Here is the scenario: you have taken a few weeks to decide on your CBD product, it arrives, you open it, workout your dosage, but then wonder ‘How long does CBD take to work?’. Well, you are in the right place as we are about to have a rundown of the most popular CBD products, from gummies to CBD creams and let you know how long you should expect to wait for your CBD to take effect.
The choice has become overwhelming for some seeking a natural way to manage such issues as anxiety, chronic pain, and insomnia, but we hope to be able to shed some light on what to be expecting after using CBD. We know many newcomers to CBD always find themselves asking, ‘how long does it take for CBD to work?’.
But unfortunately, the answer isn’t as straightforward as you might want it to be, mainly because there are various factors that influence the onset of CBD effects. So buckle up as we dive deep into understanding what CBD is and its effects on the body. We will also explore the different forms of CBD products and their various different uses that are available in the market and what factors influence their speed of effectiveness.
We will even cover their absorption rates and the duration of CBD effects in or on the body, along with recommendations and guidance for usage to make the most out of this incredible plant based natural remedy. So let’s get started and learn how you can maximize CBD’s potential while making sure you peak at the right time.
Understanding CBD and Its Effects
CBD, we now understand thanks to research, interacts with the body’s dedicated endocannabinoid system which we also now know is liked to our Central Nervous System (CNS) and this is why many believe it can aid in anxiety and pain management. Well, it does make sense, seeing as anxiety and pain are both regulated by the CNS. But don’t forget you never have to worry as CBD is not psychoactive, unlike its cousin cannabinoid THC, so you will never feel spacey or concerned you will fall about in a fit of laughter.
However, when it comes to the body’s absorption of CBD it varies greatly based on the consumption method, whether that is inhaled, ingested or topically, and many other variables contributing towards that all important answer to ‘how long does CBD take to work?’.
What is CBD?
Just in case you somehow missed the global explosion that has been CBD, let’s take a quick recap. CBD is one of around 100 cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. CBD (cannabinol) is generally derived from the hemp plant rather than the marijuana plant, as we have mentioned, it is a non-psychoactive compound with potential therapeutic effects, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO). CBD can now be found in anything and everything, from the favourite CBD gummies to even CBD lubrication! We are going to stick to our CBD edibles, we think!
What Effects Should I feel From CBD?
When CBD first hit the market in 2018 in the UK officially, it was likened to a ‘golden elixir’ being said to treat everything from anxiety to fibromyalgia. With everything in between. But as reliable double-blind placebo studies started to emerge, CBD’s potential became more clear. With the endocannabinoid system now being linked to our central nervous system (CNS) it makes logical sense that CBD has been used by many for reducing inflammation and providing pain relief, which has been widely studied.
Also, with the CNS playing a vital role in cortisol triggering, anxiety, stress and sleep also have become regular areas people look to use CBD to help with. Generally, people report they feel a nice wave of calm come over them, which allows them to return to their balanced state more easily. Team CBD with adaptogens and you are getting the best of both calming worlds.
Different Forms of CBD Products
As mentioned, CBD now comes in many forms, some maybe a little off the wall. Also, there is variability in how long does CBD take to work when comparing product categories.
However, the most popular are the fundamental staple CBD products we all know by now which include CBD edibles, tinctures, and topical. It is hard to go wrong with sublingual CBD oil drops as they offer rapid absorption into the bloodstream, as you take them under the tongue which avoids the first pass effect of the liver, which breaks down natural compounds rather destructively before they get a chance to get to work. Which means some form can end up with CBD staying in your system for much shorter periods than others. CBD oil has become the staple child product of CBD products, like the Brownie has to THC edibles!
It is important to understand the bioavailability of each product type you look to use, which correlates with how long CBD will stay in your system and how quickly it is likely to take effect for you. Here is a rundown of the CBD product categories and some helpful information for reference.
CBD Oil – Sublingual
The leader in CBD products, CBD oil, used via sublingual application, which is under the tongue, it gets to work via the blood stream in under 30 seconds. So the effect can start to take effect almost as quickly as via vaping. It bypasses the digestive system and that naughty stomach acid which breaks down natural compounds very easily. CBD oil does require a bit more trial and error than other products when it comes to dose, due to their being so many variables. Factors like body mass index can affect CBD oil absorption.
