With the growing legalization trend of cannabis sweeping the country, many are now provided with another method of pain management through the use of CBD products. These can be used to alleviate anything from muscle aches to headaches, CBD for cramps is a common reason, and even helping to deal with much greater levels of pain as those caused by chronic conditions and many cancers. Once qualified for use, many new cannabis users begin to explore methods of application. Most newbies to the CBD are under the impression that it can only be smoked, but that is far from the case. There are in fact, multiple methods by which CBD can be delivered into your body to begin the process of pain management. For those who are unfamiliar, choosing may be difficult as different forms of application or delivery can have some varying results. When starting to figure out the process most ask themselves what they are looking to have for their experience. Should the relief be quick or should the onset be gradual, slowly introducing the cannabis into your system? Many users are confused by how to handle CBD introduction into their system, so this article will try to help to clear some of it up. While there are a great number of ways to engage in the application for CBD, most methods tend to fall into four primary categories of CBD application: oral, sublingual, inhalation, and topical application.
Oral consumption is the most common application method, but it also tends to be the least effective. It takes on average about 2 hours to begin to feel the effects because the CBD must be processed by the body, travel through the bloodstream, and be absorbed by the body. This process takes time, but when the process is complete, and the effects do set in, they tend to have greater longevity than other application methods. For this reason, those who are taking CBD for cramps, headaches, migraines, or any other types of pain management prefer the oral method as it provides the most long-lasting effects. Being the most common method it is also the most popular. This also means that there are a lot of different edibles that are available for consumption. These include a variety of pastry items, oils (including those in capsule form), and gummies. Taking a CBD orally does result in a low absorption rate. The rate is low because CBD molecules dissolve faster and easier in fats than they do in liquids. This rate depends on how much your body takes away from the ingested CBD. The average absorption rate is as high as 6% to 20% when CBD is consumed in oil form, making it the most potent orally-consumed method. Most edible and other orally consumed CBD items usually contain 10mg dose. Studies have found that it is on the low side of what is necessary to feel the effects. Either way, it will require about 30 to 90 minutes after consumption to feel them, but they will last longer. The one advantage over THC consumption is that studies have found that by increasing the intake dosage orally of CBD does not produce negative effects or toxicity, as does the consumption of THC.
Sublingual applications are not as popular as the oral method, but they are still used often enough. The sublingual nature involves placing the CBD under one’s tongue and letting it dissolve. One of the most common ways CBD is ingested in this manner is by extracting the CBD into an alcohol-based mix known as a tincture. This concentration is very strong so only a few drops at application time are needed to feel the effects. This means that a user can simply drop a few drops of the substance under their tongue and let them dissolve. Similarly, they can also be used in spray form which can just be spritzed into the user’s mouth. Because it does not need to be processed by the body and travel through the bloodstream, the sublingual method allows for the CBD absorption to happen more quickly. With no metabolic process in the way, the liver, which filters a lot of the potency out is never encountered. As the CBD is absorbed the effects are faster, and the absorption rate is anywhere between 12% and 35%. This method and its efficacy are highly contingent on the user not immediately swallowing the spray or drops. If that happens, the CBD mixture has not had sufficient time to be absorbed, and travels through the digestive tract, much like an edible would.
Vaping is an increasingly common method of CBD application these days. The user utilizes a vaping stick which is loaded with a CBD cartridge. The contents of these cartridges range in concentration, allowing users to be able to select the potency of their cannabis strain. The vape pen heats up the CBD oil in the cartridge without releasing any of the smoke in a way that causes the oil to evaporate. This means that the absorption rate for the body is much quicker and stronger, averaging about 33%. However, depending on the concentration of the selected cartridge, the absorption rate can be as high as 55%. The onset of the effects is nearly immediate, taking from seconds to minutes. Similarly to the sublingual application, when CBD is inhaled, it travels through the lungs and right to the brain, bypassing the liver which filters a lot of the effects out. This is a method applied most commonly for acute discomforts (nausea, region-specific aches). Unlike smoking, vaping is a bit less harmful to the lungs (though not significantly) and not recommended to those with respiratory problems.
Another way to intake CBD is through topical application. One important thing to note about this method is that since the CBD is applied to the skin the effect will be different than with the other methods. In this case, the CBD never makes it into the user’s bloodstream, not their metabolic system. Therefore the effect of the topical substance is not due to blood absorption but rather by interceptors in the skin. This means that in order to bring the user significant levels of relief, the product’s concentration would have to be very high. The topical substance is applied to the skin and eventually moves through the skin’s layers. Once it does, it will begin to bind and interact with the cannabinoid receptors in the skin and be absorbed by the body. A fair question might be: how does a topical CBD user then control how much goes on their skin and how strong the concentration would be? One product type that helps deal with that is a CBD transdermal patch. The patch is worn by a user and dispenses steadily increasing amounts to the user’s skin over time. CBD molecules are assisted in ultimately making it to the bloodstream with added chemicals when delivered with the patch. This also means that CBD delivered in this way will have a higher absorption rate. If not using the patch, users can simply start a product and use only a little bit of it at a time. Once an adjustment period lapses, the amount can be gradually increased until the appropriate level of relief is applied. People use topical CBD applications for something as simple as minor skin irritations and bug bites.
Natural Nasal Sprays
The newest growing trend in CBD applications is through the use of natural nasal sprays. This method delivers the CBD right to the bloodstream, with the idea of increasing the absorption rate over the other methods. In places where cannabis use is by and large legal, natural nasal sprays are being clinically tested and sold on an increasingly wider scale. Many drugs that are administered through nasal sprays are done due to the high efficacy of crossing the blood-brain barriers, allowing for more immediate relief. CBD nasal sprays are similarly formulated with a saline solution combined with a pharmaceutical-grade CBD mix to provide quick relief for congestion, inflammation, seizures, and even certain neurological disorders. Unlike other intake methods, the degradation of the active components of CBDs with natural nasal sprays is minimal. For patients who can’t or do not wish to partake in other application methods, or are looking for a much quicker relief for certain conditions, application via nasal spray is a viable option.