CBD for Pelvic Pain, Sciatica & More: How Rectal Suppositories Could Help
If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you’re aware of the growing trend of putting CBD oil and cannabis-infused suppositories where the sun don’t shine. For many of us, putting things up our butts is a rare — or nonexistent — experience, especially since there are plenty of other ways to take CBD or THC.
But if you’re looking for specific, local relief, don’t rule out taking a suppository rectally. Not only is the rectum part of the digestive tract (a system that can benefit from cannabinoids), it’s also very close to sections of your spine that control your lower torso — meaning that anal or rectal suppositories might benefit the lower half of your body in unexpected ways. And for people who are intrigued by the sensual possibilities of anal play (but maybe a bit intimidated), the power of cannabinoids to relax muscles and soothe pain could make offer an additional route for sexual enhancement.
When Did People Start Putting Weed in Their Butts?
For decades, people in the medical cannabis community have endorsed taking suppositories rectally — particularly for cancer patients whose chemotherapy-induced nausea prevents oral administration.
Foria was the first company to promote vaginal use of cannabinoids for sexual pleasure and menstrual relief (at least in the modern world) and the effectiveness of that route got us curious about other routes for pleasure and pain relief, leading to our anal play suppository Explore .
But humans like to experiment, so we’ve subsequently heard about all sorts of other reasons people take our suppositories rectally :
Which all makes sense, given that cannabinoids have a surprising number of benefits — including being potent anti-inflammatory compounds. And rectal therapeutics have been embraced by our ancestors for thousands of years for treating pelvic ailments: Egyptian scrolls from 1500 BC describe over 700 herbal medications that were applied rectally .
All this might leave you wondering whether you’ve been missing out if you haven’t explored the therapeutic upsides of going this route. So instead of leaving you to explore in the dark, we’re shedding some light on the science behind anal suppositories. Read on to learn about the many ways medicine — and CBD suppositories — can accomplish wonders when you let them in the back door.
Drugs in Your Derriere: What Happens?
When molecules enter your body via the back door, their final destination depends entirely on their chemical properties.
For instance, alcohol and very water-soluble medications can easily pass across rectal tissue into the bloodstream, which gives them very quick access to your body. This is why vodka-enemas and cocaine-smuggling can be incredibly dangerous — rectal delivery of toxic drugs skips over your body’s emergency eject function (aka vomiting).
However, not all molecules travel so efficiently — if at all — into your bloodstream. The larger the molecule and the less water-soluble it is, the more likely it will stick around locally and diffuse into the surrounding tissues, which are full of welcoming fatty lipids. Instead of circulating through your bloodstream and affecting the entire body, these larger molecules have much more localized effects in the pelvis.
That’s why, compared with oral drugs & medicines, most medical suppositories provide relief to the pelvic region and digestive tract while producing fewer full-body side effects . Anti-inflammatories, anesthetics and anti-tumor drugs are currently used in medical suppositories for:
CBD & THC: Why They’re Not Like a Vodka Enema
Cannabinoids like CBD oil and THC don’t dissolve into water (they’re hydro-phobic ). Instead, they dissolve more easily in oils (they’re fat-soluble ). This is the reason that cannabis & hemp extracts usually come in a fat like coconut oil, hemp seed oil, or butter — and why our CBD Suppositories or our THC/CBD Suppositories are made with cocoa butter.
Despite their rich history and therapeutic potential, modern research into the behavior of rectally-delivered cannabinoids is lacking. To the best of our knowledge, only one study has tested whether or not cannabinoids from fat-based suppositories reach the bloodstream. When monkeys were given high doses of THC in an oil-based suppository, it only reached the bloodstream if it was first chemically modified (into THC hemisuccinate ).
However, the science is far from settled, and everyone’s body is unique. Cannabis doctors have told us about patients experiencing full body effects from rectal suppositories, and we’ve found that some of our customers report a full-body effect after using our suppositories, which only contain natural cannabinoids in organic cocoa butter.
Whether you experience this or not, current evidence suggests that rectal cannabinoids are mostly going to stay within the tissues of the pelvis. So, what’s in the neighborhood?
