Nearly one in five Americans over the age of 50 have used at least one CBD oil product, according to a Gallop poll. It’s not surprising. CBD is everywhere. But what is so appealing about it for older adults?
Pain management is the top reason. In a BDS Analytics survey, 19 percent of 50-plus cannabidiol users say pain relief is their primary reason for using it, while 16 percent say they use it to relax. And getting a better night’s sleep scored 9 percent. If CBD oil helps all of these people feel good enough to talk about it in a survey, there must be something to it, right?
In short, yes. There have been many studies about the potentially beneficial properties of CBD like helping anxiety, lowering blood pressure, and reducing migraine pain by 55 percent, in addition to the ones mentioned above. Even a study in rats suggests topical applications could help the pain and inflammation associated with arthritis.
So, how do you find the right product for you?
Do Your Research
Before you cannonball into the CBD waters, take some time to get to know the products. They aren’t all created the same. Hemp-derived CBD oil is right on the heels of olive oil as the most counterfeited plant extract on the planet. How do you know you’re getting the real deal? Well, there are three standards you can use to evaluate products:
- Make sure it uses CBD from organic hemp.
- Grown in the United States is preferred.
- It’s third-party lab tested to verify the CBD content and rule out the presence of contaminants.
And because ingesting tinctures and edibles is the most popular way for older adults to consume CBD, making sure the products are authentic is of utmost importance.
How Much Should You Use?
You’ve found an authentic product. First, talk with your doctor. It’s good practice to consult with a physician before adding in any new supplement or pain management method so it won’t interfere with any of your current medications.
Next is the dosage. You’ll notice products are measured in milligrams (mg). This is the amount of CBD oil contained within the product and/or within each dose or serving. Dr. Danial Schecter, family physician and the Director of Global Medical Services at Canopy Growth Corporate, recommends starting with 2.5mg of CBD per use and increasing in increments of 2.5mg until you get the results you want. By starting with a low dose, you’re able to test it out and ensure it’s the right choice for you.
Something to keep in mind is that different types of the same CBD product strength might affect you differently. For example, using a tincture and applying a topical cream may have very different effects — even if those products contain the same strength and concentration of CBD.
Types of Products
CBD comes in many forms and can be smoked, ingested, or used topically. You just have to find the way that suits your needs the best.
Edible forms include capsules, beverages, gummies, baked goods, and CBD oil. And new products are coming out all the time. One upside of using oral forms of CBD is that it is usually easier to measure your dosage. The packaging will usually tell you how many milligrams of CBD is in each serving.
Topical CBD often comes in creams, balms, or lotions, though you might even find it as transdermal patches. These focus on the pain-relieving effects on whatever area needs attention. Many people use topicals to help with arthritis, inflammation, and localized pain. However, topical treatments often contain higher CBD concentrations to be effective, which means lotions and balms can be more expensive than edibles.
Speaking of pain-relieving effects, Mikhail Kogan, M.D., medical director of the George Washington University Center for Integrative Medicine, says cannabinoids are "safer than Tylenol or caffeine by tenfold. If you compare them to opiates, they're about 10,000 times safer." He recommends placing a few drops of the oil under the tongue.
We hope this helps guide your path into the world of CBD. If you’re ready to take the plunge, check out our full range of tinctures, gummies, and creams. All our hemp and hemp products are grown organically and manufactured in the United States, and third-party lab tested for quality. Happy hemping!