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A staggering 8.6 million cases — that’s how many sports and recreation injuries occurred in the US from 2011 to 2014. Now that more of the nation’s people are exercising — over half of them, it appears — this injury rate is sure to be higher.
Sore muscles are among the most common after-effect of playing sports or working out. Anyone can get achy muscles after exercise, but some people seem to suffer more than others. People without prior training, for instance, seem to have longer soreness episodes.
That said, it’s best that you learn how to relieve sore muscles fast without relying too much on pills. By easing post-workout muscle soreness, you might recover faster and exercise more.
CBD products may just be what you need to help treat muscle soreness caused by your workout regimen.
Ready to learn what exactly CBD is and how it can help? Then let’s dive right into it!
What Exactly is CBD?
Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of the more than 420 documented constituents of the cannabis plant. It’s specifically one of the 60 known types of phytocannabinoids. Cannabis plants produce phytocannabinoids, while the human body produces endocannabinoids.
Phytocannabinoids are behind the cannabis plant’s therapeutic, and yes, recreational effects. Studies, however, have revealed that CBD doesn’t have extreme intoxicating or psychoactive properties. Researchers even found evidence that it can counter the psychiatric effects of THC.
THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the primary psychoactive compound found in cannabis. It’s the same cannabinoid that gives certain cannabis species their signature “psychoactive” effect.
How CBD Can Help With Sore Muscles
To understand how CBD can help with sore muscles, it pays to first answer the question, “why do muscles get sore?”
The soreness in your muscles a day or two after working out is likely DOMS. This stands for “delayed onset muscle soreness”. In most people, the soreness or pain peaks within 24 to 72 hours after exercising.
DOMS is a normal bodily occurrence, but luckily, it’s temporary. It does, however, take the body five to seven days to recover enough to make DOMS symptoms go away.
Microtrauma to the muscles is one possible cause of DOMS. This refers to the tiny tears that affect the muscles and surrounding tissues. It results from the extended and rigorous use of the muscles during exercise.
Like many other types of tissue injuries, these minute tears lead to inflammation. Inflammation, in turn, causes pain and soreness.
CBD may help with sore muscles seeing as it boasts anti-inflammatory actions. Since DOMS results from inflammation, then theoretically, CBD may help treat its symptoms. In fact, in a study of arthritic rats, CBD showed to help reduce swelling and pain.
Moreover, CBD has analgesic effects that give it a pain-relieving benefit. Cannabidiol appears to combat pain by affecting nerve pathways that have to do with pain. Researchers are still looking into this, but this may be one way that the cannabinoid can ease pain.
Some researchers also say that pain may be due to endocannabinoid deficiency. This deficiency is still a theory though, but if it turns out to be true, then it may also be behind DOMS symptoms. Taking CBD products in such cases may be a way to “replenish” the cannabinoid supply of the body.
How to Relieve Sore Muscles With CBD
One of the most popular ways that people heal with CBD is through the direct consumption of CBD oil or tincture. The sublingual method, in particular, appears to provide the quickest pain relief. This involves placing the oil or tincture directly under the tongue.
Another way on how to help sore muscles with CBD is to use a CBD topical product. Topicals are products that you apply straight on the skin.
For the best results though, go for CBD topicals that also contain menthol elements. Studies have found evidence that topicals with menthol ingredients help ease DOMS pain.
Another method on how to relieve sore muscles after a workout is to massage the area with CBD oil. CBD’s analgesic effects may work well with the soreness-relieving benefits of massages. As a plus, post-workout massages may even help boost bone and muscle functions.
Proper Dosing: The Key to Safe and Effective Use of CBD
The effects of CBD appear to vary based on the amount (per mg) administered. That said, your body weight and the extent of your muscle soreness dictate the amount of CBD you need to take. You also have to factor in your pain tolerance — you may need a higher dose if you tolerate pain well.
Unless you have a specific dosage instruction from your doctor, you need to do some trial and error.
Note, however, that in clinical studies, the oral dosages used range from 50 mg up to 800 mg per day. One study that looked into cancer pain, for instance, used dosages between 50 mg to 600 mg of CBD per day.
As for weight, some recommend taking between one and six mg of CBD per 10 pounds of body weight. So, if you weigh about 150 pounds, you may want to start with 15 mg of CBD a day. From there, you can make gradual increases until you notice a reduction in your pain symptoms.
What about the potential for overdosing?
Well, CBD appears to have no adverse side-effects even in doses of up to 1,500 mg a day. Researchers note that these amounts did not cause any change in psychological functions.
Still, it’s wise to start low and slow when it comes to CBD. You should also keep track of the amount of CBD you’re taking and if you notice any changes to your muscle soreness. Don’t forget to note how long it takes before you feel your muscle aches subsiding after taking CBD.
Ease Your Post-Workout Muscle Soreness Now
There you have it, the most important facts you need to know about sore muscles and how CBD can help. Now that you know more about the relationship between the two, you can decide if CBD is for you.
As with any well-being product though, it’s best to seek your doctor’s advice first before using CBD. Your doctor may even be able to help you get started by giving you dosing recommendations.
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