Quite a lot, actually.
The Anal Landscape
If you’re already familiar with anal anatomy, feel free to skip ahead, but this amazing transition zone between the internal and external world deserves a proper introduction.
The back door — your anus — opens into the anal canal. This narrow canal is typically 1-1.5 inches long and contains sphincter muscles that regulate what goes in and out.
Past the gates of the anal canal is the rectum, a stretchy passageway about 5 inches long. This section of the digestive tract serves as a temporary storage facility for whatever travels out of — or into — the back door.
When the rectum is full, the sensation of being stretched tells your body to either send the contents out through the anus or back up into the colon if possible. The colon is lined with sponge-like tissue that absorbs water (which is why a long-delayed bowel movements can lead to constipation).
Surrounding the anal canal and rectum are some very “sacred” parts of our bodies. The lowest region of the spinal cord is here — the sacrum — and it’s the root source of many sensations that occur in the pelvis and legs.
Directly opposite the sacrum (on the other side of the rectum) are organs that can bring us intense pleasure or pain: the vagina and uterus (for females), or the prostate and bladder (for males).
When you insert a little rocket-shaped suppository and let the cocoa butter slowly melt, the tissues lining your rectum and anal canal become coated with cannabinoid-packed oil. From this oil, CBD and/or THC slowly diffuse into and throughout the surrounding tissues. Where do these molecules end up, if not the bloodstream?
The nerves in the pelvic region carry a variety of signals & sensations. Not only do they carry signals from your anus to the decision-making headquarters of the central nervous system, they also carry messages back to the muscles and glands of the pelvic region, based on how your nervous system interprets these sensations.
Sensations experienced throughout the pelvis contribute to both “felt” sensations (tactile & structural), as well as subconscious perceptions of well-being. Many sensations felt in your anal canal & rectum can feed directly into your “fight-or-flight” response or its opposing “rest-and-digest” response (through the sympathetic nervous system or the parasympathetic nervous system, respectively). Together, these alert/relax signals help your body to coordinate when to get sexually aroused, when to digest — or when to temporarily halt these functions and panic .
The pelvic region is packed with important muscles that cannabinoids can influence.
Ringing your anal canal are two sphincter muscles — one that you control, and the other that is told by the parasympathetic nervous system when to “let go.” Further upstream, the puborectalis muscle tugs right where your anal canal and rectum meet, which creates another barrier between your rectum and the back door. (This is also why many people love squatty potties: when you squat, this muscle tends to relax!)
If you want things to painlessly enter or exit your rectum, the puborectalis muscle and both sphincters need to relax together. And because two of these muscles are controlled by your subconscious, you can’t simply will this relaxation to happen. This is why most tutorials on anal sex focus first on spending time fostering feelings of comfort & safety.
Looking at the bigger picture, these muscles belong to the pelvic floor — a group of muscles you might already be familiar with. Collectively, the pelvic floor supports pelvic organs and helps maintain continence. While kegel exercises focus on strengthening the pelvic floor, many people actually suffer from pelvic floor muscles that are too tight, which can cause painful sex, urinary problems, or even pinched nerves (as in some cases of sciatica).
Immune Cells & Inflamed Tissues
For some of us, pelvic inflammation can ravage our daily lives. Hemorrhoids or digestive disorders often coincide with inflammation in the anal canal or rectum. Other sources of inflammation in the pelvis can include arthritis, physical injuries and the ups and downs of the menstrual cycle. And inflammation can actually pinch nerve roots within the spinal cord, setting off downstream health conditions like sciatica.
But most of your pelvic region is buried within your body, so how can you know if you suffer from inflammation? Stiffness or pain could be an indication that your immune system is working overtime. Temporary inflammation from injuries, overuse or painful periods can be treated at home, but if you suffer from chronic pelvic inflammation, consult with a medical professional. Why?
In addition to diagnosing potential conditions like endometriosis, a doctor can assess whether chronic inflammation should be treated to prevent future health problems. For instance, inflammatory bowel disease increases a person’s susceptibility to diseases like colorectal cancer .
Rectal? Or Vaginal?
