Properly dosing CBD makes a big difference in the effects.

It’s hard – if not impossible – to see real results from CBD without using it on a consistent basis. Every successful CBD regimen is built on a solid foundation of consistency, though it’s the dosing CBD that’s the real key to seeing long-term effects. According to Gallup, one in seven Americans use CBD products in some form, but so many people have trouble with seeing results.

In addition to a few other factors, consistent CBD dosage and method of consumption makes a big difference. 

There are numerous ways to consume CBD, ranging from smoking hemp flower to sublingually taking CBD tinctures. Each method has its own unique benefits, depending on your reason for using it. 

Before we get into dosing CBD for each method of consumption, let us explain the basics of hemp and CBD. 

What is hemp? 

Hemp, also called industrial hemp, is a strain of the Cannabis sativa plant species that is grown specifically for the use of its derived products, such as tinctures or topicals. Hemp contains 0.3% THC or less, but is abundant in CBD.  Hemp will not get you high.

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of the most prominent compounds found in the cannabis plant. CBD is non-psychoactive, but does offer a wide range of therapeutic benefits that include treatment for: 

  • Anxiety
  • Pain 
  • Inflammation
  • Seizures
  • And more

What is THC?

Tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, is the most popular cannabis compound, or cannabinoid. It is psychoactive, and does cause a “high” or “stoned” feeling. THC can be used both recreationally and medicinally.

Will CBD get you high?

CBD is non-psychoactive, so it will not cause the high commonly associated with marijuana. You may feel calmer and more relaxed when taking CBD, but you will not get high or stoned. In fact, CBD can counteract the effects of THC. 

Now that you have a better understanding of hemp, CBD, and its effects, let’s talk about methods of consuming and dosing CBD. 

Methods of Consuming and Dosing CBD

Dosing CBD infographic

1. Smoking hemp flower

Average dose: 0.25 – 0.5g  smokable hemp flower

A beginner dose for smoking dried hemp buds is around 0.25g to 0.5g, with the half-gram being a common amount found in pre-rolled joints. If you’re new to smoking hemp, starting out with 0.25 grams of flower is a good way to gauge potency and effects. If you find this to be too much, and you get too relaxed or sleepy, you can always smoke less. Same goes for if you find this amount to not be strong enough — you can always smoke more. 

The advantage of smoking hemp flower is the near-immediate effects of CBD. For newer CBD users, taking a couple hits from a joint or rips off the bong is all that’s needed, while more experienced smokers may have to smoke more. 

2. CBD tinctures

Average dose: 1 ml CBD tincture, typically twice daily 

Dosing CBD tincture is quite different from dosing hemp buds. 

This form of CBD oil is typically mixed in food or beverage, or applied sublingually (under the tongue). Tinctures typically come in 15ml, 30ml, or 60 ml bottles. 

CBD tinctures vary in terms of concentration, ranging from 100mg CBD to 5000 mg CBD. The key to understanding how to dose CBD tincture is knowing the serving size, which should be on the label and is typically 1ml per serving. A 300mg tincture in a 30ml bottle features 30 1ml servings of 10mg CBD. A 1200 mg tincture in a 60ml bottle features 60 1ml servings of 20mg CBD. These two servings will provide very different effects.

This is why we recommend first-time CBD tincture users to start with lower strengths and gradually build up their dosage. It is also important to note the effects are not felt as quickly as they are with smoking, but they do last a long time – up to three or four hours.

To take the CBD tincture sublingually (rather than in food or drink), hold a 1ml serving under the tongue for 60 seconds before swallowing. Most users take it once or twice a day, or as needed. 

3. CBD topicals 

Average dose: Varies by product, typically per day or as needed

CBD topicals such as balms, ointments, and lotions for pain relief and inflammation are applied directly onto the skin. They do not reach the bloodstream and are non-psychoactive, which makes for little to no risk in liberally applying it. Most topical CBD products come with recommendations for suggested use. When dosing CBD topicals, start with the dosage listed on the label and then use more or less as needed.

Most CBD topicals range in concentration from 250mg to 1500mg. Individuals with severe pain, inflammation, or discomfort tend to find high-concentration topicals to be the most effective. 

4. CBD edibles 

Average dose: 10mg CBD per edible daily or as needed

CBD edibles are gummies, capsules, brownies, and any other CBD-infused products that are eaten. Similar to tinctures, edibles take longer to take effect because they are orally ingested, but the effects also last a lot longer. Typically, edibles will take effect within 30 minutes to one hour after consumption, and the effects will last for about four to five hours, depending on the strength of the edible. 

Each edible is one serving size, and dosage is always listed on the packaging. CBD gummies usually have concentrations that range from 5mg to 100mg, and some go even higher. The more pain, discomfort, or anxiety you have, the higher concentration you will want. 

5. Dabbing CBD concentrates

Average dose: 1 dab the size of a grain of rice

Different CBD concentrates have different potencies, so it’s important that you know the strength of your concentrates. It’s recommended to start low and go slow, so you can see how your body reacts to the CBD. Most CBD dabs are the size of a grain of rice. While that doesn’t sound or look like very much, these substances are highly concentrated and very potent. Start with one dab, about the size of a grain of rice, and then take more if needed. 

6. CBD transdermal patches 

Average dose: 1 patch

CBD transdermal patches are patches that contain a carefully measured dose of CBD infused in a carrier gel, oil, or solution. Through the use of carriers and permeation enhancers, the CBD molecules pass directly into the skin cells. Because our cells are made of lipids, which is what cannabinoids are, CBD diffuses through the cells, making its way to the bloodstream. Basically, CBD patches put CBD into your bloodstream through your skin, which then allows the CBD to reach the endocannabinoid system, where it binds to the CB1 and CB2 receptors to produce a wide range of effects.

The strength of the patches, and the time they are to be left on, vary by product. The packaging will include the dosing instructions.

Can You Overdose on CBD? 

CBD is non-toxic and yields very few side effects — which are minor and non-threatening. Additionally, the National Cancer Institute states overdosing on CBD is basically impossible, just as it is with THC

That being said, when using CBD, keep in mind the fact CBD products are still relatively new and the long-term effects have not been extensively studied. Because this is the case, CBD users should only buy CBD and use CBD products from brands that submit all of their products for third-party lab testing and publish these results on their website.

In the cases where CBD users reported adverse reactions, the users were taking synthetically produced CBD and / or products from brands that didn’t share the manufacturer information or list the ingredients.

Always buy CBD products from reputable buyers. 

Not sure what that entails? Read this post about how to choose the best hemp flower online