Does CBD Oil Work for Migraines?

CBD Oil for Migraines

Toward the conclusion for the 19th century, cannabis ended up being a conventional treatment for preventing and relieving migraines as well as other kinds of headaches. Numerous medical practioners advocated for the use before the 1940s, when cannabis ended up being taken out of the formal pharmacopeias due to its “high prospect of abuse” 1+, 2.

The recent legalization of medical marijuana and CBD oil in many nations worldwide revived the almost-forgotten utilization of cannabis for headaches. But, it is important to see that the actual only real medical utilization of CBD authorized by the Food And Drug Administration would be to reduce seizures in 2 forms of epilepsy 3.

Migraines along with other forms of headaches are, after joint disease, the conditions that are painful commonly enhanced with CBD oil. In a study on 1500 medical CBD users, roughly one away from six reported struggling with headaches 4.

30% of medical cannabis users reported doing this to relieve migraines along with other headaches in 2 studies on nearly 2500 individuals. But, the absolute most variety that is popular them was “OG Shark,” a THC-rich hybrid strain having a low CBD content 5, 6.

This departs us aided by the relevant concern: does CBD oil alone relieve migraines along with other forms of headaches or must you simply take THC-containing cannabis strains getting the pain-relieving advantages? Let’s look at the science of CBD first to obtain the answers.

So How Exactly Does It Work?

Regardless of kind, headaches include an overactivation of nerves attached to blood vessels within the mind (trigeminovascular system) 2, 7+.

Released vessel-widening proteins (CGRP and substance P) and messengers (NO) enhance blood circulation, which stimulates pain receptors on neurological cells into the mind and throat. Headaches certainly are a result that is direct of stimulation, while drugs for headaches usually block these receptors 2, 7+.

Boosts Natural Cannabinoids

The endocannabinoid system is consists of two receptors: CB1 and CB2. Both THC from cannabis as well as the cannabinoids obviously created by the physical human body, such as anandamide, decrease pain by activating these receptors 8, 10, 11.

CBD is significantly diffent: it blocks in place of activates these receptors. But, it prevents anandamide from being separated. Interestingly, a theory through the very very early century that is 21st migraines (as well as other chronic discomfort conditions) with low anandamide levels 12, 10, 13, 14, 15.

In reality, further studies revealed that folks – and specially ladies – with migraines frequently have less anandamide into the spinal fluid and platelets 16, 17, 18.

Exactly the same ended up being real in individuals with headaches from overusing painkillers; when they withdrew through the medications, that they had less anandamide breakdown and discomfort 19, 20.

People who have chronic headaches have actually reduced anandamide levels and greater CGRP and NO production. CB1 activation by anandamide and cannabinoids that are synthetic the creation of CGRP with no, which prevents (trigeminovascular) nerve overstimulation and headaches 21, 22, 23, 24, 16.

Activates Serotonin Receptors

As hinted above, anandamide reduces migraines by activating CB1. In rats, blockers associated with serotonin receptor 5HT(1B/1D) prevented anandamide from activating CB1. This receptor has a role that is well-known relieving headaches as well as its activators (called triptans) are mainstream drugs for migraines 25, 26, 27.

CBD may reduce neurological discomfort by activating another serotonin receptor (5HT1A), which can be based in the back as opposed to into the head 28|relative head28, 29, 30, 31.

Activates the TRPV1 Receptor

CBD and anandamide can bind to a receptor taking part in inflammatory pain (TRPV1). Its activation causes the production of CGRP cbdoilfacts discount, which increases the flow of blood towards the trigeminal nerves. This implies that CBD could potentially cause headaches 14, 32, 33, 34, 35.

Nevertheless, repeated TRPV1 activation reduces sensitivity to pain. Certainly, a nose spray with all the chili pepper compound capsaicin – which also activates this receptor – relieved migraines in a little test on 8 individuals 14, 36+.

