Can you overdose on CBD oil

CBD, just one of at least 100 compounds found in the cannabis plant, has no psychoactive properties on the human body like THC. This makes CBD an exceptional option for chronic pain relief, insomnia, anxiety and other disorders. CBD works in the human body by altering receptor activity in the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which regulates multiple functions that keep our bodies in balance, commonly referred to as homeostasis. CBD interacts with the ECS to modify our perception of pain and anxiety and helps with insomnia in addition to boosting the immune system.

CBD oil, and it's varied uses, are still considered relatively new in the medical world. As such, the number of legitimate studies are few; particularly those looking at too much CBD oil and the potential for a toxic dose. In the 2017 article An Update on Safety and Side Effects of Cannabidiol: A Review of Clinical Data and Relevant Animal Studies it was found that CBD was found to be relatively safe in both human and animal models; however, more studies of the potential effects of long-term CBD use may reveal that CBD products in very high doses could have significant adverse effects.

What do we know about CBD dosing ?

Much of what we know about CBD oil, and other medications containing CBD, is anecdotal evidence and cautious reasoning has led us to what is now considered to be a generally accepted therapeutic dose for many health afflictions such as anxiety, insomnia and even seizures. Still, patients often fear that the lack of relevant animal studies may lead to a CBD overdose.

How do I find the right dose of CBD to enjoy maximal health benefits?

The answer often starts with a visit to a healthcare professional for information on current drug safety and side effects of CBD; however, as previously discussed, the lack of clinical data on CBD is lacking. Therefore, your physician may be unable to provide you with information on recommended doses; however, they may warn against it's use based on your current medications and possible interactions.

How do I find the right dose of CBD to enjoy maximal health benefits

CBD may interact with other medications, particularly prescription medication, and could produce negative side effects and potentially lethal harm. For example, medications that carry a “grapefruit warning” such as warfarin (a blood thinner), some blood pressure medications and "statins" which are used to lower blood cholesterol are broken down by the enzyme CYP3A4 found in the liver. Approximately 50% of all prescription medications need this enzyme for metabolism. Grapefruit actually blocks this enzyme in the intestine causing a build-up of these drugs in the bloodstream.

How does CBD effect the CYP3A4 and other liver enzymes?

CBD causes problems because it not only uses this enzyme for metabolism but it is also a "competitive inhibitor" of the enzyme. In this way it uses the enzyme for breakdown and has a strong binding affinity for the enzyme prohibiting other drugs from binding and being metabolized into a harmless product that is then eliminated.

CBD also inhibits the liver enzyme CYP2D6 potentially causing an increase in blood concentrations of certain types of antidepressants, blood pressure medications and opioid pain relievers. In addition, CBD may dilate and relax the blood vessel walls, resulting in a drop in blood pressure. If you're hypotensive, high CBD doses may further lower your blood pressure so when combined with blood pressure medications it may enhance their effect.

Again, every individual is unique and these effects of CBD are not always seen; however, all consumers should be aware of possible drug interactions.

How much is enough CBD?

Doses of CBD oil are varied depending upon individual needs because different body types react differently to CBD oil. To avoid side effects with any medication, it's important to take the smallest effective dose.

So far, the scientific community has been unable to define any clear limits with regards to CBD dosing. In historical studies dosages cover a broad range anywhere from 1 mg to 1,500 mg. In general, it is recommended to use 10-15 mg of CBD once or twice daily, depending upon body weight and condition you are treating, then increasing dose until symptomatic relief is achieved. This can take days to weeks depending upon things such as individual tolerance and severity of ailment.

While the following chart is just one of many you can find, it accurately depicts the premise that when you start taking CBD oil it is best to start with a low dose and increase as needed to alleviate symptoms. In this way you can find the method of ingestion and dose that are perfect for you.

Can I take too much CBD

Can I take too much CBD?

As you may expect, what may be considered too much CBD will be dependent upon the method of ingestion and how much CBD oil is taken within a given period of time. The responsible use of CBD oil to achieve the best possible alleviation of symptoms necessitates consumer research on varying methods of ingestion and then determining the proper dosage so that too much CBD is not ingested. In general, CBD edibles will take longer to work but last for much longer than a tincture or vaping thereby increasing the likelihood of an overdose. In addition, there are other factors to consider. For example, body weight, conflicting medications and metabolism all have an influence on individual dosing.

Is CBD Oil Addictive

Is CBD Oil Addictive?

Another frequently asked question about CBD oil is whether it is addictive. The simple answer is no. CBD lacks the psychoactive effects of THC. In fact, we are now looking to cannabidiol as a possible treatment for substance abuse as it may help alter the pathways leading to drug dependence

Is it possible to overdose on CBD?

The answer to this question is likely a version of “yes,” although an overdose is typically not life-threatening as it can be with other substances. As consumers turn to cannabidiol compounds for their medicinal properties or as an adjunct to current medications the question of overdose becomes more of a concern. Although CBD has a broad range of medicinal advantages, it must be kept in mind that everyone is biologically unique and will react differently to any ingested medicine whether natural or synthetic. To avoid side effects with any medication, it's important to take the smallest effective dose. So far, scientific research has not pinpointed any clear limits to how much CBD is too much.

While a 2011 study by Bergamaschi et al. showed that repeated chronic and high doses of up to 1,500 mg per day were well tolerated in human subjects, there have been isolated incidents of overdose at amounts less than 1,500 mg. In one case, a 56 year old man ingested 2 packages of CBD gummies with 370 mg of CBD to alleviate back pain. This was more than 10 times the recommended dose of 30 mg. He was hospitalized with hypoxia, bradycardia, lowered blood pressure and dyspnea which almost required intubation.

