No one I know enjoys dealing with the symptoms of an allergic reaction, such as watery eyes, sneezing, and congestion. Any help with this would surely be appreciated..
Here’s the question: Should you take Cannabidiol (CBD) for allergies?
Traditional treatments and allergy medicines certainly will help reduce these symptoms, but CBD may provide a more natural and suitable solution.
We have compiled an article titled What is Cannabidiol (CBD) that has relevant information.
So, can CBD help with allergies? What types of allergies can CBD treat? How effective is CBD in helping with allergies? These are a few of the questions that need answering before using CBD for allergies. After careful research, here is what I found on the topic.
What Are the Most Common Types of Allergies?
Allergies are an immune system response to foreign substances, such as pet dander or pollen. When you encounter an allergen, the immune system produces antibodies to help remove the foreign substance from your airways, nasal passages, digestive system, or skin.
The antibodies attach to mast cells, which then release histamines and cause inflammation. The resulting inflammation leads to many of the symptoms associated with an allergic reaction.
The symptoms depend on the type of allergy. The most common types of allergies include:
- Hay fever
- Food allergies
- Insect sting allergies
- Drug allergies
- Atopic dermatitis (eczema)
Symptoms of hay fever include sneezing, watery eyes, and a stuffy nose. When you suffer from a food allergy, you may experience tingling in the mouth, swelling of the lips, and hives.
Insect stings cause swelling at the sting site, itching, and possibly shortness of breath. With a drug allergy, you may experience a combination of these symptoms.
With many allergies, there is a risk of anaphylaxis. This is a severe, life-threatening reaction that occurs rapidly and requires immediate treatment.
Common Treatments for Dealing with Allergies
The most effective way to prevent an allergic reaction is to avoid the allergen. If you suffer from allergic reactions to pollen, avoid pollen. Unfortunately, avoidance is not always an option.
People take a wide variety of allergy medicines to reduce the symptoms of allergic reactions. Some of the most commonly used medicines for allergies include:
- Nasal corticosteroids – reduces swelling that may lead to stuffy noses
- Antihistamines – blocks the release of histamines to reduce allergy symptoms
- Mast cell stabilizers – blocks the release of histamines to reduce symptoms
- Decongestants – helps reduce stuffiness and swelling
- Corticosteroid creams – relieves skin irritation and itchiness
- Epinephrine – used for treating anaphylaxis
Epinephrine treats severe allergic reactions. Those that suffer from severe reactions may need to carry an emergency epinephrine shot, such as the EpiPen.
Other than epinephrine, these medications address the symptoms that typically appear after experiencing an allergic reaction. However, they can cause side effects. For example, antihistamines include several potential side effects:
- Blurred vision
- Dry mouth
If the medications do not help relieve the symptoms or the side effects are too severe, your doctor may recommend immunotherapy. This involves injections of purified allergen extracts to build up a tolerance for the allergen. Unfortunately, allergen immunotherapy may not work for everyone.
How Can CBD Help with Allergies?
While we couldn’t find studies that specifically address the benefits of CBD for allergies, there are several reasons to suspect that CBD may help relieve allergy symptoms.
It appears that CBD may offer allergy relief in the following ways:
- CBD may block histamines
- CBD includes anti-inflammatory compounds
- CBD may reduce itchiness and skin irritation
When you experience an allergic reaction, the immune system releases histamines to protect the body. The release of histamines also leads to many of the symptoms connected to allergic reactions, such as sneezing and wheezing.
To combat these symptoms, people frequently take antihistamines. As the name suggests, antihistamines block the release of histamines. According to a 2005 medical journal, CBD may offer the same effects.
The release of histamines is an anti-inflammatory response. CBD may inhibit the release of mast cells that the body uses to release histamines, resulting in less sneezing and wheezing.
As the body releases histamines, the inflammation may cause redness, swelling, and irritation, which are also common symptoms of allergic reactions.
The medical community recognizes the anti-inflammatory properties of CBD. Numerous studies have found that CBD helps combat inflammation through the suppression of specific proteins and cells.
CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, which includes cannabinoid receptors to regulate various bodily processes, including the regulation of immune cells.
Using CBD to regulate these cells may fight inflammation and some of the symptoms of allergic reactions, such as skin irritation, itchiness, and watery eyes. Thanks to these benefits, CBD may replace the need for antihistamines, decongestants, and mast cell stabilizers.
The use of topical CBD creams may also replace the need for corticosteroid creams.
So, can CBD help with allergies? Based on this research, CBD may block histamines and inflammation, helping to fight the most common symptoms of allergic reactions.
What Are the Best CBD Products for Allergies?
CBD comes in many forms, including oils, vaping products, pills, edibles, creams, and sprays. The oils and vaping products are the most popular options and are readily available from health stores and online sources.
Check out our article on CBD Product Types to get a better understanding of the different types available.
Should you use CBD vaping products or CBD oil for allergies? The vaping products may offer greater bioavailability, but also makes it harder to control the dosage.
After increased use of CBD vape oils, health officials in North Carolina reported an increase in emergency room visits from CBD users.
People were experiencing nausea, headaches, disorientation, vomiting, agitation, and seizures. In some cases, people reported hallucinations and loss of consciousness.
A toxicology expert from Virginia Commonwealth University believes these emergency room visits were due to incorrect dosage.
Inhaling the CBD vapors should not change the profile of the CBD, meaning it shouldn’t produce additional side effects. The toxicology expert mentions that inhalation is more efficient, bringing an increased risk of large doses.
Pills, oils, and edibles all use the same delivery method. You ingest the substance and then it travels through your system. However, placing the oil under the tongue offers a shortcut to your bloodstream. Pills and edibles need to reach your digestive system.
Based on this information, it appears that patients may achieve better results when taking CBD oil for allergies.
Potential Side Effects of CBD for Allergies
While CBD is well tolerated by most patients, it can bring potential side effects. During clinical trials, patients took daily CBD doses of 300 mg safely for up to six months. Patients took higher doses of up to 1500 mg safely for up to four weeks.
The most commonly reported side effects of CBD include:
- Dry mouth
- Low blood pressure
CBD may also interact with other medications. Unfortunately, a lot of the information about drug interactions is based on the use of cannabis containing Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and CBD.
Our related article titled What is Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)? will give you a excellent understanding of THC.
Medical cannabis is known to interact with 614 different drugs. This includes 129 major drug interactions.
Cannabis may increase the risk of side effects when taking diphenhydramine (Benadryl), which allergy sufferers frequently take. Benadryl may cause drowsiness and lightheadedness.
Keep in mind that these interactions mostly involve medical cannabis and not pure CBD. Without more research, we cannot determine whether CBD carries the same negative interactions.
Please have a look at our article on Potential Side Effects from Using CBD for more information on side effects.
Millions of people suffer from allergies. Unfortunately, traditional treatments can sometimes bring adverse effects. Depending on the allergy medicine, you may experience drowsiness, dizziness, nausea, and headaches.
CBD may offer an alternative, thanks to its anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive properties. It helps suppress the release of mast cells that signal the release of histamines. It also contains anti-inflammatory properties to help fight the inflammation that occurs during an allergic reaction.
By blocking histamines and fighting inflammation, CBD oil and other CBD products may reduce the symptoms of an allergic reaction. This does not mean that CBD helps prevent allergic reactions or provide a cure.
It simply means that a few drops of CBD
oil may help keep you from sneezing or experiencing some of the other allergy