Best CBD For Tendonitis [2021 Update] – Does It Help?

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Updated on - Written by
Medically reviewed by Kimberly Langdon, MD

cbd for tendonitis

There is the soreness that comes with a good workout and then there is pain. Whether it’s called tennis elbow, swimmer’s shoulder, or something else, it’s more than just tired muscles. Tendonitis (also spelled tendinitis) is a chronic inflammation of the tendons[1], the tissue that connects muscle to bone.

Soreness fades as a muscle rests and recipes. Tendonitis may not just go away[2], however. Depending on the cause, the pain and inflammation may stick around, get worse, or even cause more severe issues. Relieving the pain means reducing the inflammation, so most treatments try to do a bit of both.

CBD oil or even CBD cream for tendonitis may be a great way to achieve both of those goals. There is slowly growing evidence that CBD has properties that encourage an anti-inflammatory response and pain relief.

Best options CBD For Tendonitis on the market in (September. 2021)

CBD Oil for tendonitis

Tendonitis is a type of chronic inflammation, inflammation in tendons that keeps happening again and again. Inflammation is part of your body’s attempt to fix the problem, but it can cause problems of another kind.

CBD Oil may be able to help reduce inflammation[3], giving the tendons a chance to heal normally. One study found that CBD helped reduce inflammation caused by all sorts of conditions[4]

Rather than using a topical, you can use CBD oil sort of like aspirin. You can take it to relieve pain quickly. Placing CBD oil under your tongue and letting it absorb can bring relief in as little as 15 minutes. You can also take it as a supplement, in food or plain, helping to control your overall level of pain.

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Spruce’s CBD salve comes in either 1000 mg or 2000 mg strengths, which is a much higher potency than similar topicals. It’s a salve rather than a cream because its base is made from oil and natural products like beeswax. This may improve the CBD’s bioavailability but is also great for people with sensitive systems who can’t tolerate petroleum-based creams.

CBDPure Muscle and Joint Formula

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This full-spectrum CBD cream has 250 mg of in its 3-ounce tube. That puts it at the lower end of the potency scale for CBD creams. However, that also means it’s more affordable. With the addition of menthol and willow bark, it’s still effective.

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This cream has full-spectrum CBD, to reduce inflammation and control pain. It also has menthol, willow bark, and caffeine, all of which have been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties. With three different strengths of 500mg, 1000mg, and 3000mg, you can also choose the potency that’s right for you.

How does CBD help with tendonitis?

Tendonitis is more than just pain, it’s inflammation. Inflammation actually is part of your body’s healing response. When you exercise or strain yourself, there’s a little bit of damage that has to be repaired. There is increased blood flow and a few antibodies floating around, which causes heat, swelling, and tenderness, all of which tendonitis a painful condition. 
A little bit of inflammation is important and necessary. Chronic inflammation, like tendonitis, may be too much of a good thing. CBD oil and other CBD products may be able to help[5] with the pain and inflammation that comes from tendonitis.

Reducing Inflammation

We’ve talked a bit about how inflammation is part of your body’s healing response. It’s actually a big part of your body’s immune response. The increased blood flow that leads to heat and swelling makes sure there’s plenty of resources to start the healing process. 

The problem comes when the inflammation sticks around for a while and becomes chronic inflammation, like tendonitis. At that point, it can actually start causing damage. Inflammation can also lead to an increased possibility of developing heart problems, or potentially even cancer. 

As we’ll discuss a bit below, CBD may signal your body to scale back on the inflammation response, allowing other types of healing to begin.

Pain Relieving

CBD actually tackles the pain that comes with tendonitis in two ways. Inflammation can be pretty painful in itself due to swelling and tenderness. All of that will probably be reduced as inflammation is scaled back.

Using CBD oil or CBD cream may actually reduce pain in a direct way, as well. In your body, CBD has been shown to interact directly with cells that transmit pain, reducing their effectiveness. While it may not completely knock out the pain, it has been shown to reduce it to manageable levels.

CBD for tendonitis – What research says?

Most people may experience some degree of tendonitis in their lives, but it is hardly ever a serious condition. As a result, there isn’t much research on using CBD[6] specifically for tendonitis. On the other hand, there is a lot of research on how CBD could be anti-inflammatory and offer pain relief.

One of the most important discoveries is something called the endocannabinoid system (ECS).

Endocannabinoid System

Part of the process of studying CBD and other cannabinoids is understanding what exactly they do, and how they do it. While scientists were doing this sort of research, they realized that there were already compounds made by the body that were very similar to cannabinoids.

