Arthritis is the inflammatory swelling of one or more joints. It covers more than a hundred medical conditions affecting the joints, tissues around the joint, and other connective tissues.
There are several common types of arthritis, as reported by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC): osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, gout, and childhood arthritis.
In recent years, CBD has become the go-to alternative treatment for arthritis patients due to its therapeutic versatility and excellent safety profile.
In particular, CBD creams have proven useful for reducing localized pain caused by arthritis flare-ups.
In this article, we cover the list of the best CBD cream for arthritis from 10 reputable brands. We’ll also shed light on the mechanisms of action behind CBD’s positive effects on this condition.
What Are the Best CBD Creams for Arthritis? Our Top 10 Brands for 2023
- Royal CBD – Best CBD Cream for Arthritis Overall
- Gold Bee – Best Organic Formula
- CBDistillery – Runner Up
- Hemp Bombs – Best Pure CBD Cream
- Medterra – Best Variety
- CBDfx – Good Value
- Spruce – Best Scent
- Aspen Green – Best Texture
- Joy Organics – Best Price
- Receptra Naturals – Most Affordable
1. Royal CBD
Get 15% off all Royal CBD products. Use code “CFAH” at checkout.
Royal CBD is a Nevada-based brand that offers premium-grade CBD extracts sourced from organically-grown hemp from Colorado. The company sells CBD oil, softgel capsules, gummies, vapes, honey sticks, and two types of CBD topicals for arthritis — CBD-infused cooling roll-on gel and warming cream.
The Royal CBD cream is infused with broad-spectrum CBD, so each application gives your skin a whole range of non-intoxicating cannabinoids and terpenes but without trace amounts of THC. You can use this cream for arthritis to benefit from the entourage effect but without any THC in your system.
The calming cream is a great choice for relieving severe pain and discomfort; at 500 mg of CBD per jar, it’s particularly effective at reducing inflammation and easing muscle stiffness. The consistency is spot-on; not too loose, not too greasy. If anything, it’s a bit grainy, but that’s a common issue among all-natural CBD creams for arthritis. We’d like to share more details about Royal CBD and what makes it a trustworthy brand in the CBD industry.
- Locally grown, organic hemp
- CO2 extraction
- Very potent — 500 mg of CBD per jar
- Easy application
- Third-party tested for potency and purity
- The texture is a little bit grainy
2. Gold Bee
Gold Bee is another brand from Nevada that we’ve included in our ranking of the best CBD creams for arthritis. You can check out our review for Gold Bee products and their efficacy, and also about the company and its mission.
The company specializes in all-organic CBD extracts in various formats, such as oils, capsules, gummies, honey sticks, pet products, and topicals.
CBD topicals are a brand new addition to Gold Bee’s collection. The company has introduced two types of topicals, warming cream and cooling roll-on gel. Both formulations come with 2000 mg of broad-spectrum CBD, which makes them some of the most potent CBD creams for arthritis on the market.
Another great benefit of the CBD warming cream is the infusion with cayenne pepper extract to provide a warming touch that helps reduce soreness and ease joint pain.
Similar to Royal CBD, the cream feels a bit grainy, but that’s exactly what handmade CBD creams look like.
- 2000 mg of CBD
- Organic hemp grown in California
- Lab-tested for quality and potency
- No presence in local stores (only available online)
CBDistillery makes full-spectrum CBD creams that can be used for arthritis flare-ups and other localized problems. The formula contains all-natural ingredients, which is another benefit for health-conscious users.
This company is a great choice for people shopping on a budget; the cream costs a mere $0.12 per mg of CBD. At 500 mg of CBD per jar, it’s a very affordable product. That being said, the hemp used by CBDistillery doesn’t have organic certification, so it’s unclear if the source material is actually pesticide- and heavy metal-free.
