Cannabidiol (CBD) has long been known to offer significant health benefits, such as aiding recovery after exercise, combating anxiety and mitigating the effects of stress. It is also known to be an effective way to combat pain. 

Oral CBD supplements work well for most people, but there’s a new way to experience the healing power of CBD: CBD patches. 

A transdermal CBD dose makes great sense for people who don’t like the smell or taste of a CBD oil or tincture, or who don’t tolerate an oral supplement. Let’s take a look at why people are using CBD patches and what the science says about their potential benefits.

What is a CBD patch?

Patches are an innovative way to experience the myriad health benefits of CBD and work in a manner similar to other transdermal-dose products, such as nicotine or analgesic patches.

Applied to the skin and left in place over a period of hours or days, CBD patches release a controlled dose of CBD that is absorbed through the skin (our largest organ!) and transported via the bloodstream to the receptors of the endocannabinoid system (ECS).

Five reasons to use a CBD patch for pain?

There are a lot of great reasons to use a CBD patch. Here are just five of them:

  • Regular intake: Patches deliver a more constant, steady, and regular dose of CBD than other types of supplements, such as oils or capsules.
  • Discrete and easy to apply: CBD patches are easily applied and can be placed out of sight — making them discrete and simple to use for extended periods, without the need to remember to take an oral supplement at a specific time.
  • No taste or smell: Patches are an excellent option for people who don’t tolerate conventional CBD products, because a patch’s CBD is absorbed directly through the skin and bypasses the alimentary canal entirely.
  • Direct pain support: They offer the ability to target pain directly. By placing them right on the affected area they deliver CBD straight to the site of pain.
  • Natural alternative: CBD patches are a safe, natural alternative to conventional analgesics and have very few adverse side effects for the majority of users.

What type of pain is CBD best for?

CBD patches are a great way to alleviate pain caused by inflammation and muscle cramps and can be potentially beneficial in the relief of a wide range of other complaints, such as arthritic pain and the symptoms of multiple sclerosis.

They work for both acute and chronic pain and can be applied directly to an affected area to give site-specific relief, while simultaneously delivering “systemic” benefits to the mind and the rest of the body.

CBD patches for pain: The latest research and findings

Evidence supporting claims for CBD’s ability to alleviate a wide range of conditions and symptoms is long-established and focuses on the compound's role in supporting the endocannabinoid system — the body’s chemical “messaging service.” 

Research on the efficacy of CBD patches is relatively recent, however, but several studies have found that patches may be effective at reducing arthritic pain, chronic pain, and neuropathic pain, and in relieving stress and aiding restful sleep.

In fact, a 2020 study found that a topical application of CBD is an effective remedy for localised back pain, which is great news for the millions of people suffering from sciatica, spinal stenosis, and spondylosis. 

There is also good evidence to suggest that the CBD in patches can help control inflammation, myofascial pain, fibromyalgia, and the symptoms of multiple sclerosis.

The bottom line

With so many potential site-specific and systemic benefits, we think our CBD patches are an excellent weapon in the fight against acute and chronic pain and the symptoms of a wide range of conditions. 

Here’s a quick recap of their advantages over conventional CBD supplements:

  • Provide a sustained delivery of CBD with site-specific and systemic benefits
  • Produce no adverse effects in the majority of people
  • Localized anti-inflammatory effect
  • Offer relief from both acute and chronic pain
  • Are non-greasy and mess-free, unlike many other CBD topicals
  • Can be used by people who don’t tolerate oral CBD supplements

FAQs

Who should use a CBD patch?

CBD patches are used by people who don’t want to take an oral CBD supplement or conventional analgesics but still need effective, long-lasting relief from chronic or acute pain. 

They are also useful for people who want an “apply-and-forget” CBD product that frees them from having to remember to take pills or apply a topical cream or ointment at regular intervals.

How to use a CBD patch

It’s really easy to use a CBD patch: just open the packet, take out the patch, peel off the protective layer, and apply the fresh patch to an area of clean and dry skin. Leave it in place for up to 24 hours (always read the label).

Will CBD patches make you high?

CBD patches won’t make you high, because CBD is non-psychoactive, unlike the other well-known compound found in the hemp plant, THC. 

Structurally similar to CBD, but very different in its effect, THC is refined out of harvested hemp during the production of CBD supplements by law, so you can rest assured that a CBD patch will not affect your mental acuity in any way.

Will CBD patches show up on a drug test?

CBD patches won’t show up on a drug test as they don’t contain any psychoactive compounds. However, it’s always a good idea to consult your testing authority to ensure you comply completely with their regulations.

How long should I leave on a CBD patch?

How long you leave a CBD patch in place depends on your preferences and your results with the product. As with all CBD supplements, it’s best to experiment to see what works best for you and adjust your use accordingly. As ever, always read the label for dosage instructions.

How long does it take for a CBD patch to work?

The length of time it takes a CBD patch to work for you depends on your metabolism and the type of patch you are using. Some patches start to deliver CBD immediately, but others may take several hours or even days to deliver an appreciable effect.