May 31, 2022

CBD For Pelvic Pain

Pelvic pain — it's a common condition among women, but men can suffer from it, too. Whether the pain is due to issues in your digestive, reproductive, or urinary system, it can be debilitating.

What's worse is when you're told that the pain's all in your head, or that you just have to deal with it. But what if there was a natural way to ease the pain?

Many people suffering with chronic pelvic pain are taking their health into their own hands. And some are turning to CBD for relief.

Some swear by its ability to ease their pain. And it seems like science is catching up, too. Let's take a look at how CBD may be able to help with pelvic pain.

Pelvic Pain: Causes, Diagnosis & Treatment

Pelvic pain is a broad term that is used to describe any pain that occurs in the pelvic region. A wide range of possible causes means that pelvic pain can be due to things like endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease, infection, or interstitial cystitis. The pain could also be constant or intermittent, slow developing or sudden.

Causes Of Pelvic Pain

Pelvic pain can happen due to a number of reasons. Some pelvic pain is caused by problems with the reproductive organs, such as endometriosis or ovarian cysts. Other reasons for pelvic pain could be an infection, such as a UTI.

Some common conditions that cause pelvic pain:(1)

  • Endometriosis
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Reproductive tract cancers
  • Uterine fibroids
  • Ectopic pregnancy
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Vulvodynia
  • Vaginismus
  • Appendicitis

Diagnosis & Treatment Of Pelvic Pain

Pelvic pain-related conditions are diagnosed by a healthcare provider based on a person's medical history and a physical examination. Sometimes tests like blood tests, diagnostic imaging, urinalysis, or pregnancy tests may be needed to pinpoint the cause of the pelvic pain.

Treatment will also vary depending on the cause of the pelvic pain. Some common treatments include over-the-counter or prescription medications, antibiotics, contraceptives, physical therapy, or surgery.

It often takes a combined approach of different treatments to find physical and emotional relief from pelvic pain.

CBD For Pelvic Pain: Does It Work?

The surveys are in — people are definitely using CBD to manage their pelvic pain symptoms.(2)

How does CBD fare? To see how CBD might help in the treatment of pelvic pain, we have to look at the different triggers of pelvic pain. Pelvic pain can be from vulvar/vaginal pain disorders, uterine diseases, urologic pain disorders, or other inflammatory conditions.

Let's see how CBD might help with all of these different types of pelvic pain.

CBD For Vulvar & Sexual Pain Disorders

Sexual pain disorders are more common than you think. Many women struggle with pain during sex due to:

  • Vaginismus: A tightening of the muscles around the vagina
  • Vulvodynia: Chronic pain of the labia, clitoris, and vaginal opening
  • Dyspareunia: Genital pain during intercourse
  • Pelvic floor tightness: Pelvic muscles tighten and are unable to relax

Often, sexual pain is unexplained pain — meaning no one knows why it's happening. Thus, it frequently goes undiagnosed. But, if you’re experiencing pain during sex be sure to find a doctor who won't dismiss your concerns.

In addition to being medical issues, these conditions could be triggered by stress. Stress can cause the pelvic floor muscles to tighten and could contribute to sexual pain.

Some studies suggest that CBD might reduce muscle spasms.(3) This might help relax the pelvic floor muscles.

For more on CBD and sex, read: Does CBD Help...Sexually?.

CBD For Uterine Conditions

Endometriosis is a uterine tissue disorder that can cause a lot of pain. Patients with endometriosis report taking cannabis to self-treat their symptoms. The most common reasons reported include pain reduction, addressing gastrointestinal issues, and improving mood.(4)

There’s some good news too. There's a clinical trial in the works to evaluate CBD for the treatment of endometriosis-associated pain.(5) Keep tabs on this one!

CBD For Urinary Tract Pelvic Pain

Urologic chronic pelvic pain syndrome (UCPPS) is a syndrome that includes several conditions that lead to pain and frequent urination. For those who aren't responding well to standard therapies, doctors are starting to prescribe medical marijuana as a treatment for the management of UCPPS.(6)

CBD For Other Pelvic & Inflammatory Conditions

In pelvic floor dysfunction, the muscles and tissues that support the pelvic organs are constantly tightened. Your body is unable to relax those muscles, which can lead to painful and frequent urination, as well as constipation.

CBD might help to relax the pelvic floor muscles, which can lead to less pain and fewer bathroom trips.(7)

CBD Products For Pelvic Pain

Pelvic pain is a complex condition that often requires a multi-faceted approach to treatment. If CBD oil sounds like a part of that approach for you, here are a few product types to consider:

Tips On Choosing CBD For Your Pelvic Pain

Too many options? Not sure where to start? Here are a few pointers:

  • Topical CBD is made for localized pain relief. It could be used on top of the skin around the pelvic area.
  • CBD oil, tinctures, softgels, and gummies can be taken orally and provide more systemic relief.
  • CBD oil, which is taken sublingually, skips the digestive tract. This means it may get to work more quickly than an edible CBD product.
  • CBD suppositories are a newer product that may also help to provide cannabidiol near the pelvic floor muscles.
  • No matter which CBD product you choose, opt for one formulated to have high bioavailability.
  • Consider layering different types of CBD products for maximum relief from pelvic pain. Read our blog Layering CBD: How To Do It Safely & Effectively for tips.

Final note for those seeking pelvic pain relief: CBD is not an FDA-approved product for treating pelvic conditions. Research suggests that it might help ease pain, though it’s not approved to treat or prevent any pelvic infections, diseases, or conditions. Talk to your doc for more guidance on whether CBD is a good fit for your needs.

Can CBD Help With Pelvic Pain? Maybe!

There are many different types of pelvic pain — indeed dozens of conditions could lead to this type of discomfort. But whatever the source of your symptoms, CBD oil might be able to offer some relief.

If you're experiencing chronic pelvic pain, chat with your doctor about whether CBD has a place in your pain management plan!

NATURAL CBD FOR A HAPPY PELVIS

References

  1. (2021). Pelvic Pain. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/pelvic-pain/basics/causes/sym-20050898
  2. (2021). Survey: Women with Pelvic Pain Frequently Substitute CBD in Place of Other Analgesic Medications. NORML. https://norml.org/news/2021/11/04/survey-women-with-pelvic-pain-frequently-substitute-cbd-in-place-of-other-analgesic-medications
  3. Dresden, D. (2022). 7 of the best CBD products for back spasms. Medical News Today. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/best-cbd-products-for-back-spasms
  4. Sinclair, J, et al. (2021). Effects of cannabis ingestion on endometriosis-associated pelvic pain and related symptoms. PloS one. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258940
  5. Riley, K. (2020). Cannabidiol and Management of Endometriosis Pain. ClinicalTrials.gov. https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT04527003
  6. Nickel, JC. (2018). Medical marijuana for urologic chronic pelvic pain. Canadian Urological Association journal. https://doi.org/10.5489/cuaj.5331
  7. Kassel, G. (2021). Are CBD Suppositories the Answer to Better, Less Painful Sex? Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/healthy-sex/cbd-suppositories-better-less-painful-sex


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