Most people will have heard of it, some will have tried it, and others are curious, but what can CBD mean for chronic illness? Today I’m excited to share a fantastic guest post from Reakiro on how CBD works and how it can be a natural supplement to managing chronic pain and illness.
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Living with a chronic illness is not easy, that goes without saying. It changes the way that you approach everyday tasks and the way that you experience the day, compared to others around you. Accepting and adapting is one of the key ways to manage your chronic illness, but what if there was a natural ingredient which could help manage those day-to-day pains and issues.
People with chronic illnesses have been coming forward with testimonials of how CBD has helped improve their lives. But what is CBD and how exactly can it help?
How CBD Works
CBD is the shortened three letter acronym for cannabidiol. This is a natural compound, extracted from the hemp plant which has hoards of natural benefits. Often people can get CBD confused with marijuana, but it’s very important to distinguish that they are different and separate substances. While marijuana is known to get people ‘high’, CBD-based products do not have this same effect. Consequently, people with chronic illnesses can use them confidently without mind-altering effects.
CBD works by interacting with receptors in our bodies which make a system called the endocannabinoid system. This system interacts with a wide range of enzymes and hormones affecting how our bodies and minds feel throughout the day, from mood to aches and pains.
If you’re living with a chronic illness, there’s probably a few things you would like to change about how you experience your day. Chronic illnesses can differ in their effects day-to-day, but on a bad day it can really take it out of you. So how might CBD help you as a natural alternative?
Did you know that CBD has natural anti-inflammatory properties? This means when it is applied, particularly as a cream or balm, it works to soothe and relieve inflamed areas. This is great for pain management for sore joints and muscles.
Anti-anxiety & Anti-stress
Maintaining a healthy and positive mental state consistently is a full time occupation in itself. Combine this with living with a chronic illness and whatever else the day might throw at you, well you’ve got yourself quite the headache. CBD works in a somewhat similar way to anti anxiety medication in terms of calming anxiety, but seeing as it is all natural there are none of the side effects of chemical pharmaceuticals – which your body may already have enough of to process. Keeping healthy mentally is key to the best quality of life.
CBD acts as a mild sedative, which can help you nod off to sleep at night. But aside from this, one of the key ways that it helps people sleep is by calming anxiety and stress and by easing soreness in the body. By taking away these potential stressors you are much more likely to drift off to sleep quicker and stay asleep, leaving you feeling more rested and restored the next day.
A big side effect of chronic illnesses is decreased appetite, which can be debilitating when energy levels are low to begin with. CBD promotes a sense of internal balance, through the endocannabinoid system, which can help relieve nausea and calm the nervous system and digestive tract. Additionally, as mentioned, CBD can relieve pain – so if you have been unable to eat due to pain, this may be the solution to making your appetite return.
If you’re interested in trying CBD to help you manage your chronic illness, it is important to find the correct product for you and your condition. For example if you’re looking to address something internally, like stress and anxiety, CBD oil may be best. But if you’re looking for something like relieving sore muscles, CBD creams and gels may be the way forward.
Always speak to your doctor or a pharmacist before adding CBD to your treatment plan as you need to ensure that none of the components of your prescribed medications will interact negatively with the CBD. Preventing this can be as simple as adjusting your dosage, but it is always important to consult a professional first.
Have you used CBD for chronic illness, pain, sleep, anxiety or other reasons? Is it something you’re interested in trying?
[ This is a collaborative guest post & as such the ideas expressed here are that of the author. I personally feel CBD will could be considered more a complimentary management tool and may not necessarily replace medical or professional help and intervention. Many use CBD with good results but keep in mind possible interactions with other medications or side-effects. If you have any concerns or queries, please speak to your care team. ]