According to a study published in Frontiers in Pharmacology, cannabis has been used as a medical treatment for thousands of years. However, the recent legalization of medical marijuana in many states and the rise of the use of cannabidiol (CBD) oil have prompted more research into these products' medicinal qualities. If you ever have dental pain and are tempted to turn to a natural or home remedy, here are some interesting facts to know about using CBD oil for pain.
What Is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is derived from the cannabis plant. The flowers and leaves of the plant contain tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is a psychoactive component that interacts with certain central nervous system (CNS) receptors, as the Frontiers in Pharmacology study explains. THC can affect mood, memory processing and consciousness, as well as act as an analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant.
CBD is another component of the cannabis plant that also has analgesic, anti-inflammatory and anti-convulsant properties — but without the psychoactive effects. While CBD doesn't bind to the CNS receptors like THC, it does affect other targets in the CNS to reduce the perception of pain, and it also reduces the potency of THC.
FDA Regulations for Cannabis Treatments
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved cannabis itself as safe and effective for treating medical conditions, but they have approved one cannabis-derived and three cannabis-related products for medical use if prescribed by a licensed health care provider. These drugs may be used to treat anorexia associated with weight loss in AIDS patients and seizures associated with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome or Dravet syndrome.
While the FDA knows and is concerned that many unapproved cannabis products are being marketed for medical treatments, such as neuropathic pain, the agency is encouraging further scientific studies, clinical trials and research. Once they have ample data to review, they can determine if these drugs meet the standards they have set for approval.
Should You Take CBD Oil for Pain?
The study in Frontiers in Pharmacology concludes that some research supports the use of cannabis for chronic pain in adults, but — much like the FDA — the study also notes that more research is needed regarding the risks and benefits, and careful follow up and monitoring of patients using cannabis is mandatory.
Dental pain is a condition that requires a visit to the dentist for a proper diagnosis and timely treatment to prevent more serious issues. Because the FDA has not approved CBD oil or any cannabis products for dental pain, these aren't the best options for you to find relief. Luckily, your dentist will be able to identify the cause of your pain and offer advice for treatment.
Proven Remedies for a Toothache
If you have oral discomfort or symptoms of a toothache, schedule an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible. The Mayo Clinic recommends these home remedies to alleviate tooth discomfort in the interim:
- Swish your mouth by rinsing with warm water.
- Consider using an over-the-counter pain reliever as directed. However, never place aspirin or any other pain reliever against your gums, as this can burn the gum tissues.
- Clean between your teeth with dental floss to remove any lodged food particles and plaque.
- Place cold compresses on the outside of your cheek if you have a toothache due to trauma to your tooth.
Whenever you have any dental pain, see your dentist as soon as possible to ensure that you get the necessary treatment.