Article written by
Tina MagrabiSenior Content Writer
Content reviewed by
Dr. Lewis JasseyMedical Director - Pediatric Medicine
Table of contents
For generations, people have relied on pharmaceuticals like acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or even something as dangerous and addictive as prescription opioids. However, more and more people opt to use the cannabis plant as medicine instead. An essential and often overlooked part of that medicinal cannabis family is cannabidiol oil or CBD oil for short.
CBD oil offers a range of benefits, including pain relief, mood-lifting, and relaxation. Learn how to find the best CBD oil for you as well as the best ways to use CBD oil.
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Finding the Right CBD Oil for You
CBD products, especially in oil form, have exploded in popularity since the 2018 Farm Bill made hemp-derived CBD legal and products hit mainstream shelves. CBD oil is now so popular and mainstream that the global market is projected to be worth $5.3 billion by 2025.
The explosive popularity of CBD products means many to choose from. Here are the main types of CBD oil on the market, along with their unique benefits:
CBD isolate is the purest form of CBD oil and contains no tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive cannabinoid. CBD isolate is often the logical choice for people with sensitivities to THC. However, the isolate form strips away other therapeutic cannabinoids, meaning the synergistic entourage effect will be lacking.
Like CBD isolate, broad-spectrum CBD products generally contain no THC. However, broad-spectrum CBD oils contain other therapeutic cannabinoids, meaning that the entourage effect will activate.
As the name implies, full-spectrum CBD products contain a bounty of therapeutic compounds. However, THC content must remain below 0.3% for the product to be labeled CBD rather than cannabis. Full-spectrum CBD products activate the entourage effect and help your body synergize all the potential health benefits of the plant.
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How to Dose CBD
When it comes to dosage for CBD oil, things can get a bit personal. While there’s a lot about CBD that science has a great understanding of, figuring out the perfect dose of CBD isn’t one we’ve perfected yet.
That’s because, like with other medicines, the dosage is highly dependent on a variety of personal factors like genetics, gender, metabolism, weight, age, and even your overall health. We can say that, generally, most CBD oil droppers contain about 1 mL of oil, which breaks down to about 20 or so drops. From there, if you have a standard 1-ounce bottle, we can estimate that a full dropper (1 mL) contains about 8-10 milligrams of CBD.
A 30 mL bottle of CBD containing 240 – 300 mg of total CBD is a common standard for many CBD products. We recommend using that as a barometer to figure out your optimal dosage to treat your symptoms. And remember: low and slow is the right approach to dosing cannabis. You can always take more, but you can’t take less.
Different Ways to Use CBD Oil
There is no one right way to use CBD oil. Some people prefer to place a drop just under the tongue, while others mix in their homemade creams and lotions. Here are the most common ways to use CBD oil:
Under the Tongue
Also called the sublingual method, placing CBD oil or CBD tinctures under the tongue is one of the most popular ways to use the product. Many CBD oils come in a glass bottle with an eyedropper apparatus, and use the eyedropper to place the appropriate CBD dosage under your tongue.
Expect quick results in most cases, sometimes within half an hour to 45 minutes. The speed and precision of the sublingual method make it one of the best ways to use CBD oil.
Add to Food
If you’re feeling ambitious, creative, or love to bake, you can easily use CBD oil in a batch of brownies, a cupcake, or a candy and ingest the CBD oil in edible form. If you’re looking to ingest oils quicker and easier than preheating an oven and waiting to bake, you can drop your oil dosage into a drink like juice, tea, or even water.
Once the CBD oil enters your system, it will start working quickly. Since CBD is highly bioavailable (active), your body and endocannabinoid system will react to it in mere minutes. In the end, as long as you ingest that CBD oil in some way, shape, or form, it will work. It’s shockingly simple to use CBD for issues like poor sleep and pain once you figure out your proper dosage.
Put in Creams and Lotions
DIYers might enjoy whipping up a batch of CBD cream or lotion at home. Use a carrier oil like coconut oil, along with other skin-nourishing ingredients, including beeswax, and you can create your own CBD topicals. Choose an accompanying fragrance like lavender or keep your homemade CBD lotion scent-free.
The topical application of CBD oil is one of the most popular ways to use the product since the method doubles as internal and external therapy. Simultaneously uplift your mood and moisturize your skin with CBD creams and lotions.
Capsules are an easy and portable way to experience the benefits of CBD. Some people like to take their CBD capsules in the morning and other dietary supplements, a glass of water, and healthy breakfast. The effects of CBD capsules may take a little longer to kick in than if you used the sublingual method, but this is nonetheless a potent way to experience the cannabinoid.
Vaping is a controversial cannabis ingestion method, and for a good reason. Vaporizing cannabis with vape pens and other apparatuses multiplies the risk of developing lung illness and injury. If you choose to vape, the method offers a quick delivery method, which means that you may feel the CBD effects within minutes.
How Long Does It Take CBD to Work?
CBD oil effects generally begin between 30 minutes and two hours after application or consumption. It may be necessary for you to take CBD oil throughout the day to treat specific issues, like chronic pain. Dosing CBD oil every four to six hours is standard, but you should follow the instructions on the product label or consult with your physician when in doubt.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Do you swallow CBD oil?
Swallowing CBD oil on its own or in a spoonful of food (like ice cream or soup) is one consumption option. However, many people prefer to apply CBD products like oils and gels to the skin rather than consuming them orally. The choice is personal, and you can experiment with different methods to see which is most effective for you.
How many drops of CBD oil should I take?
Start slowly with one or two CBD oil drops and then evaluate the effects. As you continue to use CBD oil and understand your body’s response, you might increase your dosage, but consult your medical professional before making any drastic changes.
Is it OK to use CBD oil every day?
Many people use CBD oil every day, sometimes even multiple times per day. However, some people, such as those taking certain medications, may not benefit from CBD daily. Ask your doctor if a daily CBD regimen is appropriate for you.