Healing Psoriasis with Cannabidiol
CBD can help to treat skin irritation and itching while controlling pain and reducing inflammation in psoriasis patients.
In fact, some of the most prominent benefits of CBD are immune system support and anti-inflammatory action, both of which can relieve the symptoms of psoriasis.
Inside our bodies is a complex set of receptors that bind with endocannabinoids, known as the ‘endocannabinoid system’.
When people use CBD products, our endocannabinoid system is activated and stimulated, ensuring that vital immune and neurological systems are balanced and work in harmony.
When we feel ill, stressed, or tired, our bodies fail to produce enough endocannabinoids naturally. However, with the help of phytocannabinoids such as CBD, our body can achieve a state of homeostasis (natural balance) again.
Additionally, the endocannabinoid system is part of our skin, giving CBD beneficial properties to soothe skin problems therapeutically. These conclusions are supported by recent studies that indicate the benefits that CBD can offer in the fight against irritating skin conditions such as psoriasis.
CBD has proved to be an outstanding antioxidant, , anti-inflammatory and a sebum regulator, helping prevent dermal aging and skin diseases.
What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a condition of the skin that causes crusty, inflamed, red patches of skin, often covered in silvery scales. These patches commonly appear on the scalp, knees, elbows, and lower back, but they can also appear anywhere on the body.
The majority of people diagnosed with psoriasis only encounter small patches of irritation, which can be sore or itchy at times. According to the National Psoriasis Foundation, the condition affects an estimated 125 million people worldwide, accounting for almost 3% of the entire population. Out of these people, an average of 20% develop psoriatic arthritis at some point during their lives.
Psoriasis can develop at any age but appears more frequently in adults under the age of 35. The severity of the condition varies significantly from person to person, with some people reporting mild irritation and others suffering a decline in their overall quality of life.
Psoriasis is a chronic disease which often involves symptomless periods followed by severe flare-ups.
Why Does Psoriasis Happen?
Psoriasis is caused by increased production of skin cells. In normal circumstances, skin cells are created and replaced every 3-4 weeks. However, in psoriasis, this process usually takes between 3-7 days.
As the skin cells build-up, the patches that are associated with psoriasis appear. It’s believed that this process is caused by problems related to the immune system. The immune system if the body’s primary defence mechanism against infection and disease. However, it attacks healthy skin cells in people living with psoriasis.
Psoriasis can be inherited genetically, although its precise genetic role is unclear. Additionally, psoriasis ‘flare-ups’ are often caused by ‘trigger’ events. These ‘triggers’ include throat infections, skin injuries, and side effects of certain medications. The condition is not contagious, meaning that it cannot be spread by human contact.
How Can CBD Help to Relive or Treat Psoriasis?
Immune System Regulation
The underlying causes of psoriasis involve the bodies immune system. Recent research has revealed that the endocannabinoid system and an immune system work in harmony to regulate some of our primary physiological functions.
The primary role of our endocannabinoid system is contributing to the control of cell differentiation, tolerance, balance, proliferation, and death. All of which can contribute to skin cell and dermatology problems.
As science begins to understand the communication channels that link CBD to immune function, it’s becoming apparent that regular supplementation can boost immune health and help to achieve balance throughout the body. As this process, known as homeostasis, occurs, our bodies defence mechanisms are strengthened. Therefore, we have an increased chance of recovery and defence against the development of conditions such as psoriasis.
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Studies suggest that CBD is has a range of anti-inflammatory properties. When you supplement with CBD products, activation of the skin’s endocannabinoid system helps to reduce inflammation in several ways.
Firstly, as the CB2 receptors are activated in the skin, a process known as a ‘pro-inflammatory Th1’ response is switched to an ‘anti-inflammatory Th2’ response, thus reducing levels of inflammation.
Additionally, the endocannabinoid system helps to regulate keratinocyte differentiation and proliferation, both of which are increased in psoriasis patients. As our CB1 receptors are activated, anandamide is released, reducing the production of keratin K6, which is a marker of keratinocyte proliferation.
Then there are the potential therapeutic effects triggered as CBD activates non-cannabinoid receptors such as GPR5, which can reduce inflammation caused by our natural nerve growth factor.
A 2007 study revealed that CBD, amongst other cannabinoids, helped to slow the growth of skin cells called keratinocytes. The research concluded that CBD could play a pivotal role in treating psoriasis. In 2016, a review was published supporting this theory.
These therapeutic effects, combined with the scientific research, cumulate to make CBD a potentially beneficial supplement to ease symptoms associated with psoriasis.
Cannabinoids also have a positive effect on pain receptors, meaning that CBD could also help to relieve the pain related to chronic bouts of psoriasis. Here at Enecta, we believe that there’s a strong possibility that Psoriasis drugs of the future will contain CBD as an active ingredient.
As with all supplemental treatments, anyone considering using CBD alongside prescribed medications should consult their physician to check for possible interactions that could occur.
It’s also recommended to check local and national laws if you are planning on using medical marijuana, or any cannabis supplements that are under regulation in your country.