Can I take Ibuprofen with CBD oil?

by Edward J. Ross

can I take ibuprofen with cbd oil  ?
Pain and inflammation pop up fairly regularly in most people’s life. Hence, painkillers, especially ibuprofen, have become a de-facto best friend. Ibuprofen has been known to fight pain, inflammation, and fever. Recently, CBD (cannabidiol) has come on the scene, offering both pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties more naturally.

A lot of people even argue it does a better job than most over-the-counter pain relievers as it is more natural and safe. CBD is used to treat a lot of ailments such as depression, anxiety, high blood pressure, and more importantly for this article, inflammation and pain.

This is good news, but for some, CBD alone might not be enough. It might only work to lessen the pain, leaving them to reach for over-the-counter painkillers like Ibuprofen to cover the gap. This raises an all-important question: can I take CBD and Ibuprofen together?

CBD vs. Ibuprofen

To get to the bottom of this burning question, let’s look at the process they each use for pain relief in our bodies. Ibuprofen is one of a group of drugs called Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) and is one of the most common.

The drug works by blocking a hormone in the body called prostaglandin, which is formed in the body chemically at the site of tissue damage or an infection. Ibuprofen blocks prostaglandin by decreasing the activity of an enzyme called COX (cyclooxygenase).

It comes with some side effects, especially after prolonged use. The side effects include nausea, vomiting, dizziness, diarrhea, constipation, heartburn, rashes, stomach and/or intestinal bleeding, increased risk of heart, kidney, or liver failure, and is unsafe to use in the later stages of pregnancy.

Cannabis, which is one of the main sources of CBD, has been consumed for centuries to help alleviate pain. CBD, or Cannabidiol as it is known in more serious circles, is a cannabinoid that is found in the hemp or cannabis plant. It has a ton of positive health benefits and avoids the high feeling that some other cannabinoids such as THC give.

It has shown promise in relieving pain, fighting inflammation, and helping to combat psychiatric disorders such as depression, anxiety, and seizures. It is used in different forms, including topicals, edibles, shampoos, capsules, and even inhalation.  

CBD eliminates pain differently from Ibuprofen and other NSAIDs. It binds to CB1 and CB2 receptors. This means that it provides pain relief by inhibiting the action of neurotransmitters. While the pain-fighting actions of CBD are not as well-known as that of Ibuprofen, it is plant-based and as such, is viewed as more natural and thus safer and more effective.

Effects CBD and Ibuprofen together

The reactions of CBD to Ibuprofen are not well known as research is still ongoing on the topic. However, research has shown that CBD will react to some of the enzymes that catalyze the metabolism of drugs.

This means that if you take CBD together with some drugs, it might alter their effectiveness. This is called altered concentration and drug interactions leading to it are hard to predict.

Drug interactions with CBD tend to fall into one of two categories: drugs that shouldn’t be used at all with CBD as they pose a significant health risk and those that require caution when used together with CBD. Ibuprofen falls into the latter group.

What does this mean for you? Well, it means you should be cautious when you take CBD and Ibuprofen together. As we mentioned, CBD may cause altered concentration with Ibuprofen. This means the effects of Ibuprofen might be more intense or less effective. The exact result of mixing them is hard to predict.

How dosage and timing affect CBD interactions with Ibuprofen

Spacing out doses of medication can reduce the workload for your liver. The result is that the time you take both CBD and Ibuprofen can change how they affect each other. For instance, we know that CBD has interactions with the enzymes that affect drug metabolism.

This effect is not permanent and wears out with time. As the effect diminishes, it is less likely altered concentration will occur when other drugs, Ibuprofen, for example, are taken after. So, simply spacing out the ingestion or application of CBD and Ibuprofen will reduce the risk of altered concentration.

The dosages used also affect the interaction of Ibuprofen and CBD. Higher doses may lead to a higher risk of accumulation of side effects. Lower doses are considered safer to take. It is also common knowledge that CBD works on each individual's system differently.

A lot determines how an individual will react to a drug such as genetics, age, size, and other related factors. This means that you might need to experiment to determine the optimal dosage of CBD and Ibuprofen. You need to exercise caution though. Start with smaller doses, then work your way up if the smaller doses are not effective.

Side effects to watch for

Starting or changing medication without your doctor’s knowledge and approval is usually a bad idea. If your doctor gives the go-ahead, then you should be able to take CBD and Ibuprofen without adverse effects. However, caution is still necessary. You should watch out for the following:

  1. New side effects such as drowsiness or nausea or an increase in their intensity.
  2. Medication decreasing in its effectiveness
  3. Increase in intensity of common CBD side effects such as fatigue, diarrhea, change in weight, or change in appetite.

Will I need Ibuprofen if I’m using CBD?

So, we have discussed using CBD with Ibuprofen. But will you even need Ibuprofen or any other painkiller if you’re using CBD? CBD has proven to be an effective treatment plan against pain and inflammation. But due to differences in metabolism, age, genetics, and tolerance to CBD, you might find that you need to supplement your CBD dosage with other pain medications.

This won’t be the case with everyone. You need to tailor your CBD intake to your lifestyle and pick what suits your health best. That being said, consult your doctor or healthcare provider before starting any medication.

Final thoughts  

You get CBD from cannabis and hemp plants. CBD works well on pain and inflammation and has been used to treat them and many other medical conditions such as depression, anxiety, and a host of other psychological ailments. CBD reacts adversely to certain substances in the body.

Published studies have shown that you shouldn't be taking CBD together with some drugs at all. However, there are no published reports that show that taking Ibuprofen and CBD together will produce adverse effects. Caution is advised when combining the two but you should be safe.

Each individual is different and might react differently to medication. We recommend you start with a low dosage, monitor your reactions, and stop taking it immediately you notice some adverse reactions. Always keep in close contact with your healthcare provider or doctor, especially when starting a new medication.  

The verdict we have arrived at is this: provided you are not allergic to Ibuprofen, you should be okay taking CBD and Ibuprofen together. Just monitor your reactions to make sure they don't adversely affect you.