CBD for Psoriasis: It REALLY works!

Combating this skin condition with nature

cbd for psoriasis

From a clinical perspective, psoriasis remains one of the trickier non-communicable autoimmune diseases to try and define. This is due in part to the number of different ways it can manifest itself in the individual, and also to the fact that there’s no known autoantigen that triggers it.

However, research has pointed to several different key factors in regard to the disease’s onset, manifestation, and subsequent medical complications:

  • It is an autoimmune response of T-cells in the epidermal layer wherein healthy skin cells are attacked and replenished at a faster rate than normal
  • It causes inflammation in epidermal blood vessels which result in pain, swelling, and localized skin irritation
  • It has a strong genetic component
  • It is triggered by specific environmental stimuli

While there are plenty of conventional treatment methods out there ranging from topical creams to prescription medications, patients have historically been wary of these options due to their ineffectiveness, their prohibitive costs, and/or their potentially dangerous side effects.

Thus, CBD oil for psoriasis has been increasingly emerging as a potentially viable treatment option based on its anti-inflammatory properties, its role as an autoimmune regulator, and its influence on whole-body homeostasis. And additionally, while specific research on CBD for psoriasis has been limited, results of the several studies that have been done have been more than promising, with one in particular showcasing a definitive role of the endocannabinoid system in regulating cutaneous (skin) cell growth and differentiation.

So while CBD oil for psoriasis likely won’t be first on your physician’s list of treatment options, it is (and has been for some time) proving to be more than worthy of a serious consideration.

Psoriasis: What is it, What causes it, and Who’s at risk

Like we mentioned in the intro, psoriasis is a non-communicable (non-contagious) disease of the immune system wherein T-cells attack healthy skin cells at an abnormal rate. Instead of the normal 28-30 days, new cells are produced every 2-4 days, resulting in a buildup of dead skin tissue due to the epidermis’ inability to shed old skin cells faster than new ones are produced. And though genetics have shown to play an important role in the onset of psoriasis, the exact autoantigen that triggers the T-cell attack on healthy tissue remains unknown.

What’s certain is that, depending on the severity of the condition, the physiological pathways of psoriasis can cause an array of other medical conditions, including psoriatic arthritis (which affects upwards of 40% of victims and can result in the permanent disfiguring of joints), and severe localized pain due to inflammation of the epidermal blood vessels. Not to mention, clinical depression has been shown to be more than 50% more prevalent among those suffering from psoriasis.

Regarding those at risk, like we’ve already mentioned genetics has shown to play a key factor in the onset of the disease. One study* in particular managed to isolate symptomatic psoriasis to seven specific gene locations, though the exact association of gene activity with the onset of the disease remains complicated due to heterogeneity among the individuals studied.

And lastly, certain environmental factors have also shown to increase the onset and severity of psoriasis, including obesity, smoking, cold weather, and stress.

Psoriasis Treatment

Conventional Psoriasis Treatment Methods Not Related to CBD

Generally speaking, conventional psoriasis treatment methods are limited to three different approaches: topical creams and ointments, phototherapy (exposure to light), and prescription medications.

Topical creams are generally the first-choice recommendations in cases of mild psoriasis. These include corticosteroids, retinoids, and Vitamin D replicators. While moderately effective, they are typically designed to alleviate sporadic flare ups and localized symptoms of itching, burning, and general skin irritation.

Phototherapy has also been a proven treatment method, with exposure to either natural or artificial UV light having been shown to “slow skin cell turnover” and reduce scaling (which is the accumulation of dead tissue buildup).

And lastly, prescription medications are the only form of conventional treatment designed to specifically target the underlying physiological pathways of psoriasis, though success has been largely hit or miss with these drugs. Some of the most routinely prescribed medications include methotrexate (a common chemotherapy drug), cyclosporin, and adalimumab (Humira).

Not only can these medications be extremely cost prohibitive, they’ve also been well-documented to pose increase risks of infections (including cancer), as well as increased instances of kidney problems and high blood pressure. Likewise, biologics such as Humira (and other drugs that alter the immune system), are particularly dangerous as they work by decreasing immune activity, thereby exposing the patient to potentially life-threatening infections.

CBD for Psoriasis: General Medical Implications and Patient Evidence

Given the condition of psoriasis as an autoimmune and inflammation-inducing disease, it would make sense that CBD would act as a “rubber-and-road” treatment option considering its well-documented roles as both an anti-inflammatory drug and an immune-modulator.

One study* in particular has shown the role of cannabinoids (CBD) in suppressing both inflammatory cytokines and angiogenic growth factors (two of the key constituents involved in the symptomatic onset of psoriasis) within epithelial layers.

Moreover, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) has described the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is a 100% innate network of cannabinoids and cannabinoid receptors inside the human body, as perhaps “the most important physiologic system involved in establishing and maintaining human health” due to its role as a regulator of homeostasis. (Homeostasis of course being the body’s ability to respond to harmful stimuli).

Intriguingly enough, publications have also pointed to the existence of a functional ECS within the skin layers responsible for onset psoriasis, identifying the ability of cannabinoid receptors within these layers to “control the proper and well-balanced proliferation, differentiation, [and] immune competence and/or tolerance of skin cells.”

Pretty compelling stuff, to say the least.

And of course, all of this is supplemental to the fact that many psoriasis sufferers (however anecdotal their cases may be) are already finding reliable, effective relief in the form of CBD oil, and have been for years.

CBD Oil Discount

CBD for Psoriasis: What the studies have shown

We’ve already of course briefly gone over two of the key publications pointing to CBD as a potential treatment option for psoriasis, with one showcasing the presence of a functional endocannabinoid system within skin cell layers, and another pinpointing the role of cannabinoids as anti-inflammatory agents within the specific psoriatic pathway.

Another recent study has pointed to CBD’s inhibitory effects on the proliferation of “epidermal keratinocyte differentiation” – in other words, the inhibition of uncontrolled skin cell reproduction.

As did the previously mentioned study, this publication has also verified the presence of cannabinoid receptors within human skin layers, and also has verified their presence in anandamide, which is a cannabinoid receptor ligand that has been shown to directly inhibit epidermal (skin) cell differentiation.

Studies like this one and the other two previously mentioned have effectively showcased CBD’s potential to influence, manipulate, and ultimately correct both the underlying conditions of psoriasis and the onslaught of symptoms and medical side effects brought on by its characteristic pathways.

And lastly, one more thing of note, we mentioned earlier about the dangerous prevalence of clinical depression among victims of psoriasis; compared to the average population, they’re over 50% more likely to display characteristics of the mental illness. In light of that overwhelming statistic, it’s important to mention the well-documented therapeutic benefits of cannabis – in particular CBD – on emotional and psychological conditions such as depression.

Finally, it’s imperative to mention that unlike THC, CBD will not get you high. THC is the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis, meaning it’s the ingredient responsible for disrupting people’s mental and motor processes. CBD, on the other hand, contains zero of these psychoactive properties; it displays all of the medicinal benefits of cannabis, without the mind-altering side effects.

The Bottom Line: CBD Oil for Psoriasis

In light of the research discussed, it’s clear that the speculation for CBD to be a viable medical treatment option for psoriasis has more than distinguishable merits. On the condition of its underlying medical bases, the cannabinoid compound works to suppress both the inflammation-inducing agents and the skin cell proliferation pathways consistent with the disease. Moreover, it acts as a more than capable therapeutic factor in the treatment of onset symptoms, specifically with regard to its roles in pain and depression management.

If you’ve been considering CBD oil for psoriasis as a treatment for your own condition, it certainly is an option worth considering. As is always the case, though, it’s important to do your own research and if possible, to speak with a medical professional about some specific tinctures and application methods that can be suited to your unique condition.

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Article Sources

CBD for Psoriasis: It REALLY works!
October 9, 2017
  1. Shirley Rosborough

    My uncle is suffering from severe psoriasis and with cbd oil usage, he feels a difference. I don’t know whether or not it cures completely, but yes, it works

    1. Joe P

      So happy to hear. I also use it. For me it helps with the itchiness

  2. Rob M

    Ive been thru the gauntlet of psoriasis relief. Currently i am using a biologic called Stelara. Cleared most of my psoriasis 100% but my shins are as bad as when they first appeared.

    Considering a salve for my shins and possibly replacing stelara fue to cost (currently covered but i have to apply every year and at 4500 every 3 months i am not taking on that cost myself).

    Any suggestions on whats working best on lower body infections?

  3. Jacob Y

    Been combining the right diet with CBD. Although it has not yet cleared my psoriasis there is an improvement.

    1. Sonia

      Amazing to hear

  4. Jacque Ortega

    Psoriasis is a serious issue, cbd deals with it perfectly.

    1. Jessica Dail

      I am not sure if perfectly, but it does help. At least from my experience.

  5. Mike

    Just started day two of CBD oil for psoriasis, so praying for relief.

    1. Adam

      Hope it works!

  6. Holy G

    I’ve used the oils, creams and tinctures. I find that the creams work best for the redness.

    1. Sandy Tate

      Me too! Which one are you using. I am currently using purekana. Works ok

  7. Susan K

    I have psoriasis and i was just looking at getting some stuff. Where would be a good place to start

  8. Erin Bennett

    I also prefer the creams to the oils, but I suppose it is all a matter of preference. I have actually heard that some people rub the oils and it helps with the itchiness.

    1. Ralph T

      I actually use the balms. I’ve been using Purekana lately. Works well

    2. Jenna

      I put the oil directly on my skin and the relief is better than any OTC or prescription drug I have tried.

  9. Lisa Chaffin

    My uncle has psoriasis. It has been helping him to an extent. I wish they would make these oils easier to come by

  10. David S

    Been taking CBD for 6 months and the results are amazing. Will keep you posted.

  11. Joseph C

    I’ve had psoriasis for most of my life and I’ve tried almost everything there is. I’ve even relocated to a warmer climate to see if that helps. It did for a while but…..after while, same old thing. I’ve tried almost everything there is. Over the counter and prescription. I’m very interested about CBD oil and I’m wondering how long it takes before you see results and if there are any side affects?

    1. Alice Green

      I think it mainly depends on the state of your condition. CBD can help to an extent but unfortunately won’t always cure

      1. Adam

        That is true, but it can help at times with the itchiness and pain

  12. Jani Delatte

    I never imagined that I could get such great relief for my psoriasis by simply using CBD.

  13. Sam W

    It does help me somewhat with the inflammation, but I use the topicals.

  14. Hannah Mcfee

    Good informative post. Love your site

  15. Alice I

    It’s comforting to know that other people are finding relief with CBD

    1. Nicole G

      I don’t use the oils, I use the topicals, but I guess its the same thing. Good stuff

  16. Mark Chambers

    I think one of the things about CBD is finding the right one that works for you. I’ve tried a few. I now use the 600mg for pain relief. I also combine it with a CBD cream for the sores. It works!

    1. Susan Davis

      I too use both, which are you using. I am currently using the purekana topical.

      1. Andy S

        I also use that one. It helps. I have also tried a few others. I have found that I have to change every couple of months in order for it to be effective. Not sure why

  17. Rose Ince

    I have recently started using 400 mg CBD salve for my 16 year old daughter with Down Syndrome. She has told me that it doesn’t itches bad and it doesn’t burn. I have also noticed the flaky skin is not there it’s getting lighter in color. I haven’t yet used it in her scalp. I was wondering if anyone has used the oils on your skin or on your scalp, or do you just consume them under your tongue?

    1. Adam

      Generally speaking, oils are normally used under the tongue or vaped. Salves are good and can be quite effective. Which one are you using. Some people have had success with rubbing the oil over the area, but it is quite individual and something you’d have to try.

  18. Virginia Gama

    So glad to hear it is helping many of you. I personally think that CBD balms and oils actually relief damaged skin, yet the benefits from the use of this herb are highly dependent on the quality of the extract, as much as on the patient’s particular condition. Just my opinion

  19. Dustin G

    Been using a topical for a while. It’s working much better than other creams I’ve used

  20. Christine W

    I have had psoriasis for more than 4 years; mostly on my legs. Tried Taclonex but it didn’t work. After the first couple of days of using CBD the redness and itchiness started to get better. The color of patches are light pink. Will update.

