Does CBD get you high? Understanding how it work for you

Does CBD get you high? Understanding how it work for you

In recent years there have been a significant increase in the number of products on the market that contain CBD. Using CBD oil as an ingredient, they offer a wide range of benefits, but for those new to these products one of the common questions is does CBD get you high.

To answer that question, we can first look at where CBD comes from, how it works and what it does for you, and how cannabis gets you high at all.

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol, often called CBD, is a naturally occurring compound, found in cannabis and hemp. While it is just one of hundreds of cannabinoid compounds found in these plants, it is probably the best known due to the rise in popularity of CBD products.

However, although CBD can be infused into a number of forms, including tinctures, oils, edibles and other products, on its own it does not cause the highs associated with cannabis. In fact, because CBD can be isolated from hemp as well as cannabis, many CBD products are hemp based and have no relationship with cannabis at all.

So, the answer to the question of whether CBD oil gets you high, is that no, it does not. But if you take products with CBD from cannabis, why do you not get high?

What causes a high?

CBD is just one compound found in both hemp and cannabis, with over a hundred more Cannabinoids also making up the distinct chemical composition of Cannabis, but not all of them are involved in the chemical process that causes the high associated with Cannabis consumption.

In fact, the key component in Cannabis that causes the high is another cannabinoid, a chemical compound called Tetrahydrocannabinol, often known as THC. When ingested, THC is absorbed into the bloodstream, and spreads throughout the body. Ultimately, it is in the brain where it has the most effect, altering neural chemistry.

They do this by attaching themselves to receptors in the brain that normally accept compounds called endocannabinoids, which are produced by the body itself. The endocannabinoids and their receptors form a system that regulates food intake, stress response, pain and metabolism, ultimately having an effect on almost every neurotransmitter, the molecules that allows brain cells to communicate with each other.

When this endocannabinoid system is hijacked by THC, it floods the entire system with false signals, altering the normal flow of signals. This results in what we describe as a high, the sense of euphoria and slight disconnect from reality are the outcome, although scientists are still unsure of the exact mechanism that leads from the false signals to those results.

What that means for CBD products?

CBD products can be made from cannabis-derived CBD as well as hemp CBD. Hemp and cannabis are the same species of plants, with hemp being defined as having less than 0.3 percent THC by volume. Conversely, cannabis is defined as having more than 0.3% THC by volume. Hemp is the source of the majority of CBD used in edibles and other products, and any product created from hemp simply lacks the level of THC to cause a high at all.

It is even more clear with CBD, whether derived from hemp or cannabis. By isolating the CBD compound from the plant, there is no THC to cause a high. Whether you are wondering can CBD get you high, does CBD oil get you high or what do CBD edibles do, the answer is the same. They cannot get you high.

So why are CBD products popular?

The benefits of CBD

We have looked at how does weed get you high through THC and its effect on the brain and endocannabinoid system. CBD doesn’t give that high experience, however it does affect the body, in a different way.

CBD doesn’t bind to the receptors in the way THC does, which is why it doesn’t have the same psychoactive effects, but it does interact with receptors in a way that does not prevent normal operation.

As a result, it has been found that CBD can offer lasting help with a variety of health problems, including:

• Epilepsy
• Anxiety
• Depression
• Dementia
• Pain
• Weight Loss

In addition, CBD can ease the side effects of chemotherapy, and may provide therapeutic benefits for sufferers of chronic pain, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, brain injuries, cancer, Crohn’s disease, cardiovascular problems and diabetes.

Studies continue to establish how CBD helps with these medical conditions, and to quantify the support it provides, but the World Health Organization’s (WHO) initial observations support CBD as helpful in all these situations.

Non-addictive and with minimal side effects, it is easy to see why CBD has quickly grown in popularity. When compared to the opioids that are the standard medicinal solution for many of these issues, it presents as a much less problematic alternative.

Why do so many people wonder if you can get high on CBD?

One of the most common question asked about edibles and other products is does CBD get you high. The reason is a simple one, Cannabis. People understand that cannabis can give you a high, and as a cannabinoid, CBD is always linked to cannabis, even if most of the products available today use hemp-based CBD as the ingredient.

