Determining how much CBD to take for the first time can be tricky if you don’t know where to start. While the CBD industry continues to grow, no regulations have been set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for dosages, so there are no set guidelines about how much CBD to take. Especially if you’re new to taking CBD, it can be difficult to know what the correct dosage should be for a beginner.
Although there may be no set CBD dosage guidelines, most experts recommend that if someone is trying CBD for the first time they should start off with the smallest dosage possible and gradually work their way up.
Here’s everything you need to know about how much CBD to take for the first time.
What Can CBD Help With?
CBD can help in managing a myriad of health ailments and/or conditions. It is not uncommon to see people choosing CBD over prescription medications as CBD is deemed to be a more natural remedy.
Here are the most common things people use CBD for:
Feeling Anxious to Feeling at Peace
Anxiety is a common mental health condition that can have a huge impact on overall well-being. While anxiety is typically treated with prescription medications, CBD has shown some promise as a treatment for the two conditions.
A 2019 study found that 79 percent of people diagnosed with anxiety showed improvement when taking 25 to 75 mg of CBD on a daily basis.
Another 2010 study done on mice found that CBD could have antidepressant effects. However, these results haven’t yet been fully replicated in humans, but nevertheless, plenty of people report symptomatic relief.
The improvement could be explained by the way that CBD acts in the brain. According to VeryWell Health, “CBD works as an agonist, meaning that it triggers an opposite response when binding to a receptor. It is possible that low doses can elicit a positive agonist response, while high doses "overwhelm" the brain and trigger a compensatory effect to ‘fight’ CBD's effects.”
Going from Having Pain to Feeling No Pain
While medical marijuana is typically prescribed to help treat people living with nerve pain, there is some evidence that CBD can help with reducing pain levels.
In a 2017 study done on rats, scientists found that CBD experienced less inflammation and neuropathic pain when treated with CBD via oral or injection methods. However, research is still lacking in determining the extent to which CBD can help people with conditions such as arthritis and multiple sclerosis.
Going from Sleepless Nights to Restful Nights
If you suffer from insomnia, there’s a chance that CBD could help you achieve restful sleep.
A 2017 review of existing studies discovered that CBD “may have therapeutic potential for the treatment of insomnia.”
More recently, a 2019 study researched whether CBD could improve sleep and/or reduce anxiety. The study involved 25 subjects experiencing poor sleep. The subjects were each given 25 mg of CBD in capsule form daily. In the first month, 66.7 percent of patients reported better sleep.
Of course, this leads to other questions, like, if each of the subjects were given 50mgs, would more of them have slept better?
As you can see, CBD offers a bounty of benefits to those suffering from some form of health ailment and/or condition.
What Type of CBD Product Should You Use?
There are a variety of ways to get CBD into your system. Before you administer CBD, it’s best to determine how to consume it.
CBD Oils and Tinctures
A common misconception of CBD oils and CBD tinctures is that they’re the exact same thing, but they actually aren’t.
Oils typically are more concentrated with CBD, meaning they’re more potent, and may have an “earthy,” “grassy,” “peaty” taste with a hint of “nuttiness.”
Tinctures are typically alcohol-based. They are not as potent as an oil but they are the better tasting one out of the two. Also, CBD tinctures may be mixed with herbs and/or flavorings.
Both products are administered sublingually, meaning you place a few drops underneath your tongue and allow it to absorb. This method allows the CBD to enter the bloodstream more quickly and the effects of CBD to kick in quicker.
CBD Edibles and Capsules
If taking a CBD oil or CBD tincture doesn’t appeal to you, you should consider CBD edibles or CBD capsules. While CBD capsules are straightforward (you take them with water like any pill), there are a variety of options of CBD edibles available on the market.
The most popular CBD edible options include:
- Hard candy
- Puffed rice treats
If you can’t find any CBD treats locally, baking with CBD is another great option for beginners. CBD baking allows you to control CBD dosages and the quality of the ingredients. If you’re health-conscious or have a strict diet, it’s important to keep in mind that many CBD-infused edibles may include processed ingredients such as high fructose corn syrup, artificial food dyes, and artificial sugar.
As for its effects, CBD edibles and capsules travel through the digestive system and start getting absorbed 30 minutes to 2 hours after being taken, meaning you won’t feel the effects of CBD right away like with an oil and/or tincture.
CBD Creams, Lotions, and Salves
Depending on the type of health ailment and/or condition you’re living with, a topical CBD option may be better suited for your needs rather than a CBD oil, edible, and capsule. Topical CBD refers to creams, lotions, ointments, and salves.
Topical CBD products may be a good choice for those who are suffering from or living with localized pain and inflammation as the CBD will only affect those parts of the body after it is directly applied to the skin.
