Chronic joint pain is a common problem among many people, caused by a number of conditions
and ailments. It is typically experienced when any part of a joint, including cartilage, bone,
ligaments, tendons, and muscles become inflamed. Joint pain is often attributed to arthritis or
arthralgia—inflammation within the joint—or musculoskeletal disorders and inflammatory
diseases. Pain can be mild to severe, depending on the root cause. Unfortunately, knees are
especially susceptible to joint pain as they bear the majority of the body’s weight and are
impacted by frequent movement. Pain in the knees can greatly affect mobility and may become
more than a mild source of discomfort and inconvenience when the pain intensifies. For some
sufferers, it is debilitating.
Conventional Treatment of Knee Pain
The traditional treatments for joint pain are drug therapy, physical therapy, injections, and
surgery. Drug therapy often entails some form of opioid prescription or nonsteroidal anti-
inflammatory drugs (NSAID’s). Non-pharmacologic treatment methods that have also been used
in addition to physical therapy are cognitive behavioral therapy and stress management. (1)
In some cases, the patient may seek alternative methods for managing painful and uncomfortable
symptoms related to joint problems. They may be disinclined to use prescription painkillers for
extended time lengths for fear of becoming chemically dependent on their medication, or don’t
wish to undergo invasive surgical procedures. They may also find that conventional methods
have been ineffective or inadequate for their needs. For such people, natural and less medically
aggressive alternatives may be more appealing and worth exploring.
Emerging Interest in Using CBD Oil for Pain
Recent studies have started exploring the possible health benefits of CBD oil—a trendy new
addition to the natural health market that has generated significant interest and attention. The use
of CBD oil for its anti-inflammatory properties to help manage pain has become a headlining
topic in health forums and medical communities. As more studies on CBD and its therapeutic
effects on the human body are conducted, many people burdened by chronic knee pain are
considering the incorporation of CBD into their pain management routine. Research on the effect
of CBD on joint pain is still limited and immature, but the emerging correlation between them
has nonetheless spiked intrigue and ongoing speculation as to how effective it may actually be.
To gain further insight and perspective on how CBD may help with your chronic pain, here is
some information on CBD oil, how it’s thought to affect your body, and what products are
available that might suit your needs.
What Is CBD Oil?
CBD is a natural derivative of the cannabis plant. This chemical compound of cannabis is
extracted and diluted with carrier oils such as natural hemp seed or coconut. The resulting
product is cannabidiol or CBD oil, which is infused into various products for consumer use.
CBD is just one of over one hundred chemical compounds, or cannabinoids, found in cannabis
and a second primary to THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol—the chemical known for its
psychoactive properties. CBD that has been isolated from THC, or has less than .03%, is not
known to cause euphoria or similar effects in the brain. (2)
CBD is believed to contain many properties that may actively contribute to overall physical and
mental health. Many advocates claim that it has significant therapeutic effects on illnesses and
disorders like arthritis, anxiety, depression, and more. There are also thought to be various other
chemicals and compounds naturally found in cannabis that could benefit the human body and
The Endocannabinoid System and Potential Impacts of CBD
The benefits of cannabidiol are thought to take place in the endocannabinoid system. This central
system that affects many vital bodily functions contains two main receptors: CB1 and CB2. CBD
binds to these receptors and molecular changes begin to happen in the body, theoretically
resulting in pain relief, anxiety relief, and decreased inflammation.
The potential benefits of CBD for pain relief and decrease in inflammation may make it a viable
alternative option for those suffering from acute or mild knee pain. These benefits work by
stimulating different receptors in the body’s nervous system. The body produces its own
endocannabinoids, which are neurotransmitters that bind to receptors in the nervous system, and
regulate many functions including mood, sleep, pain, appetite and autoimmune responses. (4)
Nociceptive and Neuropathic Pain
To better understand how pain is experienced and may be managed with CBD, it’s helpful to
differentiate between two kinds of pain: neuropathic and nociceptive.
Neuropathic pain has to do with damaged neurons, preceded or caused by localized infection or
injury. Pain receptors travel through the central nervous system and alert the brain of painful
sensations. These are often sharp, erratic, and intermittent, and may or may not be exacerbated
by external stimuli or touch. Nociceptive pain is more common and mostly caused by harmful or
toxic stimuli that are picked up by nociceptive receptors and transmitted through the body. These receptors can be
mechanical, thermal or chemical in how they sense and respond to harmful stimuli, such as
physical damage to skin, bones, muscles or tissues. Once activated, they send pain signals to the
brain and central nervous system as a warning of potential threats to the body.
The nociceptive properties or general pain-relieving properties of CBD oil are mainly produced
by CB1 receptors—those found in the nervous system which regulate pain transmission. As CBD
binds to these receptors, it prevents nerve transmission of pain signals. While this is by no means
considered a cure, and relief isn’t permanent, it may help to improve your quality of life as you
resolve the underlying cause of your knee pain. (5)
Anti-Inflammatory Properties of CBD
A common component of knee pain is inflammation within or around the joint. As joints become
stressed or damaged, the immune system recognizes damaged tissue and induces inflammation.
Without sufficient rest, treatment and recovery, the inflammation will persist and may worsen.
Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are two leading causes of pain in the knees, with
symptoms such as joint degeneration, intermittent inflammation, and peripheral neuropathy.
