Uncomfortable young woman scratching her arm while sitting on the sofa at home.

Is medical marijuana effective for Eczema?

More than mere dryness can cause itchy, inflamed, and discomforted skin. For many eczema patients, it may be a daily struggle to overcome this problem. Medical cannabis and its cannabinoids, including cannabidiol (CBD) and Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), have been discovered. Cannabis has been shown in preliminary studies to help cure skin disorders including eczema, acne, carcinoma, pruritus (scratchy skin), and psoriasis.

Cannabis interacts with a variety of receptors in the human body. The endocannabinoid system is one of the most well-known pathways (ECS). This recently identified fat-based neurotransmitter system, which includes cannabinoids interacting with cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 as well as other targets, may be increased or reduced by cannabinoids. The ECS, among other things, aids in a variety of bodily functions, including body temperature maintenance, pain sensation, and inflammation management in our bodies.

CB1 and CB2 receptors are found in skin keratinocytes (the primary skin cell) and sweat glands, nerve fibers, hair follicles, melanocytes (which make pigment or color), and skin cells, according to recent studies. Keratinocytes and fibroblast cells in the skin also contain anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), which are important endocannabinoids.

Medical cannabis also activates transient receptor potential (TRP) receptors in skin cells involved with the formation and maintenance of the skin barrier, as well as immunological and inflammation. Cannabinoids in cannabis also interact with peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPAR) to regulate gene expression. Many eczema sufferers have a gene defect that causes the skin barrier to deteriorate and inflame, which is why it’s so crucial. Unfortunately, this breakdown can result in hair follicles, dry skin, cracking, skin allergies, itching, bleeding, and sickness in the skin.

Eczema and itching

Cannabis has been shown in studies to be a highly effective treatment for atopic dermatitis, the most prevalent variety of eczema. Cannabis is known for its anti-inflammatory capabilities throughout the body, especially on the skin. It’s something to do with a mix of CB2 receptors in keratinocytes, they believe. Ionotropic cannabinoid receptors are thought to be controlled by TRP receptors. Cannabinoid receptors are involved in nociception, or the sensation of pain in nerve endings of the skin, as well as anti-inflammatory and angiogenic actions. Cannabis’ effectiveness in treating eczema itching is attributed to such receptors.

A cream containing N-palmitoylethanolamide (PEA), a fatty endocannabinoid, was tested in 2456 individuals with Alzheimer’s disease in a 2007 study. Itching, scaling, dryness, and redness were significantly reduced in 58.6% of all AD patients aged 60 years or younger at the end of the study. Corticosteroids are one of the most frequently used therapies for eczema. Over-the-counter lotions and creams are also common treatments. Patients reported enhanced quality of life as well as improved sleep in response to this treatment. The ECS and endocannabinoids are two mechanisms that can activate the same receptors in the body, which might explain why PEA is effective for eczema. Although PEA is an endocannabinoid produced in cannabis, it has similar receptors that may be activated via the ECS and need further study on endocannabinoids and eczema.

Cannabis for Eczema Relief

Topical applications that combine CBD and THC are popular among patients who use cannabis for their skin. The activation of CB1 receptors by THC is well-known for its ability to relieve pain, which has been linked to eczema. CB2 receptors, on the other hand, have been dubbed the “immune cannabinoid” system receptors for their capacity to aid immune function and reduce inflammation in many areas of the body beyond the skin. Cannabinoids from cannabis can help manage eczema because they can target cannabinoid receptors as well as TRP and PPAR receptors, which are present in the skin. Because there are so many receptors on the surface of the skin, it absorbs cannabinoids effectively, which is why topical medications don’t cause psychoactive side effects and they don’t show up.

To learn how to find out whether CBD is safe, check out our CBD guide.

Important Information

When it comes to dermatological applications of the cannabis plant, there is still a danger of adverse effects. Furthermore, cannabinoids bind to several receptors in the body at once, and altering doses may result in different outcomes than what you desire. Because cannabis and skin problems are such new subjects, dermatologists are not yet able to predict the effects of cannabinoids on your body.

Cannabis oils and topicals are intended to be applied directly to the skin, where they may be absorbed via transdermal or other means. Because cannabinoids are not efficiently absorbed into the rest of the body after being applied to the skin, their metabolites can build up over time and potentially influence drug testing results. Even when cannabinoids and their metabolites are used top. Speak with a medical marijuana doctor today. We can help connect you with a physician who can provide you with the advice and care you need.

