Legalizing cannabis in a variety of forms has given birth to a whole new industry built around taking advantage of the alleged health benefits of a plant most people know about only for its ability to make one high. Though some of the most advertised health benefits have some science behind them, it is a safe bet that others are more speculative. Take cannabis massages. It is the latest thing in the massage therapy realm.
What is cannabis massage? It’s exactly what its name implies: massage therapy using cannabis-based oils and lotions. The idea is to combine the known benefits of massage therapy with the healing properties cannabis brings to the table. People swear by it. In fact, there are now massage therapists who specialize exclusively in it.
Cannabinoids, Terpenes, Etc.
A growing body of scientific evidence shows that there are compounds in cannabis plants that can positively impact human health. That much is no longer debatable. But there are legitimate questions as to how much cannabis can really accomplish in the health and wellness arena. Is cannabis truly a miracle plant? Probably not.
Any healing properties it does possess likely come from a variety of compounds found in the plants. These compounds include cannabinoids and terpenes. If you are familiar with aromatherapy, you know that terpenes are the aromatic substances that give plants and trees their unique scents. Cannabis plants contain a number of pungent terpenes.
In terms of cannabinoids, there are more than a hundred of them. You are probably familiar with CBD and THC. Both are believed to possess healing properties. Other cannabinoids are proving interesting as well. For example, researchers are now looking into CBN, CBG, and others.
Advantages of Cannabis Massage
Let us assume that cannabinoids and terpenes can be put to good use in massage therapy. Ideally, a therapist would want a variety of products they could offer clients based on need. One client might request a THC massage oil to help with pain and inflammation. Another might request a CBD oil to encourage relaxation.
In a restrictive state like Utah, where the Pure Utah pharmacy says only medical cannabis is allowed, massage therapists would be limited to CBD oils and lotions. It is assumed that states with recreational consumption laws in place would be okay with THC products.
Either way, here are some of the purported advantages of cannabis massage:
- Pain Relief – It is believed that certain cannabinoids can encourage cutaneous homeostasis, which subsequently promotes pain relief.
- Reduced Inflammation – Some cannabis massage therapists insist that cannabis-infused massage oils visibly reduce inflammation during treatment. Some of their patients say the oils can relieve deep-seated inflammation caused by conditions like arthritis.
- Improved Circulation – All by itself, massage therapy can improve circulation. Adding a cannabis-infused lotion is believed to enhance the results considerably.
- Improved Sleep – Cannabis advocates promote the idea of ingesting certain cannabis products to improve sleep. Apparently, cannabis massage offers the same benefit.
- Faster Healing – Proponents of cannabis massage therapy say that it promotes faster healing of soft tissue injuries. This includes things like pulled muscles, cuts and abrasions, burns, etc.
None of what has been described in this post has been scientifically proven. Our current understanding of cannabis massage therapy is based on observation and speculation. That being said, cannabis massage is unlikely to harm you. If you want to give it a try, go right ahead.
There are those massage therapists who swear by cannabis massage. Likewise, there are those clients who will never go back to traditional massage after experiencing the cannabis alternative. You make the call for yourself.