General, Pain, Sleep & insomnia

How does CBD help manage pain?

We hear about people using CBD for sleep all the time. But how? If CBD isn’t a sedative, how do people use it to improve their rest?

The Endocannabinoid System

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) impacts our body’s homeostasis: our inner physiological balance. It helps regulate many vital functions, like appetite, mood, sleep, memory, and reproduction.

Research shows CBD and other cannabinoids interact with the ECS, binding to receptors throughout the body that influence important communication between different systems.

Health Conditions

Even though people use CBD for sleep, the compound is not a sedative. In fact, it’s also popular for alertness, mental clarity, and chronic fatigue.

Poor sleep and fatigue is linked to stress and numerous health conditions. With how CBD influences the body’s stress response and immune system, people often use it to pinpoint what’s preventing relaxation. It makes sense sleep comes more easily after removing those factors.

Physical issues now linked to anxiety include:

  • Nausea & digestive troubles
  • Muscular tension & contractions
  • Metabolism
  • Hormones
  • Heart rate
  • Blood pressure
  • Migraines and headaches
  • Chronic pain

Gastrointestinal pain

Research shows CBD activates the 5-HT1A serotonin receptor, well-known for reducing anxiety. This receptor also influences addiction, appetite, sleep, pain perception, vomiting, and nausea.

Further study shows CBD impacts serotonin flow, reducing stimulation of the vomiting center in the brain.

Nerve pain

Most lesions include nerve growth and pain. Some people deal with an even higher, more painful density of nerves.

The ECS helps regulate nerve growth, and CB1 receptors are found on the nerves innervating lesions. Interfering with nerve innervation can prevent receptor activation and future painful growths.

Menstrual pain

The ECS plays a big role in the reproductive tract. The endometrium has a significant source of cannabinoids, and AEA levels are high in the uterus.

Endocannabinoids are involved in regulating/preventing cell-migration. Research explores CBD and its ability to block the activation of the GPR18 receptor. GPR18 receptor activation can lead to migrating, nutrient-sucking cells.

Those with menstrual disorders like endometriosis, fibroids, PCOS, or ovarian cysts are turning to CBD more for relief.


CBD binds to the TRPV1 receptor, which controls pain perception, body temperature, and inflammation.

Activation of this receptor is common in the treatment of headaches and migraines. When CBD binds to TRPV1, it can influence pain perception and headaches caused by restricted blood vessels.

Research furthermore suggests many chronic migraine sufferers have clinical endocannabinoid deficiency.

Muscle and back pain

CBD is often used as a relaxant and antispasmodic for muscle spasms. It’s also regularly used as an anti-inflammatory. Some muscle and back pain is caused by spasms and other conditions. Sometimes it’s caused by inflammation, whether from nutrition, poor posture, stress, or more.

All of these issues can be very painful during the day and night. Severe pain is one of the most popular thieves of rest and sleep.

Other conditions associated with lack of sleep include thyroid disorders, heart disease, arthritis, gastrointestinal disorders, Parkinson’s, Multiple Sclerosis, restless legs, anxiety, depression, and hormonal issues.

Research is exploring the use of cannabinoids for many of the above and more.

CBD and the Nervous System

CBD for anxiety is nothing new.

Anxiety preventing sleep is also nothing new. Who hasn’t lied awake at night worrying?

A constant state of anxiety puts the body’s nervous system into “fight-or-flight”, known as our sympathetic nervous system. The sympathetic nervous system activates our adrenal gland, releasing hormones into the blood. This accelerates and tenses our body, making it alert. Non-essential systems like digestion and immunity partially shut down, while that energy directs to the muscles and heart.

Our body does this as protection from danger. However, people with anxiety and repetitive stress can remain in this state. This could be caused by a number of factors, such as C/PTSD, chronic illness, and other health issues.

The nervous system has cannabinoid receptors in the brain and spine, controlling the release of neurotransmitters. Many studies explore CBD’s ability to connect to the parasympathetic nervous system. This is known as “rest or digest”, where we feel safe and can properly digest & absorb nutrients.

Receptors are also scattered throughout the body’s ECS, including the immune system, reproductive system, digestive tract, and many major organs.

This means people not only use it for nervous system regulation, but for the many symptoms and conditions associated with anxiety.

Countless studies explore the use of CBD and these issues. Many users find relief.

The conditions and factors affecting rest can seem endless.

But so do the potentials of CBD.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This article is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.


2 thoughts on “How does CBD help manage pain?

  1. Wendy says:


    Please can you give me some guidance. I really struggle with nerve pain (had 3 neck ops) i have osteoarthritis, foraminal stenosis and a degenerating bone disease. I struggle to sleep and anxiety, especially if my pain is VERY bad, but it’s every single day, i never have a day without pain. I also have very bad swelling in my face, hands, feet (probably inflammation). I work behind a computer all day (which i know does not help), what kind of CBD would you recommend i order? and how would i take it, and how long would it last?

    My hubby struggles to sleep, has pains in his legs and can be quiet grumpy from stress at work (and probably from me LOL). What would you suggest for him?

    Thank you

    1. africanpure says:

      Hi Wendy.

      Thanks for getting in touch! We’re so sorry to hear you and your hubby have been struggling with pain, sleep and stress. Luckily CBD is well known to help with all three – and can really help to alleviate the inflammation and other symptoms of your bone conditions 🙂

      It does this by stimulating activity of your endocannabinoid system, which works to restore homeostasis (biological balance) among all the various systems in your body.

      We would usually recommend trying a daily dose of our highest strength 1500mg Plus drops, as you are describing multiple and some severe ailments. You can find it here:

      We would suggest you start on the South African legal recommended dosage of 20mg a day (this amounts to 8 drops of the 1500g oil) and see how your body responds, then adjust accordingly. You cannot overdose on CBD.

      If you go according to this dosage amount, the oil will last you 75 days (if one of you is using it – obviously half of this if two of you re using it). You would place the drops under your tongue for fastest absorption, and this can be done whenever you feel is right for you.

      You can take all in the morning, all in the evening, half and half, or spread out throughout the day. It is entirely a matter of personal preference.

      You can also try using the drops alongside our Pain Cream for your pain issues, applied to the area for targeted relief. You can find that here:

      We hope this info helps! Take care.

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