Certainly, thinking about the number of viral infections one can conceivably catch isn’t anyone’s idea of a good time! It is probably best NOT to even think about it because researchers have identified 5,000 different types of viral infections, not to mention millions of viruses.
The common cold is an example of a viral infection, as is hepatitis C, polio, Ebola, and COVD-19. While most of us expect to get the common cold now and then, some viral infections are far more prevalent than we think.
For instance, did you know that approximately two-thirds of people carry the Herpes Simplex 1 virus (HSV-1)? About one-in-eight people carry the Herpes Simplex 2 virus (HSV-2). In both cases, symptoms can involve painful, nasty-looking breakouts in the mouth and genital areas.
That’s the bad news. The good news is that CBD for herpes could be a breakthrough in combating this particular viral infection. Read on to find out more.
What is Herpes?
Before we discuss CBD for herpes, let’s investigate this viral infection. It is a shockingly common virus that results in sores on the mouth and/or genitals.
HSV-1 and HSV-2 viruses cause herpes. These are different types of viruses capable of living on different body parts. HSV-1 tends to result in oral herpes, while HSV-2 is linked with genital herpes. However, either virus can infect other body parts. For instance, you can catch the HSV-2 virus by performing oral sex on someone who has HSV-2 on their genitals.
One problem with herpes is how easily it spreads since it only requires skin-to-skin contact with someone who has it. Even kissing someone with oral herpes is enough to contract the virus. You can also spread it to other body parts by touching a herpes sore and touching your eyes, genitals, or mouth without washing your hands. It is also easy to pass it to someone else in this way.
Fortunately, though, herpes dies quickly outside the body, so you won’t catch it from sneezing, coughing, holding hands, or on toilet seats.
Symptoms can range from mild to extremely painful. For example, individuals with genital herpes might experience burning when they urinate. Other symptoms of HSV-2 include fever, chills, and headaches.
Treatment options include warm baths, pain relievers like ibuprofen, and ice packs. Additionally, there is evidence that CBD could help alleviate herpes symptoms.
CBD for Herpes: What Does the Science Say?
There isn’t a massive array of studies into CBD’s impact on viral diseases. Research from 2020 involved the study’s authors looking into articles published on PubMed. One of these articles investigated the use of CBD for hepatitis C and Kaposi sarcoma. However, they found that most evidence of CBD’s efficacy for treating viral diseases came from commercial websites rather than clinical sources.
What about CBD for herpes? Is there any scientific research that shows the cannabinoid’s potential in treating this particular viral infection?
There is data outlining the antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties of CBD. In theory, this could help alleviate many herpes symptoms. CBD engages with the cannabinoid receptors in the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS regulates various functions, and CBD’s capacity for interacting with CB1 and CB2 receptors in the ECS is possibly why it has anti-inflammatory properties.
There is evidence of CBD’s antiviral potential in various studies and a belief that it could suppress the inflammatory reaction of allergic contact dermatitis, which is a skin rash. CBD’s benefits for this condition suggest it could help reduce the appearance of cold sores caused by herpes.
Nonetheless, although there is light at the end of the tunnel, there isn’t any direct clinical evidence showing that CBD can help with herpes.
CBD for Herpes: Is It Worth Trying?
Despite the condition’s prevalence, herpes is a source of embarrassment for many individuals. If the symptoms are mild, it is a question of hoping no one knows about it! However, if you suffer from severe symptoms, you will likely try anything to alleviate the pain.
While CBD for herpes offers promise due to the cannabinoid’s potential antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties, there is a lack of clinical evidence pointing to its efficacy. Nonetheless, anecdotal evidence suggests that it is worth a try.