Some studies have been conducted to determine if CBD may be anti-nociceptive in osteoarthritis
cases, and if it could potentially inhibit inflammation associated with joint neuropathy and
arthritis pain. Animal studies have provided encouraging results that indicate CB1 and CB2
receptors play an active role in the endocannabinoid system in modulating pain and
inflammation. Furthermore, drugs and chemicals that impact these receptors may potentially
decrease arthritis symptoms and pain, which is how CBD and its effect on the endocannabinoid
system has become a subject of investigation. (6)
The anti-inflammatory properties of CBD are a result of CB2 receptor activation in the
endocannabinoid system. When activated, it signals the down-regulation of inflammatory protein
production, resulting in lower inflammation.
Where Can I Find a Quality CBD Oil?
The key to finding the best CBD product is purchasing from a company that you trust to be a
reliable and ethical source. You’ll also want to look for products that have been properly and
transparently tested for potency. As a novice consumer, it’s important to understand the
terminology used on labels of products containing CBD oil. There are 3 main types of CBD on
the market that you should be cognizant of. (7)
Full-spectrum CBD extract contains all chemical compounds in tact from the cannabis plant,
including terpenes, phenols, flavonoids, proteins and fatty acids, and also traces of THC. When
combined, these compounds produce a synergistic effect known as the entourage effect and may
have a holistically beneficial impact on the body. For example, they may lower inflammation and
reduce oxidative stress.
Broad-spectrum CBD extract contains most of the cannabinoids that naturally occur in the plant,
except for THC.
Isolate is the purest form of CBD extract, having been purified and isolated from all other
It is important to remember that depending on your body’s sensitivity to foreign chemicals and
substances, you may experience some side effects. Although most of the known side effects of
CBD are considered low-risk, you should be aware of what they are in case you experience any.
The most common side effects for first-time consumers of CBD are:
- Irritability and mood swings
- Gastrointestinal distress
If you have any concerns or experience abnormal side effects that don't diminish with time, it's
highly advisable to cease using the product and consult a physician. Like any other herbal
supplement, CBD may have the capacity to interact with some medications, such as blood
Third-Party Tested for Potency
Supplements aren’t regulated by the FDA. This means that virtually any supplement company
can state their product has a certain amount of CBD. Without an independent lab test, there is no
way to verify the amount of CBD present in a product.
To make sure you’re getting the quality you expect from the best CBD products, look for
companies that share their certificate of analysis (CoA) on their website. You’ll be able to verify
that the potency they claim is accurate and valid. Also, look for products that are labeled as
organically made in the U.S. Domestically grown cannabis is usually subject to agricultural
regulations. If it’s grown organically, it’ll also likely contain fewer or zero pesticides and other
potentially toxic chemicals. Note the difference between cannabidiol and hemp oil; the latter is
made from hemp seeds and shouldn’t contain any CBD, whereas CBD oil is derived directly
from different parts of the cannabis plant, including buds, leaves, flowers and stems. (7)
The Range of CBD Products
There are various kinds of CBD oil products available. CBD tinctures, vape oil, gummies, soft
gels, and CBD cream and salve ointments for pain are all potentially effective ways to administer
CBD and help alleviate inflammation in your knees.
CBD oil can be found in both topical and oral products. Because cannabinoids are fat-soluble,
they can penetrate through the fatty tissues of the skin. Topical CBD products may provide localized
pain relief and work in combination with an oral CBD product.
CBD tinctures taken orally work best when held under the tongue. The blood vessels that are
close to the surface of the tongue allow the body to readily absorb CBD into the bloodstream.
CBD Vape Oil
You can also use vaporizing devices with CBD oil. When inhaled, CBD enters the body through
the lungs and absorbs into the small blood vessels on the surface of the lungs. The absorption
rate is usually faster than other methods and the effects can be experienced almost
This method also bypasses the digestive system which may increase the amount of CBD that is
absorbed into the body.
CBD soft gels and gummies are convenient and easy to ingest. Although they take longer to
absorb and render desirable effects, they are still thought to be potent and effective by
Could CBD be a Natural Alternative for Managing Knee Pain?
Knee pain is just one of many conditions which researchers are studying with CBD. This natural
supplement may provide an abundance of benefits thanks to the way it interacts with receptors
all over the body. Early research indicates two receptors, CB1 and CB2, are the keys to helping
CBD combat pain. It is believed to have significant anti-inflammatory effects and provide a level
of pain relief. However, it should be noted that studies are still ongoing as to the efficacy and
benefits of CBD and its long-term use.
If you are suffering from chronic knee pain, you may wish to try a quality CBD oil product to
quell the symptoms. Look for a company that is trustworthy, provides full spectrum extracts, and
third-party tests their product for potency. This will help to ensure that you get the best return on
your investment, and do not getting scammed by an inferior product.
Looking to purchase high-quality and trusted CBD products? Our Highland Pharms CBD is
sourced from pharmaceutical grade plants to provide the most benefit to our customers. Learn
more about our ultra-high grade products here.
1. “Treatments for Osteoarthritis of the Knee – What Works?” Source:
2. “7 Benefits and Uses of CBD Oil (Plus Side Effects)” Source:
3. “Cannabis Sativa: the Plant of the Thousand and One Molecules” Source:
4. “A Simple Guide To The Endocannabinoid System” Source:
5. “What is the Difference Between Nociceptive and Neuropathic Pain” Source:
6. “Attenuation of early phase inflammation by cannabidiol prevents pain and nerve damage
in rat osteoarthritis”, Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5690292/
7. “Choosing a CBD Oil: 10 Favorite Oils To Try” Source:
8. “Cannabidiol (CBD) – What we know and what we don’t” Source: