Skin problems could be quite worrying. It is even worse if the problem is on the face or hands where people can see it. The fear of what happens to the skin after the problem clears is one of your concerns, coupled with the overwhelming discomfort that comes from the pain and itchiness.
For around a decade, CBD has been a media buzz in the wellness and health industry. We can attribute this to the immense potential it has in helping with various health problems - There is also minimal risk of side effects.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a compound extracted from Cannabis and Hemp Plants. CBD is not a psychoactive component, unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – the primary component of marijuana. You cannot get high from using CBD.
This article hopes to shed more light on the use of CBD for eczema. We will break down what eczema is to you. We will consider the causes, symptoms, and treatment modalities. Then you will learn about how CBD is used to treat eczema
What is Eczema?
Eczema is a skin problem where the skin develops rough inflamed patches that often get itchy and cracked. It usually starts with reddened blisters (fluid-filled) in a pattern. These blisters could erupt, leading to tiny sores. If the skin problem stays long enough (chronic eczema), the lesion could make the skin thickened and scaly.
Eczema is a pretty common skin condition and a form of dermatitis (skin irritation). But contrary to what most people think, it is not just a skin problem. It is the skin reacting to an irritation from another problem. As such, there are many forms of eczema. They often present with similar patterns, but the major difference is the cause.
The types of eczema include:
- Atopic dermatitis: this is the commonest form. It is sometimes used to mean eczema in general. “Atopic” means it is due to allergic reactions. This is why it is common among people with asthma and hay fever and some other allergic conditions.
- Contact dermatitis: irritants cause this. It could be a skincare product you just started using, detergent, sunlight, and plants (phytophotodermatitis). It could also be allergic contact dermatitis from substances like antibiotics, poison ivy, tattoo ink, etc.
- Dyshidrotic dermatitis: this presents with blisters on the soles of your feet and your palms. It is more commonly found in women and those that usually have their hands or legs in water or work with cobalt, nickel, and some other metals. The exact cause is unknown.
- Nummular/ dermatitis: this is commoner in men. It presents with coin-shaped lesions following an insect bite, abrasion, or burn.
Other types include seborrheic and stasis dermatitis.
What are the Causes of Eczema?
Eczema is commonly found in babies and children but also affects adolescents and adults. Genetic factors and some immune system triggers lead to eczema. It is not a contagious skin problem. That is, it does not spread from one person to the other.
As there are many types, many things could cause eczema. Some of the triggers of eczema:
- Allergies – to food, animal dander
- Extreme temperatures
- Chemicals like perfumes, detergent, skincare products
- Metals like nickel, cobalt
- Upper respiratory infection
- Fabric, especially synthetic ones like acrylic, nylon, polyester, etc.
What are the Symptoms of Eczema?
Symptoms of eczema include:
- Blisters which could burst and dry up to form scabs
- Signs of inflammation – redness, swelling, some pain
- Skin thickening in chronic cases/
How Do You Treat Eczema?
You should see a skin doctor (dermatologist) or your primary care physician once you notice these symptoms. They will try and identify the source of irritation so you can avoid it. This will prevent reoccurrence. Also, they will prescribe some medications like antihistamines (Benadryl, Zyrtec, etc.) and steroid creams and ointment (cortisone).
You might also be prescribed some sessions of phototherapy or aromatherapy.
Can you Use CBD for Eczema?
Now to the crux of the matter! Eczema can be troubling, especially if your triggers are things you cannot avoid. It would help if you did not have to endure the recurrent discomfort. So, how can CBD help your eczema?
A few studies have shown some positive results in treating eczema with CBD. The compound helped to clear the skin of people with atopic dermatitis. They could also sleep better because the itchiness subsided.
Medicinal hemp comes in various forms. It could be as CBD oil taken in drops, CBD cream, CBD Softgels and tablets.
Various properties suggest why you can use it for eczema.
1. Reduces itching:
CBD stimulates CB2 receptors that are found in the sensory nerves found close to your skin. This blocks the impulses causing the itching and soothes the itch.
2. Antimicrobial properties:
A very common complication of eczema is infection. If your blisters rupture, the skin might get infected if the resulting wound is not well treated. Also, an infection could be an eczema trigger. CBD kills bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus, one of the most prominent bad guys that cause skin infections
3. Anti-inflammatory properties:
Inflammation is an immune response, it is the body trying to heal itself, but often, the response can be exaggerated. CBD has anti-inflammatory properties because it influences the white blood cells that cause inflammation. It also reduces the pain that comes with inflammation by stimulating glycine receptors.
4. Aids skin moisturization:
CBD helps your skin stay moisturized. Dry skin is one of the symptoms and also a trigger for eczema. CBD stimulates the sebaceous glands to secrete sebum. This sebum helps to keep the skin moist.
With these properties, CBD could be a potent remedy for eczema. You do not need to worry about safety. So far, studies show CBD does not pose any health risks. You also do not have to worry about dependence or getting high as CBD is non-addictive and non-psychoactive.
Eczema can be very distressing. Cannabidiol (CBD) holds a lot of promise in the treatment of eczema. Studies show that it reduces the itching, pain, and inflammation. It also improves skin moisturization and protects against infection.