Blocks Glutamate

Alterations in eyesight, flexibility, or speech called aura typically precede migraine assaults. These harbingers that are migraine due to glutamate overactivation when you look at the mind. Anandamide, THC, and cannabinoids that are synthetic glutamate receptors, suggesting they help alleviate problems with auras 2, 37, 38, 39, 40.

Reduces Inflammation and Autoimmunity

Autoimmune conditions may trigger migraines and other kinds of headaches when they result irritation regarding the arteries when you look at the brain. Indeed, conditions such as for example numerous sclerosis, lupus, Sjцgren problem, and syndrome that is antiphospholipid connected with frequent headaches 41.

CBD may alleviate headaches in people who have these conditions through its strong activity that is anti-inflammatory. It decreases the manufacturing of pro-inflammatory messengers (such as for instance IL-1beta, IL-6, TNF-alpha, IFN-gamma. NO, and prostaglandins) while increasing the amounts of the cytokines that are anti-inflammatory and IL-10 43, 44, 45, 46, 47.

Alternatively, it might avoid the signs and symptoms of autoimmune disorders by curbing the response that is immune. By way of example, CBD prevented T cells from multiplying and building up when you look at the minds of mice with multiple sclerosis – while reducing the autoimmune-linked Th17 response 48, 49.

Whenever Does It Work?


In a research on over 100 individuals with migraines utilizing medicinal cannabis (with both CBD and THC), 85% reported paid down pain and frequency 50 that is migraine.

A preparation with more CBD than THC prevented attacks as effectively as a migraine drug (amitriptyline) in a clinical trial on 79 people with chronic migraines. a extra dose during the attacks paid off pain. Likewise, 3 cannabis that are heavy began having migraines after they stopped; one got rest from smoking once once again 51.

THC may account fully for a great section of these impacts. THC alone prevented attacks that are migraine reduced pain in rats. On the other hand, its overuse might have the other impact: high doses increased sensitivity to duplicated neurological stimulation – a suspected migraine trigger 53, 54.

Taken together, there’s absolutely no proof that CBD oil improves migraines. Studies in rats also suggest that THC instead of CBD will be the cannabinoid accountable for the pain sensation relief noticed in individuals cannabis that are using for migraines.

Other styles of Headaches

In research on over 100 people who have cluster headaches, 45% used cannabis but just 25% skilled relief while 22percent felt worse 55.

Within one report, recreational marijuana and synthetic THC (dronabinol) enhanced regular cluster headaches in a teen. The advantage had been likely from THC, maybe not CBD 56.

In an endeavor on 13 individuals with headaches from overusing painkillers, cannabis preparations reduced pain. Nevertheless, the planning with all the THC content that is highest (oil) was more beneficial. In accordance with this, a synthetic compound that is THCnabilone) reduced discomfort additionally the importance of painkillers a lot better than ibuprofen in another test on 26 people 57, 58.

Into the term that is short THC as well as other CB1 activators additionally relieved headaches from painkillers in rats. Nevertheless, their repeated use increased sensitiveness to discomfort – meaning it might trigger migraines 54.

Both medical marijuana and a artificial THC element (dronabinol) relieved headaches in 2 females with a high force when you look at the brain (pseudotumor cerebri) 59+, 60.

A couple of clinical and animal studies recommend that CBD is perhaps inadequate for group headaches and headaches from overusing painkillers. THC appears to be the only cannabinoid providing some relief of pain, however the proof continues to be restricted.


There are no clinical trials CBD that is testing alone headaches. Many of them utilized cannabis preparations with adjustable quantities of THC and CBD.

A lot of people with migraines prefer THC-rich cannabis strains. Plus, synthetic THC analogs were additionally effective. This shows that migraine relief requires direct CB1 activation that only THC will probably attain. Having said that, CBD may help by boosting slightly anandamide levels.