How Much CBD Should I Take?
If you’re taking CBD for the first time, the rule of thumb is to start at the lowest possible dosage and gradually increase it.
Everyone reacts differently to the effects of CBD. Some people find a 10mg CBD dosage too strong while others may find it weak. In addition to dosages, there is no standard dosage to help manage specific health ailments and/or conditions.
Before you use CBD in any type of form, it’s important to talk to your family doctor or healthcare team first about an appropriate CBD dosage and any potential risks and side effects -- especially if you’re taking prescription medication. If your doctor tells you how much CBD to use, then use their CBD dosage recommendation.
However, if your doctor doesn’t recommend an appropriate CBD dosage, many experts recommend CBD beginners start off with 25 mg of CBD. From there, they can either increase or decrease the dosage.
One way to figure out how much CBD you should take for the first time is with a simple math equation.
CBD Dosage Calculator
Using a CBD dosage calculator is an easy way to find the appropriate and most accurate CBD dosage you should take depending on your weight and pain level. However, this CBD calculator method works is only suited for CBD oil or CBD tincture products.
To determine an optimal CBD dosage for you, look at this table of dosage suggestions based on your weight and the severity of your pain level:
|< 25 lbs||26-45 lbs||46-85 lbs||86-150 lbs||151-240 lbs||>241 lbs|
|None-Mild||4.5 mg||6 mg||9 mg||12 mg||18 mg||22.5 mg|
|Medium||6 mg||9 mg||12 mg||15 mg||22.5 mg||30 mg|
|Severe||9 mg||12 mg||15 mg||18 mg||27 mg||45 mg|
It should be noted that these are just starting point suggestions, you can increase or decrease your dosage according to your needs.
Here’s how to calculate the amount of CBD per dose:
How to Figure Out How Much CBD to Take
- Look for the serving size and amount of CBD per serving. For example, 10 drops = 25 mg of CBD.
- To figure out how much CBD a drop contains, divide the amount per serving by 10. For example, 25/10 = 2.5 mg. So each drop contains 2.5 mg of CBD.
- Use the starting dosage from the chart above based on both your weight and pain level, and divide by 2.5 to find out how many drops you need.
Here’s what a CBD dosage would look like if you were a 151 lbs person with mild pain: You will need 18 mg/2.5 mg = 7.2 drops of CBD to receive 18 mg of CBD. As for the .2 drops of CBD, it can be challenging to administer the exact amount, so you can decide to either round it to just 7 drops. Just like you may have learned in school, if the decimal is higher than 5, consider rounding up or rounding down. Do whatever you feel comfortable with.
**Keep in mind that this equation will vary for every company and every bottle of CBD oil or tincture you purchase. Some bottles may have 500mg of CBD while others might have 2500mg. Read labels carefully.
How Will You Know When the CBD is Working?
It’s important to know that CBD is a naturally occurring compound that’s used in a variety of goods to induce a relaxing and calming effect on an individual. Although CBD comes from hemp plants, the cousin plant to the marijuana plant, it actually doesn’t produce a “high” effect or intoxication feeling when consumed, meaning it’s not a psychoactive substance.
In order to feel the “high” or intoxicating effects, you will need to use a CBD product that includes THC. If you do not want to feel these effects, there are plenty of THC-free CBD products available on the market such as Bespoke Extracts CBD Isolate Tincture in Lemon Lime.
Depending on how you consume CBD, it does take time for it to work and it varies depending on which type of product you use. For example, you could feel the effects of CBD within in a few minutes when using it as an oil or tincture or take several hours to begin to feel the effects if taken in edible and/or capsule form. Sometimes the effects of CBD can take several weeks. Continue to take it daily to allow your body to adapt to its effects.
Side Effects to Watch for When Taking CBD
Just with all types of recreational and/or therapeutic goods, there are some side effects to watch out for and/or be aware of when using CBD. Side effects of CBD include:
- Appetite changes
- Mood changes
In addition to these side effects to watch out for, it is also advised that you consume your CBD product on a full stomach. Consuming CBD on a full stomach may help prevent some of the above CBD side effects. However, if you’re advised by a physician and/or healthcare professional to take CBD with or without food, always follow your doctor’s instructions.
While more research needs to be done on the full effects and benefits of CBD, many people swear by it for relieving pain, anxiety symptoms, and inflammation.
The above guidelines are meant to help you identify how much CBD you should take for the first time. When you’re starting to take CBD for the first time, remember to start low and go slow to find your minimum effect CBD dosage. For example, If you’re taking a CBD product, 25 milligrams is a good CBD dose for beginners. You will want to stay with a low dosage for a few days, and then gradually increase the dose until you get and/or reach the desired effects.
Always consult your physician and/or healthcare team first before taking any type of CBD product.