Eczema types

Eczema is a long-term skin condition that causes the afflicted person’s skin to become irritated, red, inflamed, and scaly. These disorders induce the skin to feel itchy, inflamed and hives-like in appearance. Eczema frequently manifests as scaly patches on the body. The following are seven primary types.

Atopic Dermatitis (AD)

It is an autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system becomes disordered and hyperactive, causing inflammation. The barrier to the skin is damaged by the inflammation, resulting in it itchy, red, being dry, and cracked. When eczema strikes, fluid or blood may ooze or flow from the skin. Due to underlying genetic similarities, individuals who have asthma or hay fever are more likely to develop AD.

Atopic dermatitis usually appears between the first six months and six years of a baby’s life. It may fluctuate in severity over time, or it might get worse at times. Some people can outgrow it; others are not as fortunate. According to the National Eczema Foundation, a defect in the gene that produces filaggrin protein has been discovered. Filaggrin is a substance that helps to maintain the top layer of our skin’s healthy and protective barrier. The skin quickly loses moisture if there is no protective barrier, allowing germs and viruses to enter.

Contact Dermatitis

Dermatitis of the skin is an inflammatory skin condition caused by a reaction to something that sets off a skin allergy. It isn’t hereditary in families, and it isn’t connected to hay fever or asthma. There are two subtypes:

  • Allergic contact dermatitis – Contact dermatitis is a skin condition in which the body’s response to certain stimuli, such as detergent or perfume, leads to irritation and inflammation. It usually appears one day or two after the allergen has been absorbed by the skin. A typical example is poison ivy plant exposure, which causes a skin reaction.
  • Irritant contact dermatitis – It occurs when the skin has been harmed by soaps, detergents, solvents, or nickel-containing objects and is often caused by handwashing with too much soap and hot water.

Dyshidrotic Eczema

Itching, red blisters on the soles of feet, palms of hands, and the fingertips and toes. It’s also known as pompholyx, which means “bubble.” Dyshidrotic dermatitis is an inflammatory skin disease that causes itchy and painful red blisters in these areas. The majority of cases also have a genetic component, and it is more typical in patients with other kinds of eczema. It has been found to be hereditary in some individuals. Interestingly, women are more prone than males. Stress, humidity, and seasonal allergies, metals such as nickel may all play a role.


Approximately 12% of the population suffers from this sort of eczema, which is generally limited to one or two areas on the skin. Itchy spots develop on the patient’s skin as a result of his or her scratching, resulting in thickened and leather-like skin. When the skin is repeatedly scratched, it can become inflamed and infected or scar. It’s most likely to develop in women between the ages of 30 and 50 who have AD or contact dermatitis. It may be associated with anxiety, tension, and other emotional concerns that feed into the itch-scratch cycle.

Nummular Eczema

This form of eczema, also known as discoid eczema or nummular dermatitis, is marked by tiny, circular, and frequently oozy and itchy areas of skin. Nummular eczema may be mistaken for psoriasis based on appearance alone and is more prevalent in males than females. It might also be caused by extremely dry or sensitive skin, as well as bug bites, chemical burns, or scratches.

Seborrheic Dermatitis

The most frequent form of eczema is chronic eczema, which affects the upper back, nose, and scalp. It affects mostly adults 30-60 years old and can appear and go away over time. In babies, it’s known as cradle cap, which causes an itchy, flaky, and greasy scaling.

Excess Malassezia yeast, which is normally present on the skin, can cause this condition. It might also be caused by psoriasis, Parkinson’s disease, acne, HIV, depression, epilepsy, eating disorders, alcoholism, and heart attack or stroke recovery. Stressful situations are one of the most common causes.

Stasis Dermatitis

It’s a condition that affects the lower legs, known as gravitational dermatitis, venous eczema, or venous stasis dermatitis. It occurs when your leg veins’ valves have become weak and aren’t able to fully push blood back to your heart. Valves leak with ordinary wear and tear, but they can also be a symptom of an even more serious medical problem such as heart disease or kidney failure. It causes edema (fluid retention) in the feet and lower legs, as well as redness in light skin tones or grey, brown, purple, or ash patches of skin in patients with darker skin types. Skin ulcers can also develop owing to poor circulation

*DigiDrs is not offering this as professional medical advice. Do not attempt to self diagnose, or prescribe treatment based on the information provided in these pages. Consult a physician before making decisions on the treatment of any of these medical conditions.

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