Are you suffering from lower back pain? Is lack of sleep making it difficult to concentrate at work? Do you wake up feeling anxious but don’t know why? These are just some of the reasons many people are turning to Cannabidiol (CBD). The non-psychoactive compound found in the cannabis plant is experiencing significant growth as more people seek natural solutions for their health and wellness. One in seven Americans use products containing CBD, according to a new survey.
But despite its popularity, CBD may not work for you or work as well as you need. A number of factors can contribute to the failure of CBD to give you the results you want. Before you get started with CBD, consider the following.
Poor Product Quality
Not all CBD products are created equal and some don’t contain high quality CBD or don’t contain the amount that is stated on the label. Check the label to see how much CBD the product contains. The amount of CBD will be stated in milligrams, and it means the amount of CBD in the entire container of the product. Also consider the size of the bottle – 10ml, 30 ml and so forth. For example, 500mg of CBD in a 30ml bottle is a lot stronger than 500mg in a 60ml bottle. Also, the label will tell you what other ingredients are in the product. Be sure to avoid any chemicals that will be harmful or of no value in addressing a specific health need.
Ask to see a Certificate of Analysis or COA. It’s a document issued by an accredited laboratory that includes a full composition of a product. A COA should include a total list of cannabinoids, microbiological levels, terpenes (aromatic plant compounds found in high concentrations in the cannabis plant), and possible contaminants such as pesticides, solvent residue or heavy metals.
Wrong Delivery System and/or Wrong Dosage
CBD comes in a variety of delivery options, which can affect the results you get. CBD that goes directly into your bloodstream may provide better results than products that go through your digestive tract where some of the CBD is lost during the metabolic process. Also, the most effective method may depend on what relief you need and how quickly you expect results.
Ingestion and Sublingual Application
Whether in capsules, food or liquid, CBD that is swallowed is absorbed through the digestive tract. With capsules, the effective dose already has been established. CBD can also be absorbed directly into the bloodstream bypassing the digestive system by holding liquid from a spray or tincture (a liquid dosed by a dropper) under the tongue (sublingual) for 60 to 120 seconds. The effects may be felt faster, within 15 to 45 minutes.
On the skin
Topical products, including creams, lotion, balms and gels are applied to the skin over the area where there is pain. They do not get into the bloodstream but address pain and inflammation in a particular area. Since topical CBD use is localized, there is no need to dose too much. Assume a little cream goes a long way and start with a small amount on the problem area. After an hour or so, try reapplying. Any of the topicals that have Camphor, Lidocaine or Menthol can be applied up to 3-4 times a day.
CBD can be inhaled via a vaporizer, or vape pen. Inhaled CBD tends to enter the bloodstream faster than other forms. However, controlling dosages can be difficult because how much CBD is absorbed depends on how long and hard the inhalation is.
Endocannabinoid System Responds Differently
CBD interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is made up of endocannabinoids or neurotransmitters that send chemical messages between neurons, the cells that transmit nerve impulses. The ECS stimulates and controls many of the body’s functions, such as sleep, memory, appetite and immune response. The ECS acts to restore balance whenever something happens with those body functions.
If you try a high-quality CBD product without noticing an improvement condition, it may be that your genetic makeup, biochemistry or metabolism will restrict your interaction with the endocannabinoid receptors of CBD.
Not giving it enough time
Be patient when it comes to taking CBD. It can take weeks or even longer before you start seeing results. The differences in endocannabinoid among individuals can contribute to the time it takes for CBD to work. Also consider that CBD may not eliminate the problem completely but may contribute to reducing the severity. That’s why it’s a good idea to chart your progress to see how CBD is having an impact.
CBD is a commitment. You have to spend time doing your research to find the right product and the dosage that works for you. Then you need to be patient and give this natural cannabis compound time to work.
 Hansen, Chris, “1 in 7 Adults Use CBD Products, Gallup Survey Finds,” U.S. News & World Report,” August 8, 2019. https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2019-08-08/1-in-7-adults-use-cbd-products-gallup-survey-finds
 Alphagreen Team, “The Complete Guide to CBD (Certificate of Analysis),” November 18, 2019. https://medium.com/alphagreen/the-complete-guide-to-cbd-coa-certificate-of-analysis-d37cddd9b570
 WayofLeaf Staff, “The Best Types of CBD Products [Gummies, Oils],” WayofLeaf, May 5, 2020. https://wayofleaf.com/cbd/best-picks/best-forms-of-cbd-products
 “CBD for Arthritis Pain: What You Should Know,” Arthritis Foundation, accessed September 12, 2020. https://www.arthritis.org/health-wellness/healthy-living/managing-pain/pain-relief-solutions/cbd-for-arthritis-pain
 Gill, Lisa L., “How to Safely Use CBD: Should You Inhale, Spray, Apply or Eat It?”, Consumer Reports, August 26, 2018. https://www.consumerreports.org/cbd/how-to-use-cbd-inhale-spray-apply-eat/
 “Why Doesn’t CBD Work for Some People,” CBD Oils Review, Accessed February 14, 2021. https://www.cbd-oils-review.com/cbd-not-working/