As a note to those with vaginas: You might want to experiment to see if Foria suppositories are more effective at relieving pelvic issues when taken rectally versus vaginally. For period cramps, the back door is a great option if you’re currently experiencing a flow and have… obstacles in the way.
If you’re using suppositories for sexual enhancement & relaxation, be aware that oil-based suppositories and lubricants are not compatible with latex condoms.
What to Expect
If this is your first time trying a cannabis suppository, there’s a chance you’re worried about potential cognitive side effects. Although most people who use Foria Explore and Foria Relief (suppositories that contain both THC and CBD) do not experience a strong “high,” we do occasionally hear from people who end up feeling mildly “elevated” or deeply relaxed. If you already know you can’t tolerate THC, stick to a CBD-only suppository like Foria Basics .
Because the release of cannabinoids from cocoa butter is low and slow, you might feel the effects for a day or more — which is almost universally regarded as an upside for CBD suppository users. Although Foria suppositories are molded for single-use application, feel free to experiment first with smaller doses by cutting off a small amount and re-shaping it (and then firming it in the refrigerator).
Do our suppositories help you with something we forgot to mention? We’d love to hear about it!
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Why Are People Sticking CBD Up Their Butt? Everything You Always Wanted To Know About CBD Suppositories
Suppositories can become a fast-acting mode of delivery. However, they are probably the least popular way of consuming CBD oil.
CBD suppositories only became popular due to the booming cannabis industry. Since legalization, more clinical and anecdotal evidence regarding cannabidiol (CBD) benefits and its multiple administration forms started appearing. However, CBD suppositories are not surprisingly the least popular.
People are now beginning to appreciate that CBD oil suppositories can provide an alternative delivery system that is highly efficient. They can either be inserted anally or vaginally.
There is a wide variety of CBD suppositories, and some are rarely safe for rectal and vaginal use. Others are limited to anal insertion only. In this discussion, we focus on products designed to be inserted rectally.
Keep in mind that some suppositories contain THC, one of the controlled substances that are illegal in many areas. They come by various names, such as “cannabis” suppositories, marijuana suppositories, weed suppositories, or THC instead of CBD suppositories. If you cannot tolerate THC or THC is illegal in your location, stick to CBD products.
Both THC and CBD suppositories are available in many stores, but we will be overviewing products derived from hemp in this article. Remember that THC is not legal in all states. THC is illegal on a federal level, but some states allow the recreational use of marijuana.
When using CBD suppositories, be sure to follow instructions carefully. Also, read the product label to determine if the suppository is designed for rectal use, vaginal use only.
What are CBD Suppositories?
CBD suppositories are pill-sized products that contain CBD oil. They are designed to melt at body temperature after insertion into the vagina or the rectum. As soon as the product dissolves in the intestine’s mucosa layer, the CBD oil melts and releases the active ingredients, absorbed and transported into the bloodstream. The release of the therapeutic ingredients provides pain relief and other benefits.
CBD suppositories are available for rectal and vaginal use, but our focus will be on specific products for anal use. Remember that not all rectal suppositories are advised for vaginal usage. The vaginal suppositories are explicitly designed for safe vaginal use.
Benefits of Cannabis Suppositories
CBD suppositories possess specific benefits that other CBD oil products cannot provide. Whatever your reasons for cannabidiol use , there are instances when you can rely more on suppositories than any other method of CBD consumption.
For instance, CBD oil for oral use has a lower bioavailability because it has to pass through the digestive system. The fatty tissues in the stomach and the intestines absorb some of the CBD. Hence, a significant percentage of the cannabinoid will not be used because it will not reach the bloodstream.
Suppositories deliver a high percentage of the CBD directly to the bloodstream through the rectum’s mucosal linings. Therefore, most of the product’s components are fully utilized to relieve pain and other ailments.
Many patients who have neurodegenerative issues have trouble swallowing solid matter. CBD suppositories help these patients by delivering the active compounds through the rectum.
In terms of medical benefits, cannabis suppositories are beneficial for pain relief, especially for reproductive ailments and pelvic pain. The reproductive system hosts innumerable cannabinoid receptors, making the pelvic region susceptible to cannabinoids.
