Cannabis Topicals: Usage and Benefits

Cannabis Topicals: Usage and Benefits

Did you know you can apply cannabis products directly to the skin?

Cannabis-infused creams or balms can be used for cosmetic purposes and are potent first-aid remedies.

What is the point?

Here are the basics of cannabis topicals and their use.

What is cannabis topical?

Topicals include creams, lotions and oils that contain cannabis.

These products can be used in a number of ways, including for first aid, skin care, and cosmetics.

Although many are familiar with medical cannabis, few people realize its potential for topical use.

What do cannabis topicals do?

These infused topicals will not get you high.

Cannabis topicals are effective because of the unique phytochemicals in the plant. These include Tetrahydrocannabinol and Cannabidiol.

THC, which is the main psychoactive component of cannabis, is responsible for the "high" that's so well-known.

However, the psychoactive can be applied topically and does not cause any mind-altering effects.

Instead, the cannabis compound acts locally to reduce inflammation and pain.

CBD, the second most common cannabis compound, is not able to exert systemic effects when it's applied topically.

These main cannabinoids and other minor cannabis compounds can interact with specific receptors on your skin.

These receptors are known as cannabinoid receivers.

Research indicates that these cannabinoid-receptors regulate inflammation in skin. This is part of the body’s immune response.

What do you think about essential oils?

However, cannabinoids are not the only positive molecules found in cannabis.

Terpenes, which are the chemicals that give the herb its famous smell, have also therapeutic benefits.

Terpenes, which are molecules that are generally considered safe by the U.S. FDA, are found in essential oils of plants.

Pinene is one of the most prominent terpenes found in cannabis. It is also found in pine needles.

Pinene, which is a potent bronchodilator and expectorant, can be used in a natural Vapor Rub.

This compound is one of the most prevalent terpenes within some cannabis varieties that are part of the "Kush” denomination.

Linalool is another terpene worth your attention. It is also found in lavender oils.

Linalool is a topical treatment for burns that has cooling properties.

A 2015 study by Natural Products & Chemistry Research showed that linalool is more prevalent in cannabis varieties belonging to the OG family.

Evidence indicates that even 0.05 percent can have pharmacological side effects on the body.

Terpenes make up about one-two percent of all cannabis oils.

This is sufficient to be pharmacologically effective.

Terpenes are able to penetrate deep into skin unlike cannabinoids which can be large molecules and may not absorb well.

It is a good idea to use cannabis topicals that include both cannabinoids as well as terpenes when searching for the best. Essential oils from almost any plant contain terpenes.

What can cannabis topicals be used for?

For millennia, cannabis has been used in topical applications.

Ancient Egyptians used cannabis flowers and honey to relieve pain during childbirth.

Other cultures, such as ancient China, used cannabis poultices and other topical remedies to treat wounds.

Topical cannabis, in addition to being ingested orally, was the primary method by which humans have used cannabis throughout history.

Here are some modern uses for cannabis topicals:

1. Anti-inflammatory

Cannabis topicals can be used to treat any type of injury, including a sprain or infection. Cannabis Topicals can provide relief for a particular area and may be able to help you avoid taking a systemic drug.

Although extreme cases of inflammation may require reinforcement, there are some common ways that cannabis users use anti-inflammatory topicals.

  • Twists and sprains
  • Insect bites
  • Joint pain (arthritis)
  • Muscle pain
  • Burns
  • Bruises
  • Swelling

2. Antiseptic

Do you have a wound?

It is now widely accepted that cannabis can be used to treat a variety of ailments. Cannabinoids like THC and CBD have even been found to be effective in killing Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). MRSA, a superbug, is resistant to antibiotics.

Evidence indicates that these compounds have antimicrobial properties for plants, protecting them from pathogens. These same properties could be what gives cannabis its powerful antiseptic properties.

3. Pain relief

Topical cannabis might be an option if your pain is severe.

The herb is well-known for its anti-inflammatory properties and analgesic properties. Surveys show that medical cannabis patients would rather use cannabis than prescription painkillers.

There is not enough human research to determine if topical cannabis can relieve severe pain caused by conditions like arthritis and muscle strain. Many patients have reported relief from their conditions by topical cannabis application. You can only test them until you have more data.

4. Anti-aging

Cannabinoids are powerful antioxidants. Antioxidants are essential for protecting DNA and cells from damage by free radicals. External sources such as pollution and ultraviolet radiation can produce many free radicals. These external factors can cause wrinkles and fine lines on the skin.

Cannabinoids are powerful antioxidants and are being used in a growing variety of cosmetics and beauty products. You can add them to homemade night creams, or infuse your daily moisturizer with them.

5. Acne control

Are you looking for a new solution to your acne?

Research indicates that at least one cannabis component, non-psychotropic CBD, may help reduce oily skin. CBD is also antiseptic, making it an attractive compound for acne skincare.

6. Anti-cancer

Evidence is mounting that cannabis could be an effective tool to combat cancer. Although human trials have not been conducted, the case study published January 2017 suggests that topical cannabis can be used to manage pain and possibly heal malignant wounds.

A 44-year old man was able to reduce his prescriptions of painkillers by 25% and his wound size decreased by five percent after using cannabis oil on his skin.bUnfortunately, his condition had deteriorated to the point that he died.

This is a sad reminder that cannabis should not be considered a panacea or miracle cure. You can use it as a therapeutic tool or in combination with other therapies.