CBD Dosage: How much should I take?

CBD has many health benefits. But finding the right CBD dosage is key to getting the most out of your chosen product.

Here’s our in-depth CBD dosage guide, which includes a general CBD dosage chart, info on how to calculate the right CBD dosage for specific conditions, the latest research on CBD dosages, and any potential side effects.

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CBD oil dosage

The ideal CBD oil dosage is an elusive thing that depends on multiple factors. Your body weight, metabolism, and individual symptoms all play a role in how much CBD you should take.

Alongside these elements, the quality and concentration of the CBD product you’re using will make a big difference to your dosage.

Variables aside, most people start with a CBD oil dosage of somewhere between 20 – 40 mg per day.

That number may be slightly lower for the highly sensitive or those who weigh less than 100 pounds, or more for those above 200 lbs. 

After a week of steady supplementation, many choose to begin increasing their dose. We recommend experimenting with 5 mg intervals until you no longer feel any extra benefit.

Keep in mind that CBD products are infusions, so 1 ml of CBD oil does not contain 1 mg of CBD. The same goes for edibles and CBD topicals. Read the label of your chosen product to see how much CBD is infused by weight.

CBD dosage chart  📊

Here’s a simple CBD dosage chart that combines user body weight with condition severity. While the perfect dosage requires knowing more about individual factors, this is a good starting point for your CBD journey:

CBD-Oil-Canada.ca CBD Dosage Chart

Use the table above to gauge a general dosage for your body weight and condition. This will give you a benchmark from which to begin experimenting with a personal dose.

Once you have an amount in mind, take a look at the concentration of your CBD oil or edible to find out how much to take. Some products come in simple single servings, while others require you to calculate the dosage.

How to calculate CBD dosage

1.  On average, a drop of CBD oil from a tincture is around 0.05 ml in size. Divide the total size of the CBD bottle by this number to work out how many drops a bottle contains.

2.  Read the label of your CBD oil to find out its concentration. Divide the concentration by the number of drops in the bottle to find out how much CBD is in each drop.

3.  Once you know how much CBD is in each drop, it’s easy to work out how many drops to take for your needs.

How to take CBD oil

CBD oil is a versatile supplement that can be consumed in several ways. Most experts recommend dropping the oil under your tongue, in what’s known as sublingual application.

Sublingual application allows much of the CBD to be absorbed directly into the blood vessels in the mouth. This means less is lost to the metabolic or digestive processes that occur when CBD enters the body through the lungs or the stomach.

Other popular ways to use CBD include adding drops to food or massaging it directly into the skin.

CBD dosage for edibles

Many CBD and cannabis users report that edible CBD has a delayed and less predictable effect than CBD that’s inhaled or consumed sublingually. Be sure to give your dose 3 – 4 hours to take effect before making any judgments or taking more. 

Again, keep in mind that 1 mg of an edible does not equal 1 mg of CBD. Always read labels carefully to check for concentrations and other ingredients and allergens.

Research and benefits of CBD  🔬

The science of CBD is ongoing. Every month, new studies emerge showing the benefits and relevancy of cannabis compounds to a range of inflammatory conditions.

Researchers are providing evidence to back up user claims about CBD’s safety. For example, this review conducted in 2017 found CBD to be a safe treatment across several rigorous studies.

What the research says about CBD dosages

Clinical studies involving human participants and CBD have used many different dosages to positive effect. These range between 20 and 1500 mg.

Successful treatment has been recorded with a 40 mg daily dose for people with schizophrenia, a 150 mg dose for Parkinson’s, and high doses of over 1000 mg to treat some patients with psychosis.

Another study found that doses up to 1500 mg are well-tolerated by the majority of people. All of which further confirms that there is no “right” amount of CBD, only an amount that works for your needs.

How much CBD should I take for…?

Here’s what CBD researchers and consumers say about CBD dosages for specific conditions.

Factors affecting CBD dosage

Several factors can affect your CBD dosage, the biggest being the reason you’re taking CBD in the first place.

Those in significant discomfort or suffering from severe neurological conditions often benefit from much higher doses of CBD than those supplementing for general anxiety or daily wellbeing.

Bodyweight is any factor that significantly affects how CBD works, which is why we recommended calculating dosage by the pound.

Those on prescription medications may find that higher CBD doses cause drowsiness.

Previous exposure to cannabis and consumption of alcohol and other sedatives will also affect dosages.

Also, long-term CBD use itself is likely to result in a build-up of tolerance, meaning that dosages will need to be raised periodically.

CBD dosage for sleep

Evidence suggests that CBD dosages for sleep are highly individual. However, many users report success when taking a moderate-to-high dose in comparison to their usual amount.

