CBD is becoming increasingly popular around the United States. But what is CBD, what does it do, what are the benefits of cbd, and how do you know if it’s a good idea for you?
What is CBD?
CBD — short for cannabidiol — is one of the main compounds found in the cannabis plant, alongside THC. You’ll find it throughout the plant, including in the buds, stem, and leaves.
Both compounds have distinct benefits and recognizable effects. But they also serve different purposes. CBD has become widely known for its medicinal effects, and many people (even people who don’t consider themselves marijuana users) take CBD.
What’s the Difference Between CBD and THC?
THC is widely known as the “recreational” compound of cannabis. There are plenty of health benefits of THC, too. But THC has a psychoactive component — in other words, it gets you high.
There are other, more complex differences between the two compounds, but most people know THC as the psychoactive component and CBD as the medicinal one.
Does CBD Get You High?
No, CBD doesn’t get you high. In fact, it can’t — no matter what your elderly relatives might think.
CBD doesn’t contain the same psychoactive compounds you’ll find in THC. That means you won’t feel stoned after consumption — you might feel slightly more relaxed, but that’s it. CBD doesn’t cause any of the stereotypical feelings of being high. It also doesn’t impair your physical or mental abilities, so you can take it at any time of day.
What are the Benefits of CBD?
Scientists are still learning about all the benefits of CBD. The list keeps growing. CBD has been found to provide relief or reduce the symptoms from lots of health conditions.
CBD has been shown to be effective at reducing symptoms related to:
- Seizure disorders
- Chronic conditions like fibromyalgia
- High blood pressure
People commonly use CBD to relieve pain, especially from chronic conditions. Cannabis has anti-inflammatory properties, which makes it incredibly effective at treating pain associated with inflammation, such as arthritis.
You’ll also find it used to soothe anxiety, restlessness, and sleeplessness.
We’re still learning about all the ways that CBD can help us, so this is definitely not a complete list. There’s also evidence that it could reduce the symptoms associated with some cancers.
Is CBD Safe?
For most people, CBD is safe. It’s always a good idea to talk to your doctor before you start taking any kind of vitamin, medication, or supplement. A doctor can give you some insights into dosing and how CBD might interact with your other medications or health issues.
You might want to avoid taking CBD if you’re currently on antibiotics. Weed and antibiotics have a complex relationship, with CBD falling under that broad category. There are conflicting studies on how marijuana and antibiotics interact. CBD in particular seems to affect the body’s absorption of antibiotics, which means too much or too little of the medication could get into your system. In other words, taking antibiotics and weed (even CBD) at the same time might require a dosage adjustment.
Some people also worry about getting addicted to CBD, so be assured — it doesn’t happen. CBD doesn’t get you high, so it has no addictive properties. You won’t get addicted to it any more than you’ll get addicted to Tylenol.
How Do You Take CBD?
There are four main ways to take CBD. When you first start taking it, you might need to do a bit of trial and error to find out which method is easiest and most effective for you.
CBD is usually consumed:
- Via inhalation — you can smoke or vape CBD like cannabis
- Topically — CBD can be absorbed through the skin through a lotion, oil, or tincture
- Via ingestion — you’ll find tons of CBD edibles, including CBD gummies, which you can take like a vitamin
- Sublingually — some people take CBD oil under their tongue, which lets the substance absorb more quickly into your bloodstream
Deciding if CBD is Right for You
Ultimately, the only way to find out if CBD is a good choice for you is to try it out. Like we mentioned, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor first. CBD is legal in the United States, so you can buy it over the counter in all its forms. Then, with a bit of trial and error, you can find out if CBD will help you and which method is most effective.