If you’re open to taking CBD oil, chances are you’re wondering, “How long does it take for CBD oil to work?” and “How long does CBD oil last in your system?” It’s a tricky question, though. There is no one concrete answer. How CBD will work for you, and how long it stays in your system, is up to a variety of factors, from tolerance and weight to method of consumption and dosage.

How Does CBD Work?

How CBD interacts with your endocannabinoid system is a large piece of the puzzle when it comes to finding the answer to questions like “ How long does it take for CBD oil to work? ” or “How fast does CBD oil work?”

CBD, short for cannabidiol, is one of the compounds found in the cannabis plant. However, it’s often mistaken for another compound, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is responsible for the psychological “high” many users associate with cannabis. CBD will not get you high; however, it does work with your body’s endocannabinoid system to provide natural benefits.

CBD interacts with a range of proteins in both the body and central nervous system, with a critical piece taking place within the ECS. The CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors are largely responsible for interacting with the CBD. One property of CBD is its inhibition of the absorption of anandamide, a natural cannabinoid that regulates pain. CBD also interacts with other receptor proteins, such as serotonin-receptor 5-HT1A and vanilloid receptor TRPV1. Although there still is much research to be done on CBD and evidence sought after, many people believe it’s purported anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving benefits could be a result of these activations and interactions.

Methods of Consumption

Methods of Consumption

There also are a few ways to consume CBD oil, and this is another puzzle piece. Before you ask, “ How long does it take for CBD oil to work? ”, you should consider how you will use the product. CBD oil can be consumed in its pure form, inhaled, or even applied topically. Pure Relief offers a few different CBD-derived products that you can look into for yourself and determine what works best for you.


One way to consume CBD oil is to put a few drops directly into your mouth. While this is both the quickest and easiest to consume it, quickly swallowing the oil also prevents CBD from immediately entering the bloodstream. Rather than absorb straight into the bloodstream, your body will first send it through the digestive tract and to the liver.

The liver breaks the CBD down before it reaches the bloodstream, sending it instead through the digestive tract and eventually on to the liver, where the CBD’s concentration is reduced before finally reaching the bloodstream.

The same goes for CBD-infused edibles, such as brownies or CBD gummies, and even adding a few drops of CBD oil to whatever you’re cooking. All ultimately will go through the digestive tract, reducing the total CBD concentration in your bloodstream. It’s a lengthy process, and it also means CBD could take a couple of hours to set in.


Similar to ingestion, CBD oil can be consumed sublingually. The user simply places a few drops under the tongue and holds it there for 30 seconds or so before swallowing it. With this method, however, CBD is absorbed by the mucous membranes located in the mouth and allows the body to skip over the initial metabolization process. This means CBD will enter your bloodstream more quickly, reducing the amount of time it takes to feel its effects.


If you hope the answer to the question “How long does it take for CBD oil to work?” is sooner rather than later, inhalation is probably one of the quickest ways to reap the effects of CBD. This includes smoking a high-CBD strain or using a CBD vape pen.

When CBD is smoked or vaped, the cannabinoids are sent directly to the lungs and rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream. That means it reaches peak concentration within minutes after consumption, making it one of the most effective ways to reap the effects of CBD quickly.


Topical CBD is applied directly to and absorbed through the skin, interacting with localized cannabinoid receptors. CBD topicals come in the form of creams and lotions and typically are used to help alleviate localized and even chronic pain. When CBD is applied topically, it can take up to an hour or two to feel its full effects.

Other Factors

Method of consumption often plays a significant role in determining how long does it take for CBD oil to work -- and how long it will stay in your system -- but there are other factors that can have an effect on how CBD interacts with your body.


Just as with alcohol, your weight can determine how CBD affects you. How much body fat you have plays a role in the amount of CBD needed to work effectively. Someone who weighs more likely will require more CBD to achieve their desired results. This also affects how long CBD remains in the system.


Have you ever been annoyed by someone who seems to eat like crazy and never gains a pound? Your metabolism also helps determine how long CBD stays in your system. The faster the metabolism, the shorter the amount of time CBD stays in your system. Likewise, if you have a slower metabolism, it likely will last longer.


Above all, you want to make sure you’re taking the correct dosage for your needs. It’s best to consult with a doctor or healthcare provider to decide on the ideal CBD dosage for your treatment. Plus, the dosage amount impacts how long CBD stays in your system. It always is recommended to start with a low dosage and, if needed, gradually increase it until desired results are achieved.


In summary, the answer to the question of “How long does it take for CBD oil to work?” is a weighted one. Depending on various factors, from the method of consumption and dosage to weight and metabolism, the time it takes for CBD to take effect in the body -- and how long it remains in the body -- can differ from person to person. When first starting on your journey with CBD products, it’s best to be conservative with dosage and consider your method of consumption. You know your body best, so pay attention to what it’s telling you and adjust your CBD needs accordingly.

May 11, 2020