In this article we will review a couple of peer reviewed studies that use CBD for migraine treatments. After, we’ll come to a conclusion for the question, ‘Does CBD help migraines?”
What Causes a Migraine?
With the rise of CBD use over the last two years now, people have found many different ways to use CBD. From pain relief, anxiety management, and anti-inflammatory uses, it begs the question: does CBD help migraines?
To be clear, there is a huge difference between a headache and a migraine. Few things are worse than a severe migraine headache.
Most people complain they are suffering from migraine headaches, when in reality, they simply have a headache. I’m not trying to marginalize anyone, but it’s important to know the difference between a migraine and headache.
Headaches basically feel like some pressure and pain within your head. They can range from very mild, all the way up to severe forms of pain.
Most of the common headaches include areas of your head like: upper back potion of your neck, the sides of your temples, and the front of your forehead. Some headaches last very briefly. Conversely, there are headache disorders that can last several days.
Migraine headaches, on the other hand, are usually severely intense and don’t stop with simply head pain. Some of the other symptoms that can join the dreadful migraine are:
- vomiting or nausea
- isolated pains behind specific areas, like the ear or eyes
- pain in the temples
- intense sensitivity to light or even sound
- loss of eyesight (temporary)
If you compare a migraine with a headache, the migraine attack is always worse. Interestingly, migraines will normally affect only one side of your head. It’s not impossible for a migraine to affect your entire head, it’s just more common to affect one side.
Furthermore, if you have a migraine, you will be out of commission until the migraine is over.
Photo source: Healthline
Does CBD Help Migraines?
CBD oil may be able to help manage your migraines. If you are familiar with CBD, you have likely heard about CBD’s use for pain relief. That sounds like it would be a perfect to use CBD for your migraines, right?
Studies on Using CBD Oil for Migraine Headaches
In 2017, a study was conducted on using cannabis derivates (including CBD) for use as a treatment against headache and migraine pain.. The Journal of Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research stated, “it appears likely that cannabis will emerge as a potential treatment for some headache sufferers.”
In this study, the research team did a deep dive into many different studies and reports on using cannabinoids like CBD. They concluded that they are a potential treatment for headaches and migraines.
Eric P. Baron (2015) concluded in a review of cannabinoids, “The literature suggests that the medicinal use of cannabis may have a therapeutic role for a multitude of diseases, particularly chronic pain disorders including headaches.”
I was even able to find an old (Reynolds, 1868) journal that documented the use of hemp for headaches. Hemp is rich in CBD, and contains very little THC. THC is the compound within cannabis that has psychoactive properties.
he results from this study were, “Immediate relief and elimination of headaches for 14 months after treatment. No lasting harm.”
Finally, the Migraine Research Foundation has given cannabis the impact award for acute treatment of migraines. They only award this to compounds that actually relieve migraine headaches well.
While medical cannabis does include medical marijuana, it is worth nothing that even medical marijuana can contain large amounts of CBD in it. Read more on the medical cannabis cohort here.
So, do CBD oils help migraines? According to these studies, yes, it does. These are only three studies mentioned out of over 40 that I read through, too.
Best CBD Oil for Migraines
Now that we know CBD oil can potentially help chronic migraine sufferers, what type of CBD product should you take?
This is an area where it’s going to be up to personal preference. I can give you a few pointers of what to look out for when using CBD oil for migraines, but ultimately, you need to listen to your body and see which form works best.
You’re going to want to look for sublingual CBD oil drops to help offer relief. These are my favorite for one main reason: they work fast.
Simply squeeze the CBD drops under your tongue, and hold them there for at least 60 seconds. Your sublingual vein, located under the tongue, will begin to absorb the CBD oils and get them into your bloodstream almost immediately.
Another option for those who do not like CBD drops, is CBD pills, or softgels. Most CBD oil comes in soft gel form, because it can contain a little bit of carrier oil to keep the CBD-rich hemp extract fresh. Remember, hemp extract is an oil base, so if you can leave it in a concentrated oil form, then put it in a soft gel pill capsule, it’s good to go.
These pills are meant to be swallowed with a drink. After swallowing them, they can take anywhere from 20 minutes to kick in, or even longer depending on your body.
Both of these types of CBD oil products for migraines are sure to work, you just need to decide on which product works best for your body and your conditions. Everyone will process CBD a little bit differently. Do not let anyone tell you that only one form, or one type of CBD oil is the only way you should use it.
Stick to either broad spectrum or full spectrum CBD for the best results. Some people prefer a CBD isolate, but the issue with CBD isolate is that it contains no other beneficial compounds EXCEPT for CBD.
Full spectrum CBD oil and broad spectrum CBD oil both contain lots of other beneficial compounds. The only difference is a full spectrum product will contain less than 0.3% THC, while a broad spectrum product contains near 0.0% THC.
Regardless of which you choose, all forms of hemp derived CBD are completely non-intoxicating.
Conclusion | CBD for Migraines
I write a lot of CBD oil articles, pretty much on a daily basis. The research included in the writing of this article on CBD use was interesting.
To be able to find a study from 1868 on using the Indian cannabis plant for headache management was quite the find for me!
The bottom line is, people have been using CBD oil for migraines (and other cannabinoids) to manage migraines for a long time. As more studies come out, we can more effectively see just how effective CBD oil is for many types of pain relief.
As usual, please be careful who you purchase your CBD products from. Sure, I would prefer you purchase from New Phase Blends, but as long as you get a quality product from a quality brand you can’t go wrong. Double check reviews, product certifications, and check for money-back guarantees.
When you find the right product, consider using CBD oil for migraines. You’ll thank us later.
*Some users might find relief in vaping CBD oil for headache pain. New Phase Blends does not sell any CBD vape products, nor do we intend to.
Reynolds JR. On some of the therapeutical uses of Indian hemp. Arch Med. 1868;2:154–160 [Google Scholar]