Topical applications containing CBD are among the most popular delivery systems and are commonly used for managing joint and muscle pain. It can be difficult to measure specific amounts of topical CBD but can be easily used on a small area
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Full Spectrum Topicals
Full spectrum topicals contain a small amount of THC (≤0.3%) and there are studies indicating that for pain (and sleep) some small amount of THC can be beneficial. Also, the full spectrum topicals contain terpenes from the hemp plant—these also have anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties.
CBD isolates have the advantage of having only CBD (plus whatever topical carrier is used—ie. as a balm, lotion or cream). If the CBD isolate also comes in a pump bottle, it offers the advantage of reasonably accurate dosing. The disadvantage with a CBD isolate is that some people seem to get more relief with a small amount of THC and possibly, terpenes.
Most Affordable Topicals
Leafreport uses an “A”, “B” or “C” system of ranking to see which brands of topical CBD is the most affordable. It is listed as the cost per mg of CBD. The three grades are - A – “Bargain grade”– prices in this category range from $0.01-$0.079/mg CBD | B – “Market grade” – prices in the market grade category range from $0.08-$0.149/mg CBD | C- “Pricy grade” – prices were those above $0.15/mg CBD.
Most Potent Topicals
Potency is a measure of mg of CBD/unit—and you might be surprised to find that you can get relief from a relatively small amount of CBD. We recommand to start with about a pea-sized amount of topical CBD at the lowest potency you can find. If you have a larger area to cover, you may want to start with a medium-potency topical. Some users are looking for higher potency so at this section picked the best socre high potency topicals
Topicals have the advantage of direct application to an area of pain or soreness, avoidance of First Pass Metabolism, ability to use as needed on a small area. Topicals usually do not come with side effects and since they are not absorbed into the skin, it is even less likely that someone would fail a UDS. Topicals are less useful for widespread pain or soreness.
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Yes, kind of.
CBD is legal on a federal level in the United States if it is derived from the hemp plant and contains no more than 0.3% THC. However, some states, including Idaho, have laws restricting the use of CBD. Marijuana derived CBD is illegal on the federal level but is legal under some state laws. CBD laws vary greatly from country to country, so be sure to research the applicable laws in your area.
CBD is found to be generally safe. There have been no deaths attributed to ingestion of the cannabis plant, including CBD. The FDA has approved one CBD based drug called Epidiolex used for epileptic seizure reduction. The FDA reports that CBD can cause liver injury and interact with other medications. There have been no reports of liver injury in humans who have taken CBD even at high doses. Side effects of taking CBD may include drowsiness, diarrhea, loss of appetite, and change in mood. There is more research needed around the safety and efficacy of CBD. Consult your health care provider before taking CBD to ensure it is right for you.
Does CBD help with stress?
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA
) states CBD has been shown to reduce stress in animals including rats. Other studies
show that participants with social anxiety disorder (SAD) experienced overall reduction in anxiety levels after taking CBD. CBD is also known to help with PTSD
symptoms including replaying negative memories and enduring nightmares.
Does CBD help with anxiety?
Yes. CBD inhibits an enzyme called Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase, or FAAH
, which is responsible for breaking down an endocannabinoid called Anandamide. Ananda- is Sanskrit for joy or bliss and helps with elevated mood. People with anxiety may have lower levels
of anandamide. Introducing CBD can help decrease the reuptake of anandamide and cause it to hang around longer which could decrease anxiety symptoms. CBD is also thought to stimulate serotonin
receptors. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that plays an important role in mental health. Having insufficient serotonin can also contribute to anxiety. CBD may be a viable option for those suffering with anxiety disorders.
Does CBD help with sleep disorders?
Researchers have discovered that our endocannabinoid system plays a role in regulating circadian rhythms. CBD is also known to reduce pain and anxiety, both of which can have a negative impact on sleep quality. This study
found a significant decrease in insomnia symptoms for participants taking CBD and other cannabinoids. While more research is needed, CBD use as a possible sleep aid looks promising.
pain have the most research and very promising results. The Arthritis Foundation
states CBD appears fairly safe and might help certain types of pain. They conducted a survey of 2600 people and found that 79% are currently using CBD, have used it in the past, or are considering using it to help manage their arthritis pain. Research also shows that CBD inhibits inflammatory molecules in the body that contribute to pain.
No. CBD is nonintoxicating and does not produce a high, unlike its intoxicating sister cannabinoid THC. While full spectrum CBD does contain THC, it must have less than 0.3%, which is too low of an amount to produce a high, usually. Some higher potency CBD products can have as much as 2mg of THC which can be enough to cause a euphoric effect. Contrary to popular belief, CBD is psychoactive, because it does have an effect on the mind, including the ability to reduce anxiety. CBD is psychoactive but non intoxicating.
Can I use CBD if I am pregnant/nursing?
Always speak to your physician about taking any substance, including CBD, while pregnant or nursing. There are no studies that show the effects of CBD on a developing baby. Like with any other medication, your doctor will determine if the benefits of using CBD outweigh the risks of not using
CBD while pregnant or nursing. The FDA recommends against the use of CBD during pregnancy and breastfeeding due to a lack of comprehensive research on CBD’s effects on the developing baby.
How do you apply topical CBD?
If the topical is a cream, gel, or lotion, start with a pea-sized amount in the palm of your hand. Apply it with circular motions to the affected area and let it “sink in”. Wait for about 20 minutes and repeat if needed.
How long do the effects of topical CBD last?
It all depends on the level of pain/soreness and your perception of the pain/soreness, but in general, it will begin to work in 10-20 minutes and last from 2-6 hours. For some, onset of relief is faster, for others, the relief may last longer.
How often should topical CBD be applied?
Again—it depends on the individual but for most, two- four applications over a 24-hour period seem to be effective. You may have to go to five or six applications. If you need more, it is recommended that you see your physician.
How long do these topicals take to work?
Generally, most people seem to feel the effects within 10-20 minutes. For some, it is sooner and in others, it may take longer.
I’ve never tried CBD topicals. What can I expect?
By Starting Low and Going Slow, you can expect to find that “sweet spot” of relief—it may take some time to find it, but once you do, the relief is usually relatively fast and lasts for hours.
Do CBD lotions and balms help with skin problems such as psoriasis?
CBD has anti-inflammatory actions that may benefit some skin conditions including acne, psoriasis and eczema. Research is in the early stages but looks promising. If you have a skin condition, try a spot test first just to ensure that the product won’t cause any further irritation. Just try a very small amount of a CBD topical on a small, affected area and wait 24 hours. If there is no reaction (or possibly improvement) then go ahead with the Start Low and Go Slow trial and error process.
What’s the difference between CBD lotion and CBD balm?
Lotions tend to be more liquid, less oily and include water as an ingredient. Balms are thicker, oilier and may even need to be slightly warmed up to spread easily. Balms are based on plant oils and often beeswax or another type of wax. Balms contain little or no water.