    1. Jim

      Thank you for the input. I’d be very interested in how well it worked on your Psoriasis. I’ve tried nearly everything and have had Psoriasis for over 20 yrs.

    2. Jamie

      Did you use the oil or cream?

  21. Annie F

    It does work. Don’t know what I’d do without my miracle in a bottle.

    1. Chris

      How do you take it? Is it topical or oral?

  22. Cynthia P

    Hasn’t replaced my meds, but it helps with the soothing.

  23. Melissa

    Those of you using the CBD oil for psoriasis… are you consuming the oil or are you using it topically? The article is not really clear on this. I mostly battle scalp psoriasis and can’t really use heavy creams on my head. I’m hoping the oil might be a good alternative.

    1. Adam

      Hey Melissa, most people use them as a topical. But again it is quite individual.

      1. Natalie

        I will be trying CBD oil for the first time, and plan on applying it topically. Should I mix it with lotion or just rub in a drop here and there?

        1. Adam

          You may want to go for a topical or balm. The drops are normally used orally

    2. jaime

      Im wanting to try it mixed with shampoo for scalp. I have 1 gram of 150mg cbd in syringe, how many ml should I mix with shampoo?

      1. Adam

        Hi Jaime, if you are looking for a shampoo, you should check out CBD shampoo products. There are a few on the net that are quite effective. In regards to adding the CBD to existing shampoo, it really depends on the CBD you are using. Which brand do you have?

  24. Michael Ortiz

    Been using it for a while. It helps with the intense feeling on the skin. Generally speaking, CBD oil is known reduce the reduction in the proliferation of keratinocytes which are commonly known as the skin cells. At least that is what my doc told me.

  25. Heather Powell

    I have it on my hands. I use a CBD balm. It eases the itchiness and pain. I don’t think it will cure it, but it makes it manageable.

    1. Michelle

      Do you have it on your feet too? I have hands and feet. Cbd lotion helped but now I am adding oil under tongue to see what happens.

  26. Laura

    Can anyone please advise if the oil or the balm works best? I’ve got scalp psoriasis and nothing seems to have worked so far.

  27. marilyn

    where do you get the high dose cbd

    1. Adam

      It depends what is high. If you are talking about high mg then check out Elixinol, they have a 3500mg.

  28. Susan Walters

    For me CBD didn’t work until I got the 1000mg, under that it simply didn’t have an effect on me.

  29. Betty Gatewood

    Accurate article and quotes some good studies. Excellent read!

  30. Sherrie M.

    I don’t have psoriasis, and I’m not soliciting anything. I have a 25 yr old son w/ JRA and UC since he was 14 yrs old. I make my own THC and CBD oils as well as try to stay as holistic as possible. For those of u still seeking relief and may not have found it yet, look into Emu Oil. It has some amazing healing properties also and others have had success with it. Good luck to you.

  31. Janice Patrick

    So I’ve been using Elixinol balm for a while. It is ok. Also the Purekana one is ok. In general these creams help with the itchiness and make it more tolerable. Worth a try if you are suffering.

  32. Nancy H

    I use purekana. Good product and arrive fast.

  33. Adrian I

    It helps with the itchiness.

  34. Miranda O

    It does work. Don’t give up!

  35. Celia R

    Been looking at CBD for a while . I had no idea about the health benefits. It really helps me relax and deal with the itchiness

  36. Jessica M

    I use the CBD creams. It obviously won’t cure psoriasis but it does give some relief.

    1. Carol

      Can you tell me if it has helped with the look of the psoriasis please and how long it takes to start to show results ( he started using it a couple of days ago ). I bought a cbd balm for my 22 year old son because the way the psoriasis looks is really effecting his confidence and I obviously would like to help him with that

  37. Elizabeth Burton

    Love this stuff. Especially the full spectrum oils.

  38. Jordan W

    Great article and extremely accurate.

  39. Peggy Johnson

    Excellent article, amazing to hear that CBD is working for so many people.

  40. Tom Packings

    I also use a CBD cream. It really helps with the itchiness.

  41. Nicholas L

    Been using CBD for a year. It helps with the pain and the itching

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