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Cannabis Salve for Pain and Neuropathy – Yep, I had shingles.


One of the things you might have to endure if you are an autoimmune, AIDS, organ transplant, cancer or other kind of immune-compromised patient is the ever-looming specter of shingles coming to life. And in fact, shingles is exactly like a zombie. It lives in your dorsal root forever if you’ve ever had chicken pox. Which, if you are human, you’ve probably had chicken pox. Not everyone will get shingles in their lifetime but a lot of people do! Interestingly enough, the dorsal root is also part of the endocannabinoid system in the body. And as we know, cannabis is great for neuropathic pain.

Shingles is such a painful illness that the primary recommended treatments for it are opiate-based painkillers and anti-viral medication. And no, this isn’t a minor-surgery type of pain regime, it’s weeks long. And the nerve damage from shingles can get severe enough to last beyond the illness itself or even for a lifetime. It’s scary. So please visit the doctor and get the anti-viral medication for this while you are trying to cope with it!

My Refrigerated Olive Oil Technique

I talk about this simple technique in my book and recommend it in many of my topical cannabis recipes. Pure olive oil salve or ointment that is solidified in the freezer or refrigerator has a more soothing and fast-absorbing quality than the liquid oil at room temperature IMO. Try it! I discuss this in detail along with many recipes and techniques using basic kitchen ingredients in the Quick Start Chapter of the new edition of my book, The Cannabis Spa at Home.


Cannabis Salve for Neuropathic Pain

Yield: 1 salve
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes

I made a cannabis salve during my bout with shingles and I found this to be very helpful in dealing with the symptoms, the itching and the unique type of pain, that frankly, I had not experienced before even with my multiple autoimmune disorders.

One thing about shingles: you probably aren't going to feel like going out and shopping for ingredients or waiting for an online order to arrive and that is exactly the way I felt! This cannabis salve recipe uses common ingredients that you can quickly source in your cabinet or the corner store.


  • 3/4 cup of olive oil (The higher the quality, the better, but whatever you have at hand will work fine too.)
  • 1 gram of ground cannabis flower or more -- or 1 tsp of cannabis or CBD oil 
  • 1 tbsp green tea
  • 2 tsp of powdered turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp of powdered cayenne pepper
  • pinch of black pepper or a few peppercorns


  1. Add all of the ingredients to a pan or electric warmer and warm together, gently, on the lowest setting for 30 minutes. The temperature of this mixture should reach 170 F.
  2. Remove from the heat and strain through a clean cheesecloth into a clean glass or metal salve container.
  3. Place the salve into the freezer and allow it to harden completely which will take about 30 minutes. This salve will harden and remain hard when placed in the freezer and then kept in the refrigerator


Apply the cold salve to affected areas and massage in. Be sure to wash your hands afterwards as the cayenne pepper can be painful if you get it into your eyes! You will initially feel a warming sensation after applying the cold salve directly from refrigeration which will subside into relief from pain in the affected area.

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