- US-grown hemp
- Full-spectrum CBD
- 500 mg of total CBD
- Third-party tested for quality and safety
- The hemp isn’t organic
- Narrow product range
4. Hemp Bombs
Hemp Bombs provides a range of products that combine high-quality ingredients with witty marketing. The company has maintained its reputation among customers for over 5 years. Its products are openly labeled as “Pain Freeze,” clearly indicating the purpose of these CBD creams.
The CBD Pain Freeze cream contains 1000 mg of CBD coming from an isolate. So, while undeniably potent, this product doesn’t evoke the entourage effect because there are no synergistic cannabinoids and terpenes in it.
On a positive note, the product leaves a nice “cooling burn” on the skin’s surface, getting more gentle over time and reducing physical discomfort.
- Organic hemp
- Wide product range
- Up to 1000 mg of total CBD
- Third-party tested for CBD and contaminants
- It’s CBD isolate (no entourage effect)
- A bit expensive for an isolate-based product
Medterra offers two potency options of its award-winning CBD cream for arthritis: 250 mg and 750 mg of CBD. Both options come in a 3.4 fl. Oz. container. The company also sells a cooling roll-on gel, but this product is only available in one size, with 250 mg of CBD.
Similar to Hemp Bombs, Medterra also uses 99% pure CBD isolate — meaning it doesn’t carry any traces of THC, and no other cannabinoids or terpenes.
Both products provide a relatively quick sense of relief, but since they aren’t full-spectrum, they’re better suited for milder pains and aches rather than serious arthritis flare-ups.
- Organic hemp
- Two types of topicals: CBD cream and roll-on
- Available in different strengths
- No entourage effect
- The roll-on is available in limited potency options
CBDfx has been making high-quality CBD products since 2012. The company boasts a diverse product line-up, including CBD oils, gummies, vapes, drinks, topicals, and even pet products.
The CBDfx cream for pain comes with 150 or 500 mg of CBD depending on the selected strength. It’s sold in 50-mL containers and provides other natural analgesics in the formula, such as willow bark, caffeine, and menthol. The menthol scent also leaves a nice cooling sensation in the problematic area, reducing irritation.
There’s also CBD lotion, which contains other natural ingredients that nourish and replenish the skin barrier, including beeswax and organic Shea butter. It easily absorbs into the skin, allowing for quick relief from pain.
Unfortunately, these products are priced at the higher end. The 160 mg of CBD costs $0.26 per mg of CBD.
- Europe-grown hemp (Netherlands)
- CO2 extraction
- Full-spectrum CBD
- Up to 500 mg of CBD per jar
- Natural scents
- No high-potency CBD creams for arthritis
- A bit more expensive than competitors
The Spruce CBD cream is appropriate for all types of skin, including sensitive ones. It also smells great for a hemp-derived CBD cream. You can tell by looking at the texture that the cream has been made with all-natural ingredients. Spruce uses organic hemp grown in Colorado and Kentucky.
This CBD cream is good for people with mild-to-moderate arthritis, with 300 mg of full-spectrum CBD. The formula also contains other adjunctive cannabinoids, including CBD, CBG, and CBDA. It also pairs well with high levels of terpenes, such as caryophyllene, limonene, geraniol, and linalool. This combination provides relaxing and uplifting benefits — not to mention subtle fruity aromas underlined by spicy tones.
Unfortunately, the cream is available in only one strength, so if you’re looking for a more potent product, we recommend checking the other brands in this ranking.
- Organic, US-grown hemp
- Full-spectrum CBD
- Enriched with terpenes
- Well-designed formulas
- Third-party tested for potency and purity
- Only one product type is available
- Narrow selection of strengths
8. Aspen Green
Aspen Green offers premium CBD products from organic hemp, including the pain-relief body balm that packs 600 mg of full-spectrum hemp — with minor cannabinoids like CBC, CBN, CBG, and CBDA.
The full-spectrum formula gives this cream a slightly botanical aroma, but the unique blend of terpenes also provides it with pleasant scents that improve the analgesic properties of CBD. The cream deeply penetrates the skin, reaching muscles, joints, and ligaments.
