Updated: Jul 2, 2019
CBD showing promising results for eczema sufferers?
The long winter months are even more unwelcome for those who suffer with eczema and other skin conditions. Cold weather and central heating can play havoc with your skin, leaving it itchy, red, dry and cracked.
Although eczema symptoms can improve during your life, for many, it’s a long-term battle – around 60 per cent of people in the UK have some sort of skin condition that they struggle to control. And the winter, unfortunately, exuberates the symptoms.
But CBD oil could provide relief for those with skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis, with emerging research and studies showcasing the benefits it holds.
With an outbreak of positive results from studies of CBD over the past decade, scientists anticipate that the anti-inflammatory properties of CBD can help tackle the symptoms of eczema, psoriasis and dermatitis.
Specifically, the University of Colorado has conducted trials of CBD oil on over 40 patients, all of who suffer with long-term skin problems, with encouraging results. The most promising role seems to be the reduction in itching. In one study, eight out of 21 patients who applied a cannabinoid cream twice a day for three weeks reported that their itchiness completely disappeared.
How does it work?
To function normally, your skin relies, partially, on your endocannabinoid system (ECS) – a regulatory system found in all humans and animals that maintains homeostasis (balance) on a molecular level. Pain and chronic inflammation are directly related to an imbalance in the ECS. So when your ECS is out of balance, your skin is more likely to become dry and itchy.
Throughout your body, you have ECS receptors that are able to bind with the cannabinoids in CBD oil (CB1 and CB2 receptors), helping to balance your ECS and therefore reduce inflammation that presents as itchy, dry skin.
Positive effects on mental wellbeing
It’s not just about the calming, anti-inflammatory effect CBD oil seems to have on the skin – it’s also how controlling those symptoms can have a huge effect on a person’s mental wellbeing. The constant itchiness and soreness is one thing – but it’s also about how skin conditions can affect a person’s body image and self-confidence.
Furthermore, many people are reluctant to use topical steroid creams on their skin, and CBD oil offers an alternative, natural product.
Is hemp seed oil the same as CBD oil?
Hemp products have long been on the market. And many do help with dry skin conditions. But it’s important to realise the difference between hemp seed oil and CBD oil.
Hemp seed oil is typically extracted from the seeds of the industrial hemp plant, which can contain as much as 50 percent of their weight in oil. It’s great for cooking and full of nutrients. It’s used in moisturising lotions and other skincare products. CBD oil on the other hand is extracted from the stalks, leaves and buds of the hemp plant, which has a significant content level of cannabinoids – the components that have anti-inflammatory effects.
I have eczema – should I try CBD oil?
Research into using CBD oil for treating skin conditions is still at an early stage. But as researchers examine its use in treating chronic pain, epilepsy, depression and other health conditions, more and more dermatologists are looking at CBD’s potential to ease skin complaints. Anecdotes are emerging daily across the internet from people who have found that CBD oil is reducing, or completely irradiating itchiness or dryness. But until more research is carried out, we can’t say for sure just how effective CBD oil is in the long-term.