Originally just known as “another thing in weed,” CBD has recently exploded beyond hippies and out to the general public. And it’s not hard to see why, when it has so many benefits, helping conditions and circumstances like seizure disorders, anxiety, chronic pain, chemotherapy, acne, psoriasis, arthritis and hangovers. Just about everybody and their grandma have heard somebody say “well, have you tried CBD for that?”
What is CBD?
CBD is short for cannabidiol. It’s one of many chemicals called cannabinoids. These connect to the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) in your body, which, unlike the digestive or skeletal system, was only discovered in the 90’s. The ECS primarily affects the nervous system, especially the brain, which is why cannabinoids like THC and CBD are mostly known for altering behavior. This system is composed of receptors, in the brain, spine, and nerves, which are stimulated by endocannabinoids, neurotransmitters which closely resemble cannabinoids, such as CBD, on a chemical level. The two main receptor types are CB1 and CB2.
The ECS is mainly responsible for maintaining homeostasis, your body’s balance. The endocannabinoids, in different levels, affect the receptors in ways which can regulate appetite, mood, pain response, memory, libido, and sleepiness vs wakefulness. Certain endocannabinoids also lower the seizure threshold, reducing epileptic episodes. When you get stressed out, your body releases cortisol to stimulate your fight-or-flight response. If you have too much cortisol in your body, the ECS kicks in and releases transmitters similar to CBD to calm you down and restore balance.
What about THC?
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is another cannabinoid. It specifically mimics anandamide, an endocannabinoid which triggers the CB1 and CB2 receptors in a way which stimulates appetite, alters perception of time, perception of pleasure, coordination, movements, and how you perceive sensory information. THC also can stimulate release of dopamine, which is why it tends to make you feel pleasant. Between these effects, smoking or vaporizing THC-containing flower or concentrates, or consuming THC edibles or tinctures, tend to make you feel “high.” Inhaled forms of THC kick in almost immediately and can last a couple of hours; edibles take much more time to kick in and wear off. THC can cause hallucinations, delusions, motor skill impairment and memory loss. It is very important to avoid driving and operating heavy equipment while high on THC, as your thinking and motor control may be affected. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, THC is the second-highest found psychoactive substance found in drivers, after alcohol.
What makes CBD different?
Quite simply put, CBD doesn’t get you high. You might feel different, with a better mood and less pain, but you won’t feel like unable to drive a car safely, nor will you feel like the government is out to get you, nor will you feel like your dog can read your mind (unless, of course, you already feel this way). CBD is all the medicinal benefits of cannabis, boasting the most boosts of any of the cannabinoids, with virtually no adverse effects in the average user. While THC stimulates the CB1 receptor, CBD inhibits it, so it can even counter some adverse effects of THC, such as paranoia. THC is also illegal in many states, and most states in which it is legal, it’s only for medical cardholders. CBD is legal almost everywhere, and anybody over 18 can go into a CBD shop and buy a tincture or some flower.
What the difference means to you is based mostly on what you’re looking for. If you want to get blazed with your buds, find a local dispensary and get yourself some THC. If you want to skip the high, or need to do so because of where you live or work, and enjoy medical benefits like pain and anxiety relief, CBD is for you!
Silver Owl can help you find the CBD products to enhance your life. We’re invested in helping people discover the benefits of cannabidiol. All our products contain high-quality CBD with little (<.3% in the flower) or no CBD (0% in the isolate products, including tinctures, topicals, and pet products), meaning that you get all the awesome benefits of CBD without clouding your brain or failing a drug test. Enhance your life today!