is cbd oil any good for eczema

How CBD Oil Can Treat Acne, Eczema, & Psoriasis

CBD oil (or Cannabidiol ) is the new popular treatment for several health issues and concerns, including chronic skin conditions .

Research on its calming, anti-inflammatory effects continues to grow as CBD oil -infused lotions, salves and more are on the market and being used by consumers. CBD oil may be beneficial for those who suffer from skin conditions like acne, eczema, and psoriasis.

CBD and the Endocannabinoid System

The endocannabinoid system ( ECS ) is one of our body’s built-in regulatory systems with a primary goal of homeostasis. It was named after scientists discovered the interaction our bodies have with compounds from the cannabis plant.

But the entire system actually functions without ever coming into contact with any cannabis. The ECS is made up of neurotransmitters, receptors, and enzymes that help break down both endocannabinoids (from the body) and phytocannabinoids (from plants).

Cannabinoid receptors were found in 1988 in the brain of a rat. Researchers discovered that these receptors were present in humans as well. Throughout the years, research has shown that the endocannabinoid system helps to regulate important functions of the body such as:

  • Appetite
  • Immune function
  • Inflammation

In the endocannabinoid system , there are two major types of receptors . CB1 receptors are located mostly in the central nervous system, while CB2 receptors are located mostly in the immune system , related organs, and peripheral tissue — including skin .

It seems as though our skin is primed and ready to receive the benefits CBD has to offer. This concentrated liquid extracted from the cannabis plant has become well known to consumers and is now present in the world of skincare . We examine the effects of CBD oil on three serious skin conditions .

CBD Oil for Acne

One of the health benefits of CBD oil is that it can be a skin care treatment for acne , the most common skin condition in the United States .

Acne is caused by the buildup of oil and dead skin cells in hair follicles. This buildup causes the skin to become inflamed and the excessive production of sebum, an oily substance secreted by the sebaceous glands. This type of environment on the skin can encourage bacterial growth , leading to breakouts and pimples.

CBD oil is an effective acne treatment because it’s powerfully anti-inflammatory . CBD oil triggers anti-inflammatory properties and prevents excess amounts of sebum from being created, preventing breakouts and blemishes. CBD skin care may also be beneficial to those who experience chronic pain due to acne.

Initial results from scientific studies on CBD oil for acne have proven promising, however more high-quality human trials are needed. CBD skin care products are a cousin to hemp seed oil, or hemp oil , derived from the cannabis sativa plant as well. Both are anti-inflammatory and help in moisturization. It is still unclear if one or the other is more effective on acne.

CBD oil can be applied topically or taken orally. Applying topically can help to treat and target specific breakouts of the skin, while ingesting CBD products can help with the long-term prevention of acne.

When applied topically, CBD oil can be mixed with a carrier oil such as jojoba, safflower, sunflower, castor, argan or rosehip seed oil . In order to avoid side effects , before applying CBD oil directly to the skin, it is important to discuss your condition with a dermatologist , especially if you have sensitive skin. You should also do a “spot test” to ensure you don’t have an allergy to CBD oil, although this is rare.

CBD Oil for Eczema

Atopic dermatitis (AD), or eczema , is a condition that causes inflamed, red, and itchy skin. Eczema can occur at any age and is common in adults and children. Eczema is chronic and has no cure. Dry skin, itchy skin, red or irritated patches, and scaly or cracked skin are some symptoms of eczema.

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CBD products may prove to be helpful in relief of eczema symptoms. We already know that cannabidiol has anti-inflammatory properties . CBD oil also has antimicrobial and anti-itch qualities that contribute to the treatment of eczema. When flare-ups occur on the skin, CBD products can be applied to reduce both the symptoms and appearance of AD.

According to the Handbook of Cannabis and Related Pathologies, the cannabinoid receptors and cannabinoids in the endocannabinoid system aid in the treatment against contact allergic inflammation . This means that topical CBD may be able to contribute to dermatology and treat inflammatory skin diseases such as eczema and allergic contact dermatitis.

When purchasing everyday CBD oil products, specifically for skin diseases like AD, caution should be taken to avoid irritants that may be present in products like creams and salves. Topical CBD oil products for eczema include body butters and moisturizing skin lotions.

