Athletes are aware that pain is something we all have to deal with. Doing the sport you love on a regular basis is an amazing feeling, but it comes with downfalls. All athletes have experienced pain as a part of their athletic journey. Whether it’s a serious injury that forces you to have significant time off sport; an old injury which plays up when you’re pushing yourself; general soreness; arthritic joints; shin splints or something else entirely. Pain is part and parcel of the athletic experience, and everyone deserves solutions that work for them, without damaging their body.
All those who engage in sport have had to use painkillers. Painkillers come in a range of strengths and levels of effectiveness. In theory, there’s no harm in taking pain medication, when administered on occasion. Drugs have proved essential to recovery for many illnesses and injuries, and sometimes they’re necessary. Unfortunately, the USA is currently in the midst of an epidemic of painkillers which doesn’t show signs of improving.
Addiction Center, a help service for those experiencing addiction, says that ‘In the United States, 259 million opioid painkiller prescriptions were written in 2012. An estimated 2 million later developed an addiction.’ Yes, it’s true – sadly, opiates are widely prescribed in the USA without first exploring other, safer pain relief options. Opiates, while extremely effective pain relief, are highly addictive, and can force people into debt, while significantly harming their bodies and minds. Loved ones of those addicted to opioids are increasingly concerned, in their continued search for a drug-free pain and discomfort treatment.
CBD is an abbreviation of cannabidiol, which is a chemical compound of a marijuana plant. Unlike marijuana, which is used recreationally to create a high, CBD does not create any mental or psychological changes in the body. CBD is also totally legal, and when administered correctly does not halt your ability to live your life. That includes driving a car, going to work, and yes, doing your sport!
The best thing about CBD is that unlike other, damaging painkilling options, it is drug-free and non-toxic. As it is derived directly from a plant, there are no harmful chemicals in CBD Oil, only natural anti-inflammatories and other helpful elements that soothe your body, instead of hurting it. The science behind CBD’s pain killing effects is pretty complicated, but here it is, broken down into three simple steps!
- Working with, not against, your body. Everyone’s body naturally contains cannabinoid receptors. These are called CB1 and CB2. They are part of a larger system in our body called the Endocannabinoid system. These receptors work with different elements of our body to naturally provide pain relief, lower inflammation, and aid mood balancing chemicals. CBD Oil does not directly interact with these receptors, but instead, encourages them to produce their own natural chemicals! This means that CBD works with, not against, the natural systems of your body. Painkillers such as opioids, on the other hand, attach themselves to opioid receptors which are found on nerve endings in your brain and spine. They block the pain messages sent from your brain to your body. This does not promote healing or allow your body to work as normal, but actually interrupts your natural healing system.
- Slowing things down. In addition to asking your CB1 and CB2 receptors to produce their own cannabinoids, CBD also slows this process down. This means that the enzymes that are broken down by these cannabinoids, which then produces natural pain relief, are broken down more slowly. This creates the effect in your body of prolonged pain relief. This means that CBD lets your body heal itself for longer periods of time.
- Anandamide. What is anandamide? Anandamide is also known as the ‘bliss molecule’, and is essentially a molecule that helps our body to relieve pain. CBD enhances our anandamide signaling in our bodies, meaning that our pain relief is greater and more prolonged.
Why Should Athletes Opt For CBD?
So, how can all this science help athletes recover more quickly? Well, CBD can be administered as an oil, either orally or rubbed on the skin. Additionally, there are many CBD creams and CBD muscle balm which can be applied to the skin, which are absorbed safely, relieving our muscle and joint pain. Many professional athletes prefer CBD to other painkilling solutions, due to its totally natural, non-toxic qualities. Instead of dulling the nerve endings in our bodies, CBD works with your body for incredible results, without damage. Painkilling should not be a health concern, it should be a source of stress relief as well as pain relief!
As an athlete, using drug-free pain relief can keep you from experiencing the nasty side effects of other painkillers. For example, harsh painkillers can give athletes nausea, tiredness, lack of sleep, constipation, shakiness of the hands, diarrhea, among many other awful side effects. While killing pain, they bring up a whole mass of other terrible problems.
CBD, however, soothes muscles, acts to reduce inflammation, and does not give athletes any other health problems. Athletes who complete drug tests do not have to worry about CBD, meaning this pain relief is safe for competing in high-level sports events.
In addition, CBD Oil does not just promote healing and healthy muscles and joints! Athletes know that sleep is a hugely important factor in competing well. If you aren’t sleeping well, your concentration can be compromised, and you can lack the motivation to work out, practice and compete. CBD Oil for athletes does wonders for promoting healthy sleep and rest. You will no longer be woken up by your injury pains, and the healing processes in your body will aid your sleep even further.
For stress levels, CBD is a perfect solution. Unlike anti-anxiety medications that can dull out your emotions and make you drowsy and irritable, CBD has been said to reduce the likelihood of panic attacks, promoting a calm and healthy mindset, without taking harmful drugs.