CBD For Rosacea: Possible Effects Of CBD On Rosacea
Cannabidiol (CBD) can be a viable option for treating rosacea, a chronic skin disease characterised by inflammation of the skin in the central areas of the face 1 Rosacea showing up as red blotches, bumps and rashes, and causing various sociopsychological problems in sufferers. There are many traditional treatments available for this condition, but there is no cure. However, interventions involving CBD and rosacea provide an alternative that has shown to offer a range of medical benefits. In this article we’ll explore these benefits, examine the best ways to take CBD and look at what the future holds for this natural cannabinoid.
What is Rosacea?
Rosacea is a chronic skin condition that causes facial flushing, a distinct redness that can affect central portions of the face 2 . If left untreated, the blood vessels in the skin can become further enlarged, exacerbating this redness and, in some cases, causing small, inflamed bumps to appear on the face, as well as watery eyes and itchy, dry skin. As the face is the most visible part of the body, sufferers of this condition have been known to experience alongside physical discomfort anxiety and self-esteem issues, which can lead to a reduced quality of life and social stigma.
Those who suffer from rosacea are often found in the 30 – 50 age range and, while men are more likely to experience a severe case of this condition, a greater number of women are affected. The direct causes of this condition are still being investigated, although experts say that the immune system may be partly to blame, while environmental factors such as stress, drugs, sun exposure and the weather have also been highlighted as contributing factors 3 .
Interestingly, rosacea appears to run in the family in roughly one-third of cases, suggesting that there may be a genetic susceptibility to this condition.
Conventional treatments for rosacea typically target the symptoms, but few attempt to tackle the underlying causes. The most common intervention is prescribed antibiotics – usually metronidazole applied to the skin with a topical cream or taken orally. Steroid creams are also sometimes given to patients with this skin condition, but in both cases there may be adverse effects, including nausea, inflammation and hives. A more extreme intervention is the use of lasers to reduce the size of the blood vessels and, therefore, the redness of the skin.
Why CBD can be an effective treatment for Rosacea
CBD, a non-psychotropic chemical compound commonly derived from hemp, a type of cannabis plant, is known to have anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties in humans. The reason CBD is able to produce these effects in the body is because we all have an in-built endocannabinoid system, a series of receptors throughout our physiology that respond to the presence of CBD, modulating the body’s internal systems in the process. If there is an imbalance in one of our systems elevated stress hormone levels, for instance then CBD will redress the balance and relieve the associated symptoms by inhibiting or enhancing the endocannabinoid receptors.
Interestingly, anxiety is one of the suspected triggers of rosacea, so the calming effects of CBD oil and rosacea may offer a way to temper these stress levels and reduce rosacea symptoms. Likewise, the immune system is suspected of playing a part in causing this skin condition as well. It is thought that microscopic mites found on the surface of the skin, and a type of bacteria in the gut known as helicobacter pylori, trigger the immune system to expand blood vessels and cause swelling and redness beneath the surface of the skin. The well-documented anti-inflammatory effects of CBD will help to combat these symptoms, as well as reduce the associated pain 4 . As previously mentioned, CBD also has anti-oxidant properties. Anti-oxidants protect our skin from the sun’s rays, which are known to exacerbate the presence of rosacea.
How To Use CBD for Rosacea
CBD oil can be taken in a variety of ways to treat an outbreak of rosacea:
Should CBD oil be part of your skincare routine?
We speak to an expert about the efficacy of cannabidiol as a skincare product.
An effective treatment for a variety of health concerns, from pain relief to anxiety and insomnia, cannabidiol, commonly known as CBD oil, is the natural remedy of the moment.
In an unexpected twist, CBD oil is also being hailed as an elixir for a number of skin conditions including acne, eczema and rosacea. Walk into any high street shop and you’ll notice the growing number of hemp-based beauty products on sale, all claiming to leave you with clear, glowing skin.
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But is there scientific evidence to back this up or are they simply riding on the CBD bandwagon? We speak to Dr Ross Perry, GP and owner of skin clinic chain Cosmedics, about the efficacy of CBD-oil as a skincare product.
Is CBD oil an effective skincare treatment?
CBD oil comes with antioxidant properties which might benefit your skin, particularly if you suffer from acne, eczema, rosacea or other skin conditions that stem from inflammation.
‘There’s a lot of buzz around CBD in skincare and a plethora of new products entering the market at the moment,’ says Dr Perry. ‘The reason for excitement is that cannabidiol has anti-inflammatory properties and some believe that this is helpful in treating skin concerns such as eczema, psoriasis, dryness and acne.’
Cannabidiol has anti-inflammatory properties, which is helpful in treating skin concerns.
Cannabidiol is the psychoactive substance of marijuana, so using a CBD beauty product won’t get you high. Usually, hemp seed oil forms the basis of these products and acts as an emollient with a soothing effect.
‘A study in 2014 showed promising results for CBD in treating acne by regulating the production of sebum, which is excessive oiliness,’ says Dr Perry.
So while it’s not guaranteed to cure your skin condition, it might be worth considering the CBD route as a natural treatment to your skin concerns.
What’s the catch?
While the research so far indicates that CBD infused products can work as effective skincare products, the jury is out with regards to more serious skin conditions. Essentially, more research is needed before we reach a conclusion, because there is insufficient clinical evidence – as of yet.
More research is needed before we reach a conclusion because there is insufficient clinical evidence.
‘If you are struggling to find a skincare regime for mild to moderate acne, you could try CBD products if you are interested in that route,’ says Dr Perry.
‘However, for moderate to severe acne, I would advocate one of the professional or cosmeceutical ranges with high levels of active ingredients, or else a treatment such as laser to target the source of the problem by killing the acne bacteria in the pores.’