7 Best Strains for Trigeminal Neuralgia

old woman touching her one side of the face while closing eyes

Table of contents

  1. How Cannabis Affects Trigeminal Neuralgia
  2. Best Ways to Use Cannabis for Trigeminal Neuralgia
  3. Best Strains for Trigeminal Neuralgia

Trigeminal neuralgia is a condition that triggers painful sensations on one side of the face. The exact pathology of the disorder is unknown, but doctors believe that the electric shock-like sensation is caused by a triggering of the trigeminal nerve at the base of the back of the neck.

Studies are currently examining cannabis’ usefulness as a pain reliever for neuropathic pain disorders such as trigeminal neuralgia. The current research suggests that cannabis and its constituent parts may be an effective way to handle the chronic pain of trigeminal neuralgia and help those with it enjoy an improved quality of life.

How Cannabis Affects Trigeminal Neuralgia

A recent review compiled in Evidence indicates that cannabinoids such as THC and CBD show promising potential to temper the sensation of pain in the body. It does so by inhibiting the transmission of neurons along pain pathways, which indicates that cannabis could be helpful in the clinical treatment of trigeminal neuralgia.

One study, in particular, showed an 81% improvement in pain symptoms and decreased reliance on opioids with taking cannabis. A 1:1 CBD to THC ratio showed the most promising outcomes, indicating the entourage effect of different cannabinoids working together.

Cannabinoids work on the body’s endocannabinoid system and interact with nerve receptors, slowing the journey of pain sensations and modulating the perceived experience of pain. CBD’s anti-convulsant properties can also help with trigeminal neuralgia, soothing spasms and reducing inflammation after each attack.

Beta-caryophyllene is a terpene and atypical cannabinoid with powerful analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects that may help manage pain associated with trigeminal neuralgia. Other terpenes like myrcene, linalool, and pinene may also help aid relaxation and reduce anxiety.

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Best Ways to Use Cannabis for Trigeminal Neuralgia

No one way of consuming cannabis for trigeminal neuralgia is better than another, as it entirely depends on an individual’s needs and preferences.

If you need fast relief for severe pain in the immediate aftermath of an attack, smoking or vaporizing cannabis kicks in within 15 minutes to dull the pain sensation. Tinctures are another fast-acting delivery method with high bioavailability, working in about 30 minutes after being absorbed via the saliva in the mouth.

If you’re not currently in pain but are worried about triggering an attack, edibles are a longer-lasting method of marijuana medicine. Edibles from a dispensary are precisely dosed with effects lasting up to seven or eight hours, which could appeal to those looking to mitigate spasms before they occur.

Best Strains for Trigeminal Neuralgia

Due to cannabis’ status as a Schedule I substance and subsequent research challenges, the strains best suited for trigeminal neuralgia treatment remain a mystery. These are our picks based on the following levels of CBD and anecdotal reports of success in treating nerve pain.

Afghani

Afghani is a cannabis strain best suited for nighttime use, as its high levels of THC and tiny amounts of CBD contribute to feelings of sedation and strong pain relief.

The strain also features high levels of myrcene, known to sedate, and pinene, which helps to relieve pain.

Cannatonic

Cannatonic is a strain high in CBD with levels testing anywhere between 6%-17%, and THC amounts less than 6% of the total weight. It’s one of the more popular high-CBD strains and can help attenuate sensations of pain and inflammation and reduce muscle spasms. Myrcene, humulene, pinene, and limonene are terpenes commonly found in Cannatonic.

White Widow

White Widow is a relaxing yet calming strain that doesn’t sedate as much as other varieties well-suited for nerve pain. Common terpenes in White Widow include terpinolene, which produces uplifting effects, and limonene, which has anti-inflammatory properties. Terpinolene, myrcene, limonene, and both alpha- and beta-pinene are the most abundant terpenes in White Widow.

Blue Dream

Blue Dream is a highly popular strain with higher than average THC levels with little CBD content. The dream-like high it produces helps distract users from their pain while also relaxing them, making it perfect for nighttime use. Blue Dream’s terpene profile includes beta-caryophyllene, myrcene, linalool, and alpha-bisabolol.

ACDC

ACDC features a high CBD:THC ratio, which provides the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD and pain-dulling properties of THC without much euphoria. What psychoactivity occurs is usually mild, making ACDC a good choice for treating trigeminal neuralgia without impairing cognitive function. Pinene, limonene, and beta-caryophyllene are the most abundant terpenes in ACDC.

MK Ultra

MK Ultra is a relaxing medical marijuana cultivar that’s anecdotally one of the best on the market for addressing nerve pain. Its high levels of myrcene and terpinolene offer a sedative, euphoric experience, putting individuals in the right headspace to deal with the pain while slowing the movement of pain activity along neural pathways. Myrcene and pinene are two terpenes commonly found in MK Ultra.

Harlequin

Harlequin is another high CBD strain, popular among individuals who seek cannabis-based relief without the euphoria associated with THC. Ideal for soothing muscle spasms or generalized pain, individuals tend to pick Harlequin as a daytime remedy that allows them to enjoy other activities relaxed and pain-free. Myrcene, beta-caryophyllene, pinene and humulene are the most common terpenes in Harlequin.

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