Does CBD Help Endometriosis Pain?

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Endometriosis is the condition when the cells lining your uterus grow abnormally. These growths can occur beyond the inner walls of the uterus, and spread to the surrounding areas. Thus, the endometrial cells can grow in the fallopian tubes, ovaries, and even outside your reproductive system, like your bladder, bowel, or around your pelvis.

During the menstruation part of your cycle, the lining cells inside the uterus break off and leave your body through the vaginal canal. However, when you have endometriosis, the endometrial cells that may have grown outside your uterus do not have a straightforward path to leave your body. This blockage leads to tissue inflammation, scarring, and a level of pain many patients describe as “excruciating.”

Endometriosis Symptoms

It is estimated that around 10% of people with vaginas of reproductive age have endometriosis. This condition is chronic, which means that you may have it for the rest of your reproductive years once you have a positive diagnosis.

The most notable symptom of endometriosis is pain. The continued pain around your uterus’ area worsens during menstruation, sometimes preventing you from functioning in your daily activities. It can also radiate to your bladder, pelvis, lower back, hips, and thighs. In addition, it can cause dyspareunia (hurts when you have sex) or pain going to the bathroom.

Other symptoms include heavy periods, premenstrual discomfort, a general feeling of fatigue, and difficulties sleeping. If these symptoms are left too long without treatment, fertility issues can arise.

Diagnosis is Another Kind of Pain

The diagnosis of endometriosis can be an arduous and lengthy process that can last as long as ten years for many people. Due to a lack of representation of uterus-owners and scientific research, it often gets misdiagnosed as an overreaction to natural menstrual cramps or a consequence of sexually transmitted infections. 

Sadly, some medical professionals have shamed or gaslighted patients, prescribing them sedatives instead of pain medication, delaying proper treatment to a point where many patients lose their capability of conceiving.

Be sure to have a thorough record of your menstrual cycle and any symptoms related to it for a few months before going to your doctor. Precise tracking will the diagnostic process. You may have to undergo scans, blood tests, and internal examinations.  

The definitive way to diagnose endometriosis is through laparoscopy—a minimally invasive surgery entailing a small incision beneath your navel where a camera is used to examine your internal organs.

What Causes Endometriosis?

The root causes of endometriosis are still under debate. While some researchers think it may be due to the rerouting of menstrual blood flow, others blame environmental factors, possibly toxins. 

Some researchers support the proposition that this condition can have a close relation to imbalances or deficiencies in the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which regulates physiological, mental, and emotional stability. 

This hypothesis sounds consistent, given the role of the ECS in cancer cell growth inhibition and that patients with endometriosis have a higher risk of developing ovarian cancer.

Treatment and Self-care

Traditional treatments for endometriosis usually includes non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like aspirin, ibuprofen, and paracetamol. These drugs work better when you take them before the onset of pain, starting a few days before your menstruation. 

Many doctors prescribe hormonal treatments, like birth control pills or intra-uterine progesterone coils. However, this hormonal approach may be counterproductive since the estrogen boost they give your body may mask the symptoms and worsen inflammation.

Self-care and natural medicine have had beneficial effects on endometriosis pain, although limited. Anti-inflammatory diets and consumption of healthy foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids can improve your everyday life. It's important however to incorporate moderate physical activity, therapy, pelvic floor exercises, and yoga or stretching. 

Some patients report benefits from massages and acupuncture. Working on your emotional health through meditation, counseling, or mindfulness exercises can also help you relax, easing pain and discomfort.

CBD Treatment for Endometriosis

Cannabidiol (CBD), is a prominent, non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis plants. CBD can offer therapeutic benefits. The multiple properties of CBD make it an invaluable support that can help in the treatment of pain, inflammation, and neurological conditions as seizures, anxiety, depression, or PTSD.

CBD's anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties may notably reduce the swelling and pain associated with endometriosis. Additionally, CBD’s mood-stabilizing qualities may reduce the anxiety and depressive feelings that usually come along with pain episodes.

Research shows that the influence of CBD on cannabinoid receptors can induce a decrease in the growth of abnormal endometrial tissue, which can help lessen endometriosis symptoms. 

Few specific studies are testing the efficacy of CBD against endometriosis in large populations. However, many individual case studies report notable improvement in the patients’ symptoms and general feelings after using CBD-based products. According to these studies, oral CBD oil drops can bring relief, desensitizing the pain receptors and addressing inflammation.

Applying topical CBD-based intimate serums like GoLove can offer fast-acting effects since there is higher bioavailbility through the thin vaginal tissues. Insertable suppositories infused with CBD are also available as another delivery method.

As reported by many, CBD can help with endometriosis pain, making it more bearable. Although its effects can help reduce the pain, inflammation and anxiety endometriosis causes, it is important to know that CBD is not a cure for this disorder.

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