CBD Oil Dosage for Migraines


Because CBD is certainly not authorized for migraines or just about any other kinds of headaches, there isn’t any dose that is official. There’s no proven dosage either because CBD alone hasn’t been tested in medical studies. The study that is only a product greater in CBD than in THC (9% vs 0.4%) utilized a dosage of 200 mg (supplying 18 mg CBD) a day. But, we can’t rule out of the contribution of its THC content to your effects 51+.

We could also calculate dosage on the basis of the directions from manufacturers and users.

One maker of a commercial oil specifically formulated for migraines recommends 1 mL (supplying 33 mg CBD) per day.

Normal wellness blog sites and users prefer lower doses (15-25 mg/day). They often recommend you start with a dose that is low increasing it until observing pain-relieving results. It’s important to achieve this slowly, since high doses may trigger migraines while increasing hassle intensity 61.

Whatever the case, don’t try CBD oil or just about any other unverified treatments for migraines and headaches without consulting your medical professional in advance. Check with the doctor if CBD oil might help available for you and just what dose and form that is delivery be much better for your needs.

Just how to utilize

CBD oil is available in various types. Your type of option may be determined by your types of frustration 62+:

  • Vaping, lips sprays, and oil tinctures are consumed quickly and offer pain relief that is temporary. They might operate better for cyclically-arising headaches such as for example group headaches.
  • Capsules, edibles, and teas discharge the CBD more gradually however their effects last for a longer time. They might be better for conditions with constant discomfort such as for example headaches from overusing painkillers.

Although migraine discomfort is certainly not constant, slow-release CBD types might be more beneficial (according to CBD’s relationship with all the TRPV1 receptor). Acute CBD doses may trigger migraine assaults while duplicated doses decrease pain perception.

Anecdotal proof from internet forums recommends using cannabis that are medicinal just after just starting to sense the start of a migraine or cluster hassle attack 61.

Most readily useful CBD Oil for Migraines

Along with picking a CBD oil modified to your allowance (you might want to determine the purchase price per mL or mg to compare brands that are different, its also wise to assess the item quality. Read here on how to pick the best CBD oil.


The viewpoints indicated in this area are entirely those of CBD oil users whom may or may not have medical or training that is scientific. Their reviews usually do not represent the views of SelfHacked. SelfHacked will not endorse any particular item, solution, or therapy.

Usually do not consider individual experiences as medical advice. Never wait or disregard seeking expert medical advice from your physician or any other qualified health care providers as a result of one thing you have got keep reading SelfHacked. We realize that reading specific, real-life experiences could be a helpful resource, however it is never a substitute for health-related advice, diagnosis, or therapy from the qualified doctor.

The absolute most headache that is common among CBD oil users ended up being migraine, accompanied by stress hassle, and frustration from painkiller overuse or conditions such as for instance fibromyalgia. A lot of them were pleased and reported good pain alleviation. In many situations, the users reported some added benefits such as for example improving rest quality and curbing anxiety.

Some users reported that the oil didn’t work that it made them drowsy and fatigued for them or. CBD oil also caused headaches in a few social individuals taking it at high doses.


Most people with migraines use THC-rich cannabis strains, while some choose CBD oil. No medical research reports have yet tested CBD oil alone for headaches or migraines.

Animal studies reveal that CBD oil may alleviate headaches – but just within the long term and most likely not as well as THC.

Sudden surges in CBD, such as for example from vaping, could cause migraines. But taken long-term, CBD may relieve pain perception and avoid migraine auras. It mainly functions by boosting your natural cannabinoid bliss particles.

CBD oil are often a choice for those who have migraines and headaches from autoimmune diseases like lupus and sclerosis that is multiple. In such cases, it likely helps by decreasing mind infection and suppressing autoimmunity.

Opt for capsules or edibles and simply just take them every time for the greatest outcomes.

Vendors offer CBD oil on Amazon, but the majority of of these usually do not fulfill quality criteria. Some don’t even specify the CBD content inside their items, while others offer hemp oil with little to no or no CBD. Many of these vendors are to not be trusted.

We suggest the following brand name, which specifies quality procedures and CBD content within their services and products:

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