For those struggling with painful sex due to tight pelvic floor muscles, painful periods, or sciatica, cannabis suppositories can increase blood flow in the area and alleviate severe pain.
Most people use CBD for pain , while others use CBD against anxiety . CBD suppositories are beneficial in relieving pain in the reproductive and pelvic regions.
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A Brief History of Suppositories
Suppositories are not a new health trend. They go back thousands of years as archeologists have found molds of suppositories in 12th-century apothecaries. Also, people have been using cannabis for healing since around 5,000 years ago.
Suppository comes from suppositorum , meaning “something placed beneath.” The word was first used in the 1700s in academic literature to substitute for the term enema.
In ancient Egyptian documentation, they used suppositories to ease gastrointestinal problems. Some experts also suggest that the old Babylonian medical specialists prescribed suppositories to treat hemorrhoids.
Some sources assert that suppositories were independently invented by the indigenous people of North America even before Columbus sailed to the continent. They softened a piece of the dogwood tree, compressed it, and inserted it into the anus to treat hemorrhoids.
In the past, people encased herbs in honey or soap, allowed them to harden, and used them as suppositories. They eventually replaced honey and soap with cocoa butter and other plant oils.
Talking about suppositories and their application is still considered taboo in many cultures but quite popular in France among other countries. In the U.K., people avoid such a method of administering medication. In the U.S., suppositories are a little more widespread, but patients avoid discussing them with other people.
Who Benefits from Cannabis Suppositories
Some individuals with particular medical conditions benefit from using CBD oil suppositories over oral consumption. CBD suppositories are commonly used by:
- Patients with neurological conditions such as ALS, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease who have difficulty swallowing
- Patients who undergo chemotherapy and suffer from nausea and vomiting.
- Patients who are restricted from ingesting solid food before an operation or surgery
- Patients with compromised lungs who cannot tolerate inhalable CBD products and who do not want to take CBD capsules or pills
- Patients who want a faster delivery method for high concentration
Product Selection Method
If you are well-acquainted with CBD, you already know that CBD products are not made equally. You have to choose CBD brands from companies that show transparency and are dedicated to providing customers with safe and quality CBD suppositories.
When you are shopping for CBD suppositories or any other CBD product, you have to take note of the following requirements:
CBD Brand Reputation
We choose CBD brands from transparent companies with a solid reputation. They have to be dedicated to providing safe and top-quality products.
Natural and Non-GMO
CBD products should be derived from all-natural and non-GMO U.S-grown hemp. The CBD must undergo a safe extraction method and produce the least amount of processing.
All other ingredients should be natural and non-GMO. It means that the source of the ingredients should not be genetically engineered.
Independent Third-Party Lab Results
Manufacturers of CBD products must openly show third-party lab test results to customers to prove that the cannabinoid levels in the product match the product label.
CBD suppositories must be tested to determine whether they contain pesticides, moulds, or heavy metals.
Active and Inactive Ingredients
We take a look at every active and inactive ingredient in the product to ensure that you get the best quality CBD products on the market. As much as possible, we recommend products made from all-natural ingredients as possible. The active ingredient is the specific component in the product that causes the desired physiological effect when consumed.
Users have different needs, desires, and purposes for CBD products. Some brands offer one or two brand potencies, while others offer more.
We constantly look for products that have a wide range of potencies to satisfy the needs, desires, and purposes of as many customers as possible. However, the brands of CBD suppositories in our recommended list contain 50 mg of CBD for every suppository.
We prefer to promote products that include a wide price range to cater to each individual’s budget. Prices will vary depending on the potency, serving size, volume, and added ingredients. We strive to provide you with the required information to make a well-informed decision to suit your particular needs and budget range.
We seek to recommend products made using extraction methods that are safe and clean. There are primarily three methods used to extract CBD, and we will discuss each one below.
The first is solvent extraction using propane, ethanol, butane, or isopropyl alcohol to extract the cannabinoid from the plant. This extraction method is cheap and quick, but it risks leaving harmful solvent residue behind.
