There’s much to discover regarding how CBD affects you. CBD however, early research suggests promising results, according to Seema Bonney, M.D. Director and founder of the Anti-Aging & Longevity Center of Philadelphia.

“Cannabidiol–commonly referred to as CBD–is emerging as a novel, non-addictive way to help with pain, both orally and topically,” says Bonney.

The whole process begins with the endocannabinoid system , or ECS. The discovery of the ECS in the 90s. the cell-level communication network is also referred to as the “master regulator system” due to its importance in ensuring homeostasis.

“The Endocannabinoid System is involved in regulating many functions of the body, including appetite, mood, pain perception and metabolic rate,” the doctor explains. It also plays a part in the way we sleep.

Although our understanding of how this functions is “still changing,” per Bonney, we do know some basic concepts. The ECS comprises two major components: cannabinoids as well as cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2).

Our bodies produce their individual cannabinoids (i.e. the endocannabinoids) from specific organs and tissues. However they can also be consumed from plants that are essential to. They are referred to as phytocannabinoids.

The process of binding to receptors is different depending on the cannabinoid kind, however, CBD isn’t thought to actually bind to receptors. However, certain phytocannabinoids, such as CBD are believed to act in a way to control the ECS.

For topically applied CBD products it is necessary to work with the ECS to aid in returning our bodies back to a state of equilibrium, which could be an effective method to manage inflammation and pain around or just below the skin’s surface as suggested by Bonney.

“From research on animals we have discovered that CBD produces analgesic effects by regulating the endocannabinoid system, pain sensing and inflammatory systems.” Bonney explains.

For instance, a study revealed the hemp-derived CBD cream has been proven to decrease joint swelling and pain in the rodent model of mice1 (though further research is needed to confirm its effects in humans).

Another benefit of CBD cream is that it permits you to concentrate on specific body parts unlike other CBD forms, like capsules or tinctures which work in a systemic manner. Topical products such as CBD creams, lotions or balms are ideal for treating areas which hurt, like back discomfort, according to holistic physician Sony Sherpa M.D..

Take note that the hemp-based topically applied CBD will not penetrate as deep into the skin therefore it doesn’t affect other body parts like sleep, mood, etc.