November 16, 2022

CBD for Tendonitis: Benefits and Pain Relief

Products containing CBD for pain relief are blowing up in popularity all across the nation, and they don't seem to be going anywhere anytime soon. A recent survey conducted by the online health education group, SingleCare found that 1/3 of American adults have used CBD products at least once in 2020.

The enduring popularity of CBD cream, CBD oil, and CBD topicals, in general, can be credited to their clinical relevance as a treatment for reducing inflammation and chronic pain. While research is still ongoing, CBD has been used in various contexts to provide pain relief, with studies drawing comparisons between CBD and anti-inflammatory drugs' performance in pain management and chronic inflammation.

Most people, including athletes and fitness enthusiasts, report benefits from using CBD to relieve pain and address a variety of discomforts including joint swelling, chronic inflammation, neuropathic pain, joint pain, and tendonitis. This painful health condition manifests as a sharp pain in the tendons and can occur anywhere, often worsening during exercise and with increasing age. Products that can provide immediate relief from debilitating tendonitis pain have in the past, usually only included prescription medications. CBD for tendonitis pain may be the better bet for most people looking to maximize the body's natural response without the side effects of pharmaceutical anti-inflammatory drugs (while of course, always speaking with a licensed physician).

In today's article, we will answer every question you've ever had if you're thinking about using CBD for tendonitis pain relief.


What is tendonitis?


Tendonitis is a physical condition where the tendon, tissue that connects bone to muscle, becomes inflamed. It is included under the broad category of musculoskeletal conditions tracked by the World Health Organization (WHO), which estimates that approximately 1.71 billion people worldwide suffer from them. Naturally, interventions meant to treat tendonitis and relieve pain are highly desired.

The most common underlying cause of tendonitis is a sports injury, where the tendon is overloaded or overworked, leading to inflamed tendons and chronic pain. Other possible causes include infections, certain medications, uncontrolled rheumatic pain and arthritis, and abnormal placement of the bone or joint present from birth.

What are the different types of tendonitis?

The different kinds of tendonitis are usually designated by where they occur in the body. Tendonitis can occur anywhere a tendon connects bone to muscle, and pain in the affected area is typically limited.

Tennis elbow

Tennis elbow is caused by repetitive, continued, and strenuous movement of the arm. As the name suggests, it commonly affects tennis players. Inflammation occurs on either side of the elbow, where it shoots through the forearm and may cause pain in the fingers and wrist. Tennis elbow is also common among plumbers, painters, and people who work in construction -- any motion where the arm must be consciously locked in place for a long period of time can lead to tennis elbow.

Achilles tendonitis

Achilles tendonitis occurs in the Achilles tendon, one of the largest tendons in our bodies. It connects the heel bone to the calf muscles. Achilles tendonitis commonly presents with aching pain in the ankles and may shoot up the leg depending on severity. It most commonly occurs in runners, where the high, repeated impact of the foot on pavement can lead to sore muscles and pain in the Achilles tendon.

Rotator cuff tendonitis

Rotator cuff tendonitis affects the shoulder, with pain emanating from the rotator cuff down to the bicep. It can also be felt in the shoulder blades. It commonly affects people who lift heavy weights or stretch the arms too frequently. It can often lead to limited movement of the arm, making it difficult to rotate the arm across its full natural range of motion.

Jumper's knee

Jumper's knee refers to inflammation of the patellar tendon, which connects the knee to the shin bone. It is common in athletes who jump, such as in basketball or volleyball. It causes swelling and pain in the knee.


How do people usually treat tendonitis?

Most people have success with OTC anti-inflammatory drugs and abstaining from the exercise that caused the injury until pain ceases. More severe and rare cases may require being seen by a specialist in pain management and being prescribed pharmaceutical pain relief drugs, along with physical therapy. These include corticosteroids, where pain management doctors will apply them for rapid pain relief and to reduce inflammation.

However, combining too many different OTC anti inflammatory drugs, or taking too high a dosage can lead to many health problems, including gastrointestinal distress, acute kidney damage, and cardiac issues. Moreover, while many people will never need corticosteroids for treating tendonitis, their continued use may weaken the tendons over time. This is why the anti inflammatory properties of CBD are being studied in comparison to other treatment options.


How does CBD Reduce Pain Caused by Tendonitis Symptoms?

CBD stands for cannabidiol, the known major non-psychoactive molecule that is derived from cannabis plants. Many recent studies have shown that CBD oil and extracts are well-tolerated in human patients in the treatment of chronic pain and chronic inflammation, and improve quality of life.

CBD oil has also been shown to have positive effects on psychiatric symptoms and mood. For many chronic pain patients seeking a natural alternative for immediate relief, CBD products are promising candidates in mediating a variety of physical discomforts. CBD's potential as a safe and well-tolerated anti inflammatory supplement has been intensely studied, and the pharmacology of how it reduces inflammation is being revealed.

