For the final installment of our chronic pain series, we're focusing on female reproduction-related concerns and how CBD can be a saving grace in the treatment of them.
Many people with female reproductive systems the world over are turning to our favourite non-intoxicating cannabis compound to help them address the pain symptoms of conditions like endometriosis and PMS.
CBD's power to reduce the severity of symptoms associated with these conditions lies in its anti-inflammatory and pain relieving properties, which serve to reduce bloating, cramps and general sensitivity and discomfort.
Not only that, but CBD's mood elevating benefits can also help to address the anxiety, mood swings and depression that both PMS and endometriosis can elicit in sufferers.
This condition of the female reproductive system involves the tissue that normally lines the uterus growing outside of it - usually on the ovaries, fallopian tubes or intestines.
This triggers inflammation in these areas and can cause severe pain in the lower abdomen, lower back and pelvis, as well as during sexual intercourse or menstruation.
In CBD's effort to achieve homeostasis (balance) in the body, it can stimulate receptors within the endocannabinoid system that can mitigate the intensity of this inflammatory response.
An endocannabinoid called anandamide - known as the "bliss molecule" - also helps by regulating and reducing your body’s sensitivity to pain.
When anandamide binds to a receptor, it communicates with cells to stop sending out so many pain signals, which essentially helps to numb the discomfort.
A study in 2010 looked specifically at how endocannabinoids might help to alleviate symptoms of endometriosis as well as mitigate the formation of abnormal growths as a result of the disease. Their conclusion was that cannabinoid agents had potential to be effective at both:
"These findings suggest that the endocannabinoid system contributes to mechanisms underlying both the peripheral innervation of the abnormal growths and the pain associated with endometriosis, thereby providing a novel approach for the development of badly-needed new treatments."
PREMENSTRUAL SYNDROME (PMS)
We all know PMS can be a pain. Sure, a physical pain, but also that special kind of torture where one minute you're pumped up and getting ready for your day, and the next you're crying in the shower for no apparent reason.
Luckily that monthly case of the mean reds can be made a bit more bearable with the help of CBD.
Two of CBD's primary properties are relieving pain and reducing inflammation - just like that of the swelling of the uterus due to the bleeding of cells in its muscle wall during the menstrual cycle.
If you take CBD oil every day like you would a supplement, you will find that when that time of the month comes round your usual cramps and aches should be less intense. Our Goodleaf CBD drops can be very effective in relaxing the uterine system, reducing inflammation and pain as well as diminishing any feelings of anxiety and stress that may be overwhelming you due to fired up hormones.
You might also find your mood to be more stable, and your sleep more easily sustained. And even if you take CBD just over the days of your period, you should still feel these benefits.
Another CBD treatment option would be a CBD topical product - such as the Pain Cream.
These creams would be applied to your abdomen and stomach area for targeted, localised relief of the pain and swelling that occurs during this uncomfortable time in the menstrual cycle.
Women of all ages the world over are turning to CBD to help them with some of the other uniquely female issues they face too.
Many use it each month for its anti-inflammatory, pain relieving and mood elevating benefits to help them get through the symptoms of PMS. But others also take it for more severe conditions like endometriosis, with CBD assisting in reducing pain and easing nausea.
Some also use topical CBD products to relieve any pain or discomfort during sex, or simply to enhance their sexual experience.
Older women are finding CBD useful for treating the symptoms of menopause - stabilising mood changes, combatting insomnia and decreasing the rate of any bone density loss.
And, as one recent study by the University of São Paulo in Brazil has indicated, some women can use it to provide relief from hormonal imbalances. Researchers found that CBD helped to regulate the secretion of the stress-activating hormone cortisol.
Plus, hemp-based CBD products contain omega fatty acids and gamma linolenic acid, all of which are known to help regulate hormones.
Just a few more reasons why CBD is being turned to as the natural alternative for treating common health concerns.