Sciatic pain is excruciating. It’s one of those things difficult to explain to those who do not suffer the pain. Mayo Clinic says, “Although the pain associated with sciatica can be severe, most cases resolve with non-operative treatments in a few weeks.”
Two sciatic nerves travel from the base of your spine. They travel down your legs and divide into peroneal and tibial branches. And, when working right, they control your legs, ankles, feet, and toes.
Like most pain, sciatic pain follows inflammation, so it’s interesting to consider how CBD might play a role in pain relief. But, first, you need to study the causes, medical treatments, and non-traditional therapies.
Nature and origin of sciatic pain
Once the sciatic nerve is pinched, the patient feels mild to severe pain anywhere from the lowers back to the foot in either leg. It rarely affects both legs simultaneously. It often happens because of a herniated disc, bone spur, diabetes, or other condition that impacts the nerve, such as:
- Traumatic injury to the pelvis, spine, or legs from an accident, fall, or sports injury
- A herniated disc compresses nerves when the gel at the center of the vertebral disc bulges or ruptures.
- Stenosis narrows the spine’s bony canals to compress the spinal cord and nerves.
- Osteoarthritis comes with aging as the spinal discs dry out and shrink. Bone spurs might form, and the small tears in the disc wall will cause pain.
- Piriformis tightens the piriformis muscle, one of the muscles in your glutes, to compress the sciatic nerve.
- Spondylolisthesis weakens those small facet joints that extend from the side of each vertebra. You suffer pain if they slip out of position.
- Obesity adds stress to the spine that can compress the sciatic nerve.
- Work that twists the back, carries loads or requires long periods of sitting can stress or strain the spine.
Prescription medical treatment
Exercise and physical therapy often relieve mild sciatic pain. Consistent and regular exercise will reduce the stress of contributing factors. But, severe and chronic pain is often treated with prescription medications:
- Anti-inflammatory: acetaminophen, aspirin, or NSAIDs, ketoprofen, or naproxen
- Anti-spasmodic: cyclobenzaprine, carisoprodol, diazepam, orphenadrine, and tizanidine
- Muscle-relaxants: baclofen, carisoprodol, chlorzoxazone, cyclobenzaprine, and dantrolene
- Opioids: oxycodone (OxyContin) and an acetaminophen/ hydrocodone combination (Vicodin)
- Anti-depressant: Cymbalta
Surgery remains an option and laser spine care experts are promoting its mildly invasive techniques.
Sciatica patients have found positive results with application of heat or cold or with transdermal lotions that create a heating or cooling sensation. But, others have pursued solutions for their sciatic problems with:
- Yoga, especially ayurvedic yoga exercises, stretches and soothes related muscles.
- Massage relaxes all muscles and calms the patient.
- Reiki combines touch and spiritual healing.
- Hypnosis can manage the transmission of pain messages.
- Acupuncture uses ancient Chinese medical practices to minimize symptoms.
- Chiropractors focus therapy on osteo-trigger points.
Others prefer to treat sciatic pain with herbal-based home remedies, including garlic milk, ginger, turmeric, celery juice, valerian, white willow bark, aloe vera, elderberry juice, horseradish, chamomile, and/or apple cider vinegar.
CBD is one of the leading cannabinoids in cannabis, the family of plants that includes hemp. It does not cure sciatic pain. It cannot fix a herniated disc, make you lose weight, correct spondylolisthesis, or make osteoarthritis go away.
But, CBD can help ease the known symptoms:
- Inflammation: As early as 2000 B.C.E., the Chinese Emperor Shen-nung recorded the many effects of cannabis on humans in Pen-ts’ao-Ching. And, in Cannabinoids, Endocannabinoids, and Related Analogs in Inflammation (2009), the researchers concluded, “CB2 receptor-selective agonists that are devoid of the psychoactivity associated with CB1 receptor activation are potential drug candidates for the treatment of a range of diseases, most notably those associated with pain and inflammation.”
A 2016 research report in FASEB Journal claims, “Cannabinoids apparently act on inflammation through mechanisms different from those of agents such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). As a class, the cannabinoids are generally free from the adverse effects associated with NSAIDs.”
- Spasticity: With or without medical advice, patients have used cannabis to treat the spasticity related to Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, Cerebral Palsy, and, most effectively, recalcitrant epilepsy.
The mechanism of action remains unclear, but cannabis derivatives noticeably reduce spasms and perception of related pain. The track record with spasticity has led to the first FDA approval of cannabis-derived pharmaceuticals and for the legalization of CBD oil specifically formulated for such recalcitrant epilepsy and Dravet’s syndrome.
- Opioids: In 2009, the Journal of Opioid Management reported, “cannabinoids act synergistically with opioids and act as opioid sparing agents, allowing lower doses and fewer side effects from chronic opioid therapy.”
And, a year earlier, Therapeutics and Risk Management concluded, “Given their multi-modality effects upon various nociceptive pathways, their adjunctive side benefits, the efficacy and safety profiles to date of specific preparations in advanced clinical trials, and the complementary mechanisms and advantages of their combination with opioid therapy, the future for cannabinoid therapeutics appears very bright, indeed.”
In other words, cannabis derivatives has been shown to reduce the call for and addictive dependence on opioids.
- Relaxant: Studies show,CBD will reduce brain and body depression and tightness without the psychoactive high caused by THC.
What’s a sciatica victim to do?
Our High-quality CBD oil, topicals, and edibles may offer a convenient and effective solution.
- Our CBD is Totally Legal: They create a natural CBD isolate extracted without harmful chemicals. Third party labs have tested to its content and quality. And, they have confirmed there is 0% THC making it legal everywhere in all 50 states.
- Extraction: They use natural carbon dioxide to extract CBD along with effective cannabinoids, terpenes, fatty acids, and vitamins.
- Quality: The CBD in our products is the same CBD you find in marijuana without the negative side effects. But, hemp contains denser concentrations of the beneficial cannabinoids, CBD, CBC, and CBG.
You can slip CBD oil under your tongue, massage a topical lotion into your painful areas, or pop a CBD candy in your mouth.