Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder can be a real pain—literally. If you've dealt with the discomfort of TMJ, you're likely on the lookout for effective relief. One potential solution that's gaining attention is cannabidiol, or CBD.
Let's dive into what the research says about the potential of CBD for TMJ pain and how it might just be the soothing remedy your jaw is looking for.
The temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, is the hinge that connects your lower jaw to your skull. It's that magical joint that lets you chew, talk, and enjoy your favorite meals (hopefully not all at once!).
TMJ disorders, often abbreviated as TMD or TMJD, encompass various health conditions affecting this joint and the nearby muscles.
Common symptoms of TMJ include:
The causes can vary from trauma to the jaw or joint, arthritis, erosion of the joint, structural jaw issues, teeth grinding, and other factors like posture, stress, diet, and lack of sleep.
TMJ disorders can often be managed with self-care practices. Simple adjustments to your diet, stress reduction, and jaw-stretching exercises can provide relief.
Additionally, over-the-counter pain medications, muscle relaxants, and stabilization splints may be recommended by your doctor. In more severe cases, corrective dental surgery or other medical interventions might be necessary.
Typically, though, prescriptions are not necessary for managing TMJ. Instead, many people opt to take the natural route, which is where CBD comes in:
Cannabidiol, commonly known as CBD, is one of the most prominent cannabinoids found in the hemp plant. Unlike its cousin THC, CBD doesn't induce a high. Because it’s non psychoactive, it may be useful in ways that THC is not. For instance, it can be used during the day before work, before driving a vehicle, or in other situations where being intoxicated (via THC) would be unwise or unsafe.
CBD does interact with the body's endocannabinoid system, however, in a way that allows it to help regulate pain, inflammation, and various symptoms that play a role in TMJ. This is similar to the way that THC works–and is the reason that THC has a multitude of approved medical uses in medicinally legal states.
When it comes to treating TMJ with CBD, you should know that CBD comes in three main forms: full-spectrum CBD (with THC), broad-spectrum CBD (without THC), and CBD isolate (purest form). We'll touch more on that below.
For now, let's look at the possible link between CBD and improvement in TMJ symptoms:
To understand CBD's effects, we need to peek into the endocannabinoid system (ECS). This system, found in everyone's body, plays a crucial role in regulating various functions like sleep, mood, and appetite.
While CBD doesn't bind to ECS receptors like THC does, research suggests that it alters the way that these receptors bind with other neurosignals. It may help to block inflammatory signals or regulate other neural processes involved in sensations of pain, nausea, and other symptoms.
Although research on CBD is still unfolding, some studies suggest that CBD products may help with TMJ disorders.
A 2019 study found that individuals with TMD reported improvements after using CBD products. Furthermore, ongoing clinical trials are investigating whether oral CBD can provide pain relief and improved jaw function for TMJ disorder sufferers.
Although research regarding CBD for TMJ is very limited, other studies have looked at CBD’s ability to manage various types of pain. A 2018 study found that CBD may be effective for managing multiple different types of pain, including:
In other words, even if CBD has limited effects on TMJ disorders, it may still help to manage related pain and discomfort.
The World Health Organization deems CBD to be generally safe, with minimal side effects like fatigue, diarrhea, and changes in appetite or weight. However, it's crucial to consult your doctor before trying CBD, especially if you're on medications that might interact with it.
Navigating the world of CBD products can be overwhelming. To start, you need to consider the different product types available and how they each apply to TMJ.
Many dosing methods can be used together to create a more full coverage dosing regimen. For instance, edibles and topicals may pair well together to offer CBD support from the inside and out.
The most popular dosing methods include:
Topical application is also a popular route, and studies have shown that there are plenty of endocannabinoid receptors in the skin.
CBD topicals range from basic lotions to topical creams enhanced with essential oils, herbs, and other additives to help promote healing, control pain, or target other specific ailments. Topical CBD products may be applied directly to the jaw to help manage symptoms of TMJ.
Alternatively, vaping CBD or smoking raw hemp flower is an effective way to intake CBD.
Many people believe inhalation to be the fastest delivery system for cannabinoid-based supplements.
With so many choices and very little regulation within the industry, it's incredibly important to vet brands and products carefully to avoid low-quality, contaminated products that could cause adverse reactions.
To ensure you're investing in a quality product, consider these essential tips:
While research on CBD's efficacy for TMJ disorders is still in its infancy, the existing evidence suggests promising potential. If you're considering CBD for TMJ, opt for CBD oil, which can offer quicker effects than other forms. But remember, always choose a reputable CBD company and consult your doctor for personalized advice.
When choosing CBD products, look for a product that’s made from high-quality, pesticide-free hemp material and that has been third party tested.
Vida Optima Vitality CBD products fit the bill. Our selection of CBD gummies, sublingual candies, and CBD oil is 100% Farm Bill compliant and third-party tested to prove label accuracy. Want to learn more? Read:
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