Why isn’t CBD working for me?

by Laura Howarth February 22, 2023

Why isn’t CBD working for me?

If you find yourself on this page, there is a good chance you’ve tried CBD in the past and have been frustrated with the results. Perhaps you’ve heard friends and family rave about the results, but you haven’t noticed any change after starting your own CBD routine.

First and foremost, you’re not alone. Many people try CBD and find that it doesn’t have the desired results. You may find that you need to try a different product, a different serving size, or a different schedule to achieve the desired effects. And in some cases, you simply need to adjust your expectations.

If CBD isn’t working for you, there are so many reasons this could be the case. Since 2016, we have been supporting customers as they discover CBD for the first time. We’ve learned a lot in this time, particularly from individuals who don’t have the experience they were expecting. Based on anecdotal evidence from our customers, we’ve compiled this list of the most common reasons CBD might not be working for you.

Fast facts

  • CBD doesn’t have the same effect on everyone.
  • It’s common for people to give up on CBD because they don’t notice a change.
  • There are many reasons CBD might not be working for you.
  • CBD isn’t a medicine, so there are no guarantees.
  • There are steps you can take to try to make your CBD more effective.

Why do I feel like CBD doesn't work?

Before we delve into why CBD might not be having the desired effect, it’s important to remember that CBD is not a medicine intended to treat or cure any condition. If you have been sold CBD on a wild promise, then you should prepare for disappointment.

It isn’t a medicine, so it cannot be used to treat or cure any particular condition. While you might find anecdotal evidence of individuals using CBD for specific concerns, this is not a guarantee that it will produce the same effects for you. With this in mind, here are some common reasons CBD might not feel like it is working.

You haven’t found the ideal serving size

CBD oil - dropper serving

Taking too much or too little CBD will reduce its efficacy. CBD has a biphasic effect, which means it has a different impact depending on the serving size. If you’re taking too much CBD, you may be experiencing adverse side effects that prevent you from enjoying the balancing effects.

On the other hand, if you are taking a very low-strength product, or you’re taking a small serving size, then you might find that this isn’t enough to produce the effects you’re after.

CBD isn’t a medicine, so we don’t have standard dosing guidelines we can follow. Instead, individuals need to find their ideal serving size and schedule. We recommend starting low and increasing slowly, paying close attention to how it makes you feel.

You haven’t taken it for long enough

Once you have found your ideal serving size, you need to take it consistently. It’s common for individuals to give up after a few weeks because they assume it isn’t doing anything.

Many CBD oil products will contain enough for a whole month of use, and we recommend sticking with it for at least this long to see the positive benefits to your sense of wellness.

When you ingest CBD oil, the body gets to work filtering it out. The cannabinoids need a chance to build up in your bloodstream before you can enjoy the balancing effects.

Your product doesn’t contain any CBD

CBD oil scams on tablet

There are a few reasons your CBD oil might not contain any cannabinoids. 

  • It could have been mislabelled, and you’re simply taking hemp oil (this isn’t the same product as CBD oil). In this case, you need to check the fine print to see the percentage of CBD in the product.
  • The company could lie about the contents, including producing fake lab reports. The packaging can also be misleading. For example, we’ve seen companies claim a product contains 50% CBD, but on closer inspection, it’s actually 50% CBD extract, of which only 10% is CBD, which would make this product 5% strength.

It’s difficult to know if the company you are dealing with is reputable, particularly if they will go as far as faking lab reports. It’s also possible that you could have purchased a counterfeit product which looks similar to a reputable brand. If in doubt, go to a well-known retailer, and be sceptical if the price seems too good to be true.

You’re using an inferior product

If you have opted for CBD isolate, this might not be as effective as a broad-spectrum or full-spectrum CBD product. While CBD isolate is great in topical products, it’s less effective when taken orally. This is because it does not contain the full spectrum of beneficial cannabinoids and plant compounds that contribute to the entourage effect.

You have unrealistic expectations

Seagull flying high

CBD is not a miracle cure, and it won’t fix everything overnight. It’s easy to fall for the marketing hype, and this will leave you with unrealistic expectations of what you can achieve. 

As we have mentioned countless times before – in this article and in others – CBD is not a medicine. We simply don’t know enough about the endocannabinoid system and CBD to be able to test if it is working or not. 

And if you have unrealistic expectations of what it will feel like when you take CBD, then you’re unlikely to continue, because it’s really quite an unremarkable experience. A bit like taking your morning vitamins. 

It’s possible that the CBD oil is doing exactly what it is supposed to do and providing support to your endocannabinoid system, but you aren’t aware of any significant changes. The effects aren’t always noticeable, but your body is experiencing support on the inside. Give it time and learn to tune into your body.

It just doesn’t work for you

Everyone will have a different experience with CBD depending on your body composition, metabolism, the product you use, the serving size, and your individual chemistry. Even what you ate that day could have an impact on your experience with CBD.

While CBD can be beneficial for many people, others simply don’t notice any changes and choose not to stick with it. This doesn’t mean that CBD is a fake product or a scam, it simply means that it doesn’t have the same benefits for everyone. 

What to do next

If you’re unhappy with the results of your CBD product, don’t give up just yet. This checklist will help you to decide your next steps so you can continue your journey of CBD discovery.

  • Did you get your CBD from a reputable source, and have you confirmed the CBD contents?
  • Could you use a higher-strength oil?
  • Could you increase your serving size?
  • Could you adjust your schedule to take CBD twice a day?
  • Have you been taking the product for at least two weeks?
  • Are you being realistic about your expectations?

Conclusion

It’s tempting to dismiss CBD oil if it doesn’t have an immediate and profound impact on your health but try not to be so hasty. CBD isn’t a miracle cure; it should be treated like an everyday health supplement. When taken consistently, trust that it will support your endocannabinoid system, perhaps in ways that aren’t immediately obvious to you.

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Laura Howarth
Laura Howarth

Author

Laura Howarth is a specialist CBD author based in Manchester, UK. She is passionate about sharing her love for CBD through educational articles and in-depth guides.


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