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Researchers Link Cannabis Topicals to Healing Wounds

Researchers Link Cannabis Topicals to Healing Wounds

Cannabis topicals have numerous medicinal uses for patients seeking natural forms of treatment. When applied directly to the skin, the revolutionary formula has been linked to reduced pain, inflammation and skin infections. The benefits of cannabis topicals may also extend to easing the spread of aggressive injuries and wounds.

Earlier this year, a group of scientists published a report in the January issue of the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management that shows just how effective cannabis topicals can be in addressing destructive, disease-related wounds. Researchers highlighted the account of a 44-year-old patient based in Canada, who at the time was suffering from oral cancer.

Read on to understand how the man used cannabis topicals to heal his body in the fight against one of the world’s most devastating diseases.

Wound-healing Benefits

According to the report, the patient was diagnosed with oral cancer in 2013. He underwent surgery to remove tumors that emerged in his right cheek. Unfortunately, his efforts were unsuccessful, as the cancer returned – despite rounds of radiation and chemotherapy treatments. Three years later, the man was treated at a palliative-care clinic in Toronto, under the care of Dr. Vincent Maida, an associate professor in the Division of Palliative Care at the University of Toronto.

The patient was prescribed vaporized cannabis to ease pain associated with the condition. This also helped reduce his reliance on prescription opioids. Eventually, he had to stop treatment due to a hole that formed on his cheek. Maida then issued the use of cannabis oil as an alternative to vaporized cannabis. While applying the topical at a rate of four times per day for an entire month, the patient noticed that the wound stopped growing.

Moreover, it also decreased in size, by roughly five percent in the following month. Pain relief that came with the treatment lasted for two hours after applying the cannabis oil. In a major twist of events, the patient died from cancer-related complications arising out of severe deterioration of his condition.

History and Applications

Cannabis topicals have been around for centuries. The use of the plant to treat wounds, aggressive infections and heavy burns dates back to 2,700 BC. During this period, Shen-Nung, a prominent Chinese emperor, applied cannabis (along with other herbs) to exploratory treatments, which earned him the title “Father of Chinese Medicine”.

In other parts of the world, people also used cannabis concentrates in a similar manner. In 1751, Thomas Short explored the application of specially prepared cannabis in his book Medicina Britannica. The author used the formula to address wounds, ulcers, burns and insect bites.

It is important to point out that cannabis topicals are incredibly useful for patients who want to limit the psychoactive effects of the herb during treatment. Since CB1 and CB2 receptors are present in human skin, hair and sweat glands, individuals can directly apply the medicinal rub on the target area without cerebral stimulation. This makes the treatment suitable for the elderly, pediatric patients and people who are sensitive to the effects of cannabis.

Five Healing Herbs To Grow At Home

Five Healing Herbs To Grow At Home

Making an herb garden may be considered a sort of “right-of-passage” for anyone looking for a homeopathic approach to living. Luckily, it takes only a small amount of space and time to get started with an herbal garden that can serve a multitude of purposes. Some herbs are more labor intensive than others, but this list should give you some insights as to what healing powers each has to offer.

1. Basil

Nowadays, basil isn’t really thought of as a healing herb, yet traditionally it has been dubbed “the king of herbs.” Basil has natural anti-inflammatory properties and has been said to have mild antiseptic uses. It can also be used to help with appetite, nausea, and as a topical ointment on skin lesions. Better yet, if you’re a fan of Italian food you’re in for a treat. Add basil to almost any Italian dish for a boost of flavor, or on warm days, throw it in your mojito!

2. Chamomile

Chamomile is a staple herb in the Western world. Ever drink a relaxing night-time tea? If you look at the back of your tea box, chances are you will find chamomile prominently listed among the ingredients. The heads of the chamomile flower are used for treating indigestion, anxiety, and skin inflammation. The flowery taste makes for a great addition to home-brew tea and will provide serenity at the end of a stressful day.

3. Peppermint

Peppermint has been used medicinally for thousands of years to soothe & treat symptoms like nausea, vomiting, and several related digestive issues. The menthol contained within the plant are commonly used to flavor many types of foods and fragrances. Peppermint is extremely prolific, growing in any type of sun as long as moisture is present. These quickly multiplying plants are best kept in pots, as they can quickly consume the rest of your herb garden.

4. Lavender

This fragrant plant is most widely known for it’s calming effect both on the mind and body. Commonly used in herbal teas, lavender can promote a sense well-being and can do wonders to alleviate stress. Lavender has also been used to treat various gastrointestinal issues and as an antiseptic when applied to cuts or wounds.

5. Cannabis

Although the cannabis plant has been used for thousands of years, it seems that we are just now beginning to understand it’s medicinal use in an empirical way. Cannabis can be used to treat symptoms of arthritis, chronic pain, glaucoma, appetite loss, epilepsy, sleep apnea, and many other chronic illnesses. Many of this plant’s properties help in daily life and can provide comfort through the aging process.

Growing cannabis is more difficult than any of the other herbs on this list, but the plant also yields the most medicinal benefits. As long as you have a legal means to grow this plant, you can take advantage of the wide array of uses for the herb. Cooking with cannabis can also be a challenge, but with a little research and proper technique, the possibilities are endless.

Photo Credit: Suzette

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