CBD and MS
CBD and MS

Can CBD help with MS?

With 2.3 million sufferers worldwide, can CBD help with MS? 

Polly has MS and experiences problem with general movement and sitting for most of the day makes areas of her body numb. However using a CBD cream with a cooling formula has worked for her.  “using the cream takes the edge off the soreness”. 

If you know anyone with Multiple Sclerosis or have it yourself, you will know what a depilating disease it can be.

It is estimated at 2.3 million people suffer from MS worldwide [1] and over 130,000 live in the UK. [2].  You can start off with a few symptoms and then get gradually worse. 

Some of these symptoms are:

  • Numbness and tingling
  • Stiffness and weakness of the joints
  • Mobility problems
  • Pain
  • Depression and anxiety

Sometimes these symptoms appear worse at times than others, but it is the coping that is key to feeling in better control.

Multiple Sclerosis is an autoimmune disease.  The immune system attacks healthy cells when it is meant to attack viruses and other pathogens.  The immune system targets the myelin sheath, a protective coating which is wrapped around nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. 

When attacked, inflammation and damage occur, this can impair the nerve signalling that sends messages to the brain on movement, breathing, and evening thinking.

Some people are diagnosed as young as 11 years old whereas others when they are in their 40s.  MS doesn’t differentiate age, culture, religion, or colour.  We could all get it. 

CBD and MS

Although the benefits of CBD for those with MS is still being researched, early indications show that CBD might help control some of the symptoms such as pain and muscle stiffness.

CBD is found in the hemp plant; it is one of 100 plus compounds that is found in the plant.  CBD does not contain THC (Tetrahydocannabinol), this is the component which has a negative psychoactive component when taken.  

The body processes CBD via the cannabinoid receptors found in the brain and the immune cells which is all part of the endocannabinoid system. 

This system regulates inflammation, immune function, motor control and pain, everything that is affected by MS and it is exactly because of this that those with MS find relief.   Furthermore, a review of 132 studies by Bergamaschi et al [3] states that when taking CBD the heart rate, blood pressure and body temperature are not altered. 

CBD can come both orally or topically, normally people who take CBD orally are doing so for anxiety and stress, however for pain in the joints and muscles most people massage CBD directly to the area on the skin via a cream, balm or body oil. 

Janet who has had MS from the age of 11 says that finding the right CBD product that can be applied directly onto the skin can be trial and error. 

Some products bought from the internet, or the high street can have varying ranges of CBD within the product, from 50mg to 1000mg of CBD in a balm.  

Generally speaking, the higher the amount of CBD within the topical product, the better the desired effect,

it would seem that everyone is getting in on the CBD effect, but you have to find one that has a good quantity of CBD, otherwise it just won’t touch the sides”.

MS can be triggered by stress and lack of sleep which could be helped by taking CBD orally.  There are three types of CBD which is normally taken by placing droplets under the tongue: full-spectrum, broad-spectrum and isolate. 

It is only the isolate that contains CBD and no additional compounds from the plant.   Oral CBD can come in the form of gummies and capsules as well as oils and tinctures.  

The amount you should take will depend on a range of factors including your body weight and the severity of the MS.  You should start off with a low dose and then gradually increase it if the anxiety gets worse.  It would be a good idea to keep track of how much CBD you’re taking and whether the symptoms are getting better. 

Of course, if you are taking prescribed medication, you should seek the advice of your doctor. 

With one in five people surveyed by the MS Society in 2014 saying that they used CBD to help with their symptoms of pain and muscle stiffness, it would seem that CBD is certainly working for many. 

Written by Jacqui Taylor, Taylor’s CBD. You can learn more about Taylor’s CBD here:  www.taylorscbd.co.uk

References:

  1. Browne P, Chandraratna D, Angood C, Tremlett H, Baker C, Taylor BV, et al.  Atlas of multiple sclerosis 2013; a growing global problem with widespread inequity.  Neurology (2014) 83: 1022-4 doi: 10. 1212/WNL. 0000000000000768
  2. MS Society (2019). MS info, research, news and support. [online] Mssociety.org.uk. Available at https://www.mssociety.org.uk/.
  3. Bergamaschi MM, Queiroz RH, Zuardi AW, Crippa JA.  Safety and side effects of cannabidiol, a cannabis sativa constituent.  Curr Drug Saf (2011) 6:237-49 doi 10. 2174/157488611798280924