positive results.
  • A person suffering from arthritis can use CBD oil or CBD topical cream to get the benefits of CBD.
  • CBD has little to no side effects and at most will have 0.3% THC, which is not enough to get someone high.

What Causes Arthritis?

Here’s one of those catch-22 situations. There really is no concrete explanation for why arthritis appears in the first place.  It is more a matter of risk factors. According to the Mayo Clinic, these include-

  • Heredity: Some times of arthritis runs are genetic. You are more likely to develop this ailment if your family members have it. Also, genetics is responsible for making some people more susceptible to external factors that trigger arthritis.
  • Age: The risks increase with age.
  • Joint injuries: Risks are higher if you had a joint injury in the past.
  • Obesity: Carrying extra weight stresses your joints, especially bones in knees, hips, and spinal cord. This increases your chance of getting arthritis.
  • Gender: Statistically, women are more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis and men are more prone to get gout.

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis. Gout, rheumatoid arthritis, and fibromyalgia are other prevalent forms of this ailment.


According to the Arthritis Foundation, osteoarthritis (OA) tops the list as the most prevalent joint condition in the United States, affecting nearly 27 million people. Unlike RA, this is not an autoimmune disease. It more-so takes its toll on the body over time.

Instead of the body being ravaged by its own immune system, the cartilage around the joint capsules slowly starts to break down over time. The bones are then put in threat of rubbing against each other, which causes pain, inflammation, and swelling. As you can see, the symptoms and physical effects of RA and OA are relatively the same. They just develop a little differently.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Often referred to as RA, this type of arthritis is caused by your body’s own immune system working against you. For this reason, it’s called an autoimmune disorder. The joints in the body have a layer of liquid between them that helps with shock absorption and ease of movement. It’s called synovial fluid. The tissue around that is called synovium.

When RA is present, the synovium is mistaken by the body like a virus or evil substance, which causes it to get thicker.

This, in turn, sets off a series of unwanted effects like pain, stiffness, and inflammation. If left alone with no changes in lifestyle or no treatment, the cartilage surrounding the bones can get affected too and become worn away. Then you are left with unstable joints and possibly a situation where there is bone on bone.

Suffice it to say, the level of pain associated with RA can become exponentially greater.

The Research on CBD Oil for Arthritis

Here’s a sad reality that people in pain have to come to grips with. A lot of treatments that are beneficial for the body are not regulated by the FDA or posed as good options. And when it comes to using CBD oil for arthritis, the story stays the same.

But when you hear that there is no concrete research on CBD oil being good for arthritis or any other condition, take it with a grain of salt.

What is CBD and How It Works

CBD badge

CBD stands for cannabidiol. This is the actual compound derived from marijuana and hemp plants that give hope to many people as a treatment for their ailments.

Among all the compounds present in the marijuana plant, THC is responsible for the psychoactive effect that makes you high. CBD, on the other hand, works with the endocannabinoid system of your body and results in medicinal benefits.

Regular cannabis plants that have a high amount of THC are not favored for the CBD extraction because they have a mind-altering effect on the body. Plus, if a product contains over .3 percent of THC, it is not legal. Except if it is in one of the nine states where marijuana is legal.

Read our article on CBD oil to learn more about what it is and how it works.

Here are some benefits of CBD for treating Arthritis and related joint inflammation conditions which are backed by rigorous scientific research.

Cannabis Based Medicine Treats Rheumatoid Arthritis Pain

Obviously, pain can quickly take the wind out of your sails during the day. Especially if prevents you from doing the things you like to do. One of the noted benefits of CBD oil is it helps reduce pain. And the way it works is quite interesting.

Inside your body, you have pain receptors that get triggered in times of “threat” so to speak. When these receptors get calmed down, the pain dissipates. This is known as the endocannabinoid system. A particular receptor, CB2, is mostly involved with this process.

In 2006, researchers from the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases found that cannabis-based medicines helped reduce rheumatoid arthritis pain.

