Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the 113 active ingredients in the Cannabis sativa plant, or marijuana. It has been studied for its medicinal effects on seizures, insomnia, Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia and other neurological conditions.
Some studies suggest that CBD also shows promise as a potential treatment for psoriasis. A recent investigation into the therapeutic effects of CBD found that the topical administration of CBD improved the appearance of scars and blemishes linked to psoriasis.
The results, published in Clinica Terapeutica, suggest that CBD is an effective and non-invasive therapeutic option for people with psoriasis and other similar skin conditions.
Psoriasis: Causes, symptoms and treatment
Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune skin condition that causes skin cells to grow at an abnormal rate, resulting in the buildup of red, painful lesions. According to recent reports from the National Psoriasis Foundation (NPF), more than eight million Americans have psoriasis. It often appears in people between the ages of 15 and 25, but it can also occur in older adults.
Psoriasis is often associated with other serious chronic conditions like diabetes and heart disease, but its exact cause remains unclear. That said, experts believe that psoriasis is sensitive to certain triggers, such as weather changes, stress and exposure to secondhand smoke. Psoriasis flareups have also been linked to alcohol consumption, skin injuries and other skin infections.
People with psoriasis tend to have raised, red patches of skin. These patches often appear on the scalp, knees, elbows, face, hands and armpits. Although harmless, psoriasis can have a serious impact on a person’s daily routine and quality of life. This is often the case in people who experience severe forms of psoriasis that cause cracked, bleeding patches of skin.
Because of the autoimmune nature of psoriasis, it cannot be “cured” in the conventional sense. It is also considered a lifelong condition since it does not disappear over time, even with treatment. Most of the available conventional treatments for psoriasis are used to relieve the pain and itchiness it causes. These include topical steroid creams, ointments, light therapies and medications.
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Cannabidiol for psoriasis
To investigate the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD against chronic skin conditions, a team of researchers from the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia in Italy conducted a small experiment on 20 participants with psoriasis, atopic dermatitis (eczema) and resulting scars.
As per the researchers’ instructions, participants applied a CBD-enriched ointment to affected areas of the skin twice daily for three months.
After the treatment period, the researchers found that the topical administration of CBD reduced the number of papules and pustules due to psoriasis. CBD also improved skin hydration and elasticity, thus minimizing the appearance of deep, cutaneous scars. None of the participants reported allergic reactions during the treatment period.
Based on their findings, the researchers thus concluded that CBD can be utilized as a safe and natural therapeutic treatment for people with psoriasis and other chronic skin conditions like atopic dermatitis. (Related: Manage eczema with these homemade remedies.)
Other natural treatments and home remedies for psoriasis relief
People with psoriasis tend to use alternative medicines to treat rashes, according to a recent review published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.
Researchers from the George Washington University‘s School of Medicine and Health Sciences found that people with psoriasis often turn to natural therapies like vitamin D supplements and dead sea treatments when their medications caused adverse side effects.
Other proven treatments and remedies for psoriasis include:
- Sunlight – Exposure to sunlight boosts the production of vitamin D in the skin, which stimulates skin cell growth and repair.
- Fish oil – Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil or fishes like salmon, tuna and sardines inhibit inflammation and minimize flareups. Plant-based sources of omega-3s include chia seeds, beans and legumes.
- Capsaicin – Capsaicin is an active compound found in chili peppers. It acts as a natural analgesic to relieve pain and inflammation.
- Probiotics – Probiotics in fermented foods like sauerkraut and yogurt enhance the body’s anti-inflammatory response.
- Curcumin – Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric, a popular Indian spice. It has powerful antioxidant and antimicrobial effects against painful rashes.
- Oregon grape – This flowering plant has antioxidant properties that calm the body’s inflammatory receptors.
- Aloe vera – Aloe vera is a natural antiseptic. As such, it can deliver fast-acting relief from itchiness and inflammation.
- Apple cider vinegar – Active compounds in apple cider vinegar, such as acetic acid and catechins, help soothe itchy rashes and kill bacteria.
- Coconut oil – Natural moisturizers like coconut oil can heal cracked skin. It can also lock in moisture to prevent skin from peeling.
- Oatmeal bath – A warm oatmeal bath helps relieve itchiness and moisturize the skin.
- Proper diet – Avoiding refined sugar and drinking water often can also help minimize psoriasis flareups. It also helps to eat more fruits and vegetables to relieve inflammation from the inside.
- Acupuncture – This form of traditional Chinese medicine can help relieve stress, a known trigger of psoriasis flareups.
There is no accepted mainstream cure for psoriasis. That said, potent natural medicines like CBD can relieve the pain and itchiness of psoriasis rashes, as well as minimize the occurrence of flareups.
Visit CannabisCures.news to learn more about the health benefits of cannabidiol and other active compounds in cannabis.