The second is the olive oil method, a clean and cost-effective extraction technique. The plant material is soaked in olive oil or any other carrier oil and heated to a specific temperature for a certain period. Soon enough, the carrier oil gets infused with the cannabinoids from the plant. However, the main issue with olive oil is that it can go rancid quickly and must be stored appropriately to maintain freshness. Many manufacturers use coconut oil as a carrier oil or any other option with a longer shelf life.
The best extraction method so far is the CO2 method. Carbon dioxide is cooled to the point that it reaches a liquid state. The hemp is mixed with the liquid, and both are subjected to high pressure to achieve infusion. It is an expensive method that requires proper equipment and facilities, but it produces an extract that is safe, potent, chlorophyll-free, and solvent-free.
With all these in mind, here are CBD School’s top 4 CBD suppository recommendations:
How many CBD suppositories should I use?
If you are a beginner, always discuss the optimum dosage with a qualified medical professional knowledgeable in CBD suppository usage. In addition, make sure to follow the proper dosage and instructions provided on the product page of the suppository.
Some CBD suppositories have around 20-25 mg CBD content. However, the products mentioned above each contain 50 mg of CBD. This amount may be too much for those just starting their CBD journey. Hence, it is best to cut the product in half to prevent lethargy or other adverse effects.
The most suitable dosage for each person varies depending on many factors. It is wise to start with a smaller amount and monitor how your body reacts. Always start with the minimal amount of CBD that produces the expected effect. If the dose is too small, it will not provide you with any benefit and will only be wasted. An amount that is too high might have adverse effects. Remember that CBD is a biphasic compound, and its effects can diminish or change when it surpasses a specific dose.
How to use CBD suppositories?
CBD suppositories that have a firm consistency are most efficient. Store them in a freezer or refrigerator to maintain their firmness and shape.
To insert a rectal CBD suppository, you should lie down sideways and pull your knees up towards your chest. Then, you need to insert the suppository, pointed end first, into the rectum using your index finger. Insert 2.5cm to 4cm of the suppository to reach past the inner anal sphincter. Make sure to wash your hands after inserting the product.
Clench the muscles of your buttocks together as you flex the inner muscles of the anus by approximately 3-4 seconds to prevent the suppository from slipping out of the anal cavity.
It is essential to lie down sideways for at least 2-3 minutes. Remember that the associated liquid from the suppository may leak mildly from your rectum for at least a few hours. Therefore, the best time to use a cannabis suppository is during your bedtime or nap time because you have plenty of time to lay down and take your time. Besides, you can use CBD oil for sleep .
Vaginal CBD Suppositories
The products recommended in this article are for vaginal and rectal use. However, not all suppositories are deemed safe for vaginal use. If you want to use CBD suppositories to treat menstrual cramps, make sure you use vaginal suppositories.
Always read the instructions placed on the packaging to avoid inserting the wrong suppository. Some CBD suppositories are designed for RECTAL use ONLY. There are compounds in rectal suppositories that may not be pleasant for vaginal use. Hence, be sure to read every instruction on the packaging to determine if it is safe for vaginal insertion.
Insert the vaginal CBD suppository into the vaginal cavity as deep as possible by using a tampon applicator or a finger. You can place some cushion under your buttocks for at least 5 minutes to help the CBD oil get in contact with the uterine and cervical tissue. Vaginal suppositories work fast, thus providing women with a chance to find relief quickly.
How long does it take for a CBD suppository to work?
It takes up to 30 minutes for CBD suppositories to begin showing any effect. In some instances, it may take only 15 minutes or faster.
The base may melt quickly after skin contact when using a homemade CBD suppository. Learn more about using CBD for skincare .
CBD is the most prominent pain management compound found in hemp. When taken as a suppository, it can quickly get into the bloodstream and affect the central nervous system (i.e., the brain and the spinal cord).
How to make suppositories?
You can make CBD oil suppositories at home. However, exercise extreme care to keep all the ingredients clean. Wash your hands and utensils thoroughly before making CBD suppositories at home.
