THC or CBD? What’s the difference?

If you are currently looking at hemp and cannabis products or reading about their effects, you have probably seen THC and CBD mentioned a lot. If you are new to this space, you may wonder what the difference is. Despite popular opinion, THC and CBD are actually very different in a lot of ways. It is important to learn the difference so that you can make more informed decisions.

What is THC and CBD?

First of all, know that the cannabis plant contains over 100 compounds or chemicals that are called cannabinoids. Indeed, both tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) are cannabinoids found in this plant. Their chemical structure is the same but they are arranged differently. This means that they can have different effects for you when they work with receptors in the body.

The Effect on the Body

One of the big differences between THC and CBD is how they make you feel. Namely, their psychoactive effects will not be the same. For instance, when you take a product that contains CBD, you will not experience any change to how you feel. In other words, you will not get high and you can enjoy the benefits of this natural substance in other ways.

However, products that contain THC are going to create a ‘high’ feeling. This is due to the THC binding with cannabinoid 1 receptors. This may not be a feeling that you want during the day or may be an effect that you do not enjoy.

The Medical Benefits

Often, a person can take CBD and THC for the same conditions. But they do have specialties they can help with and their medical benefits differ slightly.

For instance, there are a lot of people that will take CBD for depression and for helping with anxiety. In addition, there are studies that suggest that CBD may be able to help with inflammation and managing pain. For example, this could be for injuries, aches and pains associated with joints or the blinding pain of migraines.

On the other hand, products that contain THC can have other purposes. For instance, THC can help if you have a low appetite and there are suggestions that it can be beneficial for those that suffer from insomnia. Similar to CBD, THC can be used for pain management and anxiety, as well as for nausea.

The Side Effects

There is the possibility that you can react negatively when you have had THC or CBD. While these side effects are temporary and often not serious, it is important to make yourself aware of them. They will be slightly different.

THC can cause side effects such as a dry mouth and red eyes. Other studies have found that it is possible to experience changes in behavior like anxiety and problems with memory. An increased heart rate may happen with coordination issues.

The side effects reported for CBD are slightly different. For example, you can lose weight and experience appetite changes, although the two may not necessarily be linked. In addition, feeling tired and experiencing dizziness is possible, as well as diarrhea.

The Law

It is essential that you are aware of the laws where you live regarding CBD and THC. This is going to avoid you getting into any trouble. Indeed, the laws have evolved in recent years and each state has slightly different regulations that you should be aware of. You will need to do your research before you purchase any products containing CBD or THC.

For example, there are some states that allow you to use cannabis products for recreational use. In particular, CBD products are often legal but there can be a limit on the THC that they contain. Often, there has to be a very low THC content, such as 0.3 percent. Here are some of the states in which you can purchase CBD products for recreational use:

  • California

  • Colorado

  • Michigan

  • Nevada

  • Oregon

There are some states that follow stricter laws and only allow such products to be used for medical use. This includes:

  • Arizona

  • Florida

  • Minnesota

  • New Jersey

  • Oklahoma

  • Utah

When it comes to drug testing, there is the possibility that CBD and THC can be detected. This is because the components are stored in your fat and this can mean that they stay there for several weeks. THC is more likely to show up on a standard drug test than is CBD.