What is CBD?
CBD is everywhere these days — from your local gas station to that old video store down the road and even the local cannabis or CBD dispensary. But, what’s all the rage about anyway? Keep reading to find out.
What is CBD?
CBD (cannabidiol) is a therapeutic, non-intoxicating compound that’s produced by cannabis. CBD comes in the form of oils, gummies, tinctures, and other products that are continuing to grow in popularity as people seek non-intoxicating and non-pharmaceutical relief for anxiety, stress, pain, and other symptoms.
Why Doesn’t CBD Produce Intoxicating Effects?
THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is the molecule in cannabis responsible for the high. CBD is a different type of cannabinoid, and although both molecules impact the cannabinoid type 1 (CB1) receptors in the brain, they do so differently. For example, THC activates the CB1 receptors, which cause euphoria and the high associated with weed. On the other hand, CBD works as a CB1 antagonist and blocks any potential intoxicating impact the CB1 receptors cause. In fact, taking CBD with THC can inhibit THC’s effects.
What Conditions Can CBD Treat?
As we mentioned, people enjoy CBD for its therapeutic effects without the high that THC produces. CBD is used to treat the following conditions:
- Anxiety — The majority of CBD research suggests it is beneficial for treating anxiety symptoms. For quick anxiety relief, it’s best to vaporize high CBD strains that also contain botanical compounds.
- Pain — Research shows that CBD can help with two types of pain: neuropathic and inflammatory. CBD appears to be less effective for other types of pain, whereas THC can also help relieve pain. So, if you’re dealing with a different type of pain, you may want to look into products that contain both THC and CBD.
- Insomnia — Researchers are still working to deepen their understanding of the link between CBD and sleep. So far, they’ve found that dosage dos play a role as higher doses appear to be more effective than lower ones.
- Epileptic seizures — For kids with epilepsy, a lot of the treatment options come with a broad spectrum of side effects that impact their quality of life. That’s why researchers honed in their focus on CBD. In 2018, the FDA approved a CBD-based drug Epidiolex, to treat two forms of epilepsy, Dravet syndrome, and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. Anecdotal evidence and early studies have shown promising results, but researchers have not yet reached a scientific explanation for why CBD helps reduce seizures.
What’s the Right Dosage of CBD?
Like most things, there is no one-size-fits-all dose for CBD. The perfect dosage will depend on a few factors, including your individual biology, how you take the CBD, and your symptoms. For example, higher dosages seem to be the most effective for conditions like epilepsy, and low dosages seem to work best for anxiety.
More research is needed before specific scientific CBD guidelines can be created. Until then, if you’re using CBD to treat stress, anxiety, pain, or insomnia, consider starting with a low dosage (about 5mg) and slowly increasing until you find the dosage that works best to combat your symptoms.