CBD's pain relief powers are thought to be due to its interaction with the human endocannabinoid system, a major regulatory pathway that contains receptors expressed throughout the central nervous system. It is also believed to modulate the immune system, partially explaining its effects on immune cell signaling in the body.

Researchers believe that modulation of this pathway is the primary mechanism by which CBD oil, CBD topicals, and CBD products reduce inflammation. Two receptors have been identified within the endocannabinoid system, CB1 and CB2 -- while THC, the major psychoactive component of cannabis, binds readily to these receptors directly, CBD functions as a weak antagonist (i.e. it prevents other things from binding to them), and regulates other molecular and cellular processes throughout the endocannabinoid system, including those that modulate the immune system.

The endocannabinoid system is still being studied, but its effects on our overall function, both mental and physical, are better understood today than it was years previously. A recent study found that people who used CBD products reported an improvement in pain severity and sleep quality, while another found that routine use of CBD oil for neuropathic pain dramatically improved symptoms in patients when compared to a placebo (sham treatment).

In short, CBD reduces inflammation, is well-tolerated, safe, and effective at addressing pain by way of its anti inflammatory properties on the central nervous system.


Which CBD Products Help With Treating Tendonitis?

CBD products are often marketed in three different formulations: full spectrum CBD, broad spectrum CBD, and CBD isolate.

Any CBD product from CBD oil, CBD cream, and dietary CBD can be classified as one of these types. All three can have their place in an effective supplement regimen, but there a few things to consider if you plan on using any of these types of CBD oils for tendonitis pain relief.

Full Spectrum CBD

Full spectrum CBD is made from the whole hemp plant, so while it has a high concentration of CBD, it also contains the other chemical constituents of cannabis, including small amounts of THC. As compared to CBD isolates, full spectrum CBD oil is reported as being more effective in reducing inflammation and relieving pain, an effect known as the entourage effect. Full spectrum CBD oil remains the most popular option for consumers due to this effect.

Broad Spectrum CBD

Broad spectrum CBD is very similar to full spectrum CBD, but it does not have any THC in its formulation. While not as complete as full spectrum CBD oils, broad spectrum CBD oil still causes some of the entourage effect.

CBD Isolate

CBD isolates are CBD products that contain none of the other molecules from hemp that are carried over in full spectrum CBD or broad spectrum CBD. They usually have no odor or flavor, and are desirable for people who want to incorporate just the benefits of CBD oil or other CBD products without worrying about trace THC or hemp byproducts. However, they usually have a weak if non-existent entourage effect.


Should I Use CBD Oil or CBD Cream for Tendonitis?

Besides the different CBD formulations, the route of administration affects how well a CBD product reduces inflammation, including inflammation from tendonitis. Because CBD is highly versatile, it can found in a variety of different forms including edible CBD products and topical CBD products.

CBD Oil for Tendonitis

CBD oils come in vials that usually have droppers, and is made by extracting CBD from the hemp plant and infusing it into food-grade carrier oil, such as coconut oil. CBD oil comes in different varieties and concentrations, and droppers make it easier to dose properly. With how well CBD mixes into different products, using CBD oil for tendonitis is easier than ever, nowadays. Pure CBD oil is commonly taken in two routes of administration:


A dropper of CBD oil is placed under the tongue and left there for about a minute before swallowing. This is done to increase the bioavailability of CBD in the bloodstream, since absorption of drugs and supplements including CBD oil is faster when taken under the tongue rather than being swallowed immediately. Depending on the brand, the taste of the CBD oil can be off-putting for some as opposed to swallowing it immediately or placing it in a drink.


Instead of letting the CBD oil absorb under the tongue, its swallowed right after being placed in the mouth. There are more ways to take CBD oil when using this method, including putting it in a drink, or on food. This is an attractive and popular option for many since it minimizes the natural "earthy" taste of CBD oil, and may be more easily incorporated into the diet. It has lower bioavailability compared to sublingual.

CBD Cream for Tendonitis

CBD creams are lotions, gels, muscle rubs and salves that contain CBD, and are applied to the skin directly. It works by being applied directly to the area to soothe inflammation and relieve pain. CBD creams are popular, and provide immediate relief to the area.

It is usually reapplied after a few hours, since it is absorbed through the skin very quickly. The best CBD cream will typically be tested for efficacy and safety, but special attention to the other ingredients such as fragrances must be given, especially for people with sensitive skin.

Using CBD for tendonitis is especially easy with CBD creams, since you can apply it directly to the area of the body where the pain is especially intense. Using topical CBD products for tendonitis may be a more attractive option for some people who dislike the taste of CBD oils, or want to limit the effects of CBD to only the part of the body affected.


CBD for Tendonitis: Summary

Tendonitis is a painful condition that can stop you in your tracks. Many people in recent years have found success in using CBD for tendonitis treatment, and research shows that it is a safe, effective, and fast method for improving joint pain, chronic pain, mood, and quality of life.
Whether you plan to use CBD creams or CBD oil for tendonitis, both products contain significant benefits and can be incorporated into a treatment plan readily, with the advice of your physician.