Endometriosis is a disease that affects nearly 1 in 10 women in the United States and hundreds of millions of women worldwide. Yet the medical causes of endometriosis are largely unknown, and the disease often goes untreated. Women living with endometriosis can experience symptoms that range from mild discomfort to excruciating pain, and many think their suffering is just a particularly nasty kind of Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS). Thankfully, more and more people are becoming aware of the disease and finding ways to ease its symptoms. One exciting new option is the use of Cannabidiol (or CBD), which offers many benefits for women who suffer from endometriosis.
What is CBD?
CBD is one of the chemical compounds found in hemp and cannabis. Unlike THC (the compound in marijuana that is best known for its recreational and psychoactive properties), CBD does not cause a high or have any effect on cognitive and motor functions. In fact, CBD is best known for its medicinal properties. For women with endometriosis, CBD’s anti-inflammatory and anxiolytic properties can be particularly beneficial.
What is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a condition in which endometrial tissue (which is tissue that is similar to the material that grows inside a woman’s uterus) instead grows elsewhere in a woman’s body. Most of the time, this material grows in the abdomen, around the ovaries, and along the fallopian tubes, although in rare cases it can grow elsewhere in the body (such as the lungs). The most common symptom of endometriosis is pain and cramping in the abdomen and pelvic areas, particularly around the time of menstruation. Other symptoms can include bloating, nausea, the formation of cysts and abdominal masses (usually non-cancerous), and problems with fertility.
Endometriosis is difficult to diagnose, as its symptoms are often perceived as simply more severe versions of “normal” PMS. However, a few examples of abnormal pain might include: cramps so sharp that they cause nausea; the inability to stand fully upright without feeling a pull or a pinch; or the need to stay home from work soaking in a hot tub for several hours to alleviate discomfort. Women who experience such severe pain and/or unexplained infertility should consider asking their doctor to check for endometriosis.
How can CBD help?
There are many ways in which CBD can make it easier for women to live with endometriosis. One of the main benefits of CBD is its anti-inflammatory properties, which help to relax the abdominal muscles and ease the pain of intense menstrual cramps. Pain from endometriosis is not limited to menstruation, however, and can occur at any time in a woman’s cycle. Because CBD is an analgesic, it alleviates discomfort throughout the body by easing pain from bowel movements, backaches, headaches, and chronic pain. As an antiemetic, CBD combats the nausea that sometimes accompanies intense cramping and pain. Thanks to its anxiolytic properties, CBD can also provide powerful relief from anxiety and depression. CBD may also slow the growth of endometrial tissue. Finally, because CBD is not psychoactive, it can be used to treat symptoms without impairing a woman’s ability to drive, go to work, or otherwise function normally throughout her day.
Women who struggle with endometriosis are often scared and distressed about their symptoms, and living with long-term discomfort and infertility takes a heavy mental toll. CBD offers a safe and effective way to reduce the suffering and pain that are associated with endometriosis. Although it is recommended that any woman who suspects she has endometriosis should speak to her doctor, CBD can be obtained without a prescription and is safe to use as an alternative or complement to any medical treatment. Check out our article HERE that explores the best places to legally get CBD shipped to your front door in all 50 states,