Follow these instructions to make rectal CBD suppositories at home:
- CBD Oil
- Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
- Ice tray with pop-out cubes (circular)
- Stir stick
- Place the coconut oil in a container and melt it by placing the container over hot water
- Place 1/8 inch of oil into the bottom of the ice tray reservoirs
- Use a dropper to place a measured amount of CBD oil into each reservoir
- Stir gently
- Freeze the mixture for about 1 to 2 hours
- You can store the homemade suppositories in the freezer
- Before using, you can cut the suppositories into smaller sizes if necessary
Keep in mind that homemade suppositories melt rapidly. Hence, use them during bedtime or at a time when you can lie down for an extended period.
By the end of 2018, the federal government legalized hemp, the cannabis plant from which CBD oil is extracted. As a result, the production of hemp extracts such as CBD isolate and full-spectrum CBD oil were also made legal for production, sale, and use.
The 2018 Farm Bill made hemp and hemp-derived products legal on a federal level. However, the regulation of hemp, CBD, and other hemp derivatives was put into the hands of the state legislature. Every state has its plan on regulating hemp products under the approval of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Some states may not allow certain cannabis products, such as smokable cannabis flowers. However, you can easily buy CBD oil suppositories, CBD tinctures for vaping , and most hemp-derived products.
When you purchase a product not produced in your state, it does not necessarily put you at risk of breaking cannabis possession laws. That responsibility is in the hands of local CBD shops. They should know which products they can or cannot sell to you.
You can find marijuana-derived CBD products from state-licensed dispensaries. Marijuana refers to any cannabis plant that contains more than 0.3% Delta-9 THC.
CBD Safety and Side Effects
CBD oil is one of the safest natural herbal remedies you can find. It is non-addictive, non-toxic, and non-intoxicating. It does not cause any mind-altering effects. Studies show that humans can easily tolerate high doses of CBD without any severe side effects.
Some of the mild side effects of CBD include dry mouth, drowsiness, and lethargy. It may also cause diarrhea, but this is usually caused by the contents and quality of the product.
The best practice is to start with a small dose of CBD, around 5 to 10 mg, depending on your body weight and age. After trying this dose for a few days, you can increase the quantity based on how your body reacts to the cannabinoid. Increase your dose gradually until you reach an amount that delivers the desired effects.
Use the minimum amount of CBD to experience the most optimum relief if you plan to treat an ailment. Keep in mind that when you reach a certain amount of CBD, there is no longer any additional benefit to the body. Taking more will only be a waste of cash.
Starting with a small dose also tests your tolerance to CBD and the other ingredients found in the product. For instance, some users may be allergic to specific terpenes or flavonoids.
There is much that we know and what we don’t know about CBD . Therefore, we have to exercise caution when consuming any form of CBD or other cannabinoids. As far as we know, we can easily tolerate CBD without experiencing significant side effects. Nonetheless, we should consume moderate amounts of CBD or risk experiencing any adverse side effects.
Are CBD Suppositories Suitable for You?
When finding the best delivery method for CBD, it’s wise to explore all options. Anal CBD may be the solution for specific individuals.
For example, some older people can no longer swallow their medications in pill form. Other individuals with cancer may be going through chemo and experiencing chronic nausea and vomiting, making it impossible to take prescription medications without vomiting. Some undergo surgery and are not allowed to ingest any solids.
Using suppositories to consume CBD may seem incredibly awkward because of the many sensitive topics and social ideologies about the rectum. However, this method has many benefits that you should consider.
CBD suppositories provide an efficient way to experience the healing properties of CBD. Introducing CBD oil into the anus offers a quick way to absorb the cannabinoid. Some users even turn to CBD enemas to treat a few gastrointestinal disturbances.
Rectal Cannabis Suppositories
Despite the fact many people start to giggle when someone mentions rectal suppositories, this way of application is not funny and has many advantages. Suppositories are especially suitable for patients who cannot or don’t want to ingest or inhale cannabis.
Suppositories infused with medicinal cannabinoids have relatively fast onset of action – a bit slower than while you smoke cannabis, but faster than edibles; and its effects last longer. However, the biggest advantage of this way of application is that even if you apply a relatively large dose of psychoactive THC you will not feel as “high” as if you consume the same amount orally (both smoking and eating).