It really is that simple. There is very little real information readily accessible about CBD, so the first thing people see when it is mentioned is cannabis, and immediately associate it with getting high. Raising awareness of the industry can go some way to combating that, however it will be a long journey.

Recommendations for using CBD products

While it is clear that CBD brings many benefits without the issues of getting high, that level of misinformation that surrounds the industry also leaves many uncertain about using CBD. More confusion is added because there are so many different types of CBG product available, and for those new to CBD, it can be confusing.

Although the range of CBD products available is almost endless, they break down into four distinct ways of consuming.


Smoking CBD concentrate or vaping CBD oil remain one of the more popular ways to take CBD. Inhalation gets the active compounds into the bloodstream quickly, so you feel the benefits faster than the other options. This approach also gives you the highest concentration of CBD too, however this method does have downsides.

Smoking CBD concentrate is still smoking, and can be harsh on the lungs and throat, and while vaping avoids some of these problems, both require additional tools that add to the cost. In addition, whether vaping or smoking, it is easy to take a much higher dose of CBD than you need. For some people, this can be an issue if they are particularly sensitive to dosage levels.


Edibles are the fastest growing way to take CBD today, and its easy to see why. You can simply take CBD oil on its own, but the taste can be off-putting, so adding it to delicious baked goods, gummies and lollipops make it a fun way to get your CBD intake.

It’s also a really discreet way of taking your CBD, no one will know that what you are eating contains any. However, you do have to be careful with edibles, as it is easy to get carried away and eat too many, especially as digestion is a slow process and it can take several hours for the effects to really kick in.

Topical Applications

Topical applications are the balms, creams and ointments containing CBD that are applied to the skin, with the active compounds then absorbed through the skin into the bloodstream. It’s the best way to treat sore muscles or localized pain, and its reasonably fast to work.
Best of all, because you just apply to an area and massage in, you don’t need extra equipment or anything. However, the way that it is absorbed does mean you may need to use a lot to get a higher dose if the symptoms are especially severe, and the effects don’t last as long, so you may be reapplying more frequently than you think.


The final option is using a tincture, where you simply place a few drops under your tongue, wait for a minute, then swallow. This is known as sublingual application, and it is a very easy way of taking CBD that makes dose control very easy. It also leads to long lasting effects and produces relatively fast results.

The biggest problem people have with this method is that CBD has a very earthy taste on its own and it can be difficult to put up with. Additionally, the effectiveness of sublingual does vary from person to person, so it may not give the results you are looking for.

Once you have chosen the right way to take CBD for you, and it is worth trying them all to find the one you enjoy, it is important to think about how much CBD you take. Getting the dosage right can dramatically change your experience and the benefits you enjoy from CBD, but we are all unique with different responses and absorption rates, so here is how to get it right.

It is important to start with a small dose of 50 to 100 mg and assess your own tolerance of the compound. If you find that you are not getting the results you want, try a little more until you find the right balance. In general, studies have shown that average doses for different problems are as follows:

• Anxiety – 300 to 600 mg
• Chronic Pain – 50 to 600 mg per day
• Parkinson’s Disease – 25 mg per day
• Insomnia – 25 mg per day

These can only ever be guidelines though, as each of us responds to CBD differently, and the level of pain or other issues will also have an effect on the required dosage. Always work from smaller amounts, adding a little extra until you get the right outcome, as this will prevent too high a dose for your needs.

Important Takeaways from CBD

When discussing CBD products, there are some key points that you should always remember.

• THC is the active compound in Cannabis that causes highs, not CBD
• The majority of CBD products today use Hemp derived CBD. Hemp contains little THC and cannot produce highs.
• Whether you are talking about tinctures, edibles or any other form of CBD product, none of them provide a high.
• CBD products are excellent at helping with a variety of medical problems, and are especially useful in easing chronic pain and a variety of brain and mental issues.
• Choose the method of taking CBD that you find the best, all have their merits, but it is your experience that matters.
• Start slowly with dosages, and always increase a little at a time until you get the results you want.