by Mr Nice 16.05.2021

In August 2020, NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) found that

“a number of commonly used drug treatments for chronic primary pain have little or no evidence that they work and shouldn’t be prescribed.”
“Chronic primary pain represents chronic pain as a condition in itself and which can’t be accounted for by another diagnosis. It is characterised by significant emotional distress and functional disability.”

Treating long-term pain as an ‘illness’ requires daily use of painkillers, which should only be used for acute (secondary) pain from illness or injury. 

Ongoing use risks greater harm from side-effects and possible addiction, far outweighing the benefits, which are now shown to be minimal anyway.

Lack of medical alternatives mean painkillers are all that’s on offer.

Patients understandably want a quick fix, but any relief achieved doesn’t induce actual healing, only temporarily blocking pain signals.

 Over-use of painkillers can have a knock-on effect, causing additional issues such as mood and/or sleep disorders.


Medical focus has been on short-term pain management rather than long-term patient healing due to lack of info around chronic pain.

Legal restrictions have prevented meaningful scientific discovery until now. So, although in the initial stages of research, early evidence shows a positive outlook for chronic pain sufferers interested in using CBD. 

Many treatment-resistant conditions appear to have responded well to early cannabis trials, including those associated with chronic pain. 

CBD was found to be an exceptional resource for chronic pain sufferers, and with no adverse side-effects


 In a recent study on the use of CBD in Chronic Pain, the following conclusions were drawn:

  • CBD appears to provide therapeutic benefit in certain forms of epilepsy, treats pain in certain conditions, and improves quality of life.
  • CBD treatment for fibromyalgia decreased pain by more than 30%
  • Consistent improvement in patient-reported quality of life and quality of sleep
  • CBD treatment in 400 chronic pain patients indicated its safety for prolonged use


CBD has arisen as one of the most promising treatments for migraine. CBD increases serotonin levels in the brain (low levels can be a trigger for chronic migraines).

CBD has proven highly effective at treating mood disorders, such as anxiety and depression by interacting with serotonin neurotransmitters, as well as for general physical/mental imbalances by regulating the body’s ECS (see below graphic).


Other conditions such as arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and chronic primary pain were found to be effectively treated with CBD.

One of the main causes behind chronic pain is inflammation. CBD regulates imbalances like an over-active inflammation response.

One study found that Cannabinoids desensitise our body’s pain and sensory perception. Others show CBD’s ability to work at all stages of pain, including transmission at the injury site.


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