How Do They Look Like?
Cannabis suppositories have usually conic shape and they are administered rectally (vaginal suppositories are specific, and they would deserve a separate article). A two grams suppository (the most common) is approximately 2.5 cm long, and the basic mixture is made from cocoa butter with a “touch” of coconut oil or shea butter – all of that mixed with cannabis extract. If you do not have an access to the extract, you can mix cocoa butter with dried cannabis buds and prepare the basis the same way, as if you were making homemade cannabis cream.
How Do They Work?
Suppositories are an effective way of administering cannabis during the treatment. After they are inserted into rectum, the cannabinoids are quickly absorbed through large intestine wall directly into bloodstream. Process of application is not difficult at all – you can ask your doctor or find instructions on the internet.
In case of smoking, the effects are almost immediate, but they do not last long unless the inhalation is frequently repeated. When eaten, the effects can be felt as late as 30 minutes after consumption because active ingredients have to pass through intestines and liver. To the contrary, the effects of cannabis suppositories are noticeable already after 10–15 minutes and they last from four to eight hours.
Bioavailability (absorbability) of cannabis during smoking is just 10–25 per cent depending upon frequency of smoking and dosing. The efficiency of eating of cannabis products is approximately 20–30 per cent and the effects can vary greatly. On the other hand, the bioavailability of rectal administration is between 50–70 per cent and its effects on individual patients with various diagnoses can be easily predicted.
Who Are They for?
Suppositories are ideal choice for many patients – for example for those undergoing chemotherapy; these people suffer from severe nausea and thus it is often impossible for them to digest cannabis edibles. They are also suitable for elderly and children and for those who cannot swallow pills. Moreover, suppositories would benefit surgical patients who cannot eat immediately before and after operations, and also patients who are unable to swallow due to stroke or another disease.
Concerning specific indications, suppositories are suitable for patients with Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and other diseases associated with a gastrointestinal tract and excretion. Many male patients also report that suppositories are effective especially in treating various health problems associated with prostate.
However, we should note that there has not been much of scientific research in this method of cannabinoids application.
How to Use Them?
Suppository forms are usually sold in two-gram version for adults and one-gram version for children. When they are prepared, they should be stored in a cold place. Before inserting, it is good to make sure that the suppository is firm. If not, put it into a fridge or a freezer (it is actually best to store them in fridge the whole time).
Lie sidelong and crouch. Using your index finger, insert the suppository into your rectum, pointed end first. Insert it circa 2.5–4 cm deep, all the way behind the inner anal sphincter.
To prevent the suppository from slipping out, you must clench your buttocks together firmly and flex muscles of your anal sphincter for 2–3 seconds.
Keep lying sidelong at least for next few minutes. There is a risk that fluid from the suppository will mildly leak during next few hours – you should take that into account when planning other activities (this is why the best time to apply the suppository is before you go to sleep).
What Can You Expect?
You will probably feel warm feeling spreading from the area of your pelvis to the rest of your body. It should pretty quickly alleviate your pain (of course it depends on the particular cannabinoid content) and the effects should last up to 5–6 hours, and at the same time you should not be feeling anxious or “high”. Most of the patients are delighted by the effects of suppositories when they compare them to other ways of application of cannabis.
The time-tested mixture contains 75–80 per cent of cocoa butter and 10 per cent of coconut oil and shea butter. Shea butter and coconut oil have tendency to melt already around 25 degrees of Celsius – that is the reason why they should not be put into the basic mixture in bigger amounts.
You can order moulds for suppositories in various e-shops with medical supplies (they can be also rarely found in pharmacies). Volume of these moulds should be one or two millilitres / grams.
To start making your suppositories you also need last important thing – a cannabis extract (in case you cannot obtain it proceed the same way as if you were making cannabis cream with dried buds).
Example of dosing: to make one set (10 pieces) of one-gram suppositories containing 10 per cent of cannabis extract, warm 9 millilitres of basic mixture with 1 millilitre of extract in water bath until the extract completely dissolves. Mould for the suppositories should be then fixed into a holder. Let the mixture cool for a while and then pour into moulds of all 10 suppositories.