A lotion or ointment that is applied directly to the body’s surface. Topicals are utilized for fast-acting localized relief of inflammation and pain. Cannabis topicals are typically non-intoxicating, which allows patients to enjoy the plant’s therapeutic effects without THC’s attendant psychoactivity. This growing category of cannabis treatments has expanded to include transdermal solutions, as well as lubricants, often including essential oils such as clove and wintergreen for additional relief.
What are Topicals?
Topicals are cannabis-infused products you apply directly to your skin to relieve an ailment. Cannabis used in topicals will allow cannabinoids to be absorbed into the bloodstream at a slower rate than smokable or edible cannabis, so the effects of topicals are typically felt only where they’re used without the THC that causes intoxication.
They can include lotions, oils, patches, sprays, soaps, lubricants, bath salts, and cool or warm balms, and are often made with essential oils and other organic materials. You might find tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD), or tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) in topicals, but whether they have an intoxicating effect depends on the cannabinoids used and where on your body they are applied.
How Topicals work
What does topically mean when it comes to cannabis creams? Your body’s natural endocannabinoid system (ECS) regulates your appetite, mood, and pain and pleasure receptors, among other functions. Cannabinoids THC and CBD, the active compounds in cannabis plants, are chemicals that activate that system. Your body also makes its own natural versions of these compounds, called endocannabinoids.