• Research suggests that CBD (cannabidiol) possesses analgesic and anti-inflammatory benefits that may help with various types of pain like chronic pain(1). Anecdotes from CBD users note that CBD produces feelings of calm and relaxation. 
  • CBD comes in various forms like tinctures, edibles, topicals, and vapes. The compound’s efficacy may differ depending on these forms and the user’s body weight, metabolism, and diet. 
  • CBD should not be used to cure illnesses and consulting a doctor, or medical professional for a proper diagnosis and treatment is necessary. More clinical research is required to know the effects of CBD on one’s body conclusively.

Can Individuals Feel CBD?

It is vital to keep in mind that CBD is not like THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), wherein the compound causes the feeling of being “high”(2).

According to various personal anecdotes of CBD users, cannabidiol may only induce feelings of relaxation and calmness, promoting a healthy sleep cycle. 

The CBD form, dosage, and administration method may determine how long the effects of CBD may start to affect the user’s system. 

CBD acts as adaptogen(3). Adaptogens are naturally occurring substances that help the body adapt to stress and various biological changes, including immune system function(4)

Due to CBD’s adaptogenic characteristics, the compound’s effect may differ depending on the body’s needs. For example, the brain is more active during the day. Hence, CBD may cause wake-inducing effects(5)

Meanwhile, if a user utilizes CBD for sleep aid or general relaxation, the compound may help with sleep regularization and produce calming effects(6).

CBD may also cause an opposite impact on appetite and eating habits. Based on a 2017 study, CBD may cause side effects like increased and decreased appetite, depending on each participant examined(7)

All in all, CBD may produce both relaxing and stimulating effects, depending on what the user’s brain and body require. Moreover, individuals may not notice any mental or physical impairment when using CBD, unlike THC

How CBD Affects People in Different Ways

The CBD dosage, administration method, form of CBD, the strain of hemp used in the CBD product, where the hemp plant is grown, and the reason for taking CBD may all cause a unique experience for each individual. 

Different Types of CBD Oil Delivery Methods

CBD may come in various forms, including CBD oil tinctures, edibles, CBD topical products, and vapes. The effectiveness of CBD may differ depending on the user’s weight, diet, and metabolism. 

CBD Edibles

Edibles such as CBD gummies and supplements work by letting the compound pass through the body’s digestive tract before it enters the bloodstream. 

This CBD product is a convenient way to ingest CBD and offers all-day or all-night effects. 

Ingestion may also be helpful for individuals suffering from inflammatory bowel issues as the compound will be delivered to the area it is needed most(8)

CBD Tinctures

CBD oil tinctures are created by infusing cannabis into carrier oils, like coconut oil, MCT (medium-chain triglycerides) oil, and hemp oil(9).  

This CBD form may also be added to certain drinks and foods like smoothies, yogurt, and coffee.  

Tinctures are then applied sublingually or directly under the tongue. Individuals should wait for at least one to two minutes before swallowing(10)

CBD Vapes

CBD oil may also be inhaled through vape pens. This method is the quickest way to feel the benefits of the compound due to the vapor going straight from the lungs into the bloodstream(11).

However, it is crucial to know that smoking and vaping are associated with the development of severe lung diseases and chemical irritation, so caution is advised(12).

CBD Topicals

CBD topicals, like CBD creams and lotions, are applied to the desired area on the skin for localized pain relief of minor or chronic pains(13).

Topical cannabidiol does not enter the bloodstream. Instead, the compound is picked up and absorbed by the CB2 receptors in the skin to offer relief to the specific area(14)

Even if the topical product contains THC, this product may not cause impairment due to the compound not entering the bloodstream(15).  

What the Body May Feel After Taking CBD: What Experts Say

There effects of CBD on a user are vast. Personal anecdotes of CBD users noted that the compound may have helped with managing back pain, arthritis, or other physical discomfort caused by pain and inflammation. 

Generally, the effects of CBD may show in various ways for different people, depending on their specific needs and health issues. Everyone’s body is different. Hence, CBD may affect one person differently than others. 

The only way for individuals to know what CBD feels like is to try it themselves.

In a recent study from the journal Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research, researchers examined the effects of CBD oil on anxiety disorders(16)

The study participants were given CBD oil capsules for eight weeks. Researchers noted that CBD may possess anxiolytic-like (antianxiety) properties that may help decrease the anxiety levels of individuals with social anxiety disorders(17).