The theory with CBD oil is it relaxes this and other pain receptors, which in turn, reduces pain associated with arthritis.

Topical CBD Helps With Inflammation

Inflammation is another defense mechanism of the body. If you’ve ever sprained your ankle, you likely experienced a good amount of swelling, stiffness, soreness, pain, and redness. These are all signs of inflammation. And this occurs when white blood cells cluster up at joint locations to act as a protective mechanism while simultaneously promoting healing.

Researchers from the University of Kentucky concluded in 2016 that transdermal application of CBD helps with arthritis pain.

No wonder, users are flocking towards CBD creams to manage pain.

This is how CBD oil can help. It has been known to reduce inflammation, boosting the healing process.

Moderates the Immune Response

Rheumatic arthritis is often driven by the immune response of your body. There are cells in your body that are responsible for protecting against outside bacteria and virus. They can turn against your own joints, by mistake, causing inflammation and pain.

If you remember from above, CBD oil has a positive effect on the CB2 receptor. Well, this is also part of the body’s immune system.

In cases where RA is prevalent, the oil can attach itself to these receptors, shutting off the pain response to the body, and in turn the joints. This also works in another type of arthritis terms as collagen-induced arthritis or CIA.

Additionally, the CBD oil can cause the body to produce more cannabinoids on its own, which can attach to CB2 receptors and have an even greater effect on pain and inflammation.

How To Use CBD Oil for Arthritis

There is a right and wrong way to do everything in life. Much like there is a safe and dangerous way. And when it comes to CBD oil, there is a right and wrong way to go about it. One thing you want to remember is, CBD oil and THC are two very different things.

If you happen to smoke weed, you can get the effects of the CBD, but you will also get high. Unless you are looking for that effect, just know that it’s going to happen.

If you strictly want to get the benefits of CBD without the psychoactive effect, you can use it in two different ways–orally or topically. The way you choose to use it is a matter of preference, but here is a little more insight into the differences.

Topical vs. Oral Use Of CBD For Arthritis

CBD Cream

At the base level, CBD is either an extract or powder. The extract is blended in hemp oil and the powder is often made into creams, gels or capsules for ingestion.  Plus, there is a spray that is made for oral use as well. When it comes to your situation, any one of these options is valid.

It really just depends on what you prefer. It’s probably in your best interest to experiment with available options and use the one or ones that work best for you.

The Recommended Dosage Of CBD Oil For Arthritis

Any time you are using alternative treatment, you should start with a low dose and see how your body reacts. Then you can gauge the effect it has on you and moves forward accordingly. As it pertains to CBD oil, a rule of thumb is to start in the 5-to-10-mg range and go from there.

If that does the trick, then stay with it. If not, increase it slightly and see what happens. Follow this pattern until you arrive upon a dosage that works for you and then just remains there.

The Downside of Using CBD oil for Arthritis

Much like anything else, there is an outside chance you can grow dependent on CBD oil for pain relief and overall better function. But in the big picture, this is rather benign compared to being debilitated and unhappy.

In reality, though, you have a low risk of developing a major chemical dependency.

Probably the main downside of CBD oil is the fact that it’s not cheap. However, this can be still be construed as a small price to pay to have your life back.

Side Effects

The side effects of using CBD oil are mild and do not happen to everyone. But be aware for things to crop up like stomach aches, dry mouth, nausea, diarrhea and feeling drowsy.

Drug Interactions

If you are on any medications for other conditions, you are best advised to discuss the use of CBD oil with your doctor. There are no known interactions to speak of, but every person reacts differently to things.

You are better served to be on the safe side and always discussing this with your doctor.

The Final Word on CBD Oil

Always remember that you are in charge of your life. If you are suffering from debilitating pain caused by arthritis, then give CBD oil a spin and see what happens.

If you stack it up against the pharmaceutical drugs that can cause you a battery of unwanted side effects, you really can’t go wrong.


Research References

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