Unlike tinctures and edibles, which have to pass through your digestive system before they become effective, hemp topicals allow you to experience the therapeutic potential of cannabis in a more immediate way. Cannabis topicals include creams, salves, and roll-on sticks that are rubbed directly onto the skin for instant relief from pain.
The majority of topicals don’t contain enough THC to produce a psychoactive effect, but those that do contain THC (such as transdermal patches) will deliver the cannabinoid through the skin into the bloodstream. When applied to the skin, THC and other cannabinoids bind to CB2 receptors in the local area of application. This interaction doesn’t cause a “high” because the cannabinoids don’t penetrate the blood/brain barrier and reach the brain.
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Because of this, you should only feel a localized response to your THC-infused topical and shouldn’t experience any psychoactive effects, as long as the product is not applied to the eyes, mouth, or open wounds. As with all cannabis products, it is important to research the ingredients and lab test results of each individual cannabis topical before purchasing. Make sure you choose a trustworthy, reputable company that publishes batch test results so you can trust the medicine in your topical. This is especially important for a topical that contains THC, as the dosage and concentration will vary from one product to another. THC topicals can be extremely effective in reducing chronic pain, including muscle soreness and joint pain.