Cannabidiol (CBD) is the second most prevalent ingredient of Hemp, discovered back in 1940. It is a Phytocannabinoid and a very vital component of Medical Cannabis. In itself, CBD does not cause a high even though it is derived directly from the Hemp Plant. Research has shown that CBD has no potential for dependence or problems related to public health. In fact, CBD is very effective in pain management and treating childhood epilepsy syndromes and seizures. In this article, we will tell you more about the use of CBD for the treatment of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
About Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a condition that occurs when the median nerve is compressed. This is essentially the nerve that runs through the length of your arm, through the carpal tunnel ending in your hand. Compression of this nerve limits the amount of oxygen and blood flow, resulting in symptoms like pain, itching, and a burning sensation. Hair stylists, assembly line workers, knitters, and any other person working in a profession that requires them to make the same motion with their hands are often at higher risk of developing the condition. If you have fractured your wrist or have a family member with small carpal tunnels, you are also at higher risk of developing the syndrome.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can be caused by repetitive motion, especially if your hands are below your wrists most of the time. When your wrists are in this bent position for a long period, you risk repeatedly squeezing your median nerve. Conditions such as hypothyroidism, diabetes, obesity, and arthritis can also cause Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. In some rare cases, pregnancy can lead to women being diagnosed with this condition.
At first, you might notice that your arms become numb at night, and you feel as if they have fallen asleep. In the morning, you may experience a tingling sensation and numbness in your hand that runs to your shoulders. These symptoms may worsen during the day when you attempt to hold an object while your wrist is bent.
Other symptoms include increased weakness in your hands, a burning sensation in your palm and thumb, and shock-like feelings that move towards your fingertips. As the condition worsens, the muscles in your hand may shrink, leading to lesser grip strength.
Pain and muscle cramping can also be common. Remember, the median nerve is very important in hand strength and coordination, nerve impulses, and feeling in your fingers. These three functions will be impaired if this nerve is squeezed not working properly.
In the initial stages, shaking your hand might offer some relief. That said, the technique might start getting less effective with time.
CBD and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
There aren’t many therapies for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, but Hemp-based medicines are proving effective in managing the condition. CBD is known for its anti-inflammatory and painkilling properties, which is why it comes in handy in treating Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. The Endocannabinoid System, ECS, is a vast network of receptors across the body and is known to engage with CBD in medication to bring about an equilibrium in the body. The ECS controls pain perception along with digestion, reproduction, and mood regulation.
CBD interacts with the Endocannabinoid System, indirectly stimulating the body to produce its natural cannabinoids and inhibiting enzymes that break it down. This way, cannabinoids stay in the circulatory system longer, and CBD is bound to the ECS receptors. CBD for pain management is a much better alternative to marijuana because it does not cause intoxicating effects. CBD reacts differently with everyone, so it is wise to run a test trial and start with a smaller dose as you work your way up. Topical CBD products will require you to reapply frequently for maximum relief. Do consider combining your topical medicine with an oral form of CBD. If you need fast pain relief, then CBD Oils and tinctures are the way to go.
Since Carpal Tunnel Syndrome involves nerve suppression, this condition is categorized as entrapment neuropathy. The main aim of CTS treatment is to reduce inflammation of the surrounding ligaments and tissues, which CBD is known to do. The European Journal of Pharmacology published a study in which oral CBD was administered to rats, and the result was reduced sensitivity to pain and reduced inflammation.
Another study published by the European Journal of Pain featured rats with induced arthritis, a disease of the joints caused by increased inflammation. A CBD cream was administered to the rats, which showed a significant reduction in joints' redness, reduced inflammation, and improved limb posture. This further indicates how effective CBD is in the treatment of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
Other treatments for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Apart from using CBD, patients can do exercises involving nerve gliding to help the median nerve move better within the tunnel. People suffering from this condition are advised to do more stretching and strengthening workouts to alleviate the situation. Wearing a splint at night is another alternative that limits the wrist's mobility, reducing pressure on the nerve. If all else fails, the patient can undergo a surgery known as Carpal Tunnel Release. This surgery increases the size of the carpal tunnel, therefore easing the pressure on the nerve.
Extracts from herbs obtained by straining, boiling, and chopping have been used for centuries to curb pain and inflammation. Examples of such herbs include Devil’s claw and the Indian Olibanum. Unfortunately, there is no known research published to support the efficacy of these herbs. Cayenne pepper is also used in the treatment of CTS because it contains capsaicin, an ingredient that helps reduce peripheral nerve pain.
Early diagnosis of this condition is vital, given that Carpal Tunnel Syndrome gets worse over time. Prolonged pressure to the median nerve can cause severe nerve damage. It is safe to say that CBD offers therapeutic targets for treating Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.