Moreover, a 2018 case report investigated individuals diagnosed with epidermolysis bullosa. These individuals who used topical CBD experienced less pain, blistering and faster wound healing(18)

Epidermolysis bullosa is a rare skin disorder that causes painful blistering skin.

Further research is necessary to determine how exactly CBD affects the body. It is vital to note that CBD is not intended to treat or cure any disease. 

Individuals should consult their doctor or healthcare provider to get an official diagnosis and treatment for their health conditions. 

How Does CBD Make Individuals Feel if Taken in High Doses?

According to studies, CBD operates in a “bell curve” or “u-shaped” manner in terms of dosing(19). In other words, taking too much CBD may be as ineffective as taking too little. 

However, research studies on laboratory animals showed low oral toxicity in ingesting CBD(20).

In a study on physical dependence on drugs, researchers administered 1,500 mg of CBD to individuals per day for four weeks. Results showed that the participants did not undergo withdrawal after the trial period(21).  

Another study found that high doses of up to 1,500 mg of CBD every day were well tolerated by humans(22)

How Long Does It Take to Feel the Effects of CBD?

There are various factors that may affect how long it takes for individuals to feel the effects of CBD. Such factors include CBD product form and administration method. 

CBD edibles, gummies, and capsules may start to take effect within 30 to 90 minutes after ingestion(23). Meanwhile, CBD tinctures may have an onset time of 15 to 30 minutes(24)

CBD inhalation through vape pens may provide the fastest way for individuals to feel the effects of CBD. Vaping may only take 2 to 15 minutes before the compound takes effect(25).

However, it is vital to remember that vaping may lead to severe lung diseases(26).

Lastly, topical CBD products like creams and lotions may take effect within 10 to 15 minutes(27).

Does CBD Oil Give a Buzz or High?

In the United States, CBD products are only legally allowed to contain less than 0.3% THC(28)

CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid. Hence, cannabidiol does not cause a euphoric high. 

On the other hand, tetrahydrocannabinol, also known as THC, is known for its psychoactive effects that induce a “high,” or an altered state characterized by a heightened sensory perception, euphoria, or pleasure.

CBD does contain positive health benefits, like aiding with symptoms of anxiety disorder(29)

How Much CBD Should Individuals Take to Feel a Difference?

Epidiolex is the only cannabis-derived drug authorized by the FDA or the Food and Drug Administration(30). Epidiolex treats tubular sclerosis and seizures caused by two rare forms of childhood epilepsy(31)

The FDA has not validated the use of CBD as an alternative treatment for any medical condition. Hence, there is no set CBD dosage for any medical condition.

However, 10mg to 100mg of CBD per day has been hypothesized to manage medical issues like pain, inflammation, anxiety, and depression(32)

Dosing may also depend on several factors, such as the user’s body weight, potency, and the condition the individual wants to address. 

THC vs. CBD Feeling

THC and CBD may overlap in therapeutic benefits. However, the compounds’ effects may have a significant difference. 

CBD is non-intoxicating and may cause calming effects, according to a 2019 study from The Permanente Journal(33). 

On the other hand, THC’s properties are related to the compound’s intoxicating effects(34). 

THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is a cannabinoid responsible for the psychological effects of cannabis or marijuana. 

THC attaches to the cannabinoid receptors can be found in some regions of the brain and affects a person’s mood, thinking, body movement, and memory(35).

Furthermore, when individuals consume THC, they may feel the different effects of the compound, such as(36):

  • Euphoria
  • Relaxation
  • Short-term memory loss
  • Paranoia
  • Nausea 

Aside from relaxation, individuals may not experience any of the mentioned effects when taking CBD.

Does CBD Relieve Pain?

Studies suggest that CBD may contain positive effects, like anti-pain (analgesic) and anti-inflammatory properties that may help manage chronic pain and improve people’s overall quality of life(37).

The compound’s purported anti-inflammatory benefits make CBD a potential option for dealing with various types of pain(38).

The benefits of CBD may include managing pain associated with the following medical illnesses(39):

  • Arthritis
  • Inflammation
  • Migraines
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Diabetes
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Cancer

CBD works by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS)(40).

The ECS contains many cannabinoid receptors, like CB1 and CB2 receptors, located in the nervous and immune systems

CB1 receptors play a crucial role in regulating pain sensations. Meanwhile, CB2 receptors stimulate the body’s anti-inflammatory response(41).

