Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) can be quite uncomfortable due to the variety of symptoms associated with it, some of which generate severe discomfort capable of altering the daily life of women. Considering that it occurs every month and that your symptoms can last up to several days, it is important to understand it well and know how to effectively treat it to alleviate discomfort.
There is increasing evidence, both clinical and anecdotal, suggesting that cannabidiol (CBD) has the potential to alleviate certain symptoms of menopause. We look at the ways CBD affects the body and mind of menopausal women.
Menopause symptoms are generally difficult to treat. Current pharmaceutical options, such as hormone replacement therapy (HRT), carry considerable risks and are not effective in the long term. Let’s look at the reasons why CBD might be a great option for alleviating menopausal symptoms.
WHAT IS PREMENSTRUAL SYNDROME?
Premenstrual syndrome is a term that refers to a variety of symptoms that women often experience in the post-ovulation period and before menstruation. The symptoms that appear are both physical and emotional, they usually vary from woman to woman and may even change in future menstrual cycles.
Despite its variability, PMS is usually quite irritating and generally uncomfortable, so finding an effective way to alleviate it is common in most women. There have been cases in which women experience the so-called Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (TDPM), a more serious version of PMS capable of significantly weakening the woman who experiences it.
It is a disorder that follows a predictable cycle around the female menstrual cycle, which consists of an alteration of the mood resulting from hormonal fluctuations during the normal and natural cycle of women. Now, let’s see the spectrum that covers the symptomatology of PMS.
THE ENDOCANNABINOID SYSTEM AND MENOPAUSE
There is extensive research on the complex role of the endocannabinoid system in female fertility, including the onset of menopause. Current research indicates that during the menopausal transition some fundamental changes occur in the SEC and related biological systems.
The endocannabinoid system is a biological network of endocannabinoids and cannabinoid receptor proteins, which are distributed in the central and peripheral nervous systems of mammals. This means that this network extends throughout the body and regulates a series of physiological and cognitive processes, including fertility.
The endocannabinoid system controls the interaction of cannabinoids, like CBD, with the body. Estrogen is one of the hormones that facilitate the proper functioning of this system. It achieves this effect by regulating levels of fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) in the blood. When estrogen production decreases, FAAH levels decrease. During ovulation, estrogen and endocannabinoid levels peak. And in turn, FAAHs facilitate the breakdown of the endocannabinoid anandamide.
The anandamide has an ovarian function, which aid in the maturation and release of the ovum at ovulation. Another role of estrogen is to activate the endocannabinoid system for the regulation of the emotional response. These diminishing interactions between the endocannabinoid system and estrogen indicate that menopausal symptoms could arise from reduced endocannabinoid activity.
SYMPTOMS OF PREMENSTRUAL SYNDROME
About 150 symptoms have been associated with PMS. The type of ailment and its intensity varies from woman to woman and can change depending on factors such as lifestyle or stress.
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, about 85% of women have at least one of the symptoms before menstruation, at an intensity that can range from mild to extremely strong.
Ailments usually appear one to two weeks before the arrival of menstruation and are an expression of what is happening in the woman’s body. Most experience mild symptoms, such as mild cramps or general discomfort that can last all day.
In other cases, before or during menstruation, they may experience violent emotional ups and downs that are not easy to control in most cases. Along with cramps, they can range from headaches, swelling and tenderness in the breasts, to digestive disorders such as constipation, diarrhea or vomiting, and decreased sexual desire.
Other symptoms that can occur are cravings for certain foods, fatigue, pain, or discomfort in the lower back, acne breakouts, insomnia, concentration problems, depression, anxiety, and even weight gain.
Cannabidiol (CBD) oil has been revealed as a product with many wonderful properties, and its usefulness in treating various ailments and health problems has catapulted its popularity in recent years. Premenstrual syndrome is one of the ailments that can be effectively treated with oil.
Cannabidiol is one of the many cannabinoids found in cannabis. However, an important aspect to keep in mind about this oil is that, unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), it does not cause euphoric effects. Conversely, several studies have shown the efficacy of cannabidiol oil in treating people with anxiety and depression 1 .
According to Julie Holland, a doctor with a long career in pharmacology and the creator of the non-profit project The Pot Book 2, aimed at financing therapeutic research on cannabis, cannabidiol “can be immensely useful for treating irritability and discomfort during the premenstrual phase ». Its anxiolytic properties are constant and it is also a muscle relaxant, so it can help with physical and mental tension, as well as with menstrual cramps that may appear later. ”
Every day there are more studies that illustrate the possible medical applications and for the daily well-being of CBD and cannabis in general, either for the treatment of particular medical conditions or to help improve physical, mental and emotional health. Of course, this includes its use to treat the symptoms of PMS.
HOW CAN CBD HELP MENOPAUSIC WOMEN?
Menopause appears to alter the endocannabinoid system of women. So CBD can be beneficial in controlling certain symptoms of menopause, as explained below.
LOSS OF BONE DENSITY
During menopause, many women can experience loss of bone density. If left untreated, this can lead to osteoporosis and other debilitating bone diseases. Estrogen is responsible for regulating the process that replaces old bone cells with new cells.
The reduction in estrogen levels causes the bones to gradually weaken. Osteoclasts are special cells that are involved in the breakdown of bones. When an osteoclastic activity is aggressive, bone loss occurs.
Osteoclasts have several GPR55 receptors. If these receptors over-stimulate cells, excessive bone loss can occur, leading to osteoporosis. Studies indicate that CBD can interact with GPR55 receptors and inhibit their action, thereby preventing loss of bone density.
This is one of the most common symptoms of menopause. Hot flashes are felt by women as an intense build-up of heat in the body, which begins in the chest and face, followed by sweating and chills. Some women report feeling anxiety as symptoms increase.
The previously mentioned anandamide, an endocannabinoid, helps in regulating body temperature. CBD is believed to increase anandamide levels in the body, by inhibiting the action of FAAH. The overall effect is a better ability to control body temperature.
Insomnia in menopausal women occurs as a result of other symptoms, such as migraines, hot flashes, and joint stiffness. If left untreated, lack of sleep can often affect other aspects of women’s lives.
This can worsen menopausal symptoms and cause mood swings. CBD has been documented to be a very effective natural alternative for treating sleep problems. The CBD has anxiolytic (anxiety inhibitors) and relaxing, which can help reconcile a deep, restful sleep.
The hormonal changes that occur during menopause can lead to several painful conditions. They may consist of joint stiffness, migraines, and muscle aches. CBD can be a very effective pain reliever. Today, many people use CBD to control pain in clinical settings.
Researchers have documented the beneficial aspects of CBD in terms of muscle and joint pain. CBD inhibits certain cellular processes, which can cause both swelling and pain. CBD’s anti-inflammatory action can help menopausal women get on with their daily activities without affecting their productivity.
CHANGES IN HUMOR AND ANXIETY
Mood swings during menopause are the result of fluctuations in estrogen and progesterone. Often these mood swings are accompanied by anxiety. In fact, menopause and anxiety go hand in hand.
The stressful life changes that occur during this time can be the source of this anxiety. CBD has the ability to inhibit anxiety and improve mood.
Several studies in humans and animals have shown the anxiolytic effects of CBD. This cannabinoid is being applied for a number of emotional disorders, including depression and anxiety.
Overall, the body of research on the role of CBD in treating menopausal symptoms holds great promise for cannabinoid as a natural alternative. Pending future research to support these findings in more detail, CBD appears to have a bright future in the treatment of menopause.
In summary, cannabidiol oil is effective and very useful when it comes to relieving PMS symptoms. Various investigations support it and those who have used it have obtained satisfactory results.