The Aspen Green CBD cream features terpenes like cymene, limonene, ocimene, pinene, caryophyllene, terpinolene, myrcene, humulene, guaiol, bisabolol, and eucalyptol.
- Organic hemp
- Full-spectrum extract
- Rich in terpenes
- 1000 mg of CBD
- Lab-tested for quality and safety
- Only one type of topicals
- No high-strength CBD creams
9. Joy Organics
Joy Organics partnered with the largest farms and producers of hemp in the USA to extract raw plant compounds and infuse them into its range of CBD creams.
The Joy Organic CBD cream comes with a broad-spectrum extract that contains 1000 mg of CBD alongside other supportive cannabinoids and terpenes. The terpene blend includes myrcene, caryophyllene, pinene, geraniol, eucalyptol, terpinolene, ocimene, limonene, and terpinene.
Besides providing delicate floral notes and refreshing scents of forest and menthol, it also gives it a refreshing feeling when you apply it to the skin. The terpenes work synergistically with CBD to magnify its anti-inflammatory effects.
There’s also an unscented CBD cream that is less potent than the broad-spectrum one, so if you don’t have severe arthritis, you may choose it for a more affordable option. 1 oz container comes with 250 mg of pure CBD.
- Organic hemp
- Broad-spectrum CBD and isolate
- Up to 1000 mg of total CBD
- Infused with additional terpenes
- Third-party tested for quality and safety
- The unscented version doesn’t evoke the entourage effect
- Priced at the higher end
10. Receptra Naturals
Receptra Naturals was launched in 2016, catering mainly to athletes. Its product line-up includes CBD oils for humans and pets, but the company also has a broad range of topicals among its best-selling products.
On top of full-spectrum CBD, the formula includes high-quality herbal ingredients to reduce pain and inflammation, such as turmeric, making them some of the best CBD creams for arthritis.
Just keep in mind that the company offers two types of topicals: an all-purpose body butter and a high-strength cream. Although both products contain full-spectrum CBD, the body butter is better suited for daily use. At 11 mg of CBD per mL, it won’t be useful against serious pain. However, the cream does the job pretty well, with up to 800 mg of full-spectrum CBD per jar.
All of Receptra Naturals’ topicals are vegan, containing organic ingredients such as coconut oil, jojoba oil, mango butter, and an array of antioxidants, such as ylang-ylang, jasmine, and vitamin E.
- US-grown hemp
- Vegan formula
- Infused with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds
- 800 mg of CBD
- Full-spectrum extract
- The body butter has very low levels of CBD
- The cream feels a bit greasy on the skin
What Is CBD Cream?
CBD cream is a term that covers a range of topical products that you can apply directly to the skin. Creams are only one format; you can also find topicals such as roll-ons, lotions, salves, and body butter. CBD creams relieve pain and other types of discomfort, including arthritis flare-ups.
People commonly use CBD creams on the neck, shoulders, feet, knees, elbows, and other joints.
CBD creams boast remarkable anti-inflammatory properties. They can also mitigate pain signals from firing neurons. According to cannabis researchers, deficiencies in our naturally produced endocannabinoids may lead to a range of medical conditions. Scientists believe that CBD helps the body restore its internal balance by increasing and maintaining sufficient levels of endocannabinoids in the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
The ECS is the major regulatory network in the body that keeps us in a state of biological balance. The system is responsible for the way we process our emotions, remember things, learn new things, perceive pain, pleasure, fear, and more.
When you use CBD cream for arthritis, it will interact with the cannabinoid receptors in your skin, producing many therapeutic effects, including relief from pain and inflammation.
Benefits of CBD Cream for Arthritis
CBD uses a multifaceted mechanism to manage pain. Although there aren’t many studies regarding its influence on arthritis, the evidence surrounding its analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties is piling up.
