You’ve made the decision to try hemp extracts. Now comes the next big choice—which method to use. You have several ways to take therapeutic CBD—edibles, tinctures, smoking, vaping, and creams, balms, and other topical applications. Which of these methods is the best way to use CBD oil?
The answer can be tricky because it depends on your goals and preferences. A vape pen might be ideal for you, while another person may prefer an edible. If you’re not familiar with these products, consider the potential benefits and drawbacks of each method before deciding which one is right for you.
The Versatile Hemp Plant
The multiple ways to take therapeutic CBD are often confusing for consumers new to the popular flower and extract. One of the biggest reasons for this is that there is no one-size-fits-all solution. The best way to use CBD oil depends on your personal health and wellness goals, lifestyle needs, and experience with hemp extracts.
Additionally, the plant’s incredibly versatile. Everything from the stalks, stems, and leaves to the flowers is viable. Also, although they contain no phytocannabinoids or terpenes, the roots and seeds have nutritional value.
The most common ways people take CBD are through tinctures, capsules, edibles, vape devices, and topicals. Each category breaks down to add more options. For example, you can take tinctures sublingually and orally, and topicals are available in several forms, from lotions and balms to transdermal patches.
CBD Oil Tinctures
Tinctures are the most popular way to take therapeutic CBD for a good reason. Many consumers find it easy to use tinctures sublingually, and it absorbs quickly through the membranes under the tongue so that their bodies can absorb cannabinoids directly into the bloodstream. This action allows the compounds to work within 20 minutes because it bypasses the digestion process. Most tinctures have a four- to six-hour duration.
Tinctures come in dropper form for easy application under the tongue or with food and drink. You can also add them to recipes or use them topically. Finally, tinctures provide excellent bioavailability, which means that your body absorbs more of the full spectrum of cannabinoids to give you the best results.
You don’t have to use CBD oil under the tongue. You can take the dose and add it to a smoothie, tea, or other beverage. However, this makes the oil the same as a standard consumable and takes up to two hours to work once it goes through the digestion process.
On the other hand, the sublingual method can confuse some users and isn’t ideal to use on the go. Additionally, it’s not a discrete option. It might look odd trying to use an eyedropper and measure oil while sitting at your desk or riding public transport. Luckily, you have a few other more discrete options and are easier to use away from home.
You might think CBD vape pens are the only form of hemp concentrate. However, there’s an endless list of high potency CBD concentrates containing upwards of 99% cannabidiol. What’s the benefit of this method? It’s fast-acting and hard-hitting, offering near-immediate results. The differences between types of concentrates are the consistency. Each offers slightly different advantages. Available options include,
- Live Resin
CBD Gummies and Other Edibles
Edibles are one of the easiest ways to take CBD. They come in a wide variety of flavors, shapes, and styles. There’s something that tastes good for everyone, no matter their dietary restrictions. Consumables like gummies and mints make it easy to dose CBD precisely because they come in specific serving sizes, such as 10mg or 25mg per piece.
Although it’s harder to find precise dosing in the same way with edibles, you’ll enjoy several benefits that aren’t available when you choose tinctures. Also, you have more options when it comes to the types of edibles available. You can get gummies, chocolates, cookies, drinks, honey sticks, and more.
In addition to pre-packaged CBD treats, brands and entrepreneurs are adding the compound to drinks at bars and restaurants and even develop recipes that include a full spectrum or isolate. You may recall that after CBD was legalized in the U.S., Carl’s Jr. launched a 4/20 CBD burger in Colorado. The single-day treat had people lining up before dawn to get a taste of the once-forbidden delicacy.
Edibles take longer to work than sublingual oils because they go through the digestive process to reach the bloodstream. The onset time varies by person from 30 to 90 minutes, with an average of 60 minutes. It’s essential not to take another dose until it’s been at least 90 minutes. Too much CBD isn’t dangerous. But it can leave you very drowsy for the duration, which is about four to six hours.
Capsules are also a type of edible. Many consumers prefer softgels because they’re more traditional. These products take the same amount of time to work and share a similar duration. Both types take the guesswork out of dosing.
Vaping and Smoking Hemp Flowers and Oils
Another convenient option is vaping and smoking hemp flowers. This method works quickly—it has an onset of one minute. A few puffs from a pre-roll or CBD vape pen can have you calm and smiling for up to an hour before you need to take a few more.
The beauty of vaping and smoking CBD flowers is that you don’t need to measure anything. However, the best option is vaping over smoking because it’s safer for your lungs. Inhaling any smoke can damage your body.
A vape pen with flowers or oil cartridges doesn’t burn the product. Instead, it heats them without touching the compounds to produce a vapor. There’s very little fragrance, and it dissipates fast, making it a discrete option, too.
Consumers love their vape pen because it’s so easy to use in social situations, and they don’t have to worry about the aroma or have to juggle a tincture bottle. Additionally, a few puffs are more effective than taking an edible an hour before the event.
Topical Therapeutic CBD Products
Topical CBD products can be used to soothe itchy skin and sore muscles and joints. These are different than other methods because they offer local relief. Topicals, such as creams, ointments, and patches, are applied to the area of concern.
In addition, topical CBD doesn’t break the blood-brain barrier, which means you can apply as necessary throughout the day and use it with other products, such as oils and edibles.
Although we mention CBD for itchiness or soreness following a challenging workout or long day on your feet, there are many topical hemp products.
Studies of the benefits of CBD lotions and balms show the compound’s anti-inflammatory properties can help relax irritated skin from common conditions, such as acne, psoriasis, and eczema. Research also indicates the compounds have protective characteristics that help lock moisture in and keep skin hydrated. Just to name a few popular options on the market, here are some of the most prevalent products:
- Lip balm
- Bath salts
- Eye serums
- Anti-wrinkle cream
- Face wash
- Body soap
These products offer targeted benefits, but they all have one thing in common: the main ingredient is CBD. Additionally, topical items are available for pets too. Many dog and cat owners praise the cream’s ability to soothe their animal’s skin.
Another topical option that’s making headway on the hemp market is the transdermal patch. These can provide relief for sore muscles for several hours. Similar to lidocaine patches, a steady amount absorbs through the skin for specific times. The topicals are often eight to twelve or longer durations for long-term support. Transdermal CBD patches are ideal for slapping on a clean area of skin after a shower before work to sustain you throughout the day.
You can use CBD oil in a variety of ways to meet your needs. There’s something for everyone from sublingual oils, yummy edibles, and topical applications for localized relief to vaping or smoking hemp flowers and oils. Therapeutic CBD offers premium products to add to your wellness routine.