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Home > CBD Vs THC – Knowing the Difference
CBD Vs THC – Knowing the Difference

Knowing the Difference between CBD Vs THC

CBD and THC both came from the same family of plants. But both also have their differences.

There’s a common misconception that the two are entirely similar. CBD is still considered a “forbidden plant” among others claiming that it can get you high.

Same Plant Family, Very Different Chemicals

Even though cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) both come from cannabis plants, they are often derived from strains that have been grown to highlight either one or the other.

Some cannabis plants are harvested specifically for their high THC content, while others are grown specifically to cultivate CBD.

It’s probably better to discuss CBD and THC somewhat separately since they are so different from each other.

What is CBD?

CBD is a natural ingredient that grows from the cannabis plant and is wholly unique to that family of plants.

CBD is a cannabinoid which means that any ingredient or chemical that is solely derived from cannabis.

It won’t make someone high because CBD has less THC compared to recreational weed. It’s meant to help users manage pain, anxiety, and even skin problems.

Research suggests cannabinoids might:

  • Reduce anxiety
  • Reduce inflammation and relieve pain
  • Relax tight muscles in people with multiple sclerosis

Physical Effects of CBD

Although it might not be as much of a miracle cure as many people have come to believe it is (at least not proven through studies, yet), there are still a wide variety of physical benefits shown to be associated with CBD.

These include, but are not confined to, the following:

  • Chronic pain relief
  • Topical pain relief
  • Reduced inflammation
  • Reduced nausea/vomiting
  • Fights acne
  • Improved circulation
  • Lower blood pressure

Psychological Effects of CBD

Similar to the physical effects of CBD, there are a number of beneficial psychological effects linked to this natural ingredient.

This is where CBD and THC differ most greatly as CBD doesn’t work as a psychoactive compound, but this naturally-derived product has still been shown to offer some great benefits, including:

  • Reduced anxiety
  • Combats depression
  • Antipsychotic effects
  • May reduce opioid dependence
  • Reduced feelings of isolation
  • Fights PTSD symptoms
  • Improved sleep

Along with the psychological effects, CBD has also been linked to a handful of neuroprotective properties.

It has been and is being studied for its help in treatment for neurological issues.

While research thus far for CBD and neurological issues has been limited, along with any other cannabinoids due to the regulations behind cannabis products in general, there are high hopes for those with conditions like multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, and other neurological disorders.

How Do Most People Use CBD?

Like other natural and naturally-derived products, those wishing to use CBD have a variety of options available to them. For the most part, people use CBD in the following ways:

  • Topical oil application
  • Tinctures
  • Edible cannabis-derived products
  • CBD capsules

It should be noted that low THC cannabis plants can also be dried and smoked to gain the benefits of CBD, but this method of CBD consumption is rare and we don’t recommend it.

Why Do People Use CBD?

If you’ve been following along so far, it should be somewhat obvious as to why people use CBD.

There are a variety of benefits to this natural product, some of which are supported by studies and others of which are circumstantial or situational, and more research is required.

Still, there are a handful of reasons why most people use CBD, and these include things like:

  • Relax after a hard day
  • Reduce swelling after working out or athletic competition
  • Calm down during or after a particularly intense situation
  • Get more restful sleep
  • Internal support for social situations
  • Get nausea under control (especially when it’s brought about by medication or medical procedures like chemotherapy)
  • Promote heart health

As you might have guessed, the majority of people don’t use CBD for reasons that are often associated with cannabis.

This is because THC is the psychoactive compound that physically and emotionally makes people feel “high”.

CBD doesn’t deliver those kinds of effects, but it does work particularly well as a natural remedy for a wide range of issues.

Still, not everyone receives full benefits from using CBD, and some users may experience some negative side effects, including but not limited to nausea, loss of appetite, and diarrhea.

While these cases are rare, we do feel we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention them.

Likewise, for topical applications, there is always a chance that certain ingredients or compounds cause an allergic reaction.

If this happens to you, please stop use immediately and discuss your options with your physician.

What is THC?

Like CBD, THC is a natural ingredient that is only derived from the cannabis family of plants.

It’s also a cannabinoid but rather than being extracted from the plant, THC is often consumed along with parts of the plant material itself.

One big difference between CBD and THC is that the latter is visible on high THC plants in the form of small crystals that cover the dried leaves.

Physical Effects of THC
While not nearly as prevalent as the psychological effects, THC still delivers some very noticeable physical effects on the body. These include:

  • Increased heart rate (when smoked)
  • Enhanced flavor of foods
  • Increased appetite (“the munchies”)
  • Feeling weighed down
  • Tingling sensations, usually near the eyes, scalp, or extremities
  • Pain relief
  • Nausea control

Psychological Effects of THC
As THC and its various strains hit different people in wildly different ways, it’s almost impossible to list all of the ways that it can affect the brain. Nevertheless, there are some effects associated with the ingredient that seems common among its users:

  • Altered perception of time
  • Colors appear brighter
  • Mood changes
  • Fits of giggling
  • Hallucination (in very high doses)
  • Difficulty moving one’s body

Like CBD, THC does have some side effects that are worth noting and are notably more common than the side effects of CBD. The side effects of THC include, but aren’t limited to memory problems, psychosis, delusional thinking, difficulty with critical thinking, extreme cases of nausea, and respiratory issues.

How Do Most People Use THC?

As displayed in popular culture for decades, the vast majority of people consume THC by smoking it as a dried leaf. This is often done by being rolled into a joint, in a pipe, or via a bong. However, there are still some other popular methods of using THC, including:

  • Dabbing
  • Vaping
  • Edibles
  • Capsules

While there are some people who use THC in a tincture or via topical oils or creams, this is extremely rare compared to the number of people who ingest it directly. This is because people primarily consume THC for its psychoactive properties.

Why Do People Use THC?

Where people use CBD primarily for the way it impacts the body, people use THC primarily for the way it impacts their minds. THC, for an extreme majority of users, is consumed for the sole purpose of feeling “high”.

The disparity of uses between these two cannabinoids is precisely why comparing them side by side is difficult, even if the comparison makes sense on some levels.


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