Can Cannabis Play a Role in Dental Health?

There’s no question that the cannabis industry has seen exponential growth over the last decade, largely due to the legalization of cannabis products in some states, and the growing information regarding the health benefits of cannabinoids. Cannabis has been used to treat everything from pain and nausea to anxiety and sleep problems. 

But, can it also play a role in dental health? 

Let’s take a closer look at the potential of cannabis and cannabinoids in supporting oral health. Dental fear is a real problem for some people, and cannabis might be able to help with that kind of anxiety, as well as assist with pain management for others.

How Cannabis Can Help With Dental Treatment

Dental pain is a terrible experience. It can leave you feeling helpless and miserable, and you might not always be able to get to a dentist right away.

CBD can be a temporary solution to that pain, especially if you’re dealing with inflammation or swelling or something like burning mouth syndrome. That syndrome can come on without a viable cause and lead to symptoms like: 

  • Pain in the mouth
  • Burning sensation on the tongue
  • Dry mouth
  • Loss of taste

When you ingest cannabis, the brain’s cannabinoid receptors are stimulated, activating your reward system. When your brain recognizes that it’s getting “rewarded,” the effects of your pain will weaken. 

Even something as common (but annoying) as a canker sore can be helped with CBD, since it slows down inflammation and can help to promote faster healing of the skin. Topical CBD solutions can reduce the size of the ulcers on your lips or mouth while making it easier to manage pain effectively. 

In the not-so-distant future, we’re likely to see cannabis-based oral health products on the shelves because of their effective healing properties.

Some strains of cannabinoids contain anti-bacterial properties, which can help to reduce the effects of harmful bacteria in the mouth and lower the risk of oral health diseases simply by brushing, flossing, or rinsing with a cannabis-based product. 

Conquering Dental Fear

Again, a significant portion of the population deals with dental fear. For some, the fear is so extreme that it causes them to avoid going to the dentist altogether.

But, it’s extremely important to see a dentist at least once a year for an annual check-up as a form of preventative healthcare. While taking care of your oral health at home is important, there are some things that simply can’t be replaced by self-care and home remedies. 

Dental check-ups can help to prevent cavities, gum disease, and other harmful oral health conditions that could have lasting negative consequences. A hygienist doesn’t just check your teeth – they know what to look for on your gums and in your throat to ensure your entire mouth is safe and healthy. 

If you tend to have a fear of the dentist, cannabis might be able to help. Using CBD to calm your nerves before a dental visit is a safe, easy, and effective way to get through a dental exam.

When you have a positive experience with that dentist, you might not need to use CBD next time. But, if need be, you can take comfort in knowing it’s safe to use as often as needed to calm your fears and help with dental anxiety. 

Consider talking to your dentist about using something like CBD oil before a visit or before a specific procedure. If you’re having dental surgery, discussing taking anything beforehand will ensure you and your dentist are on the same page, so they can support your use of cannabis to calm your nerves. 

As you can see, cannabis can absolutely play a positive role in dental health. While much depends on the strains used and how it’s applied, we should expect to see more CBD products in the oral health sector in years to come. 


  • Patricia Miller is an executive editor at Innovative Properties Worldwide. She explores science, technology, and policy shaping the legal cannabis sector. Follow her work when you subscribe to Cannabis & Tech Today at or visit her website

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