It’s well known that cannabidiol, or CBD, can be used to treat a variety of mental and physical problems. According to new research, CBD may also be used to treat a number of disorders affecting the body’s largest organ: the skin.
It turns out that cannabidiol, a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that is often derived from the hemp plant, may be an effective treatment for multiple serious skin disorders. These aren’t merely cosmetic issues, either. These skin disorders can wreak havoc on patients’ lives, and conventional treatments frequently fail. Although more research is needed to determine exactly how CBD works on skin, patients who suffer from these common dermatological ailments may find that CBD is just what they were looking for.
CBD and Acne
Acne is one of the most common and pernicious of all skin disorders. It strikes most frequently during adolescence and young adulthood. In fact, over 80 percent of teenagers experience acne breakouts, but many people suffer from acne well into adulthood, too. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, acne affects approximately 50 million Americans each year.
CBD oil offers acne-sufferers new hope. A 2014 study, published in The Journal of Clinical Investigation, found that CBD had a “unique ‘triple-anti-acne’ profile.” This comprehensive study looked at the use of CBD as a targeted acne treatment and found that it was a “promising, cost-effective, and, likely, well-tolerated new strategy for treating acne vulgaris.”
Traditional prescription acne treatments usually come with unpleasant side effects, from dry skin to allergic reactions or contraindications. Familiar over-the-counter acne treatments are less risky, but also generally less effective. There is no record of any similar side effects from CBD oil, making it likely a safer acne-treatment tool for most individuals.
CBD and Psoriasis
Psoriasis, a skin condition that causes dry, scaly patches, is the most common autoimmune disease in the United States. It is most commonly found in adults and affects approximately 75 million Americans. Like acne, psoriasis is treated with a number of different prescription medications but is frequently resistant to conventional treatments.
A 2007 study found that cannabinoids may inhibit the proliferation of keratinocytes, which cause the itchy skin patches that psoriasis is known for. In fact, cannabidiol may be an effective treatment for multiple autoimmune diseases, according to a 2010 study, in part due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
Although more research is needed, anecdotal evidence suggests that psoriasis sufferers may benefit from the topical application of CBD in areas where they experience symptoms.
CBD and Skin Cancer
One of the most exciting areas of research is the possible use of CBD oil to prevent or treat skin cancer. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer, and it primarily affects older adults. While most forms are treatable, nearly 10,000 Americans die from skin cancer each year.
Cannabinoids have long been used to treat the side effects of cancer treatment, but new evidence reveals that they may also fight against cancer itself. More research needs to be done, but a 2007 study published in the British Journal of Pharmacology suggests that phytocannabinoids can affect cell proliferation and differentiation. This same study also found that CBD had a particularly had a strong therapeutic potential for skin cancer.
Of course, nothing replaces proper skin protection and regular medical checkups. But, for too long, many people have suffered from these skin problems with little relief. CBD offers a new option for people who have suffered for years, and the healing potential is more than skin deep.