Demystifying CBD and Treating Muscle Pain
Updated: Mar 11
Here's the thing about CBD oil: it isn't weed. CBD is an abbreviation of the word cannibidiol. It's an extract of the cannabis plant, yes. It is part of "weed," certainly. But it's the product of some scientists getting at the plant and doing some science on it.
I have a lot of friends who smoke a lot of weed. A lot of cheerful, smiling, slightly dopey friends, who eat a lot of snacks, and wear a lot of big sweat shirts.That's the general impression of cannabis. It is, isn't it? But this is the thing: CBD is not weed.
Quick answer to the million dollar question: Nope, if you are looking for a marijuana-induced high, then CBD will be a disappointment for you.
The first person I met who used CBD oil was my mom. She helped demystify CBD for me. She has some chronic leg pain related to an auto-immune skin disease. I don't know whether it was eczema or psoriasis. Something like that, though. I just saw the angry rashes. It looks uncomfortable, anyway. She doesn't try literally everything to relieve the pain. She does have a preference for using things that need less processing before they're useful. She also has a manic drive to research the hell out of things before buying into them. If she didn't, she wouldn't have come across CBD oil at all because she's both too young and too old. She's in her fifties, so she missed being an adult during the seventies or a teenager during the early oughts. I guess weed's never really not been a thing. My mom didn't have a chance to be in the middle of hippy culture at its height or hipster culture at its inception. She was, in fact, loudly opposed to marijuana use when I was a kid. I remember that particularly.
And yet she decided that CBD oil was probably the best option. She did her long stretch of manic research into good topical pain relief treatments and still decided on CBD. It helped with the pain from her eczema or psoriasis or whatever it was--definitely an auto-immune something.
I live in Denver, CO, one of the big Weed Culture hubs of North America. As John Denver puts it, "Colorado, where everybody's high." And that does seem to be the case. You throw a rock downtown and you'll hit some blissed out new agey type with a smile between their tie-dye and their dreadlocks. They'll offer you a hit off their hash pipe. It is a sharing culture, and that's a good thing to say about it.
I have a lot of friends who smoke a lot of weed. A lot of cheerful, smiling, slightly dopey friends, who eat a lot of snacks, and wear a lot of big sweat shirts.That's the general impression of cannabis. It is, isn't it? Of happy, hungry, hippies, sharing their pipes and dancing to Grateful Dead and Bob Marley songs. They're a generation out of joint, and just generally not being very medical.
Full disclosure: I don't smoke. At all. It doesn't agree with me. I've tried it, and I don't have anything against other people doing it, but it doesn't do anything for me. So I don't do it.
I do know a thing or two about it now, though. I do for a variety of reasons. Not the least because of living in the middle of it. I've also been doing a bunch of research, because it's interesting to me.
Like, did you know, right? Did you know that you can't pass a drug test if you eat an entire bag of a half dozen poppy seed bagels all at once? It's true. They did it on the Mythbusters show. They had an episode where they looked at opium. They discovered that there is enough opium in poppy seeds that you'll fail a drug test just by eating poppy seed bagels.
This matters. After the scientists got a hold of it, they were able to extract what was useful. Opium gives us oxycodone and hydrocodone and other high-powered painkillers. They're derived from opium, which has all the stigma attached to it that it ought to have. It's a hard, addictive drug, that ruins lives probably. But it had some valuable properties, and now we have high powered pain killers to help with therapy and recovery. And yeah, opioids are potentially addictive, but they're pretty well regulated. And--this being the important point--well understood.
We can use science to make something useful out of opium, which ruins a lot of lives. You can bet the horse you rode in on that we can use science to make something useful out of cannabis.
Now, here's the thing about CBD oil: it isn't weed. CBD is an abbreviation of the word cannibidiol. It's an extract of the cannabis plant, yes. It is part of "weed," certainly. But it's the product of some scientists getting at the plant and doing some science on it. The purpose of doing this science is to divide the parts of the cannabis plant into various parts. In the case of CBD, the idea is to remove all of the psychoactive elements and leave behind...well, some of the other stuff. I'll get to that in a second.
The psychoactive elements, by the way, are the parts that make you "high." The parts that make your mind small and limit your ability to pay attention or make lucid decisions. That's in the THC. I don't know what that stands for. I wanted to understand what my mom was talking about, not what she was trying to avoid.
When the psychoactive elements get removed, you're left with the other parts. As it turns out, the parts that help with anxiety, and make you feel more calm. You're left with the parts that help you to relax, and the parts that ease aches and pains. These are all effects that my extremely high friends would report experiencing while smoking weed. They'd talk about them right before losing their thread and then asking if the stuffing in my pillows was edible. Because they still had THC in their systems.
My mom never had THC. Once every two weeks, though, she sends one of her kids down the street to the dispensary. We carry twenty dollars and her order. We come back with the little phial of cannabis-derived oil, to help her relieve her pain.
And that did a lot to demystify CBD oil and help me think about treating muscle pain.
The Calm-a-Mama team is constantly creating for everyone who may need a bit of calm and sleep. We have you covered for everything from calm drops and flower essence sleep drops Calm Drops with CBD and Sleep Drops with CBD are coming in Winter.
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