Delta-8-THC is proving itself to be a useful alternative to traditional THC products, and people are snatching it off the shelves in hopes of using it to manage chronic pain. Just like with traditional cannabis flower, however, there are many different varieties of Delta-8-THC flower, and they each offer unique benefits. So, what are the best Delta-8-THC strains for pain? And what exactly makes them the best? Let's dive in:Table of Contents
In general, Delta-8-THC itself may help manage pain, which means that any high quality product may help to some extent. So, what makes some strains of Delta-8 better at managing pain than others? Mostly, it's because of terpenes.
Terpenes are aromatic compounds found in all cannabis strains that are thought to carry therapeutic benefits of their own. For instance, some terpenes are known to promote relaxation and sleep, which is why some strains may be better at managing insomnia than others. Similarly, some strains may help to more effectively take the edge off of pain and inflammation. When combined with Delta-8-THC and the other major and minor cannabinoids found in hemp flower, you get a powerful, synergistic cocktail of relief.
These benefits are commonly known as the "entourage effect," a term coined by established cannabinoid researcher Ethan Russo. In his study titled "Taming THC: potential cannabis synergy and phytocannabinoid-terpenoid entourage effects," Russo describes the complex synergy between cannabinoids and terpenes and how different combinations may better target different ailments, like mood disorders, addiction, insomnia, dementia, MRSA, acne, pain, and inflammation.
In other words, some strains are more effective at relieving pain than others because they contain the right combination of cannabinoids and terpenes. The secret to choosing the best Delta-8 strain for pain is considering how these different combinations will affect you, since each strain is likely to produce a different experience. That also means that there are Delta-8 strains that are more suitable for managing pain at night, while some may have effects that are more appropriate for daytime use.
Ultimately, the decision is up to you, and you may want to try out a few strains to see which ones are most effective. Here are some strains to start with:
If you’re looking for a Delta-8 strain to help manage pain, you’ve got options. Here are our top three suggestions for managing pain during the day and night:
Royal Purple Kush is a potent indica strain that's sweet, earthy, and rich in aromatic (and therapeutic) terpenes. This Kush variety does what indicas do best—lulls you into a deep relaxation.
Like all Delta-8 flower, Royal Purple Kush contains a full spectrum of cannabinoids and terpenes, but it’s terpene profile is dominated by myrcene which may have muscle relaxant and analgesic benefits of its own. Royal Purple Kush also contains small amounts of CBG, which may also provide its own unique benefits, like boosted anti-inflammatory capabilities.
Because of it’s heavy indica-leaning effects, Royal Purple Kush is a great option for managing pain at night, and many people are able to quickly drift off to sleep after small doses.
Sour Diesel, as its name implies, is known for its pungent, sour aroma. It’s also known for a potent cerebral effect that sparks creativity and boosts energy, but that’s not all Sour Diesel has to offer.
This strain’s terpene profile is dominated by caryophyllene, the only terpene known to bind directly with cannabinoid receptors in the body. Thanks to the caryophyllene (and moderate doses of myrcene and limonene), Sour Diesel may provide an extra layer of pain-relieving, anti-inflammatory benefits.
This may be a more suitable option for managing daytime pain, and many people love the energizing effects of a Sour Diesel dose first thing in the morning.
Pineapple Express offers the bright, tropical aroma you expect out of this infamous strain. Just like Sour Diesel, this strain’s terpene profile is dominated by caryophyllene, so you’ll get the extra pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory benefits that a direct-binding terpene can provide.
Pineapple express is a hybrid strain with a slight sativa-dominance, which means it can provide the same daytime stimulation with a mellow undertone. In other words, it's the perfect option for managing pain in the afternoon, or for those who are sensitive to strong Sativa strains but still want a strain that won’t glue them to the couch.
If you're looking for the best Delta-8 strains to help manage your pain, you're probably already somewhat familiar with Delta-8-THC’s health benefits. If not, you should know that Delta-8-THC interacts with the body similarly to traditional THC, which means it carries many of the same therapeutic benefits.
One of the most common reasons that people use THC medically is to manage pain, including chronic or severe pain.Experts think that Delta-8 may be able to provide the same benefits since it interacts with the same endocannabinoid receptors as Delta-9-THC.
