CBD boasts of an ever-growing list of medical conditions that it can potentially soothe. Migraine headaches is one of them. Research has shown that CBD migraines can sustain anandamide levels outside of the cell thereby stopping its uptake. This process helps to reduce migraines. 

CBD short for cannabidiol is one of the many molecules which belong to the cannabinoid class. These molecules have been found to possess a wide range of therapeutic properties and are mainly produced within the trichomes of the cannabis plant. The popularity of CBD oil in recent times is as a result of its health benefits and has also been shown to exhibit antioxidant, anticonvulsant, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotective effects.  CBD for migraines is non-psychoactive which has allowed many people to access it easily and legally.

The list of conditions that can be treated with CBD is increasing rapidly and migraine headaches is among them. In a study that was published within the Scientific Journal Pharmacotherapy, it was determined that edible and inhaled CBD decreases the frequency of migraine headaches significantly. The form of CBD used in the study was full spectrum which had THC and other compounds like terpenes. So what exactly does CBD migraines do?

What are migraines?

Migraines are mild or severe headaches that usually occur on one side of the head. Migraines often cause irritation and sometimes unbearable pain. Additionally, migraine headaches may initiate symptoms like nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light. In the United States alone, an estimated 38 million people are affected by migraines. Statistics have shown that 18% of women and 6% of men across the US experience these headaches while every month about 5 million people experience at least one migraine headache.

Forms of Migraines 

There are numerous forms of migraines but the most common are migraine without aura and migraine with aura. An estimated 80-90% of the population experiences the migraine without aura which lasts between 4-72 hours. This migraine is characterized by pulsating pain on one side of the head. Migraine with aura is the other form and its symptoms range from colored spots, tunnel vision, and blind spots in the field of vision. Chronic migraine is not common but can persist for more than 15 days in a month.  CBD for migraines has been found to offer relief from these forms of migraines. 

What Research Says

The Migraine Centers of America shared studies on the use of CBD in the treatment of migraines which included;

A 2015 survey by Care by Design which reported that 100% of patients suffering from migraines got relief after using CBD oil.
A 2016 study that was published in Pharmacotherapy which revealed that a group of marijuana users experienced reduced frequency of migraines from 10 per month to 4 per month. 
A 2017 review showed that effective cannabinoid treatment resulted in the reduction of frequency of pain due to migraine headaches. 

Migraines and the Endocannabinoid System

The effects of CBD migraines stem from its interaction with the endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system has receptor sites which are present in different cell types within the body and are responsible for regulating physiological systems. There are two receptor sites CB1 and CB2 receptors. When it comes to migraines, the endocannabinoid system plays a big role. According to a paper published within the Journal of Experimental Neurology, the endocannabinoid system may be centrally and peripherally involved in the process of pain signaling. 

The endocannabinoids have been found to inhibit the release of neurotransmitters which control pain signaling through interaction with the CBD1 receptor. According to research, the endocannabinoid system is a potential therapeutic tool that may reduce both physiological and inflammatory elements of pain as a result of migraines.  

CBD and Migraines

The lack of endocannabinoids within the system may be the reason migraines occur in addition to other conditions. This condition has been named as “clinical endocannabinoid deficiency" and maybe the major cause of migraines in some people. AEA (anandamide) is one of the endocannabinoids that is synthesized within the human body. According to a study published within the Journal Neuroendocrinology Letters, AEA can increase and decrease serotonin receptors activities. As such, it has therapeutic applications that can help reduce migraine headaches. 

In a study published within the Journal of Headache and Pain, it was found that the development of migraines attacks may be as a result of a dysfunction within the endocannabinoid system. Modulation of the endocannabinoid system receptors by CBD for migraines can be useful in the treatment of migraine pain.

Research also suggests that the potential power of CBD lie in how it can manipulate the AEA levels within the body. CBD has been found to inhibit the uptake of AEA and also the enzymes which degrade this molecule. This is to say that CBD migraine allows AEA to remain for longer periods out of the cells.  

How to Use CBD to Treat Migraines

If you are considering using CBD oil to treat migraines, you should first consult with your doctor. It is important to note that not all brands and products are reputable since the FDA has not approved CBD as a treatment for migraines. Furthermore, you should also check to ensure CBD for migraines is legal in your state.

CBD can be taken in different forms. This may range from vaping, tinctures which are dropped under the tongue, edibles which are eaten and capsules which are swallowed. The most discreet way to consume CBD is through tinctures. Capsules can be taken alongside an existing daily supplement. The CBD is absorbed rapidly into the bloodstream. Due to the rise in popularity of CBD, more seed banks are breeding strains with no THC with high CBD concentrations.  

CBD has no side effects. This is one of the reasons it is used as an alternative for pain management. Many pain killers have resulting side effects and people can easily overdose. It is not easy to overdose CBD migraines even if you increase your dosing. However, it is important to start small and increase your dosage gradually while monitoring the effects. This will help you know which dosage is adequate for your condition.

 You should also do your search to find out which brand sells high-quality products. Due to the lack of regulation in the CBD industry, many brands may take advantage and sell poor-quality CBD products. It is thus important to do your research to find the companies that sell high-quality products.