Five Best Strains for Fibromyalgia Treatment
Many patients report that cannabis is the only thing that works for their fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia is a painful lifelong illness, but it’s very poorly understood. Lady Gaga has vividly detailed her own struggle with the disease. She describes it as a “global and mental pain.”
Similarly, the Arthritis Foundation says: “Fibromyalgia is not a single disease, but a constellation of symptoms.” It’s a heightened sensation of pain, coursing throughout the body for no apparent reason.
Conventional fibromyalgia treatments are effective, sometimes, for some people. Their success rate is often sporadic, and patients with the disease are often frustrated by lackluster results. As a result, many patients are desperate to find an effective treatment.
Exasperated Patients Turn to Cannabis
As Lady Gaga stated in her documentary, Five Foot Two: “I just think about other people who have maybe something like this, that are struggling to figure out what it is, and they don’t have the money to have somebody to help them. I don’t know what I’d (expletive) do if I didn’t have everyone here to help me. What the hell would I do?” Even with the resources available to her she is often left incapacitated by the symptoms.
It’s due to this exasperation that people have started to seek alternative treatments. And cannabis has proven to be a very effective fibromyalgia treatment. For some patients, it has provided relief where other medications have failed. As one member of the RxLeaf community stated: “Cannabis has given me back most of the life I lost.”
Because fibromyalgia is so poorly understood, medical professionals struggle to understand why cannabis is such an effective treatment. Historically, many assumed the disease was an issue of inflammation, and it was one of the few ideas what could explain the spreading, pulsating sensation of pain throughout the body. But according to the American College of Rheumatology, “Fibromyalgia is not from an autoimmune, inflammation, joint, or muscle disorder.” Instead, it’s now believed to be an issue the central nervous system, and the way our bodies experience pain.
How Cannabis Can Target the Systems of Fibromyalgia
Patients are increasingly working with cannabis as a novel fibromyalgia treatment. It makes sense; cannabis targets a “constellation” of pathways unlike most conventional medicines. Chronic diseases, like fibromyalgia, are often a combination of convoluted system issues, not just one specific system failure. In other words, no single pill is going to solve the problem. In fact, many patients get locked into a vicious ‘pill cycle’ of taking even more meds for the side effects of the previous.
Furthermore, cannabis is multifaceted. According to a recent report on CBD in the New York Times, CBD by itself has more than 65 cellular targets. It’s why “CBD may provide a kind of full-body massage at the molecular level.” And it’s not just CBD. There are over 100 additional cannabinoids in cannabis, all with synergistic relationships to one another.
The most famous cannabinoid, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), works with cannabinoid receptors, called CB1 receptors, located within the central nervous system. Other cannabinoids, like cannabidiol (CBD), are not as strongly linked to a specific receptor. Still, they operate within the endocannabinoid system, pushing it towards a healthy internal balance called homeostasis. Part of the beauty of cannabis is that all cannabinoids are molecularly similar, but have distinct therapeutic value. They work together synergistically to target the same issues like pain, inflammation, and balanced endocannabinoidal function.
Cannabis may work well for fibromyalgia treatment due to this multi-targeted approach. Finding a strain with a complex mix of cannabinoids and terpenes can help boost its possible benefits.
5 Suggested Strains for Fibromyalgia Treatment
What strains work best for treating fibromyalgia? It comes down to cannabinoid profile, personal preference, and time of treatment. It’s best to look for strains with 1:1 ratio split between THC and CBD. This encourages a synergistic therapeutic value between the two cannabinoids, but optimal day-time function. Of course, pain doesn’t just occur during the day. You may also want to have a more powerful chronic pain strain handy for nighttime use. high THC strains can help target nighttime pain while acting as a natural sedative.
Here are a few suggestions for all your fibromyalgia treatment requirements. Keep in mind you may want to experiment with the strains suggested below (or try new ones), as the perfect option is also based on personal preference.
Profile: Up to 24 percent THC. Hybrid.
Suggested Use: Useful for immediate relief of chronic symptoms, including pain and inflammation. It has high levels of THC, and minimal levels of CBD, making it best suited for after-work recovery or nighttime relief. It may also help with depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues associated with fibromyalgia.
Profile: 7-15 percent THC and 10 percent CBD. Sativa-dominant hybrid.
Suggested Use: A great day time selection, with a gentle mixture of THC to CBD. Said to treat symptoms of pain, inflammation, headaches, and fatigue. It seems to target muscle and joint paint effectively.
Profile: 1:1 CBD to THC. Hybrid.
Suggested Use: As Cannatonic is very rich in CBD, it will combat anxiety, depression, and neuropathic pain. For those looking for reliable day time medicinal benefit, Cannatonic has an equal ratio of THC to CBD. This ratio makes it good for symptom relief, while maintaining productivity. It’s associated with feelings of happiness, energy, and mood improvement.
Profile: 20 percent THC and 5 percent CBD. 70 percent Indica.
Suggested Use: This is another great option for those who need pain relief, with a milder intoxicating effect. Critical mass is a potent indica, but one with around five percent CBD. This higher CBD ratio helps reduce the “high”, without compromising on relief.
Profile: 17 to 24 percent THC. Indica-dominant hybrid.
Suggested Use: Because of its very high THC profile and indica heritage, this is an excellent strain for pain relief. Especially good for nighttime use, as it may have strong sedative powers. It get its name from its applications for headaches and migraines, which is another common symptom of fibromyalgia.
Of course, there are thousands of strains to choose from these days. You may not readily find Cannatonic or Harlequin on your retailer’s shelves, but don’t despair. Ask the budtender for direction, and look for similar blends of cannabinoids for a similar effect. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and seek advice from the people behind the counter. A qualified budtender likely has experience helping other patients with fibromyalgia and may have information on strains that have worked for others.