Do CBD patches work?
Everything you need to know about CBD patches
There are numerous methods of drug delivery, and the same is true for CBD products. Each delivery method has its pros and cons. A transdermal patch is a way of creating extended-release CBD products. Transdermal patch releases active ingredient slowly for hours, in some cases even in days.
In recent years, there has been increased interest in CBD patches, Hemp patches, Cannabis patches.
What are CBD patches?
Transdermal cannabinoid patches are non-invasive. It is a patch with adhesive applied to a specific part of the body. Once applied, CBD is slowly absorbed via the skin.
Many people find a CBD oil patch more comfortable than oral CBD oil. As, in this case, there is no need for multiple dosing during the day. One may simply apply the patch and forget about it.
Patches are slow to work but have a prolonged duration of action. They also help gain more predictable levels of the active ingredient in the blood as the patch slowly keeps releasing it. It means once an adequate amount of CBD has reached the blood, it will remain in that steady-state for hours. Thus, in specific chronic conditions, patches may be more effective.
Like other methods of delivery, not all patches are created equal. Some are made for a faster and short duration of action. Others are designed for prolonged activity. Some may use absorption enhancers to increase the efficacy of the product.
How do CBD patches work?
Transdermal drug delivery is one of the oldest methods. Ancient practitioners have also utilized this method. Ancient people would often apply various herbal oils and pastes and cover them with leaves or cloth. However, modern medicine has been slow to pick up this route of drug delivery.
It has a very simple mechanism of action. When CBD patches are applied, CBD gets absorbed via the skin and enters the systemic circulation.
This route provides some distinct benefits like a steady-state of CBD in plasma, no first-pass metabolism, or degradation of CBD. No loss of CBD in the intestinal tract. Prolonged duration of action and improved patient compliance.
However, there are some variations in CBD absorption depending on age, ethnicity, skin hydration, gender, and so on. It means that manufacturers should test their products in various population groups before their commercial introduction.
There are already some early bioavailability studies showing that this route of administration works for CBD. Studies show that transdermal patches are slow to start acting. It may take few hours before any considerable amount of CBD could be detected in the blood.
Bioavailability study shows that transdermal patch achieves steady plasma concentration after several hours. However, once this constant state is achieved, it is easier to maintain it than other dose forms. It means that patches are especially good for chronic painful conditions. Further, the bioavailability study shows that steady-state CBD concentration can be increased several folds by adding a permeability enhancer.
Transdermal CBD is preferred in many health conditions. CBD patches for pain relief are popular. CBD patches for anxiety are another area of interest.
Where do I put my CBD transdermal patch?
It is vital to understand that skin patches only work if applied correctly. For example, skin patches should not be applied to irritated or injured skin. In addition, one should not put a patch into the mouth or chew it.
When applying a patch, one should use certain precautions like not touching the adhesive side of the patch. Doing so may have an impact on how the patch works.
So, where do you place a transdermal patch?
Before starting, one should ensure that the skin is clean and dry. It could be especially important for those living in warmer climatic zones with lots of sweating. The best place to apply a patch is on the upper arm, chest, or even back. One should preferably apply a patch at places that do not move much.
Another essential thing to remember is that not to apply a patch on hair parts of the skin. It is because the patch would not stay in its place for long. Further, the presence of hair would also alter the rate of absorption.
If one needs to clean a part of the skin before applying a patch, it is better to use plain water. Likewise, one should avoid using oils or even alcohol-based cleansers.
After applying the patch, press it firmly for about 30 seconds to ensure it stays in place.
How long any patch can be applied would differ, as the technologies used to produce patches vary significantly. For example, some patches are made to be applied once every day. However, certain technologies might allow 72 hours of action.
Manufacturing CBD patches
The manufacturing approach would differ, as there are numerous proprietary technologies available. Each technology has its pros and cons. Some may provide better adhesive properties, while others may have higher bioavailability and prolonged duration of action. Therefore, a CBD transdermal patch manufacturer would need to explore some technologies.
Most patches would have these five components:
- Protective liner: It is removed before the application of a patch. Its role is to protect the patch when it is stored. It may also help enhance the stability and shelf-life of the product.
- Drug reservoir: It is precisely where the active ingredient, that is, CBD, is contained. There could be certain technologies to ensure that a definite amount of CBD can be applied to any patch.
- Drug release membrane: It is generally regarded as the most vital component of any transdermal drug delivery patch. This membrane comes directly in contact with the skin, and the rate of drug release or CBD release is highly dependent on this membrane. Therefore, this membrane must be compatible with CBD.
- Contact adhesive: It ensures that the patch sticks to the skin. Again, there are numerous medical-grade adhesives available with various degrees of sticking strength. Strong adhesive is not necessarily better as the patch must be removed, too. The adhesive ought to be hypoallergic to avoid local skin reactions.
- Clear backing: It protects a patch from outside contamination.
To conclude, transdermal drug delivery is not new, and neither is its use in medicine. Transdermal patches were first approved by US FDA and European nations in the late 1970s. It means that there is a lot of experience in using patches for drug delivery. There are numerous drugs available in this form. CBD patch manufacturers need to build upon this extensive experience of the pharma industry with patches.