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How to dose your CBD

How to dose your CBD

If you're new to CBD, and are starting your journey of figuring out how you want to use it, one of the key questions you might have asked yourself is - what's the best dosage for CBD?

CBD is not the same for everyone

Basically, there is no official dosage of any type of CBD. There is no official Government Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) for most uses of CBD (though there has recently been an approval of the use of a pure CBD product called Epidiolex for epilepsy). Even recommended dosages printed on CBD product labels can change by company or product.

Also as with any drug, the effects of CBD on any one individual depends on several factors and what one person may use as an ideal dosage may not be ideal for someone else. Instead, what is probably the best way to figure out how much you should take is to simply experiment with your chosen product each time you use it until you find a dosage the works best for you. 

Factors that impact an optimal CBD dosage include:

  • The concentration/strength of CBD in the particular item you’re consuming
  • Your own weight and body chemistry
  • The type and severity of the condition you’re treating
  • Your intake type – whether you’re using oil from a tincture or a vape as an example

It just requires some trial and error, patience, and ideally the advice of a physician that is aware and understand CBD to some extent.

Rules for finding your dosage

Since finding your proper CBD dosage will require some experimentation, it helps to be systematic about the process. Follow the rules below for a smooth calibration process:

  • Start small and increase your dosage gradually. This is good advice for any supplement, and it’s the same with CBD. Start with the lowest possible dosage for your weight, condition, and intake type, then increase each time.
  • Estimate by body weight. CBD Origin are experts on the matter, and recommend using your body weight to find your starting dose. They ave a dosage calculator that will let you enter your condition severity and weight and will give you an estimated dosage at the lower end of the scale for you to work with.
  • Try it before bed. If you're new to CBD and are unsure of how it will affect your energy, some recommend trying it before bed in case it makes you feel drowsy (a common side effect of CBD).

CBD dosage and intake type

As we have mentioned, a large factor in determining how much to use in a dosage is the way in which your administering your CBD. The bioavailability (how the CBD enters your blood) of oil, edibles, vaping and other methods are all different and will change how long it takes for the effects to take place.

So what are the most common ways of taking CBD?

  • Oils 
  • Edibles
  • Capsules
  • Topically (creams and ointments)
  • Vaping

Some are easier to dose than others. Many edible products will come with specific information about how many milligrams of CBD are in each unit. Oils and tinctures, however, whilst they nearly always list the mg strength, may require more estimation on your part. But can be more 'fine-tuned' compared to others as you're able to add or subtract from your dose at a very small level. Creams topicals are probably the least precise, so it's probably best to start with a small amount first.

How to dose CBD oils and tinctures

CBD oils and tinctures are often taken sublingually(beneath the tongue). This offers high bioavailability as the CBD gets to bypass your digestive tract, where some of the CBD would otherwise be filtered out. 

A shortcut to understanding dosage in this type is to purchase a bottle that comes with a 1 milligram per drop concentration, this way you understand that if you want to start with a serving of 10mg - that's 10 drops from the tincture!

If you can't find one of these, however, you can figure out how many mg of CBD actually fit inside your dropper if you know:

  • how many milligrams of CBD are in the bottle
  • how many millilitres of oil is in the bottle
  • how many millilitres of oil fits in the dropper itself

As an example - 500 mg CBD ÷ 50 ML tincture = 10 mg CBD per ML tincture, or 10 mg CBD per dropper

From there, you can easily decrease or increase dosages one drop at a time. If you want to start with only 10 mg, just fill your dropper halfway.

Dosing CBD for vaping

Vaping CBD is inhaling CBD vapour that comes from an oil. So technically you could estimate how much CBD is in one “puff” of the vaporizer using a similar process to estimating your dosage for a CBD tincture. If you know how many milligrams of CBD are in your oil, as well as how many millilitres of oil fit in your tank, and about how many “puffs” you can get from your tank before you need to refill - you can gauge about how much CBD you’re taking in per puff.

But honestly that's a fairly unrealistic way of doing this and won't be accurate at all.

Instead - just start with a single small puff and wait to see how you feel. As was the case with oil you can then ease into your ideal dosage by increasing or reducing as needed if you can tell your plateauing or feeling worse. Considering your intake is impacted depending on how deeply you inhale when vaping, this isn't the most precise method, it does go some way towards giving yourself an understanding of what will work best for you. 

As was the case with sublingual tinctures, vaping CBD offers fairly high bioavailability since the vapour does not go through your digestive system.

Dosing CBD capsules or edibles

Capsules are a very common intake method for CBD users, mostly because they come in pre-measure units. This essentially decides your dosing for you and gives you a much quicker understanding of exactly how much your using at any given time. They do, however, have a much low bioavailability as they have to travel through your digestive system, and therefore you may need to use a higher dosage than you would if you using an oil for example. Another drawback is you can't really fine-tune your dosage and take or add small amounts to it as each capsule will be of the same strength. 


Dosage for CBD creams and topicals

Creams and ointments may be the toughest to precisely dose. True topical creams are designed to produce an effect only at skin-level, while CBD typically works best when in the bloodstream. Even for a cream intended to penetrate the bloodstream through the skin, it would be tougher to produce the desired effects than through a method with higher bioavailability, like sublingual or even oral consumption.

Your best bet is to use creams sparingly to start with and talk to your doctor about your usage.

Do your research before changing/increasing dosage or trying new intake methods.

Since there are no official CBD dosage regulations, it's important to do quality research before changing how much you're taking or in which way you're taking it. there's plenty of information online (including on our website) so spending a little time in understanding what you're doing will go a long way. 


Sources: CBD Origin, Canex, Project CBD.

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