Consumers will want to be sure to purchase high quality CBD skin care product from reputable sources. The FDA has yet to approve non-synthetic cannabinoid -based topical therapy for medical skin conditions like eczema. Research is still ongoing in this area, so talking to a doctor about topical CBD is important.

CBD Oil for Psoriasis

Using CBD could serve as an effective treatment for psoriasis as well. Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune disorder , meaning that the immune system impacts healthy cells in the body. This skin condition causes skin cells to be produced at a rapid rate, reaching the surface of the skin before they are able to mature.

The rapid skin cell growth causes skin to be scaly . Other symptoms of psoriasis include redness, swelling, and discomfort. Those with skin diseases like psoriasis may develop psoriatic arthritis , which causes swelling and stiffness of the joints and can be very painful.

According to the National Psoriasis Foundation , there are several psoriasis treatments such as biologic drugs, oral treatments, phototherapy, and topicals.

One particular 2013 study suggested that cannabis and cannabinoid receptors may treat psoriasis by slowing the rapid growth of keratinocytes , stating “cannabimimetic agents might be relevant for the treatment of several skin conditions … such as psoriasis and wound healing.” Keratinocytes are the cells produced immaturely in psoriasis patients.

Another way that CBD products can treat symptoms of psoriasis is through the treatment of chronic pain. When individuals experience psoriasis flare-ups , CBD may be helpful in soothing the pain caused by the skin condition .

An article from the British Pharmacological Society states that cannabinoids are safe and effective in neuropathic pain, with evidence regarding fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis . Stress is another symptom of psoriasis that can be treated with CBD oil , as its calming effects have been known to help soothe anxiety.

Topical CBD oil skin care products are ideal for psoriasis treatment . Topical creams can have a cooling effect that helps to relieve itchiness and discomfort.

In Summary

  • The endocannabinoid system is a built in biological system that interacts with the cannabis plants. This system can regulate important functions of the body and interacts with cannabidiol .
  • CBD is a compound that can treat many skin conditions such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis.
  • CBD treats acne by decreasing the amount of buildup or sebum in the body. Topical use of CBD may be able to prevent long term acne of the skin.
  • Eczema can be treated by CBD through its anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties.
  • The chronic autoimmune disorder , psoriasis, may also see improvement when treated with CBD . Studies suggest that CBD slows the rapid production of immature skin cells caused by the disorder.
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Sources

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  2. El Manira, A., & Kyriakatos, A. (2010). The role of endocannabinoid signaling in motor control. Physiology, 25 (4), 230-238. : https://www.physiology.org/doi/full/10.1152/physiol.00007.2010
  3. Ashton, C. H., & Moore, P. B. (2011). Endocannabinoid system dysfunction in mood and related disorders. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 124 (4), 250-261. : https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1600-0447.2011.01687.x
  4. Fine, P. G., & Rosenfeld, M. J. (2013). The endocannabinoid system , cannabinoids , and pain. Rambam Maimonides medical journal, 4 (4). Full Text: https://www. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov /pmc/articles/PMC3820295/
  5. Pertwee, R. G. (1997). Pharmacology of cannabinoid CB1 and CB2 receptors. Pharmacology & therapeutics, 74 (2), 129-180. Abstract: https://www. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov /pubmed/9336020
  6. Ständer, S., Schmelz, M., Metze, D., Luger, T., & Rukwied, R. (2005). Distribution of cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) and 2 (CB2) on sensory nerve fibers and adnexal structures in human skin. Journal of dermatological science, 38 (3), 177-188. Abstract: https://www. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov /pubmed/15927811
  7. Fine, P. G., & Rosenfeld, M. J. (2013). The endocannabinoid system , cannabinoids , and pain. Rambam Maimonides medical journal, 4 (4).: https://www. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov /pmc/articles/PMC4151231/
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  10. Tüting, T., & Gaffal, E. (2017). Regulatory Role of Cannabinoids for Skin Barrier Functions and Cutaneous Inflammation. In Handbook of Cannabis and Related Pathologies (pp. 543-549). Academic Press.: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780128007563000673
  11. Klein, T. W. (2005). Cannabinoid -based drugs as anti-inflammatory therapeutics. Nature Reviews Immunology, 5 (5), 400.: https://www.nature.com/articles/nri1602
  12. Ramot, Y., Sugawara, K., Zákány, N., Toth, B. I., Bíró, T., & Paus, R. (2013). A novel control of human keratin expression: cannabinoid receptor 1-mediated signaling down-regulates the expression of keratins K6 and K16 in human keratinocytes in vitro and in situ. PeerJ, 1 , e40. Full Text: https://www. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov /pmc/articles/PMC3628749/
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Dr. Michelle Jeffries, D.O., FAOCD, FAAD, IFMCP