A 2018 study from the Frontiers in Pharmacology analyzed several studies from the past on the effects of cannabinoids on pain. The review mentions the painkilling properties of CBD, underlining the role of CB receptors in pain signaling. The authors also added that CBD blocks the release of neuropeptides and neurotransmitters on the presynaptic site of nerves.
According to the researchers, there’s “A moderate amount of evidence that cannabis and cannabinoids exhibit analgesic activity.”
The studies on the benefits of CBD creams for arthritis are limited due to complicated laws surrounding cannabis. Fortunately, the legal landscape is changing dynamically in the favor of cannabis consumers. The rolling legalization movement is opening the door to extensive research on cannabinoids and pain.
Another study — conducted in 2017 — suggested that CBD acted as an anti-inflammatory agent in rodents. The authors investigated the osteoarthritis model of male Wistar rats. After applying CBD cream, they found that the application of CBD cream reduced pain associated with the condition. They also noted that CBD could potentially become a safe and effective therapy for osteoarthritis.
Scientists are trying to figure out whether the same effect can be achieved in humans, but animal studies with regard to cannabinoids carry a high degree of relevance because all animals, except for certain insects, have the same endocannabinoid system that interacts with cannabinoids from hemp.
CBD for Arthritis Pain
Arthritis is one of the leading causes of disability in the United States — affecting over 50 million Americans according to statistics.
Several studies have highlighted the anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties of CBD in relation to arthritis:
- A 2011 study showed that CBD can help reduce inflammatory pain in rats by changing the response of the pain receptors to the pain trigger.
- A 2014 review of the existing animal studies concluded that CBD may be an effective treatment for osteoarthritis.
- A 2016 study found that CBD creams can be used to reduce pain and inflammation associated with arthritis.
- In a 2017 study, the authors suggested that CBD might be a safe and effective treatment for joint pain.
That being said, we still need more clinical human trials to support the initial findings of CBD cream’s potential to relieve arthritis pain and inflammation in humans.
A 2006 study analyzed the efficacy and safety of Sativex in arthritis patients. Sativex is a cannabis-based oral spray used in people with Multiple Sclerosis. Although the results from this study have been encouraging, it’s worth noting that Sativex combines CBD with THC in a 1:1 ratio, so more studies are needed to confirm that CBD oil alone could produce similar results.
CBD for Sleep and Anxiety
Living with an autoimmune disorder, such as arthritis, can be a true pain — both literally and metaphorically.
In a 2018 study published in Arthritis Care & Research, the research team found that people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are more likely to suffer from anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorder in their lifetimes than those who haven’t been diagnosed with the condition.
Fighting a chronic disease can be a large burden to carry on your shoulders, let alone struggling with persistent pain on a daily basis. This can lead to sleep problems, behavioral changes, anxiety, and depression.
Meanwhile, studies show that CBD has great potential to relieve anxiety and depression. A study published in the journal CNS and Neurological Disorders – Drug Targets noted that CBD had anxiolytic and antidepressant-like properties.
Researchers in a 2019 study posted in the Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry found that CBD could help dampen the body’s response to environmental stressors — producing anti-anxiety effects.
Another 2019 study measured the anxiety and sleep scores of the participants and noted that CBD could be a beneficial treatment for anxiety-related disorders.
Considering CBD’s anxiolytic and sleep-inducing properties, daily supplementation with CBD oil can improve the quality of life of arthritis patients on top of helping them manage localized pain with CBD cream.
How CBD Cream Works to Help with Arthritis
To understand the mechanism behind CBD’s benefits for arthritis, we must take a closer look at how the endocannabinoid system (ECS) functions.
The therapeutic effects of cannabinoids such as CBD are manifested by their active interaction with the body’s ECS and its receptors.
As mentioned, the ECS is a vital system responsible for regulating different biological processes, including pain perception, immune response, anxiety, sleep, blood pressure, metabolism, appetite, mood, memory, body temperature, reproduction, and more.
A 2014 study from The European Journal of Neuroscience reported that the presence of cannabinoid receptors and the important role of the ECS in the regulation of inflammation, pain, and joint function lays the ground for the support of therapeutic use of cannabinoids for arthritis.