Tailoring the amount of CBD in oil drops to individual preferences is possible, making it an effective option for many. With lower bioavailability, sublingual consumption provides a more immediate onset of effects compared to other methods.
CBD Patches -Transdermal
Transdermal CBD patches supposedly ensure consistent delivery of CBD to the body, taking 30 minutes to an hour to start working. However, there has been very mixed research regarding transdermal patches being actually able to do anything very much at all. As unlike other topical applications, they contest to being able to penetrate the skin and get into the bloodstream that way, however, many believe that is wishful thinking. There needs to be a lot more research before we can say for certain how effect transdermal CBD patches are and also how long does CBD take to kick in via this route.
CBD Gummies – Ingestion
Our favourites here at The London Dispensary CBD gummies, part of the CBD edible category. Quick, discreet, convenient and, dare we say, fun to take? CBD edibles once consumed take anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes to produce an effect, as there are many variables at play such as weight, height, BMI, timing of last meal, hydration levels.
So be a little more patient with gummies. But we love them for their convenience and tastiness. You generally will want a gummy that has a higher CBD content to make allowances for a slight loss via the digestive system. But studies have found that consuming CBD with a high good fat meal increases the absorption and increases the time the body holds the CBD within its cells for. That is because CBD is transported and stored in fat cells. Like how a number of vitamins and minerals need fat to metabolise, CBD does as well. Due to this, CBD can
stay in your system for longer via ingestion. Seeing as our Boost CBD gummies with ginseng, chaga, and lion’s mane have won 5 awards, we know a thing or 5 about good gummies!
CBD Creams – Topical
CBD topicals include balms and creams. They work locally on the applied area with the cells in the immediate area. Only small amounts of CBD will get into the blood stream, so CBD topicals are best for supporting inflammation or joint pain, rather than treating anxiety which a CBD oil is a better choice for. CBD topicals do not count towards the FSA recommended daily dosage as that is related to consumption of CBD only.
You can use a CBD topical alongside gummies or oils for a double whammy effect. We also suggest a strong CBD topical of at least 1000mg to ensure the best chance of feeling an effect. When selecting a CBD topical look for one that is natural, with other botanicals to support those tired joints and muscles too. A great example is arnica, which we add into our CBD cream, as it has been proven to be a natural treatment for bruising through to inflammation.
CBD Vapes – Inhalation
Inhalation of CBD through vaping allows for very rapid absorption, it is the fastest way to feel an effect from CBD, leading to quicker onset of effects than edibles. As we are talking seconds. However, lung health can influence CBD absorption through inhalation, affecting bioavailability, and as the research for vaping in general is still mixed in terms of the long-term health implications some might be put off. For them, we recommend a CBD oil. You can get prefilled CBD vapes, vapes with CBD extract or dry herb vapes for CBD flower users.
Factors Influencing CBD Effectiveness
CBD is a very personalised compound as it affects everyone in a slightly different way as we are all our own unique compositions of DNA and chemicals. Further to that, there are a number of other influences that influence CBD effectiveness and also how long CBD stays in your system for. Lets run through a few of them:
Method of CBD Consumption
The time it takes for CBD to kick in is influenced by the method of consumption. As mentioned above, vaping or smoking can have you feeling the effects of CBD within seconds as it enters your bloodstream almost instantly, whereas CBD edibles have a longer onset time and take anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes to kick in, however they generally take longer to leave your system as well.
Additionally, topical application absorbs more slowly but via the skin barrier and not via the blood or digestive system, so it is unlikely to will feel much of a calming effect, which makes CBD topical better for localised administration. It is worth noting that some research has stated that it can take up to 6 days for CBD to build up in our systems, with it being used daily, until we feel the full beneficial effect. So patience might be needed for some.
It is also reported it can take anywhere from 24 hours to 7 days to leave your system as well. It is clear a lot more research is needed in this area as the variability of reports are clearly high currently.
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Dosage and Potency
Obviously, a large element of effectiveness of CBD products is influenced by their potency, this is seen on the labels expressed in mg which is milligrams of CBD. Higher CBD dosages may take longer to leave the system, but as just mentioned, using a daily dose of CBD oil drops can lead to more consistent and lasting effects. But dosage and potency are the number one contributor I tell people when they ask ‘how long does CBD take to work?’.
