How Long Does CBD Take to Kick In?

Jay Hartenbach

by Jay Hartenbach

May 27, 2020

At this point, CBD’s potential health benefits are pretty set in stone. Most CBD users know it can improve mobility, mood, and sleep health, for example. 

But one particular aspect of CBD’s inner workings remains elusive: its pharmacology. CBD might kick in nearly instantly…it might take 10 minutes…it might take an hour. It all depends on your body and the CBD products you choose to give it! Here’s a closer look. 

  • Instant CBD?
  • The Ins and Outs of CBD Edibles
  • CBD Oil: The Best of Both Worlds?
  • How to Get Your CBD To Work Better

Instant CBD?

Do you ever wish you could get an instant boost of upliftment? Like coffee, perhaps, but without the letdown or jitters afterward?

Thanks to CBD, you can — so long as you select a very specific type of product called the CBD topical

CBD topicals make dealing with even the most stubborn aches and pains surprisingly easy. Just take your topical of choice, rub it into problem areas, and within a few minutes you should be feeling near-total relief. If your topical doesn’t seem to be working, it might be a matter of dosing…so just use a little more! 

How are topicals able to work so fast? Look no further than your body’s endocannabinoid system; its sensitive CB2 receptors sit right on the skin’s surface, and they love to ‘pick up’ messages from cannabinoids like CBD. These messages help mediate the inflammatory response, in the process reducing pain and creating a healthier, happier, more supple you. 

The Ins and Outs of CBD Edibles

Other types of CBD are much slower-acting — especially CBD edibles.  These edibles are processed by the digestive tract, processed a second time by the liver, and then finally released into the bloodstream. With every step, a little bit of CBD is ‘lost,’ and when it’s all said and done CBD edibles can take up to two hours to fully kick in. 

That’s not necessarily a bad thing, however. CBD edibles are also impressively long-lasting, making them perfect for those who need sustained relief throughout a long day of school, sports, or work. And the digestive processes these edibles initiate may make them perfect for anyone with gut health problems. 

CBD Oil: The Best of Both Worlds?

CBD topicals work nearly instantly, and CBD edibles take a long time to kick in. Thankfully, those who want to take a more balanced approach can do so with the help of a CBD oil!

That’s because CBD oils kick in relatively fast…and last a long time. When used as a true sublingual, (i.e., held under the tongue) CBD oil can be absorbed in to the bloodstream in mere minutes, yet some of its CBD content is still subject to the timed-release nature of hepatic (i.e., liver) metabolism. To put it simply, the way our bodies process CBD oil is complex enough produce all sorts of effects. Even those who aren’t especially sensitive to CBD oil usually notice it within 30 minutes. 

How to Get Your CBD To Work Better

Even after you’ve selected the right CBD product, there are ways to get your CBD to work even better. Taking your CBD alongside a fatty meal, for example, has recently been shown to boost its total absorption — and maybe even reduce its onset time. Taking CBD in tandem with terpenes may also help the cannabinoid kick in faster. 

Thankfully, our products are loaded with pro-metabolic fats and beneficial terpenes as it is…

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