The interaction of these two cannabinoid receptors with CBD may produce analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects(42).

Cannabidiol also interacts with the 5-TH1A receptors, also called serotonin receptors(43)

Serotonin, commonly known as the “happy hormone,” is a neurotransmitter that produces feelings of happiness and regulates mood. 

Research shows that CBD’s interaction with these neurotransmitters may induce potential anxiolytic (antianxiety) effects(44).  

Is CBD Addictive?

According to a World Health Organization or the WHO report, CBD does not exhibit any effects indicative of physical dependence or abuse potential(45).

In a study on abuse potential, a number of controlled and open-label trials indicated that CBD possesses potential therapeutic effects and is well tolerated by the body(46).

What Are the Side Effects of CBD Oil? Can It Make Individuals Feel Bad?

In general, using CBD may yield minor side effects such as(47):

  • Dry mouth
  • Diarrhea
  • Drowsiness
  • Fatigue

Moreover, taking CBD alongside some medications may cause possible drug-to-drug interactions. 

CBD may inhibit the cytochrome P450 enzymes at certain doses(48). This interaction may cause detrimental effects on how the user’s body metabolizes or breaks down various prescription drugs. 

Drugs that may interact with cytochrome P450 enzymes include pharmaceutical medications like(49):

  • Antihistamines
  • Antibiotics
  • Antidepressants
  • Anesthetics
  • HIV antivirals
  • Beta-blockers
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)

It is vital to consult a physician for medical advice regarding the individual’s medical condition and drug prescriptions before taking or purchasing CBD for their overall health and well-being.

What Is CBD?

Cannabidiol, more popularly known as CBD, is one of the most prevalent active components derived directly from hemp plants, a species of medical marijuana(50).

CBD can also be synthetically manufactured in a laboratory. 

CBD may interact with the endocannabinoid system, which is present in most mammals and is located in the nervous and immune systems.

Aside from being nearly present in almost all animals and humans, the ECS also plays a crucial role in maintaining homeostasis or balance(51)

Choosing the Best CBD 

Individuals should look into several factors such as extraction methods, product classification, and CBD content before purchasing CBD products. Consumers should evaluate whether the products match their needs and preferences. 

CBD oil is obtained from hemp plants. CBD manufacturers utilize different extraction methods like hydrocarbon, carbon dioxide (CO2), or ethanol to derive CBD from the hemp plant.

Once extracted, CBD oil is categorized into full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, or isolates.

Full-spectrum CBD oil possesses most cannabinoids and compounds present in the cannabis plant, such as THC, terpenes, and flavonoids. 

Terpenes are plant compounds that give plants their unique fragrance. Meanwhile, flavonoids are components that have anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and antioxidative properties(52). When combined, these compounds produce the “entourage effect.” 

The entourage effect refers to the phenomenon wherein all the active compounds of cannabis function better when taken simultaneously(53).

Broad-spectrum CBD oils contain similar compounds as full-spectrum products, except broad-spectrum contains trace amounts of THC or is THC-free.

CBD isolates are composed of pure CBD only. Isolates do not contain the other compounds or cannabinoids found in full-spectrum or broad-spectrum products.

Individuals who want to use high-quality cannabis products without the psychoactive effects of THC may opt for CBD isolates or broad-spectrum CBD oil.

CBD products from trusted brands have a certificate of analysis (COA). COAs are issued by third-party laboratories and contain the test results of the CBD product’s actual CBD content.

Moreover, third-party lab tests determine whether the product possesses harmful contaminants and additives like heavy metals or pesticides that may cause potential health risks and toxicity to consumers.

Individuals should inspect the COA and ensure the information on the CBD product’s label matches the COA results. 

CBD brands that sell quality products must be transparent by displaying their COAs on their official websites.

The Farm Bill in 2018 has federally legalized the use of cannabis derivatives in the United States as long as the products have less than 0.3% THC(54).

Individuals should make sure to verify their state laws and legislations regarding the use of CBD to prevent any potential legal repercussions. 

The Human Endocannabinoid System

The endocannabinoid system is pervasive in humans and mammals. This system regulates the homeostasis or balance of the human body’s immune and nervous systems and other organ systems(55).

The ECS also has an integral role in regulating a range of bodily functions, including mood, sleep, memory, appetite, and reproduction. 

