CBD and Weed for Women’s Pain Relief – Does it Help

Are CBD and cannabis helpful to women? I recently started thinking about CBD (cannabidiol) and weed as an alternative for women who suffer from ailments such as autoimmune diseases, eating disorders, anxiety, and depression, menstrual cramps, and menopause. Yes, men can have the first 3, but I was interested in if and how women were using them to cope.

Autoimmune Diseases

Out of the 8% of the population affected by autoimmune diseases – 78% are women (these include rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, multiple sclerosis, celiac and type 1 diabetes). A common thread is inflammation, and studies have shown that CBD combats it.

Out of the 8% of the population affected by autoimmune diseases –

One such study focuses on the potential use of cannabinoids as an anti-inflammatory against autoimmune diseases.

Eating Disorders

You may find this hard to believe or even fathom, but eating disorders, out of all mental illnesses, have the highest mortality rate!

Here are some startling statistics in Canada according to NEDIC (National Eating Disorder Information Centre).

  • Females between the ages of 15–24 had an eating disorder (2002).

  • 0.3% of adolescent females have anorexia and 1% have bulimia.

  • Girls as young as 5 years of age are aware of dieting and weight-loss.

  • Grade nine females who diet account for 30%.

  • 37% of grade 9 females consider themselves fat and 40% of grade 10 females also believe this.

  • Estimates put 10% as diagnosed with Anorexia Nervosa (which is self-starvation and extreme weight loss), and has the highest rate of mortality of any mental illness, will die within the first 10 years of being diagnosed with the disorder.

Studies have shown that the normal functioning of the endocannabinoid system (ECS) is impaired in Anorexia patients. Evidence has led to a link between defects in the ECS and eating disorders, including obesity; some anorexia individuals are turning to CBD to counteract this defect instead of relying on antidepressants or anti-anxiety drugs.

Medical marijuana in Canada and a few states cover eating disordersIt is continually best to seek out what’s allowed where you reside.


The prevalence of major depression is higher in females than in males–in 2010 the figure was around 5.5% and 3.2% respectively. In Canada, the prevalence was 5.0% in females and 2.9% in males in 2002.

CBD has been shown to be effective in managing anxiety and depression. It also doesn’t come with the side effects associated with prescription drugs.

Woman leaning over in pain of depression

Menstrual Cramps

I recently read an article about CBD vaginal suppositories for women. They are pill-sized and when inserted dissolve. The question, of course,  is,  does it help with menstrual cramps, commonly referred to as a period or ‘that time of the month.”

Dr. Hance Clarke who is the director of Pain Services and medical director of the Pain Research Unit at the Toronto General Hospital says there is limited research on this.

The idea or theory is that since CBD contains anti-inflammatory properties, it could help with pain associated with periods, but we need more data.

woman holding hot water bottle to her stomach

UPDATE: Companies are now starting to develop specific products for women to help with moods and cramping.

Cannabidiol Life has formulated a woman-centric menstrual relief full spectrum CBD Oil which contains MCT and Sacha Inchi oil as well as Cramp Bark, Black Haw, Cinnamon, Maca, Mamaki, Chamomile, Motherwort, Fenugreek, Passionflower, Blue Vervain, and Skullcap. The combination of organic roots and herbs provides inflammatories and antispasmodics to aid in the reduction of cramping, bloating, and irritability (found under Edibles (CBD OIL); Delivers within the  U.S.).CBD Oil

2000 mg

With over  573 reviews, pure Honest Botanicals CBD Oil is perfect for those seeking relief without THC for such ailments as anxiety, pain, inflammation, or sleep issues. Comes in 4 strengths – 50 mg, 500 mg, 1000mg, 2500 mg. Available at Canada CBD Oil (delivers within Canada).

250 – 2500 mg

A newer product also available in Canada is the  Menstrual Pain Relief Roll-On. This floral-based roll on is formulated by Dr CBD in British Columbia to ease cramps and deep muscle pains, as well as to aid in relaxing the mind and revive the skin.

 Menstrual Pain Relief Roll On

500mg/90ml bottle


Are CBD Suppositories Safe?

There is also the question – how safe is it? Inserting any foreign object in the vagina poses a risk. Research conducted by the University of Guelph has identified a link between douches and vaginal infections claiming “that women who use some type of product for douching such as gels, washes, and wipes are more susceptible to an infection.”

Further study shows that many women use products inside the vagina even when the products are not for use in that area such as wipes and washes.