Researchers working in 2019 studied the effects of a 25 mg daily dose of CBD on sleep quality in 72 subjects, over half of whom also experienced anxiety. In the study, just over two-thirds of participants reported improvements to sleep.

 

CBD dosage for Pain

Depending on the intensity of pain and discomfort, a good starting dose of CBD oil is between 20 – 50 mg per day. But as the studies show, this amount can be significantly increased in severe cases.

CBD dosage for Joint pain and arthritis

For inflamed joints, The Arthritis Foundation recommends starting with only a few mg of CBD, taken twice per day. Dosages should then be increased by small increments on a weekly basis.

The Foundation also highlights the importance of keeping doses regular in order to “maintain a stable level of CBD in the blood.”

CBD dosage for Neuropathy pain

When researchers conducted a small study on the effects of CBD on neuropathy pain, they found that participants reported a statistically significant reduction in symptoms when compared to a placebo.

The dosage used in the study was a CBD product that contained 250 mg of CBD.

 

CBD dosage for Chronic conditions

CBD isn’t a cure for chronic conditions, but many users have found relief from the daily discomfort and frustration that comes from an ongoing illness.

CBD dosage for IBS and Crohn’s disease

CBD’s credibility as a supplement for IBS and Crohn’s comes mostly from cannabis’s anti-inflammatory properties.

When researchers gave 30 participants with Chron’s a regular dose of cannabis (not CBD extract), they found that 21 were able to reduce their need for other medications and surgeries. 

CBD dosage for High Blood pressure (hypertension)

There’s growing evidence that CBD could play a role in helping to reduce hypertension and its symptoms.

In 2017, research from the UK found that a single, 600 mg dose of CBD lowered both resting blood pressure and stress-related blood pressure increases in males—though the study stopped short of recommending CBD for the treatment of cardiovascular disorders.

A more recent study also found that CBD has a vasodilatory effect, meaning that it could be used to enhance circulation

CBD dosage for epilepsy

Multiple studies over the past decade have confirmed CBD’s status as an anticonvulsant, leading to its use in clinical practice—a rarity for CBD.

A CBD dosage schedule for seizures should be developed with your health care provider. Often, dosages begin at between 2.5 and 5 mg of CBD per kg of body weight and are reviewed and incrementally increased on a weekly basis.

CBD dosage for cancer

Very early research suggests that CBD may possess some direct anti-tumor properties. Studies such as this one from 2019 have observed CBD’s ability to block tumor cell activity.

More generally, CBD—as well as medical cannabis—may be a good option for anyone experiencing inflammatory symptoms as the result of cancer or cancer treatments. This includes nausea, headaches, muscle pain, and gastrointestinal irritation.

Dosage for these symptoms is highly individual depending upon their severity.

For Canadians with cancer, Sativex, a CBD/THC oral spray to treat pain and discomfort may be available by prescription. Talk to your healthcare provider for more information.

 

CBD dosage for Anxiety

For mild-to-moderate anxiety or nervousness, a good starting dose of CBD oil is between 15 and 35 mg per day. As with all uses for CBD, but especially anxiety, users can expect more successful effects from a consistent dosage that allows CBD to build up in the bloodstream.

For some, a much higher CBD dose has been shown to be effective in reducing anxiety symptoms. In a review of studies published in 2015, the authors found that trials using significant doses ranging from 300 to 600 mg were most effective.

The review concludes that CBD has the potential to reduce anxiety in patients with SAD, in the treatment of PTSD, and for “enhancing cognitive behavioral therapy.”

Safety and side effects of CBD  🏥

CBD is legal and regulated in Canada thanks to the Cannabis Act, which helps ensure that products are monitored for quality and safety.

In the US, CBD is also federally legal (when made from hemp plants). However, the FDA has only officially approved one CBD product—a drug called Epidiolex used to treat severe forms of epilepsy in children.

Millions of people around the world safely use CBD, with only minor side effects reported in clinical studies and through anecdotal evidence.

Possible side effects of CBD

The most commonly reported side effects of using CBD are –

  • Drowsiness or tiredness
  • Dry mouth
  • Changes to appetite (reduced or increased)
  • Diarrhea

Safe dosages and overdose: Is it possible to take too much CBD?

All research and anecdotal evidence points towards CBD having very low toxicity, which makes it extremely hard to take a dangerous amount.

When researchers tested the upper limits of dosages by giving people 1500 mg of CBD per day for a month, they found no signs of damage or withdrawal.