But be careful that there isn’t a transferrable scale for CBD, for example 1,000mg of CBD in a Cream is very different than 1,000mg in a CBD oil. So bear that in mind if you are looking to change product type and try something new.
Quality of CBD Product
Quality of CBD products significantly influences their absorption rates in the body and, consequently, their effectiveness. The full effects of CBD largely depend on the extract content, extraction method and the quality of the hemp plant used in its production. That is why it is good to ensure you are purchasing CBD that has been organically grown.
Additionally, contaminants in low-quality CBD products can interfere with absorption, while the presence of heavy metals may impact how long the CBD stays in your system, which can be found by requesting a Certification of Analysis from the CBD brand if you really want to go into that level of detail on your hunt for the best CBD products. Higher quality CBD oil generally has a higher bioavailability in the body, making more of the compound available for your body to use. The entourage effect is also worth keeping in mind if using a CBD oil for example, broad-spectrum is the way to go.
How long does CBD take to work? Does CBD type matter?
When looking at how long CBD takes to work, we cannot leave out the important aspect that is the type of CBD being taken. Full-spectrum has all of the cannabinoids accompanying the CBD, but this has gotten some businesses into a spot of bother before as legally you must stay below 1mg of THC per CBD product to be within the legal limits. CBD isolate has been heavily refined and has had all other cannabinoids taken out, leaving it inferior to the others. CBD broad-spectrum is a good happy medium with all the cannabinoids to support CBD in small amounts minus the THC so no need to worry if you are buying something illegal without knowing or not.
CBD Absorption and How Long Does CBD Take to Leave System?
As previously touched upon, CBD absorption, also known as bioavailability, is a key factor when it comes to understanding how quickly you will feel the effect of CBD as well as, what the overall effect will be. But once your body has adsorbed the CBD, how long does CBD take to leave your system? On average, it is currently acknowledged that CBD can take anywhere from 1 hour to 5 days to leave your system.
Factors like the method used to administer CBD, such as smoking, ingestion, and absorption, impact how long CBD takes to kick in and also how long it takes to leave your system once utilised. A general rule of thumb is the quicker CBD takes to get to work, the quicker it will leave your system compared to other methods.
CBD Half Life
We measure how long our bodies take to utilise and the activeness of a compound in half-life. Which is how long it takes for the substance to lose half of its effectiveness or how long it takes the body to eliminate half of the compound. In most cases, the body will have completely eliminated the substance in four to five half lives. For example. CBD Drops have a half life of 1.4 to 10.9 hours. Taken consistently, this increases to 2 to 5 days. Meanings that CBD drops and other oral CBD methods stay in the system for between 10 hours to 25 days.
CBD bioavailability measures how much of the active CBD compound gets absorbed and utilised by the body. CBD bioavailability varies depending on the product’s extracted CBD content. Not only does the way CBD is administered play an important part in the level of bioavailability of CBD, but the quality of CBD as well.
We are unsure fully how the other estimated 100 cannabinoids being present alongside CBD help the effectiveness of CBD overall, we just currently know that they do. This is referred to as the entourage effect. This is why broad-spectrum CBD for oral consumption has be marked as a superior form of CBD compared to isolate. This is why product quality is so important when choosing a CBD brand to purchase from.
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Duration of CBD Effects
The duration of CBD effects is influenced heavily and measured by the half life duration which we have covered above, as well as the method of consumption, body metabolism, and the product’s CBD volume. CBD gummies and edibles may last longer than vaping, but vaping gets to work faster, while capsules and oils can have varying durations in the body. Additionally, the type of CBD and the amount of CBD in a product impacts its effects’ duration. Understanding these factors helps in determining the most effective option based on individual needs. Also, how you can use multiple products together for a greater synergizing effect.
CBD Usage Recommendations
CBD usage or dosage is very much a contested subject still in the industry and amongst healthcare professionals. Mainly down to CBD being a very personalised compound. Some people are naturally more sensitive than others, and there needs to still be advancements in this area. But for The London Dispensary’s CBD drops we have a dedicated section for recommendations regarding dosages, and other useful tips.