What this means is that we need to provide more evidence-based information about the safety and efficacy of products such as CBD so that women can make an informed decision about choosing such products. We need more quality studies to address not only the benefits but the side effects of cannabis products.

It is necessary for women to consult their doctors if they have severe pain before choosing an unregulated product.


Some early signs of menopause include mood swings, sleep disturbances, hot flashes, and irregular periods as a result of changing estrogen levels in our bodies. We already know that studies show women use CBD effectively for mood swings such as anxiety and sleep loss.

An Expert View on PMS and Mood Swings

Dr. Julie Holland is a psychiatrist specializing in psychopharmacology and has a private practice in New Your City. She has written several books; two of these are “Moody Bitches” and “The Pot Book.”

Moody Bitches

In an interview with Goop the following is some of what Dr. Holland has to say.

In Moody Bitches, she talks about our moods and how women all over the world are medicating themselves to handle their emotions and mood swings with drugs, food, alcohol, and addictive behaviours. In her book, she offers effective, alternative, natural therapies. She believes Cannabis could be the solution to treating PMS symptoms-cramps, moodiness, anxiety, and irritability. Given that they have passed medical cannabis laws in many states and in Canada, she feels that we are on the right track even though more research is needed.

The Pot Book

In her research for The Pot Book, she learned many women were using cannabis for cramps and PMS. She feels that women are more likely to be diagnosed with depression and anxiety than men and are often being prescribed antidepressants and that cannabis can help with depression as well as mood swings.

The Pot Book is the complete guide to Cannabis and has over 50 contributors offering their areas of expertise. She believes Cannabis can be part of a healthy lifestyle and that it is a food as well as medicine. The book addresses the risks, the benefits, the clinical indications of use and policies.

Buy the books for yourself or give it as a gift!

If you are not a woman reading this, you still might enjoy listening to this video. It is about 14 minutes long but very interesting. Dr. Holland talks about what is in the book, what cannabis is, its uses, and the need for policy change.


Dr. Holland says that New York City, where she has her private practice, arrests more people for marijuana offences than any other city in the U.S.

Renewable bio-fuel, food, clothing, paper, and medicine – and America can’t have any of it. Because it makes us laugh. As a psychiatrist, I have to tell you: This is insanity!

Final Thoughts

As a woman, I wish CBD or cannabis (weed) was offered to me while I was a young woman. It was just not heard of. Today, women have the option of choosing for themselves and with so much documentation available, they can make an informed decision on how they want to take care of their bodies and what products they can take to accomplish this.

Disclaimer: This article does not constitute a legal or medical endorsement. It is up to you to seek medical attention or advice of a medical practitioner and to make sure CBD or medical marijuana is legal in your area of residence. See the full medical disclaimer here.

I hope you enjoyed this article. Please feel free to share any comments you have.

This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see full disclosure here.


16 thoughts on “CBD and Weed for Women’s Pain Relief – Does it Help”

  1. Fantastic article. Very well written and very informative. CBD has come a long way in helping with all kinds of medical problems.
    I must say with all the progress it’s making big pharma may have some very tough competition.
    Your article needs to be read by many, A lot of people want to get away from medications that are addicting and sometimes just making them feel worse.
    My wife made the same comment you did about wishing this was around when she was younger.
    Thank you for this great article.

    • Thank you David! About Big Pharma, unfortunately they are getting their sticky fingers into the pie! You are right though. A lot of people are tired of the side effects, not to mention the costs of prescription drugs. 

      I am sure there are many women who feel the same as your wife and I.

      Thanks again for stopping by!

  2. Wow, I never knew about all the benefits of CBD especially for women. It really is amazing that CBD has all of these uses for different medical diagnosis! My mother suffers from depression and has been on prescription medication pretty much the entire time I’ve been alive. You can definitely tell those prescription drugs have taken a toll on her. I like the fact that CBD helps treat depression and does not have the side effects of prescription drugs like you mentioned. Great article and thanks so much for sharing!

    • Hello Brian. Thanks for stopping by. It is awesome that CBD can be used for so many different things. I am sorry about your mom. I have not personally been involved with depression but I sometimes wonder if all the side effects of prescription drugs just make the situation worse. 

  3. Thanks for sharing your own story and you have explained CBD and Weed in a way that anybody can understand well. I had many questions before reading this post but now I am kind of well informed and will definitely tell my wife to read your blog who, unfortunately dealing with some of the problems you have noted here.

