CBD has rapidly gained popularity in the last few years with many companies popping up, offering a load of CBD-infused products. Regardless of an increase in visibility, CBD continues to be a bit confusing to many. We hope this blog can help answer some questions you may have regarding the substance, how it differs and compares to THC, and how it can enhance your current MMJ routine.
A Quick CBD Primer
CBD stands for cannabidiol—a chemical compound found in cannabis plants. Confusing many people, there are actually two varieties of the cannabis plant: hemp and marijuana. CBD is produced from hemp, which contains less than 0.3% THC.
Marijuana contains THC which produces psychoactive effects on the brain, which leave users feeling intoxicated, while CBD is largely responsible for the medicinal benefits. Cannabidiol will not get someone “high,” per se, but users will experience a calming and relaxing effect without feeling intoxicated.
CBD Application & Delivery Methods
There are multiple ways to apply or use CBD. Much like THC, the way you use CBD can make a big difference in the substance’s efficacy. Here are the four main ways someone can apply and take CBD, as well as the conditions each method is best for:
Topicals come in many forms, including creams, balms, salves, and gels. This application form is great for those who battle external physical pain and tension, as the substance directly applied can battle sore muscles and swelling. As an anti-inflammatory, CBD is also incredibly beneficial for those suffering from skin conditions like Psoriasis and Eczema.
Much like the inhalation of THC, this CBD application method allows for quick absorption into the bloodstream. When inhaled, CBD makes its way to the lungs where it is quickly absorbed into the bloodstream. The CBD then bonds to the CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors, producing relaxing effects.
Ingesting CBD can take the longest to kick in, but it remains the preferred application method for many people—mostly because they can be so, dang delicious. CBD ingestibles come in many forms from gummies and baked goods to capsules or softgels. Like THC edibles, ingesting CBD is a great option for those battling chronic pain, as its effects last longer.
Sublinguals are tinctures or oils that you take by dropping the substance directly under the tongue and waiting about a minute before swallowing. Taken this way, the CBD is absorbed into the bloodstream through the mucus membrane. When taken sublingually, the benefits of CBD can be fast, taking effect in approximately 15 minutes, so they are best for those who need fast acting relief for headaches, anxiety attacks, or severe pain.
Using CBD in Addition to MMJ
The benefits of using both CBD and marijuana are great—that’s why many strains of cannabis include a mix of the two cannabinoids. In fact, some preliminary studies show that combined use is actually more effective than taking THC or CBD alone. Researchers call this theory the entourage effect and believe that, when combined, THC and CBD will drastically benefit those suffering from anxiety, pain, epilepsy, inflammation, and cancer.
What’s more, if you like the medicinal benefits of marijuana but find yourself experiencing negative side effects, using CBD along with THC may help alleviate some of those side effects.
All in all, CBD shouldn’t be written off just because you’re using medical marijuana. As the above indicates, it may actually improve the efficacy of your current routine!