Board-Certified Physician in Dermatology, Pediatric Dermatology & Integrative Medicine
Institute for Functional Medicine Certified Practitioner

Hi I’m Dr. Michelle Jeffries. I’m a Board-Certified Dermatologist and I’m also board-certified in Pediatric Dermatology and Integrative Medicine. And you may not know this, but I also have a Masters degree in Psychology.

I know, a little nerdy of me to be triple board-certified and have a masters degree, but let me explain.

Benefits Of CBD Oil And Eczema

The list of patients using CBD oil for their chronic conditions is constantly growing. The research into the benefits of using CBD oil for chronic and other conditions is ongoing. As we progress, we come across more benefits of CBD oil, and more people that have found relief through the use of CBD oil. Eczema is one of these conditions where patients have reported significant relief to their symptoms. Let’s take a look at how eczema responds to the use of CBD oil.

What Is Eczema?

Eczema is a chronic or reoccurring skin condition that affects up to 20% of children and around 3% of adults. doctors have not been able to understand what causes it and sufferers experience symptoms in different ways such as:

  • Red, irritated patches of skin
  • Raised bumps filled with clear fluid
  • Dry, moderately to severely itchy skin
  • Thick, cracked and/or scaly skin
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Flare-ups can be triggered by stress, food allergies, and even weather condition changes. Causes are believed to be linked to:

  • The use of certain substances or products such as skin or hair products
  • A complex immune system malfunction
  • Being rooted in the genetics of a person and therefore having a predisposition to the skin condition

What Is CBD Oil?

CBD refers to cannabidiol, which is derived from cannabis plants. CBD is just one of the hundreds of chemical compounds found in a marijuana plant. CBD oil is often confused with regular marijuana. CBD oil does not contain the psychoactive chemical, known as THC, that marijuana does. Therefore, using CBD oil will not get you “high”. This is what makes CBD oil so attractive: relief from pain without the effects that marijuana is associated with. CBD oil is created by extracting CBD (cannabidiol) from the cannabis plant. Carrier oils such as hemp seed oil and coconut oil is used to dilute the CBD.

Will CBD Oil Work For Eczema?

Although medicine is constantly evolving, where vaccines are being created to solve epidemics that affect large parts of the world population, there are many illnesses that remain a mystery to the medical field. With eczema, the skin condition is not well understood at this point and therefore, there has yet to be a cure.

Topical creams and steroids that have been prescribed to patients have been known to have several side effects, especially when used over a long period of time. The side effects of prolonged usage of topical creams include acne, changes in pigmentation, atrophy, thinner skin, delayed healing as well as the suppression of the normal adrenal function of the body.

The human body hosts a system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Understanding the endocannabinoid system and how it interacts with CBD oil is helpful in becoming more comfortable with using CBD products. This system controls body functions such as pain, immune system response, sleep, and appetite. The body produces endocannabinoids. These are neurotransmitters that are bound to your cannabinoid receptors in the nervous system. CBD oil interacts with these receptors and reduces inflammation, naturally.

The anti-inflammatory properties of CBD make this a useful treatment method for skin conditions like eczema.

The skin consists of receptors that interact with the cannabinoids in CBD oil which has been shown to:

  • Reduced dry skin which causes itching
  • Eliminated severe itching
  • Reduction of complex bacteria on the skin

When selecting the type of CBD oil for your eczema to be sure to purchase one that carries the ingredients that assist in healing skin conditions and not CBD oil for muscle or joint pain. You’ll want unscented oil, and also that does not contain any added ingredients that may cause irritation. As you begin treatment, start in small doses and watch how your body responds and from there, you can increase your dosage.

Legally, many states have begun passing laws that limit the restriction of cannabis products for treating illnesses and ailments. While not all states are completely comfortable with making marijuana products legal, there are systems that have been implemented to assist patients in getting the help they need – legally. We always suggest purchasing CBD oil from a reputable source. As medicine evolves, and more research into cannabis products is done, we continue to marvel at the benefits that have been reported.