    • Thank you Sanjay! I am happy that you feel a bit more informed about CBD and its healing properties. I hope it helps your wife and that she will continue to seek more answers about her own health problems.

  4. Thank you for this informative article on CBD oil. 

    Where I live, CBD oil is still illegal so we don’t get to benefit from it’s amazing properties. 

    Yes, women have to medicate themselves through lack of understanding in the society and just having to ‘get on with it’. Instead, we could try this less agressive aproach.

    I have a friend who lives abroad and has used CBD oil in pain management. It has helped greatly. 

    Of course, more research would always help, and I hope more will be conducted in the near future. 

    Best wishes. 

    • Hi Alenka. It amazes me when I hear people say that CBD oil is still illegal where they live since so many states and countries now allow it. Women need to be educated about the alternatives available to them. My husband and I both use CBD oil for chronic pain and we sure sleep better at night! As with anything, the more research, the better. Thanks for stopping by.

  5. Hi Mary,Thank you for writing this informative post. I have suffered from menstrual cramps ever since I had my first period. Some months would be so painful and it surprised me that we do not really have the right painkillers to target menstrual cramps. Meanwhile half of the population on earth is female and we are suffered and turn into the OTC drugs which in a long term can harm our health. Last year, I was so desperate with my cramps, it was bad to the point that I couldn’t walk or eat for a day. I was thinking of medical marijuana but I do not enjoy the high as well (I need to get things done, I am a busy girl!) After long hours of research, I came across CBD oil.It was a life changing moment, I noticed that my mood swing before the period is better, my cramps is tolerable (if it’s bad I might take advil, most likely not). I am taking CBD tincture 1,000 mg and very happy with it.The only thing that I am not happy about is the price. It is so expensive comparing to the OTC meds. I hope soon we will see CBD replacing the OTC meds with more affordable price.Great article 🙂

    • Hi Nuttanee,

      I have no tolerance for THC so I stick to CBD. I am glad you were able to find something that was a great help to you. Sounds like you are getting good quality.

      I read today that prices were actually coming down in Canada – don’t know about the rest of the world. Might be something I can check out at a later date.

  6. Thank you so much for the information about CBD. I honestly had no idea what it was although I have seen it on the internet and heard people talk about it being legal. I thought it was just a legal pot. Now I know it is so much more and also very helpful to women. I wish we had this available when I was younger as I had horrible menstrual cramps. At least our daughters will have better options. Again, thanks for educating me. 

    • Thank you Wendy for stopping by. Like you, I too wish it was available when I was a younger woman. Might have saved me some unnecessary discomfort and pain.

      Today, I use CBD for pain management in both my hips. It really does make a difference, especially when I am sleeping.

  7. Hey there and thank you for this informative article. I really enjoyed reading it. It is proven that cannabis is helpful in some medical conditions, not related to the gender. Depression and pain relief is the most common use. I think mensutral pain can also be treated with cannabis, I do not know how efficiently though.

    However, first time I read that cannabis can influence mood swings associated with hormones and menopause. That is really a breakthrough.

    I will bookmark your website.

    Thank you.


    • Hi Strahinja,

      CBD is definitely helpful to conditions not related to gender. For example, depression and anxiety afflicts many people. I personally can’t attest to menstrual pain but I do wish it was available when I was younger.

      Thanks for boomarking my website. Hope you drop by often.

  8. Hi Mary Ann, A very informative website about the health uses of CBD. Pretty obvious, it’s not just for getting high.

    Eating disorders, out of all mental illnesses, have the highest mortality rate! I was shocked by this stat. It is sad about the number of young girls who deal with eating disorders. I suffer from depression and arthritis myself. I use the oils and lotions made from cannabis. It works a lot better than pain pills. It was helpful to have direct links to the studies you mentioned. The one on anxiety and depression was useful. Is the safety for all CBD suppositories standard nationwide? Does it vary from legal states to non-legal states? Also, are the benefits the same for men in related issues, like depression? 

    Very well done and helpful. I am going to share this post with my wife, Cindy. Thanks, johnny.

    • Hi Johnny,

      Thanks for stopping by. I too was very surprised that eating disorders have the highest mortality rate.

      I have heard many people use the CBD oil for anxiety, depression and arthritis with great success, regardless of gender.

      CBD is very safe. It all comes down to if you are getting quality CBD products, regardless of where you live, so it is always wise to do your due diligence in checking out your products. Many reputable companies are now doing 3rd party testing for quality and safety. You have the right to ask if your supplier does this.


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