Chronic Pain Leads to Opioid Epidemic

Over 100 million Americans suffer from chronic pain each year, so it’s not necessarily a major surprise the opioid epidemic has now been declared a public health emergency. Nearly 2,000 people died from opioid overdose or abuse in California alone during 2016, while approximately 35 percent of California residents were prescribed opiates in the same year.  
 
Healthcare groups have made many attempts to stop the opioid epidemic through advice and education for physicians who prescribe opiates. The Medical Board of California has published accounts of overprescription to shed light on how easily and how often it happens. 
 
Opioids have increasingly been prescribed to treat chronic pain (long-term) rather than acute pain (short-term), according to the Statewide Opioid Safety Workgroup. The risks of this methodology are great and include long-term dependency, opioid abuse, and user-transition to less expensive alternatives, like heroin. 
 
Medical and government authorities are working hard to protect us from these risks, but what if they could eliminate the need for opioid treatment of chronic pain altogether?

CBD Treats Chronic Pain

 
Your body has an endocannabinoid system (ECS) that interprets signals it receives from cannabinoids that your body already creates. The ECS works to regulate sleep, immune-system responses and pain. 
 
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid. It does not produce a “high,” or alter a person’s state of mind. It does however, help the body efficiently use endocannabinoids by affecting other compounds in the ECS system. 
 
In some cases, CBD prevents the body from absorbing compounds associated with regulating pain. In other cases, CBD limits inflammation in the nervous system, which may help those experiencing pain, insomnia, or other conditions intertwined with the ECS system. 
 
According to a recent study by the University of Mississippi, CBD may block the rewarding sensations that opioids send to the brain. It could be used to treat those seriously addicted to opioids, and could eventually replace them entirely. 
 
Another study suggests CBD could reduce the cravings and withdrawal symptoms associated with opioid addiction. 
 
“Opioids are more dangerous in part because of their potential for overdose,” said Yasmin L. Hurd, PhD, the Director of the Center for Addictive Disorders for the Mount Sinai Behavioral Health System. “Opioid receptors are very abundant in the brainstem area that regulates our respiration, so they shut down the breathing center if opioid doses are high. Cannabinoids do not do that. They have a wider window of therapeutic benefit without causing an overdose in adults.”

CBD Tinctures Could be an Alternative for People Who Rely on Opioids

 
CBD comes from a variety of plant sources, but when it’s sourced from cannabis, it can work synergistically with other cannabinoids present in cannabis to provide more powerful therapy. CBD also works in conjunction with other cannabinoids and terpenoids present in medical cannabis to increase blood flow and enhance brain activity.
 
CBD research is so promising that the DEA has publicly prioritized the opioid epidemic over legal enforcement of federal law that still prohibits the sale of cannabis-sourced CBD. 
 
“People are not dying from CBD,” said U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration Spokesman, Rusty Payne. “Some would argue lives are being saved by CBD. Are we going to get in the middle of that? Probably not."
 
CBD comes in a variety of forms including flower, tinctures, edibles, and more! Current CBD flower at Elemental includes Purple Pleiades, a 2:1 THC:CBD ratio (11% THC, 5% CBD) strain offering large, chunky nugs and an agreeably sweet flavor. Great for functional relaxation and pain relief. $35/eighth, while supplies last.
 
Wonder's 25:1 CBD:THC Olive Oil is a great option for medical users seeking the therapeutic benefits of CBD, without any tangible effects of THC. $80 for three grams of oil, while supplies last.
 
On the edible menu, selections from Korova and Veda Chews are among the most popular products with our patients. From Korova, members will love our Vanilla Bean Mini Cookies, offering 50mg CBD & 50mg THC per bag, split into ten cookies with 5mg CBD & 5mg THC -- $15/each, while supplies last. And from Veda, members will enjoy a variety of CBD:THC ratios in their ideally dosed chews, optimal for those looking for a discreet, on-the-go CBD edible -- $12/each, while supplies last.
 
CBD is a general well-being promoter, and doesn't require increased doses over time to maintain its effectiveness. Fortunately, CBD and other types of medicinal cannabis are available to members at Elemental Wellness, and are slowly reaching other parts of the world as well. The industry is so robust that easy, discreet CBD options exist for any lifestyle. Stop by Elemental Wellness today to see how CBD can improve your quality of life!