The ECS consists of cannabinoid receptors CB1 CB2. CB1 receptors are predominantly present in the central nervous system, whereas CB2 receptors are mostly found in the immune system.

CBD works by indirectly activating the ECS through a channel of receptors within the body’s central and peripheral nervous system located in the brain, spinal cord, immune system, and other organs. 

Studies have hypothesized that the activation of CB1 and CB2 receptors in the ECS may influence various bodily functions and produce potential therapeutic benefits(56).  


  1. A Balanced Approach for Cannabidiol Use in Chronic Pain
  2. CBD Products Are Everywhere. But Do They Work?
  3. Cannabis sativa L. and Nonpsychoactive Cannabinoids: Their Chemistry and Role Against Oxidative Stress, Inflammation, and Cancer
  4. Adaptogen
  5. Potential Effects of Cannabidiol as a Wake-Promoting Agent
  6. Cannabidiol in Anxiety and Sleep: A Large Case Series
  7. An Update on Safety and Side Effects of Cannabidiol: A Review of Clinical Data and Relevant Animal Studies
  8. Healing With CBD, page 202. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1AGlxnhS2SoFeOXEuysv75bd_C9pEnwsU/view
  9. Healing With CBD, page 205
  10. CBD for Arthritis Pain: What You Should Know
  11. Best Way to Take CBD
  12. Outbreak of Lung Injury Associated with the Use of E-Cigarette, or Vaping, Products
  13. Healing With CBD, page. 210.
  14. Ibid.
  15. Ibid.
  16. Use of Cannabidiol for the Treatment of Anxiety: A Short Synthesis of Pre-Clinical and Clinical Evidence
  17. Ibid.
  18. Self-Initiated Use of Topical Cannabidiol Oil for Epidermolysis Bullosa
  19. Cannabidiol Presents an Inverted U-shaped Dose-Response Curve in a Simulated Public Speaking Test
  20. Cannabidiol Hazard Profile – Proposal P1042
  21. Drug Label Information: Drug Abuse and Dependence
  22. Safety and Side Effects of Cannabidiol, a Cannabis sativa Constituent
  23. Healing With CBD, page. 192.
  24. Healing With CBD, page. 191.
  25. Healing With CBD, page. 193.
  26. Can Vaping Damage Your Lungs? What We Do (and Don’t) Know
  27. Healing With CBD, page. 210
  28. FDA Regulation of Cannabis and Cannabis-Derived Products, Including Cannabidiol (CBD)
  29. Cannabidiol as a Potential Treatment for Anxiety Disorders
  30. FDA Approves New Indication for Drug Containing an Active Ingredient Derived from Cannabis to Treat Seizures in Rare Genetic Disease
  31. Ibid.
  32. CBD: A Patient’s Guide to Medicinal Cannabis, page 129.
  33. Cannabidiol in Anxiety and Sleep: A Large Case Series
  34. Tetrahydrocannabinol
  35. What Is Marijuana?
  36. What Is THC?
  37. A Balanced Approach for Cannabidiol Use in Chronic Pain
  38. Healing With CBD, page 167
  39. Healing With CBD, pages 167-168. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1AGlxnhS2SoFeOXEuysv75bd_C9pEnwsU/view
  40. Review of the Neurological Benefits of Phytocannabinoids
  41. Cannabinoids and Pain: New Insights From Old Molecules
  42. CBD Oil: What Is It and How Does It Work?
  43. Antidepressant-Like and Anxiolytic-Like Effects of Cannabidiol: A Chemical Compound of Cannabis sativa
  44. Cannabidiol as a Potential Treatment for Anxiety Disorders
  45. Cannabidiol (CBD) Critical Review Report
  46. Ibid.
  47. CBD: What You Need to Know Before You Try
  48. CBD User’s Guide
  49. Healing With CBD, page 115. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1AGlxnhS2SoFeOXEuysv75bd_C9pEnwsU/view
  50. Cannabidiol (CBD)-What We Know and What We Don’t
  51. The Endocannabinoid System of Animals
  52. Flavonoids As Antioxidants
  53. The “Entourage Effect”: Terpenes Coupled with Cannabinoids for the Treatment of Mood Disorders and Anxiety Disorders
  54. New Congressional Farm Bill Legalizes Some Marijuana
  55. An Introduction to the Endogenous Cannabinoid System
  56. Ibid.


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