The Case for CBD
In most of the United States CBD (short for cannabidiol), a non-psychoactive cannabinoid compound found in marijuana, can be purchased and used legally (the laws are murky but it’s basically legal). Unlike using marijuana medicinally which contains the psychoative compound THC, using CBD is known to have many of those beneficial properties without the high and the risk of jail time. Among the many benefits reported from use of CBD include reduction of inflammation and joint pain, overall pain relief, even anxiety relief. CBD is seeing headlines most recently for being approved for treatment of a rare form of epilepsy. Most of the claims about the benefits of CBD are not substantiated (yet) but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a useful product at best and a fairly harmless but expensive one to add to hipster coffees and cocktails at worst.
Obviously we are on track in the US to legalization of marijuana in many more states (hopefully!) but since most of us can only buy and use CBD products is it a better alternative to other pain medications, like Midol, to treat menstrual pain?
There are lots of ways in ingest your CBD- tinctures, salves, lotions, gel capsules, oil drops, and vaping are just a few. After trying a friend’s CBD vape pen I liked it so much I ordered my own– how millenial of me. I was initially interested in trying out CBD for anxiety to see if that would help my insomnia but I knew that it may be useful for pain relief and headaches as well so I made sure I tried using my pen during these times and noted my pain levels before and after. CBD has some lofty claims from dedicated users- I wanted to see if it was as good as they said!
My Experience with CBD
For my aches and cramps I noticed a definite reduction and even elimination of pain after one use of the CBD vape pen. There was no “high” from use, only noticable pain relief. As an overall wellness side effect CBD does also have a calming and focusing effect but I can’t say I always experience that. My pain during menstruation is often a 0-1 but there are some days where, on my heaviest day, I suffer back aches and cramping that range from a 2-5 on the pain scale. Since my discomfort and pain are minimal compared to what many menstruators experience, especially those with endometriosis, I can only say that the CBD personally helps my pain levels. What it does for those in severe pain is not something I can speak to but I do think it’s worth a shot for pain relief for those even higher on the pain scale.
The Cost of CBD
CBD can be somewhat expensive, especially if you’re using it often. The pen I purchased has 150 doses and runs $45 but the brand, Select CBD, often runs sales so it can be purchased for less. There are other brands and prices will vary, I just loved the discretion/color of the pen Select sells. I will say that even if I were in a state where recreational cannabis were legal I would continue using CBD for pain relief more than reaching for the real thing- it’s been a great addition to my wellness routine. I’m seeing many friends and neighbors who are using it quietly (due to stigma) who swear by it as well. There are many wonderful resources on CBD that you may want to research before trying it yourself including, of all places, Bon Appetit.
Have you tried CBD for pain relief?
let us know your thoughts or experience of using cannabis and/or CBD products for pain relief in the comments.
I purchased a Select CBD pen to try myself (got it on sale for 25% off woo). This article is not meant to be medical advice and shouldn’t be taken as such. Some links are affiliate links and the author will receive a percentage if you click through and make a purchase.