When the World Health Organization (WHO) produced an extensive review of the literature on CBD in 2017, they found that “CBD is generally well tolerated with a good safety profile” and that “there is no evidence of public health-related problems associated with the use of pure CBD.”

It’s worth noting that CBD appears to have a favorable side effect and safety profile in comparison to similar pharmaceutical drugs, such as ibuprofen and other NSAIDs.

Talk to your doctor

Many healthcare professionals are happy to help their patients develop a safe CBD dosage schedule, so always talk to your doctor before beginning supplementation. If they do give you advice on specific dosages, use their recommendations rather than online information.

CBD is one of several natural compounds, along with grapefruit juice, that are known to affect enzymes in the liver that help break down certain medications. These include statins and benzodiazepines.

As a result, those taking prescription medications should check with their doctor for any potential negative interactions before taking CBD.

CBD dosage for dogs  🐶

Dogs are vulnerable to several common inflammatory conditions, including osteoarthritis and canine anxiety. As a result, they can also benefit greatly from CBD supplementation.

** Always give dogs and other animals pet-friendly CBD products designed for non-human use. **

How to calculate CBD dosage for dogs

There are three things to keep in mind when developing a CBD dosage for dogs:

  1. The dogs’ condition
  2. The dogs’ body weight
  3. CBD product concentration

Using these factors, owners can give their dogs CBD with a starting dose of 0.2 mg per lb of their pets’ body weight.

Just like humans, dogs will benefit from a personalized dosage, and owners should experiment with what works for their pup. Increases of doses up to 0.7 mg per lb are generally tolerated well.

As with traditional medications, dogs can also build a tolerance to CBD, so dosages may need to be slowly raised over time to retain their effect.

Talk to your dogs’ healthcare provider to develop a specific dosage schedule for their individual needs.

Summary: CBD dosage tips & FAQ

 

  • There is no one ideal CBD dosage—instead, it’s important to experiment to find the right amount of CBD for you, based on your weight, tolerance to cannabis, and reasons for supplementation.
  • Most people find that a dose of between 20 – 40 mg is a good starting point for their CBD journey.
  • CBD is safe and well-tolerated by the vast majority of people. If you do experience side effects, they are likely to be minor (tiredness, dry mouth, etc).
  • CBD can interact with certain drugs that are metabolized by a type of liver enzyme. If you’re currently taking prescription medications, talk to your healthcare provider before starting CBD.

CBD dosage tips 💡

Make note of your dosage

When it comes to CBD, what works for one person may not for another. This means that finding the perfect dosage is going to take a bit of experimentation.

That experimentation shouldn’t be inconsistent. We suggest using a notebook or spreadsheet to record as many relevant factors as you can, including your weight, your diet, how you felt before and after dosages, and anything else that may affect your CBD experience.

 
CBD Is Biphasic/Adaptogenic

CBD is biphasic, which means that different effects can emerge at different dosages. As a result, a higher dosage doesn’t always provide greater benefits.

The concept of biphasic compounds can seem counterintuitive but isn’t uncommon. For example, alcohol is biphasic. Below a certain blood alcohol content, alcohol provides a stimulating effect, while it becomes a depressant at higher blood saturation.

 

Choose the right CBD format

Selecting the appropriate CBD delivery method for your needs can affect successful supplementation.

For those with general inflammation and anxiety, CBD oil will help provide a whole-body effect. Those with skin and muscles issues may benefit more from a topical CBD product, such as a cream or roll-on.

CBD dosage FAQ  🔍

How many times a day can I take CBD?

3 – 4 full droppers of CBD per day, spaced apart, is completely fine. Beyond possible fatigue and dry mouth, you should expect no ill effects.

 
When should I use CBD?

We recommend taking a full dropper in the morning and at night before bed (depending on your weight and concentration of CBD oil).

Others may choose to use CBD at the point of need, such as few hours before a flight, or after exercise.

 

What is a safe dose of CBD?

The only significant safety issues related to CBD are (1) possible negative interactions with prescription medications, and (2) low-quality or counterfeit CBD products.

Beyond these two points, all doses of CBD should be considered safe.

With high doses of potent full-spectrum CBD oils that contain traces of THC, some users may feel a small high. It would take approximately 6 droppers of THC-containing CBD oil within a 4-hour window to feel any intoxicating effects.

 

What is the maximum amount of CBD I can take in 24 hours?

With no overdose risk, the only factors to take into account with extreme CBD dosages are the possibility of fatigue and dry mouth, as well as mild intoxication with full-spectrum oils.

Because high dosages of CBD oil require users to consume large amounts of carrier oil, there may also be a risk of diarrhea and stomach upset.