Researchers aren't exactly sure how Delta-8 manages pain, but it's assumed to work the same way as traditional THC—by blocking pain signals. That means that unlike some supplements and medications used to manage pain, cannabinoid therapy doesn't just mask the pain, it prevents it at the source.
Delta-8-THC, however, takes things one step further than Delta-9-THC. While Delta-9 only binds with CB1 receptors in the brain and central nervous system, Delta-8 binds with both CB1 receptors and CB2 receptors, the primary endocannabinoid receptor found within the immune system throughout the body. Again, more research is needed to understand how Delta-8 uses this avenue to reduce pain, but CB2 receptors are known to play a role in regulating pain and inflammation.
What's best is that Delta-8’s benefits don't stop there. It may help to take the edge off pain, but could also help improve your mood and improve your sleep, two areas that are known to be heavily impacted by pain. In fact, one study conflates poor sleep with pain, insinuating that not getting enough quality sleep can actually make pain worse. The study concluded that "insomnia symptoms significantly increase the risk of developing future chronic pain disorders in previously pain-free individuals."
In other words, Delta-8-THC may put a damper on pain in the moments when you need it most, but it may also help improve other areas of life that positively impact pain conditions, or at least prevent them from getting worse.
There are many different types of Delta-8 products on the market, and any high quality Delta-8 product may be a practical solution for managing pain. However, Delta-8-THC flower has a few significant advantages over other common dosing types, like edibles and tinctures.
First, Delta-8-THC flower produces effects that are nearly instant. It also makes it easy to stack doses, meaning you can take small puffs every few minutes until you find relief. This may work well with methods like microdosing Delta-8, which is a suitable pain management method for people who want to experience therapeutic benefits of Delta-8 without the potent psychoactive effects.
Delta-8-THC flower has another unique edge. It's made by adding Delta-8 distillate to premium CBD hemp flower. Different hemp flower strains have different benefits, as we demonstrated above, because of their different cannabinoid and terpene profiles. Still, almost all Delta-8-THC flower will contain a hearty dose of CBD, a well-known cannabinoid thought to help manage pain.
The combination of THC and CBD is potentially even more beneficial than using either cannabinoid alone. Typically, CBD is said to help moderate THC by reducing the chance of adverse effects. And Delta-8-THC is already milder than Delta-9, meaning the potential for side effects is even lower and there may be a more significant synergistic interaction between the two cannabinoids.
CBD is also thought to help block pain signals, soothe inflammation, help balance sleep, and regulate mood. In other words, Delta-8-THC and CBD, the two main components of Delta-8 flower, may be a match made in heaven for pain management, but more information is needed to fully understand how these two cannabinoids interact.
Using Delta-8-THC flowers is pretty straightforward. Flower is generally meant to be smoked, although it can be vaporized using a special dry herb vaping device, or baked into snacks and baked goods. Typically, Delta-8 flower is rolled and smoked or smoked out of a glass smoking piece, like a pipe.
Smoking Delta-8 flower is the only way to reap it's fast acting benefits, and also allows you to use the dose stacking method we mentioned above. To manage pain, try taking your Delta-8 dose as soon as the pain arrives. If you suffer from pain that disrupts sleep, you may want to take your dose at night. You may even pair it with a CBD product designed specifically to improve sleep, like our CBD + CBN Dream Tincture.
Delta-8 dosage varies by person, condition, and product. You may have to do a little experimenting to figure out what dosage works best. Fortunately, Delta-8-THC flower allows you to stack tiny doses by taking tiny puffs until you get more comfortable with your dosing routine. For more information about Delta-8-THC dosage, you may want to read "How Much Delta-8 Should I Take?”
Now that you know how to choose the best Delta-8 flower for pain, you need to also consider the quality of different products and Delta-8 brands. The hemp market faces one significant problem—inconsistent regulation. That means it is incredibly important for consumers to understand how to sort the good products from the bad.
Look for a Delta-8 manufacturer that uses U.S. grown hemp and cGMP manufacturing practices. They should also use various testing methods throughout manufacturing to ensure cleanliness and quality. Then, look for the third-party test results that verify the quality of every batch and make sure that they line up with the product’s label.
If you want to skip the footwork and purchase your Delta-8 relief today, we recommend you check out our Elev8 Collection. Our premium Delta-8-THC flower is made with clean, U.S. grown hemp and potent Delta-8 distillate for maximum enjoyment and fast-acting relief.
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