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CBD Oil and its Benefits, Uses and Side Effects

CBD oil, or cannabidiol, is derived from chemical compounds in the marijuana plant and diluted with a carrier oil, like coconut oil or hemp seed oil. It is considered safe in most cases because it doesn’t have the same effect of getting people “high” like marijuana. Instead, it’s widely used, and has been for thousands of years, to treat a variety of pain symptoms. Many have seen how its benefits can be applied to a number of situations. We know that it can be used to help people, but we don’t know everything. The medical community is just now starting to take CBD oil seriously, now that is becoming legalized in some states and more to come. Like most forms of pain relief, there are possible side effects. The following info will help you determine if CBD oil could help you or your loved ones with pain management or other ailments.

How CBD Oil Works

According to Medical News Today, CBD works as effective pain management by attaching to certain receptors in the body. We naturally produce certain cannabinoid on our own, but we have receptors that receive other cannabinoids, called CB1 receptors and CB2 receptors. CB1 receptors are mostly in the brain and affect coordination, movement, emotions, pain, mood, appetite, and more. CB2 receptors are mostly in the immune system, affecting inflammation and pain. Instead of attaching to either receptors, CBD oil helps the body use more of its own natural cannabinoids.

Benefits of CBD Oil

There are many benefits to CBD oil, and because we don’t yet know everything about it, there could potentially be many more. Just some areas where we have seen some of the benefits of CBD oil are:

  • Pain relief

Most people turn straight to over-the-counter options when they start to feel pain, including chronic conditions. According to a study of mice and rats, CBD oil dramatically decreased chronic inflammation and pain. Because it’s a more natural option, researchers are excited about the possibility of CBD oil becoming a new and effective treatment for chronic pain.

  • Relief from drug withdrawals and smoking addictions

It can be incredibly difficult to stop smoking and, in some cases, drug withdrawals can be life-threatening. A pilot study published in Addictive Behaviors found that “smokers who used inhalers containing CBD smoked fewer cigarettes than usual and had no further cravings for nicotine.” It can also reduce symptoms associated with opioid addiction and other substance abuse disorders. Examples of symptoms CBD oil can help with are anxiety, pain, and insomnia.

  • Epilepsy

The FDA has approved the use of CBD as a therapeutic treatment for two rare epileptic conditions. After extensive research, it has been found that this CBD treatment, Epidiolex, can help with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, and Dravet syndrome. Other types of medication do not control these types of seizures as well as Epidiolex.

  • Cancer

Researchers have found that CBD oil can help prevent the spread of cancer, according to recent studies. The compound has a tendency to suppress cancer growth and promote cancer destruction. Further research is being done to see its potential as part of the standard treatment for cancer patients.

  • Anxiety

CBD oil can reduce anxiety in certain people with conditions such as panic disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorder, general anxiety, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Most current treatments come with additional side effects which can make people not want to take them. CBD oil does have some side effects, but they may not affect everyone or be distinct enough to discourage someone’s accepting treatment.


It’s hard to say how and when CBD oil can be used because dosage isn’t always clear, and legality differs from state to state. Hemp and hemp products are legal because of the Farm Bill, as long as their THC content is less than 0.3%. THC is a compound found in marijuana that gives off the “high” effect in the body but is a completely different compound than CBD. Check the laws in your state to see what is and isn’t allowed and remember that the FDA has not approved any nonprescription products. It’s best to talk to your medical provider about your options before using CBD oil or making any major decisions.

Side Effects of CBD Oil

Though it has the potential to help so many people, CBD oil also has its side effects. It won’t have the same effect on everyone, and most adults can tolerate a wide range of doses. The most common side effects are:

  • Fatigue

  • Diarrhea

  • Weight loss

  • Weight gain

When combined with some over-the-counter drugs, dietary supplements, or CBD prescription medications, CBD oil may not be a good idea. CBD may also negatively affect your liver, causing a risk of liver toxicity. It sounds like a promising solution, but the truth is, we just don’t have all of the facts. Doing your research and talking to your doctor is important, but if you are worried about the potential risks, it may be wise to wait until more research is done and more solid evidence is produced on CBD oil. Because interest is growing in CBD and its benefits, researchers are currently working on producing more findings.

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