Sciatic nerve pain can be debilitating, making it difficult to perform everyday activities. Fortunately, recent studies suggest that cannabis may be an effective treatment for sciatica. The results of one study showed that THC could reduce pain levels in those with sciatica, while cannabidiol (CBD) may help reduce inflammation and pain. With many clinical trials showing that cannabis is effective for chronic pain and neuropathic pain, it appears to have potential as a treatment for sciatica.
The study followed patients with sciatica for 12 months and evaluated them for pain and range of motion. On the first visit, nine participants were given an average of 15 milligrams of THC oil under their tongues and six were given placebo oil. After treatment, those who had received THC reported that their pain had decreased to an average of 35, while those receiving placebos reported an average pain level of 43. This difference was enough to indicate that THC did have an effect. The results suggested that THC could alleviate sciatica pain by interrupting signals between the pathways in the brain that process pain.
Those who are concerned about the psychoactive effects of THC may find some relief for their sciatica by taking CBD, which has anti-inflammatory properties. CBD is a chemical compound found naturally in cannabis plants and some studies suggest that it may relieve pain and inflammation. Because this study followed patients for an extended period, it has provided a good analysis of the effects of medical cannabis on patients with sciatica and low back pain. With some tests showing that CBD helps reduce pain and inflammation, two key symptoms of sciatica, CBD may help.
Future studies are needed to examine how other components of the marijuana plant, such as cannabidiol, may be useful in relieving pain in combination with THC. Because of this, the study researchers believe that THC could help reconstruct pain connectivity channels that have been damaged by chronic pain. Studies on sciatica and CBD haven't been published yet, so there's no way to know for sure how effective CBD would be for this condition. But with the help of your doctor, you may discover that cannabis is the pain management tool you've been looking for to help you manage sciatica and other nerve pain problems. Because THC is the intoxicating cannabinoid in cannabis, higher doses of THC can cause side effects such as changes in mood and perception, increased appetite, drowsiness, and problems with work and other daily activities. With this in mind, it's important to talk to your doctor before using cannabis to treat your sciatica.