More chiropractors are talking with patients about CBD for pain and sleep
Trouble sleeping is one of the most common problems for those seeking chiropractic care, often due to pain.
Whether patients suffer from actual sleep disorders or lose sleep due to pain or issues with the central nervous system, they look to chiropractors to alleviate their symptoms in ways that are non-invasive and non-pharmacological. In this regard, CBD for pain and sleep may be a powerful tool for chiropractors.
Studies have shown that CBD works as an all-natural sleep aid, relieving many symptoms that lead to poor sleep quality.
CBD and insomnia
Insomnia is a cause of musculoskeletal pain and migraines, so for many patients who seek chiropractic care, a sleep disorder may be at the root of their symptoms.
CBD has been shown to improve sleep in those suffering from insomnia. In one study, 66% of participants reported improved sleep within four weeks. And this was only after taking 25 mg of CBD for pain and sleep daily, which is a small and affordable dose.
CBD likely helps poor sleepers due to its sedative and anxiolytic effects. These may be due to the way that CBD interacts with GABA (gamma aminobutyric acid) and serotonin receptors in the brain, both of which are associated with relaxation and sleep. Although CBD’s relationship with sleep is not yet clear, researchers have observed that CBD has a positive impact on sleep duration and decreased cortisol levels.
CBD and pain
In one study on migraines, the researchers concluded that cannabinoids (CBD and THC were used in the study) were “…a promising class of compounds for both acute and prophylactic treatment of migraine pain.”
Another study showed how CBD interacts with TRPV1 receptors to reduce the perception of pain much in the way of painkillers but without the negative side effects of these drugs.
James Raker, DC, observed this in a patient struggling with back and leg pain which was at a “10.” After chiropractic care didn’t help, the patient scheduled surgery. In the time before the surgery, Raker suggested CBD for pain and sleep. Within one week, the patient had gone from getting almost no sleep to sleeping all night and reporting a pain level of “2.” In the end, the pain reduced further to a “1” and the surgery was canceled.
Many pain-related stories like these are encouraging more chiropractors to recommend CBD for a lack of sleep caused by pain.
CBD and inflammation
Inflammation plays a key role in joint pain, chronic illness, and gastrointestinal issues that prevent restful sleep. CBD can reduce inflammation throughout the body, preventing pain that causes many to lose sleep due to a lack of mobility in bed or to painful tossing and turning.
One study on CBD creams and salves found a marked reduction in pro-inflammatory compounds particularly in the spinal cord, as well as a reduction in joint swelling at the location of application.
Other studies on CBD and inflammation and pain, including the migraine study above, note that CBD seems to inhibit the inflammatory response and stop inflammation before it begins. It has also been suggested that CBD may help to reverse the course of chronic inflammatory conditions, though more research is necessary.
Recommending CBD for sleep
Whether or not to recommend CBD for pain and sleep is a decision you’ll have to make, especially as it becomes more popular among clients and chiropractors. More than 1 in 4 chiropractic clinics are already offering CBD products to patients, and as the research becomes more conclusive, those numbers are expected to grow.
If you’re interested in learning more about how CBD can improve the sleep of your clients and the success of your practice, it’s important to first understand the facts on CBD and its properties.
CBD has no serious side effects, is non-dependency forming, and can be taken safely in high doses. But, recommending CBD should start with a conversation, and chiropractors should always take a responsible, measured approach when proposing supplementation.
BENJAMIN GORMAN is a writer and editor who specializes in cannabis, health, and wellness.