The article has been medically reviewed by Doctor Ramlah Tariq FCPS on/gyn, RMP, MBBS, BSc.You can read more about our medical review policy here. It is also based on Rachel’s real life experience.

As someone who has suffered from the monthly aches and pains of periods, ibuprofen has been a good friend of mine. There’s always a packet of those sugar-coated pills for times when cramps leave me sofa bound.

CBD and Ibuprofen

Then came along CBD.

CBD may help with period cramps, chronic pains related or unrelated to periods. It can even lift your mood as proved by medical research. (cited in this research from Best Practice & Research Clinical Anaesthesiology)

When my period started, along with cramps, I was left wondering, can you take CBD and Ibuprofen together? Is it safe? Will I even need it if I use CBD?

Well, let’s answer these common questions on CBD and ibuprofen.

What is CBD?

CBD is one of the hundreds of cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. It is completely legal and will not get you high.

It os sometimes used for the treatment of psychiatric disorders (cited from NeuroToxicology) like anxiety, depression. It has also been researched for its help with pain, inflammation and sleep.

Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC is the cannabinoid you may have heard of, it is the main psychoactive compound in marijuana that cause the high or sense of euphoria. (CBD vs THC) (cited from research from WebMD)

CBD does not contain THC which causes the high.

Can I take CBD with ibuprofen 

There are certain substances you shouldn’t mix, such as antibiotics and alcohol. 

You might be concerned that CBD and ibuprofen are on that list of do not mix, they’re not, as confirmed by research on drug-drug interactions of CBD (cited from the Journal of Clinal Medicine)

Providing you are not allergic to ibuprofen you should be fine taking the cannabinoid alongside the painkiller.

There have been no reported interactions between CBD and ibuprofen, (as cited by the Journal of Neurology Research) however, there could be a personal reaction, so always use it with caution. 

It is safe and legal but if mixed with alcohol or other depressants can cause drug interactions.  

Will I need Ibuprofen if I am taking CBD?

CBD may help reduce those aches and pains as it can help to relax smooth muscle tissue. Smooth muscle tissue is what exists within the womb. When this contracts it causes pain, so having a relaxed womb will be the ideal. It is also said that it may reduce feelings of pain.

You might find that a dose of CBD daily throughout the month does wonders for your pain, however, you may need to dose it with ibuprofen too, depending on your pain threshold and your tolerance to CBD. 

CBD vs Ibuprofen

Ibuprofen is a non-steroidal anti inflammatory drug, also known as an NSAID. It is sold over the counter and used to help with inflammation and pain.

The way it works is by blocking prostagladins from being produced by non-selectively inhibiting an enzyme called Cyclooxygenase (COX). Prostaglandins are lipid containing substances present all over the body and have hormone like functions. Amongst many types of prostaglandins, some are inflammatory prostaglandins that the body releases when there is an injury or you feel unwell. They’re the cause of pain and inflammation.

CBD interacts with the human bodies endocannabinoid system and has shown promising results in the treatment of substance overuse disorder.  (cited from research by Frontiers in Psychiatry)

The endocannanoid system and how it works still needs a lot more research but there are some theories. It is thought that CBD might do something similar to ibuprofen, by stopping the prostaglandin hormone being produced. Another theory is CBD may bind to receptors and send signals to help your body respond differently. 

One review in 2018 (cited from research by Frontiers in Pharmacology) found that CBD might show promise in helping to relieve and manage pain and inflammation.

The current recommendation for use of ibuprofen is to limit it to 10 days as over the counter drug or as long as doctor has advised. If used OTC for a long time, it may cause stomach ulcers and may damage the intestines as well.

If you are in chronic pain and feeling that you have to reach for the packet of NSAIDS every day, then this might not be sustainable and certainly something to talk to the Dr about.

There is no known negative side effect of CBD so it is something you can take each day as part of your daily supplements in your optimised dosing. We always recommend speaking to your doctor about your supplement routine.

Why might I try CBD for pain?

Pain is one of the reasons why customers use CBD. Some customers top up with ibuprofen or paracetamol, others may find CBD to be enough relief. 

Can you use CBD instead of NSAIDs?

That is totally up to you. Sometimes, you may find that the natural approach is enough to curb your pain and inflammation and sometimes you might need some additional meds to help you through painful times. We advise you chat to your Doctor about your medicine and supplement routine. 

There is research (cited from an article on ResearchGate) showing promising results that, scientifically CBD might be better option for analgesia than pharmaceutical analgesics such as ibuprofen.

A daily dose of CBD is all natural. You won’t be adding chemicals to your body or having potential side effects from prolonged use of meds.

NSAIDs certainly have their place, but there are natural options to consider too.

Summary – Can I take CBD and Ibuprofen?

There have been no reported interactions between ibuprofen and CBD. However, if you feel any adverse effects then stop taking immediately.

Every person is different. There is a fair chance, any one of us may have individual reactions to these.

If you are still unsure then, as always, check with your healthcare provider. 

Author

I'm Becky! I studied creative writing at uni and am a content strategist. I love reading, climbing up mountains and wearing a little too much tye dye. I'm also a Personal Trainer for women, I try not to count calories and really want to start a business where I make and sell cookies. A true sagittarius - I am adventurous, restless and hate being told what to do.

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