CB1 and CB2 receptors are the two main sets of receptors found in specific regions of the human body. These receptors modulate the functioning of the ECS.
CB1 receptors regulate memory processing, pain sensation, sleep, mood, memory, and appetite.
CB2 receptors are responsible for controlling immune responses.
When CB2 receptors are activated, they lead to a response that reduces inflammation, mitigating pain and reducing damage to tissues.
A 2019 study released by the journal Current Opinion in Rheumatology concluded that cannabinoids exert anti-inflammatory actions by activating CB2 receptors, decreasing cytokine production, and the mobilization of immune cells.
On top of that, there is evidence that CBD affects the TRPV-1 and GPR55 receptors, both of which are found in the skin and play a role in modulating inflammation.
Another research paper demonstrated CBD’s potential to signal the ECS to produce more of its endocannabinoids, like anandamide, which regulates emotions and our pain threshold. Results showed that anandamide levels were elevated in volunteers who took CBD.
Where to Buy CBD Cream for Arthritis Near Me
Now that you’ve learned about all the possible health benefits of CBD cream for arthritis, you must be wondering where you can find high-quality CBD products near you.
There are two options for buying CBD: you can shop for it locally or look for a reputable online vendor.
While finding a local store that stocks CBD may sound like a convenient way to find a good CBD cream for arthritis, there are certain limitations to it.
To begin with, you must rely solely on the store owner’s perception of “high quality.” Many local vendors stock products that are mislabeled or contaminated with pesticides and heavy metals only to benefit from a booming market. It takes time and effort to find a trustworthy vendor locally, not to mention that stationery shops usually limit their selection of CBD products to 2–3 types.
When buying CBD cream for arthritis online, you can compare hundreds of different products in the comfort of your home, which is the first perk of shopping for CBD this way.
The second benefit of finding a trustworthy online supplier is the wealth of choice. Online companies usually offer multiple options for CBD, including oils, capsules, vapes, creams, gummies, and even products for pets.
And, most importantly, online vendors can cut out the middleman, so you can take advantage of lower prices, discounts, gift cards, and reward programs.
How to Use CBD Cream for Arthritis
Using CBD creams for arthritis is straightforward. Once you open the jar, apply it directly to the skin and wait until it absorbs. CBD will penetrate the skin, interacting with its cannabinoid receptors. CBD creams are more effective than THC creams because CBD offers 10x higher permeability.
Most people report first signs of relief from pain and inflammation after 15–30 minutes, but for some individuals, it may take even 120 minutes before they experience any effects.
It’s difficult to determine the amount of CBD that will be absorbed into the skin. With other product types, such as oils, capsules, edibles, and vapes, it’s easier to measure the bioavailability of CBD.
For example, the bioavailability of oral forms is around 6%; for CBD oils, this figure is around 35%, inhalable forms of CBD demonstrate the bioavailability of 56%.
If by bioavailability we understand the amount of CBD that reaches the bloodstream, then the bioavailability of CBD creams for arthritis is ZERO, as none of the CBD gets there. However, this shouldn’t concern you because CBD topicals are meant to interact with the ECS through the skin.
Key Takeaways on the Best CBD Cream for Arthritis
CBD has many potential medical benefits. Scientists are impressed by its anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects. Cannabis experts suggest that the best you can do to fight arthritis is to combine CBD oil for general pain and CBD cream for targeted relief.
When you apply CBD topically, it interacts with CB2 receptors in your skin and reduces inflammation as well as different types of pain. CBD has been shown to alleviate minor aches, stiff joints, and chronic pain — all without dangerous adverse reactions.
If you’re looking for the best CBD cream for arthritis, we highly recommend Royal CBD warming cream because it features high levels of broad-spectrum CBD and a cayenne pepper extract for an extra analgesic effect.
Do you use CBD creams for arthritis? Let us know by leaving a comment.
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