In other words, CBD has the effects it does because it’s pretty close to compounds your body is already using. The compounds and the receptors they interact with are called the endocannabinoid system. Endo- just means inside, so that altogether it means the system of cannabinoids inside you, that your body naturally uses.

ECS Receptors

Receptors are the things the compounds interact with, signaling cells to do different things. There are two known receptors for cannabinoids called cb1 and cb2[7]

The technical details may not matter, but it may be helpful to understand that cb1 receptors are usually found in the central nervous system, while cb2 receptors are associated with the immune system.

In both cases, CBD and other cannabinoids work to reduce the activity in these systems. They’ll lower the sensitivity of pain receptors and suppress some aspects of the immune system. It’s these two properties that give CBD its anti-inflammatory properties and provide pain relief. As a result, it may be ideally suited for tendonitis pain relief.

Benefits of CBD Oil for tendonitis

There are a lot of options for managing the inflammation and pain that come with tendonitis. Aspirin, Tylenol, and other over-the-counter drugs are usually enough to manage muscle soreness or tenderness. OTC anti-inflammatory drugs are limited in their usefulness because of adverse side effects, though, and you can only take so many. They may not be ideal for treating tendonitis.

CBD has a number of advantages over those other options, however. It can safely be taken as needed or as a supplement and is undoubtedly effective. While it’s not quite true to say there are no negative side effects with CBD, the side effects do tend to be fairly mild and temporary.

There are a few ways that CBD can help alleviate tendonitis directly.

Improve Healing Times

While inflammation is part of the healing process, chronic inflammation usually means that process is getting in the way of itself. The immune system may have even started attacking the damaged tissue, to some extent. As you might expect, that can have a big impact on healing.

CBD works directly on the immune system to get it to settle down a little bit. It’s not a huge effect, but it does provide a window for other healing processes to take over.

Pain Management

Chronic pain is exhausting. Even if your particular case of tendonitis isn’t that bad, it will remind you it’s there every time you bend your arm or take a step. With more intense pain caused by conditions like arthritis, joint pain, or some other serious condition, it can end up being debilitating.
CBD is a gentle way of managing chronic pain[8]. Depending on how you take it, you can use it as a supplement so it’s always working, or you can use it for immediate relief on the spot.

Reduce Swelling

Swelling and tenderness are a symptom of tendonitis, but both can be painful on their own. Swelling is a consequence of the immune response, with increased blood flow and damage repair taking up more room than normal.

By reducing inflammation, you’re also going to help reduce swelling and tenderness.

How to choose the right CBD for tendonitis

Trying to choose between the huge variety of CBD options out there can be hard. Trying to find a CBD product that can help is hard enough. You may also have to be wary of products that don’t deliver what they promise.

When you’re seeking relief from inflammation and pain, however, keeping just a few things in mind can be very helpful.

What sort of relief do you want?

There are oils, topicals, and edibles, as well as other ways to consume CBD. All of these will have the same effects, to some degree. Taking it in different forms may deliver more help, or provide it more quickly.

When using CBD for tendonitis, consider what might be the cause of the original injury. 

If it’s a strain from working out, then a topical cream or oil might be the best way to go. You can apply it right to the painful spot, concentrating the effects where they are needed.

Tendonitis is also often caused by chronic conditions such as arthritis. In those cases, applying a cream can provide some immediate relief. However, this sort of tendonitis can benefit from using an oil or edible. These can be taken on a daily basis so that the CBD reduces inflammation and relieves pain throughout the day.

Reputable brands

Not all CBD products are equal. The most common problem is not containing the amount of CBD on the label. When one website tested a range[9] of different types and brands of CBD, they found that only a fraction actually provided the amount of CBD they promised.

As a result, it’s becoming common for CBD brands to offer third-party lab test results on their websites. The brand provides an outside lab with samples of their product and the result of that testing is made available to their customers. 

Checking the test results can ensure you’re getting everything you paid for. Within 20% of the label is usually considered close enough.

CBD Dosage for tendonitis

Dosing

There are no medical guidelines for CBD dosing currently. For CBD oils, the recommended dose is between 25mg and 40 mg at a time. From that point, you can increase the dose gradually to find the right dose for your needs.

Edible and topical CBD products will usually have their own dosing instructions. In most cases, however, it’s possible to increase the dose without much danger of serious side effects.

What is tendonitis?

Tendonitis is a chronic inflammation of the tendons, the fibrous tissue that attaches your muscles to your bones. Similar to the way your muscles can be strained or pulled[10], you can overwork or injure your tendons causing pain and inflammation.