It remains the FSAs legal guidance to not consume more than 70mg of CBD per day for the average adult. That only covers consumed products such as CBD oils and gummies. You can use topical alongside those products as they do not contribute to your daily allowance. It remains advised that if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, trying to conceive, or taking regular medication that you consult the advice of a healthcare professional before taking CBD as a supplement.
Regular vs Occasional CBD Use
As we have covered above, CBD builds up its effectiveness overtime in the body. To get the best and most out of your CBD product its the most effective to take regularly as part of a balanced and healthy lifestyle. As when you stop using CBD, you will start to lose the effects that have been gained from using it.
In conclusion, the effectiveness of CBD and how long it takes to work, kick in and take effect, and then leave you system can vary depending on multiple factors such as the method of consumption, dosage, quality of the product, individual metabolism, half-life effect, bioavailability and physiology. Sublingual ingestion, topical application, and inhalation are some of the common methods of using CBD, each having their own methods and time periods for activity in the body.
Remember, you can take an oral CBD form such as an oil or gummies, alongside a CBD topical. When starting CBD, we always recommend starting low and go slow to build up to the desired effect. Checkout the UK’s most extensive CBD product range right here at The London Dispensary!
How Long Does CBD Stay in Your System?
The duration CBD stays in your system is influenced by several individual factors, including metabolic rate, dosage, frequency of use, and the specific type of CBD product used. Generally, CBD can remain in the body for 2 to 5 days, but for some individuals, it could stay for weeks. This variability highlights the importance of understanding that each person's experience with CBD can be quite different.
How Long Does It Take for CBD Oil to Work?
The time it takes for CBD oil to exert its effects varies, largely dependent on the method of administration and individual bodily responses. Typically, when taken sublingually, you may start to feel the effects in about 15 to 45 minutes. However, factors such as your metabolic rate, the concentration of the oil, and your overall health can influence this onset time, making it a unique experience for each individual.
How Much CBD Should I Take?
Determining the right dosage of CBD is a personalized process, influenced by factors like individual body weight, the condition you're addressing, and your body's unique chemistry. As a starting point, a low dose of 5-10 mg per day is recommended. Monitoring your body's response and gradually adjusting the dose, potentially with guidance from a healthcare professional, will help you find the most effective amount for your needs.
How long does it take for CBD to relax you?
The time it takes for CBD to induce a state of relaxation can differ among individuals, influenced by factors like the method of consumption and personal body chemistry. Some might experience relaxation within minutes, especially when using methods like vaping or sublingual application, while others might find it takes longer. This variability underscores the importance of patience and paying attention to how your body responds to CBD.
How long does it take for just CBD to kick in?
The onset time for CBD to take effect depends on the consumption method. Inhalation methods, such as vaping, generally produce quick effects, sometimes within minutes. In contrast, oral forms like edibles and capsules may take longer to kick in, often up to an hour or more. This time frame can be influenced by factors like your metabolic rate and the specific formulation of the CBD product.
Do you feel a buzz from CBD?
CBD is known for its non-psychoactive properties, meaning it does not produce a 'buzz' or high like THC. Instead, CBD is associated with promoting a sense of relaxation and well-being without altering your cognitive state. This distinct characteristic of CBD is crucial for those seeking the therapeutic benefits of cannabinoids without the psychoactive effects associated with THC.
How much CBD does it take to feel effect?
The effective dosage of CBD can vary significantly from person to person. Factors such as body weight, the specific condition being addressed, and individual body chemistry all play a role in determining the right amount. Generally, it's advisable to start with a low dose and gradually adjust it, paying close attention to your body's response. This personalized approach helps in finding the dosage that best meets your needs.
How long does CBD under the tongue take to take effect?
Sublingual administration of CBD, where the oil is placed under the tongue, typically allows for effects to be felt within about 15 to 30 minutes. This method enables quicker absorption into the bloodstream compared to ingestion, as it bypasses the digestive system. The exact onset time can vary based on factors like the concentration of CBD in the product and your individual metabolic rate.
How long does sublingual CBD take to work?
Sublingual application of CBD generally results in a relatively quick onset of effects, often within 15 to 30 minutes. This method is effective due to its direct absorption into the bloodstream, bypassing the digestive process. The time it takes for sublingual CBD to work can be influenced by individual factors like the specific product's formulation and your body's absorption rate.