Cannabis may be known most popularly for delivering an intoxicating “high”, but also has been known to provide benefits through cannabis-infused topicals.
However, the chemical compounds in the cannabis plant offer a variety of uses beyond the psychoactive effects usually associated with consumption.
Cannabis topicals, for example, are cannabis-derived products that you can apply to your skin for pain relief, acne treatment, and much more.
If you’re looking to experience the benefits of the non-psychoactive cannabinoids and terpenes found in cannabis without the feeling of getting “high,” then cannabis topicals might be the perfect choice for you.
In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about cannabis topicals and what medical benefits they can provide for you.
What Are Cannabis Topicals?
From cannabis-infused lotions, creams, balms and essential oils to transdermal patches, bath soaks, and salves, there are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to shopping for topicals.
Even though they’re made with cannabis, topicals can bring you relief without causing any psychoactive effects.
Most topicals are designed to prevent you from experiencing any sort of intoxication, as no psychoactive cannabinoids can enter the bloodstream when applying topicals to your skin.
However, if you are looking for the typical intoxicating effects of cannabis, certain transdermal patches with enough THC content can provide you with a “high.” That’s because such cannabis-infused topical products work by sending cannabinoids into your bloodstream.
How Do Cannabis Topicals Work?
Cannabis topicals come in several cannabinoid-specific formulas that feature four main cannabinoids that provide medical benefits:
- Cannabidiol (CBD)
- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)
- Cannabigerol (CBG)
- Cannabinol (CBN)
These cannabinoids interact with your body’s endocannabinoid system, responsible for many vital processes in your body, such as your metabolism, memory, and immune responses.
When these cannabinoids bind themselves to the cannabinoid receptors in our endocannabinoid system, they affect how the receptors regulate various biological functions. As a result, the ingestion of such cannabinoids can produce positive health effects, including anti-inflammatory and pain relief properties.
Can I Get High From Cannabis Topicals?
The short answer is no – the vast majority of cannabis-infused topicals won’t give you a “high” the way smoking cannabis might, and you won’t fail a drug test for cannabis if you’re using topicals.
Since topicals aren’t ingested through inhalation or digestion, they don’t enter the bloodstream and won’t deliver any psychoactive effects.
Cannabis topicals like CBD lotion, for example, are applied to your skin. The cannabinoids present in the cream are not exposed to receptors in your body that allow for the psychoactive effects.
How do I Use Cannabis Topicals?
Most cannabis topicals require external usage and are often applied directly to the affected area(s), including areas of stress or specific pain. Simply use your preferred product on the back, neck, knees, temples of the head, and wrists for pain alleviation or a particular area of your choosing.
To get the enhanced experience and better results, you should have the desired areas cleaned up before applying the cannabis topical products for easier absorption into the skin.
What Are The Benefits of Cannabis Topicals?
Because most topical products like cannabis-infused lotions are applied directly onto your body, they are often used for fast-acting localized relief against any inflammation or pain.
Since these cannabinoid topicals are usually non-intoxicating, users or patients find solace in using these cannabis-infused products for therapeutic benefits without enduring THC’s psychoactive effects.
The Health Benefits of Cannabis Topicals Include But Are Not Limited To:
Pain and Inflammation
Topicals have shown better results than opioids in treating breakthrough pain, chronic pain, and neuropathic pain.
Conditions like arthritis are primarily caused by joint inflammation, and topicals can help treat this inflammation and relieve the pain itself. As a result, many cannabis-infused products and CBD essential oils may be used to treat conditions like multiple sclerosis (MS) or rheumatoid for pain relief.
According to recent findings at the University of Colorado, topicals may effectively help to treat several skin diseases such as severe itching, psoriasis, contact dermatitis, and others.
When it comes to the treatment of dermatitis, for example, cannabis topicals may be a practical solution, as they can help relieve itchy sensations and inflammation of the skin.
CBD topicals also contain antimicrobial properties of cannabinoids that can manage your skin against Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, which is the primary factor responsible for dermatitis or eczema.
Preliminary research also shows that cannabinoid topicals may assist those suffering from acne. For example, in one study, CBD was found to suppress the production of lipids in skin cells, which is often linked to acne outbreaks.
Protects Skin Damage
Topical cannabinoids are also known to have antioxidant characteristics, protecting your skin from damage and reducing signs of ageing.
Studies are still ongoing on how cannabinoid topicals can help those who want to continue looking younger. Still, early results suggest that the antioxidants in CBD can help with managing skin issues like wrinkles, skin dullness and ruddy skin tone.
Pain Alleviation and Antibacterial For Wounds
Topical cannabinoids may also be ideal for alleviating pain from physical wounds.
A 2018 research review showed evidence that topically-applied THC and CBD cannabinoids might assist in effective pain alleviation and other forms of pain management and lead to the healing of malignant wounds.
And since cannabinoids contain antibacterial characteristics, they may also act as an antibiotic, which may help the wounds heal faster and reduce the chances of infection.
Preliminary studies have shown that cannabis cream and other topicals might be helpful for migraine relief.
This hypothesis stems from knowledge of cannabis’ anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to help alleviate your headache (which are inflammatory).
However, not all headaches are created equal. Some can be caused by blood vessels swelling out of control, resulting from neck muscles tightening.
It’s often hard to identify the underlying cause of a headache, and that’s where cannabis topicals can help. By rubbing a CBD-infused topical into your temples or the base of your neck, you may be able to eliminate headache-related pain in either area.
Where Can I Buy Cannabis Topicals?
Ready to try out cannabis-infused topicals for yourself? Canadian Cannabis Clinics offers access to topicals and other medical cannabis products for qualified patients across Canada.
If you are considering using cannabis for any purpose, Our cannabis educators are here to help and answer any questions you have. Call 1-888-797-9374 or email [email protected] and we’ll get back to you shortly.