Before going out and buying your new CBD tincture, bag of gummy bears, lotion, or bottle of capsules, keep in mind that not only your unique needs go into this choice, but also CBD’s many uses. CBD’s chameleon-esque nature means that it can potentially do many different things, but the effectiveness of this depends quite a lot on how you are using it. The world seems to have fully caught onto this idea, and thus a cornucopia of CBD and medicinal hemp products has burst into our lives, to suit literally every and any variable.
So what works best for what? Well, this depends on how CBD is absorbed into the body. Ultimately, the ways in which CBD can be absorbed dictate what exactly it will do, and how. So if you’re wondering about buying CBD body lotion, or a bottle of CBD oil, or any other medicinal hemp remedy – take a look at our beginner’s guide to the many uses for CBD.
How Does CBD Work?
CBD is a phytocannabinoid that comes from the same plant as THC, cannabis. Like THC, CBD interacts with our body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) but does not have the same psychoactive effects. The ECS helps the body regulate many different functions including immune system response, appetite, sleep, and pain. As a cannabinoid, CBD impacts ECS receptor activity and can help the ECS better regulate any irregularities.
The ECS is a vast and complex system that we know affects both our bodies and brains. Because the ECS is so encompassing, cannabinoids can take many different forms and affect the ECS in various ways. Depending on how you take CBD, then, will determine things like how quickly it starts to work and how long it lasts, and if the effects are targeted to one area or if they produce an all-over benefit. Generally speaking the various uses for CBD fall into four broad categories for how people use medicinal hemp, and specifically CBD: edibles, sublingual drops, topicals, and vapes.
How Do CBD Edibles Work?
CBD edibles are, you guessed it, ingested somehow. Whether you want to add CBD capsules to your vitamin regime, want to enjoy it in your morning coffee or your midday energy bar, or want to drink it back in some infused water, there is no end to your options when considering your edible choices.
With good reason, edibles are incredibly popular- who doesn’t love to eat and experience improved wellness at the same time? Literally zero people. But how does eating your CBD impact it’s interaction with your ECS?
Well, because your CBD brownie needs to be digested by the stomach and pass through the liver, the speed at which it is absorbed into your body and enters your bloodstream is slower than other ways we use CBD.
The effects of taking CBD in this way are slow and steady. Sure, it might not hit your bloodstream right away, but for those who are willing to wait, taking CBD in this way will produce a subtle and longer lasting effect. Because it has entered the bloodstream, it can quietly go to work throughout the body and brain. If you’re looking for prolonged and subtle relief for, say, stress at work or mild, consistent pain, edibles are for you.
How Do CBD Sublingual Drops Work?
CBD oils are probably what we all think of when we hear the magic letters ‘CBD’. The most common and maybe the most traditional, but no less popular, way of taking CBD. By placing a few drops under your tongue and holding there for 30-60 seconds, the CBD oil comes in contact with our mucus membranes and is absorbed directly into the bloodstream.
The benefits of bypassing the digestive system are a much more rapid absorption rate. This means that the CBD will start to work more quickly and will be more acute. However, this form of ingestion is shorter lived, and could require more than one dose throughout the day. But, if you’re looking for more instant pain relief, or if a stressful situation requires a quick response, sublingual drops are a very popular option.
How Do CBD Vapes Work?
If you’re a fan of vaping e-liquid, well of course there’s a medicinal hemp & CBD option for that! By combining CBD with our favorite e-liquids, some very smart people have made it possible for us to inhale our CBD. Of course this method of taking CBD is partial only to those who vape generally, but that doesn’t stop it from being very popular.
By inhaling CBD particles, they enter our lungs. Our lungs have a huge surface area in which these particles can land and enter directly into our bloodstreams. As such, the effect is almost instantaneous and the CBD can start to go to work (again, wherever we may need it since our bloodstream carries it throughout the brain and body) to provide fast and effective relief.
How Do Medicinal Hemp & CBD Topicals Work?
Straying slightly from the other methods mentioned above, medicinal hemp and CBD topicals are applied directly to the skin and don’t actually enter the bloodstream. Instead, they interact with endocannabinoid receptors that are close to the surface of the skin.
This creates a very targeted effect that does not travel throughout the body but is directed to the area in which it’s applied. Topicals have shown excellent promise relieving joint pains such as those caused from arthritis, and can even be used to help treat acne.
Now that you have an idea of what CBD can do depending on how you use it, take a few moments to decipher for yourself what you would like CBD to do for you, how fast you would like it to take effect, and how long you would like it to last. CBD’s many variations can work for you no matter what your need, and on your journey of discovery, CBD is there to help every step of the way.