Stress. Pain. Sleep disturbance. Insomnia. If there are any four health troubles that could be said to categorize the human experience in this modern age, it might be these.
For most people, even with all the advances of medicine today, their chronic pain, stress and insomnia continue unabated. If this describes you, you are likely feeling frustrated that you don’t have more options to ease your symptoms and get the rest you need and crave.
This also explains the rising popularity of products like hemp oil and CBD oil. Hemp, the plant from which CBD is derived, has health benefits that are just now starting to become well publicized. In this article, we learn four surprising ways hemp oil can help treat insomnia, pain and stress.
1. Hemp Oil Works to Block Perception of Pain
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recently shared some shocking statistics – one out of every five Americans suffers from chronic pain.
Many more people go through bouts of sudden onset (acute) pain. Sometimes acute pain then turns chronic, as in the case of an injury that never quite heals properly or a repetitive overuse injury that never gets proper rest.
A body in pain produces a chemical compound called anandamide which researchers now associated with feelings of pain (pain sensations). As Medical News Today explains, hemp oil can bind to pain receptors in the brain to block uptake of anandamide, thus blocking pain perception and easing pain.
2. Hemp Oil Is Able to Ease Inflammation
CBD oil and hemp oil are now being researched for their many potential uses to alleviate both acute and chronic pain, which often have a similar underlying source: inflammation.
For example, according to the Arthritis Foundation, more than 50 million Americans today suffer from inflammation-related pain caused by arthritis.
Medical News Today outlines the results of several promising research studies that have linked hemp oil’s ability to reduce local and systemic inflammation to a reduction in arthritis pain.
CBD in hemp oil helps to ease inflammation in a similar way to how it can work to block the perception of pain – by binding to certain receptors in the brain. In particular, researchers have identified a receptor called CB2 that is associated with inflammation.
While much more research is needed to understand exactly how hemp and CBD do what they do to reduce inflammation, these early studies are promising enough that the Arthritis Foundation has issued a general statement of support for further research to be done.
3. Hemp Oil Helps Regulate Circadian Rhythms
The American Sleep Apnea Association outlines 10 distinct sleep disorders that plague Americans today. Ranging from sleep apnea to outright insomnia, as many as 70 million Americans may be struggling with sleep disturbance right now.
Not getting enough sleep or good enough quality sleep is a danger that affects every person today. When sleepy people drive, operate machinery or even make important decisions, the ripple effect can be huge.
But help and hope may be closer than many affected people realize. As the American Sleep Association reports, CBD in hemp oil has been found to help regulate the sleep/wake cycle for people by impacting their circadian rhythms.
In one important study involving nearly 500 people with self-reported chronic insomnia, use of CBD with THC reduced insomnia episodes by up to half in research participants.
Another study in Permanente Journal with 72 participants who had self-reported poor sleep and anxiety experienced significant relief in both issues. Here, researchers were also investigating a link between poor sleep and anxiety which the study upheld.
4. Hemp Oil Decreases Stress By Impacting Serotonin Levels
The American Institute of Stress highlights just how pervasive stress is in modern society. A full 77 percent of Americans report experiencing stress on a daily basis. Nearly half say that stress causes them to have insomnia. The same percentage say their stress is constantly increasing.
Researchers are hard at work identifying new potential treatments for chronic stress, which doesn’t show any signs of going anywhere anytime soon.
CBD in hemp oil is being investigated for its potential uses as a source of stress relief. According to Healthline, early research suggests one way that hemp oil can decrease systemic stress is by increasing the serotonin available for use in the body.
Serotonin has earned itself the nickname of the “feel good hormone” due to its ability to influence stress and mood. When serotonin gets too low, depression and anxiety can be the result.
In turn, when you feel depressed or anxious, the body releases more cortisol, which has earned itself the nickname of “the stress hormone” and “the silent killer.”
As Healthline reports, by influencing two important brain receptors, CB1 and CB2, to become more receptive to serotonin, researchers now believe hemp oil may one day be able to replace prescription medications for easing depression and anxiety for some patients.
CBD and hemp oil have shown so much promise in these early research studies for easing stress, sleep disturbance, pain and insomnia symptoms. While researchers are not completely clear about exactly how hemp oil achieves these results, what is clear is that it works.
However, a word of caution: if you are under a doctor’s care for any health issues, or you are trying to conceive, pregnant or nursing, it is important to talk to your doctor first before adding CBD and hemp oil to your daily healthcare routine.
In the same way, because hemp oil can contain trace amounts of THC, the psychoactive compound in marijuana, it is important to talk with your employer first if you must take drug tests as part of your employment.
Always look for a pure hemp oil product from a reputable, trusted manufacturer. Be sure the product you choose contains only hemp oil with no fillers or artificial ingredients. This is how you can ensure you will have the best experience taking hemp oil for insomnia, stress, pain or sleep issues.