Although he fully recovered within 18 hours this was, for him, a very high dose that could have been deadly. No mention was made of whether he was taking other substances that may have exacerbated the effects of CBD; however, it is altogether possible that the product this man ingested had higher doses of CBD than what was listed on the package or he was taking another medication known to interact with CBD.

Typical CBD high dose effects

Not much research exists addressing the toxicity of CBD or whether adults, children, or pets can overdose on CBD. Research on the potential health benefits and risks of CBD oil is ongoing. The general consensus among professionals, and even the World Health Organization, is that even in extremely large doses CBD is likely to cause extreme drowsiness, lethargy, upset stomach, nausea and diarrhea and other unpleasant, disorienting side effects, not death.

While CBD is generally regarded as a safe and effective way to manage pain and anxiety, CBD is still a medicinal substance that should be taken according to the dosing instructions on the packaging label.

If you choose to take products that contain THC in addition to CBD oil then there is a possibility you can ingest enough to end up in the emergency room. THC is the cannabinoid that can cause adverse reactions such as anxiety or panic attacks and a faster heart rate although there is insufficient evidence to support or refute a statistical association between cannabis use and death due to cannabis overdose.

Has anyone died from CBD?

A 2017 review of clinical research published in Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research confirmed that CBD is generally very safe, particularly when compared to other drugs. In general, the biggest risk when consuming a higher dose of CBD is when combined with other prescription drugs. CBD is a safe, non-toxic, and non-addictive compound that has shown to be potentially helpful for a variety of health conditions. CBD, in the proper dosage and when not combined with conflicting medications, has not been implicated in a fatal overdose.

Typical steps for ingestion of too much CBD are the same as any overdose. If someone you know is unconscious or having difficulty breathing or even just acting strangely it's always a good idea to have them assessed by a physician so dial 911 or visit your nearest emergency room or urgent care. If you feel you may be having an adverse reaction consider reaching out to a local poison control center or call 1-800-222-1222.

What are things to look for when buying CBD oil?

Ideally when you decide to purchase CBD oil, in any form, you will do a little research.

Things to look for:

1. Look for a company that provides a CoA (Certificate of Analysis) for their CBD product performed by a reputable third-party lab and with results that you can access easily, typically on their website or the labs website.

Although the FDA does not regulate CBD products as it does other food & drug items they do provide a Warning Letters and Test Results for Cannabidiol-Related Products site which provides a list of companies whose products were tested but failed to contain the advertised amount of CBD in their product. Additional research highlights the issue of contamination of CBD products with substances from heavy metals to pesticides.

Discover CBD provides a website with lab results and CoA for their products that is easily accessible

2. Read product reviews. This is actually a great way to determine whether customers are satisfied with the product as well as guide you to the products that consumers like best. If they have a lot of 5 star reviews, chances are good they are a stand-up company.

3. Potency is important so you want to pay attention to dose per serving and start with a lower dose for a few days then increase as needed for full relief. If, for example, you have a 30 ml bottle that has 300 mg then each ml. provides 10 mg, a typical suggested starting dose. As mentioned before, different methods of consumption may provide quick relief for a short period of time (such as vaping) where CBD edibles such as CBD gummies or chocolates are a tasty way to get your CBD and will provide a sustained dose for a prolonged period of time.

 Full Spectrum CBD oil

4. Be aware that there are other cannabinoids that may be in the product. While there are many products available with CBD oil alone, there are related products available that contain other cannabinoids and THC. Products such as Full Spectrum CBD oil which contains other cannabinoid compounds of the cannabis plant will contain THC, potentially up to 0.3% in a dose. Broad Spectrum has the same cannabinoid compounds as Full Spectrum minus the THC. If you are looking to take CBD only and want no other cannabinoids or additives then isolate, the crystalline form of CBD, will provide you with a pure product that may be added to food or drink as a supplement. Other cannabinoids such as CBG and CBN may be purchased as isolate as well!

CBD isolate

5. CBD oil is generally mixed with a carrier oil like MCT oil or hemp seed oil and may contain other products such as vegetable glycerin or, as in the case of gummies, sugar. For this reason it's always recommended you check all ingredients to avoid a possible allergen or, for diabetics, extra sugar.

Now, let's return to the original question: can you overdose on too much CBD oil?

The simple answer is no - you can't overdose on CBD oil. CBD is known as a 'safe compound', meaning that it has a very low toxicity level and is well-tolerated by humans, even in very high doses. A report by the World Health Organization (WHO) stated that CBD was found to have relatively low toxicity, noting that it has "no effect on a wide range of physiological and biochemical parameters or significant effects on animal behavior unless extremely high doses are consumed". Compared to prescription medication which has a considerable risk of unwanted side effects and the possibility of overdose, CBD is a great way to meet health and wellness goals with little fear of negative consequences. So whether you're looking for relief from pain, anxiety, insomnia or other health afflictions - CBD may be able to help.

The Bottom Line:

The odds of you overdosing on CBD products are improbable, even taking very high doses. However, consuming too much or taking it alongside certain medications that are metabolized by the liver can cause liver damage and the potential for liver failure. So, recommendations are that you start at a low dose of 10mg to 20mg in a day and see how your body reacts to CBD then increase over a period of weeks. Remember, more does not mean more effective! It's all about finding your optimal dose. Since CBD is non-addictive and has no known side effects, you can feel great about using it daily without worry.

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