When the same tendon is hurt repeatedly, or the inflammation continues for some reason, it can create additional problems. 

Symptoms of tendonitis usually consist of:

  • Pain in the tendon and surrounding area.
  • Swelling and redness
  • Difficulty moving the joint
  • A rough sensation when moving the joint

The most common and most noticeable symptoms of tendonitis are pain and swelling, however.

Types of tendonitis

Tendonitis can occur whenever a tendon is injured or strained. However, there are a few places where it can more commonly occur. Tendonitis[11] can occur in different areas that are usually associated with different sports or by the site of the inflammation, like:

  • Tennis elbow
  • Golfer’s elbow
  • Pitcher’s shoulder
  • Gardener’s thumb
  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Jumper’s knee

Frequently Asked Questions

Can CBD help with tendonitis?

CBD has been shown to reduce inflammation and relieve pain, so it can be very helpful when you’re suffering from tendonitis.

What is tendonitis?

Tendonitis is a chronic inflammation of the tendons. It can occur around any joint, but is most often seen in the elbow, shoulder, or knee.

Is a CBD cream or oil better for tendonitis?

This can depend on a couple of different factors. If you’re nursing a strained tendon, a little cream can be helpful. If tendonitis is the result of arthritis or other chronic condition, CBD oils may be the way to go.

How does CBD work?

Research has shown that your body creates and uses compounds similar to CBD to help regulate pain and immune responses. CBD can take the place of the endocannabinoids, the compounds your body makes itself, signaling your body to stop inflammation or reduce pain.


+ 11 sources

Health Canal avoids using tertiary references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic researches from medical associations and institutions. To ensure the accuracy of articles in Health Canal, you can read more about the editorial process here

  1. Jump Start by WebMD. Tendinitis. Available from: https://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/arthritis-tendinitis#1
  2. Edward G. McFarland, M.D. & Andrew Cosgarea, M.D. 'Good Pain' Versus 'Bad Pain' for Athletes. Available from: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/orthopaedic-surgery/about-us/ask-the-experts/pain.html
  3. Medical News Today. (2020) [August 28, 2020].What to know about CBD for inflammation. Available from: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/cbd-for-inflammation#summary
  4. Prakash Nagarkatti, Rupal Pandey, Sadiye Amcaoglu Rieder, Venkatesh L Hegde & Mitzi Nagarkatti. (2010) [2010 Aug 1]. Cannabinoids as novel anti-inflammatory drugs. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2828614/
  5. Laura Tennant. (2020) [February 14, 2020]. Does CBD help with inflammation? What we know so far. Available from: https://www.leafly.com/news/health/cbd-for-inflammation-science
  6. Peter Grinspoon, MD. (2018) [August 24, 2018. Cannabidiol (CBD) — what we know and what we don’t. Available from: https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/cannabidiol-cbd-what-we-know-and-what-we-dont-2018082414476
  7. Prakash Nagarkatti, Rupal Pandey, Sadiye Amcaoglu Rieder, Venkatesh L Hegde & Mitzi Nagarkatti. (2009) [2009 Oct]. Cannabinoids as novel anti-inflammatory drugs. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2828614/
  8. Livvy Ashton. (2021) [January 9, 2021]. CBD Oil for Tendonitis: Benefits & Usage. Available from: https://www.cfah.org/cbd-oil-for-tendonitis/
  9. Bruce Barcott, Ian Chant & David Downs. (2019) [November 18, 2019]. Are you getting the CBD you paid for? We put 47 products to the test. Available from: https://www.leafly.com/news/strains-products/cbd-oil-test-results
  10. L. Nicole Krum, DPT. University of Maryland Medical Center. Understanding Muscle Soreness – How Much is Too Much?. Available from: https://www.kidney.org/content/understanding-muscle-soreness-%E2%80%93-how-much-too-much
  11. Laura Inverarity. (2021) [March 22, 2021]. What Is Tendonitis?. Available from: https://www.verywellhealth.com/tendonitis-definition-causes-treatment-269647

Medically reviewed by:

Sean Newton has nearly ten years of experience as a health and fitness writer, focusing on diet and its effects on your health. He also is an avid athlete and martial artist, specializing in bodyweight exercises and movement training. Together with an evidence-based approach to good health, his goal is to lay out the facts for readers, so they can make informed choices.

Medically reviewed by:

PubMed Central

Database From National Institute Of Health

U.S National Library of Medicine
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